Well, it’s back. College basketball return last weekend all across the county. In the ACC, teams were getting their feet wet by playing games against non-conference opponents. Once again the conference looks strong from top to bottom. Five teams led by preseason number one Duke, find themselves in the AP Top 25 to begin play.
Speaking of those Blue Devils, congrats are in order for the man at the helm. Head Coach Mike Krzyzewski won his 1,000th game at Duke last weekend vs Utah Valley. While another coach, Roy Williams of the defending National Champion North Carolina Tar Heels was closing in on 400 wins at the school. In fact, as the year begins, the 15 head coaches in this league have combined for 6,200 career wins and nine national titles.
There are some terrific players for fans to watch this season. Notre Dame’s senior Forward Bonzie Colson is the preseason pick as player of the year. Duke’s freshman big man Marvin Bagley III has NBA scouts drooling over what he brings on a nightly basis. No wonder he was tabbed as preseason rookie of the year. Another Blue Devil that will be counted on for big things is senior guard Grayson Allen, who leads all active league players in career points with 1,424. This conference has players and teams that will keep fans engaged.
The Wake Forest Demon Deacons, are starting to turn a corner under fourth-year Head Coach Danny Manning. Two players to keep an eye on this season are Junior Guard Keyshawn Woods, who appeared in all 33 games of which he made 22 starts. He averaged 12.5 points a game, 4.2 rebounds, and 3.5 assists per contest. While running mate Bryan Crawford, enters the campaign having scored in double-figures in an ACC best 24 consecutive games.
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There is a new man running things at North Carolina State, his name is Kevin Keatts. He welcomes back senior forward Abdul-Malik Abu into the fold. A season ago, Abu led the Wolfpack in rebounding for the second consecutive season. Abu started 31 of the 32 games that he played in averaging 11.8 points a game. He will be counted on heavily by the new head man as a new chapter in Wolfpack basketball begins.
The Clemson Tigers have some key returning seniors back for their final season. One of then is Donte Grantham. He averaged 7.3 points and 4.3 boards a game last year while starting 32 games for the Tigers. He also ranks third on the team in three-point field goals made with 38. The other senior is Gabe DeVoe, who averaged 7.1 a game which was a career best for him as a junior a year ago.
The Boston College Eagles will be counting on their backcourt to get things headed in the right direction this season. One of those guards will be junior, Jerome Robinson, who last year scored 18.7 points a game, 3.9 boards, and 3.4 assists per contest. Robinson was chosen second-team preseason All-ACC, while also garnering one vote for player of the year. Robinson will have to live up to that lofty status if the Eagles are going to make headway in the conference.