2009-2010 ACC Preview

Posted on 08. Sep, 2009 by Nolan Shulman in Conference Previews, NCAA

One year after Tyler Hansbrough and his Tar Heels captured the National Championship, the ACC is wide open. With the Heels in reload mode (do they ever rebuild ??), the rest of the league has as good a chance as ever to capture a league crown. Last year it was a three horse race between UNC, Duke and Wake, but this year there is much more parity throughout the conference. This parity is highlighted by Georgia Tech. Coming off an abysmal 2 win conference season, the Yellow Jackets should do a 180 and compete for a conference title. How is this possible? Paul Hewitt went out and secured the top big man in the class of 2009, freshman sensation Derrick Favors. With Favors in the fold along with the emergence of Iman Shumpert and steady play of Gani Lawal, Tech should be really exciting, and more importantly really good. Wake should once again be in the hunt with Al-Farouq back on campus, while Miami will unleash their own dynamic freshman, Durand Scott. Let’s not forget Maryland. They will once again be leaning on Greivis Vasquez to carry them to the promise land. There is a plethora of talent in the ACC and while last year was all about the Big East, this year the best basketball in the country will no doubt be played on the Atlantic Coast.

2008-2009 ACC Standings
1. North Carolina 13-3
2. Duke 11-5
3. Wake Forest 11-5
4. Florida St. 10-6
5. Clemson 9-7
6. Boston College 9-7
7. Maryland 7-9
8. Miami 7-9
9. Virginia Tech 8-10
10. NC State 6-10
11. Virginia 4-12
12. Georgia Tech 2-14

2009-2010 Projected Standings

1. Duke 12-4
2. North Carolina 12-4
3. Wake Forest 11-5
4. Miami 11-5
5. Georgia Tech 9-7
6. Maryland 8-8
7. Florida St. 7-9
8. Clemson 6-10
9. Virginia Tech 6-10
10. NC State 5-11
11. Boston College 4-12
12. Virginia 3-13

PRE-SEASON All-CONFERENCE TEAMS

Player of the Year: Kyle Singler, Duke

After being asked by coach K to play somewhat out of position in his first two seasons at Duke, Kyle will be able to slide over to the wing and show off more of his skill set in 2009-2010. With freshman Ryan Kelly and Mason Plumlee ready to take the court at Cameron, Kyle is in for a monster season. His rebounding (7.7 rpg) may drop slightly, but his assists (2.4 apg), and points (16.5 ppg) should both increase. He will be able to utilize the bounce more, should get more touches, and will inevitably hoist up more shots. If he can keep his shooting percentage in the mid 40’s, while increasing his free throw attempts and percentage (71% as a sophomore), he should take his game to new heights and prove to NBA scouts he’s the player he was projected to be coming out of high school.

First Team
G- Iman Shumpert, Georgia Tech: I got a chance to watch this kid work at the LeBron James Skills Academy this summer. He’s worked hard to improve his jumper (shot 31% last year from 3 and 39% from 2)….Prediction: he’s one of the 3 best point guards in the land this year.
G- Greivis Vasquez, Maryland: This kid does a little bit of everything. Averaged 15, 5, and 5 last year and has worked as hard as any player in the country throughout the off-season. He may never be an NBA lottery pick, but he’s going to be one of the elite guards and leaders in the country this year.
F- Al-Farouq Aminu, Wake Forest: Elected to remain at Wake Forest and put the draft on hold. If he can improve his jump shot and decision making, he could go top 5 in 2010.
F- Kyle Singler, Duke: Mr. Consistancy will become a leader and go-to-guy at Duke this season. He’s been working on his quickness and ball handling all summer to get ready.
C- Derrick Favors, Georgia Tech: Could be the best big man in the country by the time conference play rolls around. He’s an absolute stud who should single-handedly allow Tech to triple it’s ACC win total. (not that that’s saying a heck of a lot)

Second Team
G- Sylven Landesberg, Virginia: This kid is an absolute stud and getting better everyday. If he can extend his range a little (31% from 3), sky’s the limit. Great rebounder who averaged 6 a game as a guard. Could become a GREAT defensive player one day.
G- Jon Scheyer, Duke: Last year the team really took a giant leap after he took over the point guard duties. He’s now had the entire summer to sit on the fact that he’s going to run the show and he’s going to do a phenomenal job once again.
F- Gani Lawal, Georgia Tech: He averaged 15 and 9.5 last year on 55% shooting. With Favors in the fold and less attention on him, he could be 20 and 10 this year.
F- Ed Davis, North Carolina: With Hansbrough gone, Davis will be asked to pick up the scoring slack on the low block. He’s more than up to the challenge and should help Heels fans get over Phsyco-T.
C- Soloman Alabi, Florida St.: How does a guy who averaged 8.5 and 5.5 make it on the second team all-conference team? At 7-1, 240 pounds he should be able to change the game on the defensive end of the floor for the Seminoles. Think a poor man’s Thabeet.

