Sunday, November 11, 2007

ACC Basketball Predictions

ACC Basketball is here again and not a moment too soon. There are several intriguing stories this season that will dictate the standings by seasons end. Will Landon Milbourne be the small forward Gary and the terps need to win? Can Kyle Singler (watch, he's number 33) and the other Duke freshmen provide the scoring and athleticism that they sorely lacked last season? Can Virginia maintain the momentum from last year's magical season without J.R. Reynolds?......This is the beauty of the ACC, every team can win on any night. How many conferences can boast that their 10th place team (Florida State) has brought in the nation's fifth best high school center (five star Solomon Alabi)? With that said I give you the the first ever ACC Ballers season preview:

Team Predictions:

1. North Carolina: Their talent, depth, and athleticism should prove too much for everyone else. Watch for Wayne Ellington to have breakout year as a sophomore after a solid first year.
2. Duke: Talent. Singler, Nolan Smith (watch) and Taylor King should be the influx of talent that this program needed.
3. Maryland: Might be high for some people's liking but they have the ingredients of a good acc team. Young but experienced backcourt and a big time front court player in senior James Gist.
4. North Carolina State: Sidney Lowe has infused new life into this program. They've got the talent inside to beat anyone in this conference but point guard play is an issue. Can Farnold Degand be the solution? I'm not sure, but we'll see. Apparently 07' McDonald's All American power forward J.J. Hickson (watch) is the real deal.
5. Virginia: In college hoops, guards win games. Senior Sean Singletary has been the best point guard in the conference for the past two seasons. He'll retain that title this season as well.
6. Clemson: Played a very soft schedule last season and it hurt them come ACC season. James Mays leads the way here.
7. Georgia Tech: They get Lewis Clinch, their leading scorer before his suspension, back to go along with high school All American Gani Lawal.
8. Florida State: Tough team with experienced guard play. They need a big year from Uche Echefu.
9. Boston College: Lost two first round picks on the front line in Jared Dudley and Sean Williams and will have a tough time making up that loss of production. Junior point guard Tyrese Rice will have to do more than ever this season.
10. Wake Forest: Tough off season for the Demon Deacons. They'll look to sophomore point guard Ishmael Smith to run the show.
11. Virginia Tech: Lost two big time guards and now must rebuild. This could be a very long season in Blacksburg as they have to find a way to replace the almost 29 point per game they lost in the backcourt. The heralded freshman from Washington, DC Jeff Allen should contribute inside though.
12. Miami: Jack McClinton, the junior guard from Charm city leads the way. He needs some help though, and it doesn't look like he'll get it this year.

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