Third Team
G- Malcolm Delaney, Virginia Tech: Great shooter can rebound and drop dimes as well. One of the most versatile players in the ACC.
G- Rakim Sanders, Boston College: Shooting stroke is improving daily which should make Sanders one of the more efficient guards in the ACC. With Rice gone, he should see more shots.
F- K.C. Rivers, Clemson: Played better and better as the season went on and should build on that this season.
F- Trevor Booker, Clemson: Averaged 15 points and nearly 10 boards a game as a Junior. He’s a tad undersized but he gets the job done every night. Played his best hoops of the season down the stretch last year and I expect he’ll improve on his already impressive numbers.
C- Deon Thompson, North Carolina: With Psycho-T now playing for the Pacers, I expect Thompson to have a big year. He’s got all the gifts to become a big time player, now he should get the touches as well.

PRE-SEASON ALL-FRESHMAN TEAMS

Freshman of the Year: Derrick Favors, Georgia Tech

Georgia Tech accomplished something every team who goes 2-14 would love to accomplish. They went out and got the best big man in high school basketball. Favors is a really good kid, but more importantly he’s a terrific rebounder, has a solid back to the basket game, and is excellent at guarding the post. This kid has the potential to be the best big man in the history of the Yellow Jackets program and may emerge as an All-American.

First Team
G- Michael Snaer, Florida St. : Should be an explosive scorer from day one. Can stroke it from deep and pull up from mid range. Should do an excellent job replacing Douglas’ production.
G- Durand Scott, Miami: Should make Hurricane fans forget all about Jack McClinton. Hard nosed kid who’s going to bring it for 40 minutes.
F- John Henson, North Carolina: Henson should make the North Carolina front court as deep as any in the country. Versatile kid can play the 3,4, or 5 in a pinch. May take a year or two to become an all-league player.
F- Ryan Kelly, Duke: John Wall’s teammate on D-One sports should give the Blue Devils another versatile forward. He can shoot it and should bring a similar skill set as Singler.
C- Derrick Favors, Georgia Tech: Will compete with John Wall for Freshman of the Year. Will team with Gani to form the best front court in the country.

Second Team
G- Dexter Strickland, North Carolina: Next in line to be North Carolina’s two-guard, which means he should be phenomenal from day one.
G- Mfon Udofia, Georgia Tech: Should team up with Shumpert to form one of the more formidable backcourts in the ACC. Was a point guard in high school but might have to move off the ball in year one if he wants PT.
F- Milton Jennings, Clemson: Needs some work on the low block and could use some strength, but he’s got all the skills one needs to be a dynamite player down the road.
F- Ari Stewart, Wake Forest: More of an athlete than a basketball player at this point. He’s got tremendous upside for a wing.
C- Jordan Williams, Maryland: Great frame with solid low post moves. Needs to act tougher and to make an impact.

COACH ON THE HOT SEAT

Paul Hewitt, Georgia Tech: Don’t think he’s in danger of losing his job but he’s got no excuses this year. With Favors and Lawal up front and Shumpert running the offense, the Yellow Jackets should be dancing this year. I think they are sleepers to make a deep run too. What a difference a year make. Hewitt is certainly getting it done on the recruiting trail, now he needs to get it done on the court.

Nolan Shulman
nolan@flagrantfouls.com

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4 Responses to “2009-2010 ACC Preview”

  1. Greg

    16. Sep, 2009

    Florida State should be much better than 7-9. True they lose Toney Douglas, but they return a lot of talent, size, and experience. They seem to have gelled after a summer trip to Spain. I would expect them to challenge for ACC supremacy this year.

    Reply to this comment
  2. Steve

    15. Sep, 2009

    Solid but you need to edit the article. KC Rivers already graduated from Clemson.

    Reply to this comment
  3. Richard

    08. Sep, 2009

    Your right. Durand Scott is going to be a star. Hes already better than Jack

    Reply to this comment
  4. Minnesota Terrapin

    08. Sep, 2009

    Singler over Vazquez…..You must be on drugs.

    Reply to this comment

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