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  1. #1

    2022-2023 MBB ACC Preseason Predictions

    We have a thread on Ď22-Ď23 MBB national preseason rankings, way-too-early stuff. And recently the transfer portal thread has included discussion especially of where UNC should/will be ranked next preseason.

    I hope itís not jumping the gun to offer a thread on our MBB ACC standings predictions. Hereís a start. I am not entirely confident about these predictions, as it appears a few transfer portal guys are yet to decide. More important, I just donít know much about incoming transfers on many ACC teams who may be expected to play major minutes; I think some of you do know about some of these guys.

    So mine are at best semi-educated guesses. More than willing to be educated, told Iíve got team X or Y way in the wrong tier. I guess what follows is a vague #1-15 guess, but for now Iím more interested in whether these tiers are approximately correct, plausible. Are UL and Cuse likely to fall that much? Should UNC be in its own top tier? [NOOOO!] Should the top tier be 2 teams? Four? Might both Pitt and BC be sneaky dangerous?

    That said:

    Top tier
    UNC
    Duke
    UVa

    Challengers for top tier, and ACCT double-bye
    FSU
    Miami
    ND
    VT

    Middle tier
    Clemson
    NCSt
    Pitt
    BC

    Bottom tier
    UL
    Cuse
    Wake
    GT

  2. #2
    David Lowder of howtheyplay.com believes Duke will finish third behind kerolina and UVA during the regular season, but then advance to the Final Four.

    https://howtheyplay.com/team-sports/...etball-Preview

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2022
    So...What am I missing about UVA? I'd have had them at the bottom of the second tier in the ACC. I think they are getting the benefit of the doubt from their great recent run. But they haven't been powers in the ACC for the last few years, their returning players are guys who didn't set the world on fire, and a solid group of incoming recruits would be the first frosh that Bennet has had to make an immediate impact. We joke about UNCheat burying recruits, but the Cheats are like UK compared to UVA.

    That Traudt recruit would seem to be an immediate fix at PF, but kids at UVA don't play until they pick up the D, and his profile screams: I DON'T LOVE PLAYING D. Beekman is a player, no doubt, and probably the current number two preseason CPOY. But Clark's negatives are pretty known at this point. I don't see a lot of other talent that scares me.

    I think UVA, and Bennet, is/are getting the benefit of the doubt based on past results. Well, I'll throw a name out there: Gary Williams. Sweating Gary was a guy who was a solid coach until he had a team with 3 kids SIGNIFICANTLY outplay their rankings. While almost everyone else on the team played at or very near (or slightly above) their rankings. After that, UMD steadily went down as Gary was unable to replicate his strategy of finding hidden gems (or in his case, finding guys that are significantly better than their rankings)

    Ditto Bennet at UVA. Their conf run came at a time when they got lucky scheduling wise, often getting the stronger teams in FSU, Duke, and UNC only 1 time a season, or getting the other guys 2 times in a bad year. Outside of that, their title was because of the lost 1 v 16 game. Hunter, who was on his way to playing into the middle (or possibly tail end of the lottery) got hurt right before the NCAAT, which is why they lost that game. If his injury had been known fully, they'd have been a 3-4 seed. But with Hunter, they'd have won that opening round game, stumbled past the second round, probably, and have gone out in the S16. But Hunter would have gone pro, and UVA would have finished 3rd or 4th in the ACC the next season without him, and probably lost in the second round of the NCAAT. With Hunter, it required the refs to make a call in a situation where refs NEVER make a call (and it was iffy even then), for UVA to win. Plus, it took Duke to faceplant int he Elite 8. Because we would have dog walked them in the FF or Title game.

    So, luck. Both in Hunter, and that PG significantly outplaying their rankings, and that lone McDs AA playing to his ranking, and their supporting players outplaying, even if in a small way, their own rankings (which were pretty modest to begin with).

    That isn't all skill by Bennet. It is a lot of luck, and I'll just flat out ignore how UVA's vaunted defense is founded upon hip checking ball handlers to sideline while the refs just ignore it.

    I see a team with one good player. But that is at SG, which is the most loaded position in American Sports. I see a team that is under-athletic, that lacks top tier skill. Their best recruit, Traudt, would the first frosh to play a big role at UVA in years.

    I just don't see it.

    I think the ACC will be Duke and UNCheat, in some order, and possibly FSU being closer to them than to the rest of the second tier.

    Also, though it brings me zero pleasure to say it, I think NCSU will be at or near the bottom of the bottom tier.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    NC
    Quote Originally Posted by HayYou View Post
    So...What am I missing about UVA?
    I was driving the "UVa is mediocre" bandwagon this past year. But not so much this coming year.

    They return basically their entire team from last year, but upgrade their backup PF/C spot with Vander Plas and a talented freshman Troudt, and they upgraded their backup wing spots with talented freshmen McNeely and Bond.

    They return a super senior former All-ACC PG (Clark), super senior All-ACC PF (Gardner), a junior All-defense and fringe All-ACC PG/SG who led the ACC in assists (Beekman), a multi-year double-digit scoring wing (Franklin), and both of their centers: one a bruising big in the Jack Salt mold (Caffaro); the other a very athletic shotblocker (Shedrick).

    But most importantly, they have the thing that is manna to Bennett: experience and continuity. They return their entire starting 5 plus their sixth man, and they added a 4th big with a ton of experience to an already experienced big man rotation. It's an old team with experience together, and that's usually worked out well for Bennett.

    As far as the players themselves, they'll be lightning quick on the perimeter with Clark, Beekman, and Franklin. They'll be bruising and experienced and deep inside with Caffaro, Gardner, Shedrick, and Vander Plas. And they have talented young wings that they can sprinkle in as necessary in Murray, McKneely, Bond, and Dunn.

    In general, Bennett's teams have tended to overperform in conference play. Even in recent years, when they've finished 1st in the ACC in 2021 and 4th in 2020; last year with an inexperienced team they finished 6th. Combine that with a talented and experienced team, and you have a recipe for a team that overachieves in conference. I'd be fairly surprised if they aren't a top-4 team in the ACC. And #2 is definitely not out of the question as Duke will likely hit some conference play speed bumps.

    To be clear, I think Duke will be the better team by season's end, and will most likely be a higher seeded team in the NCAA tournament. But I could certainly see a scenario in which UVa eeks out a better conference record. They will be notably better than last year, and the ACC looks like it might take a step back.

    I'm not sure what you see in FSU; they were bad this past year and lose Osborne, Evans, Polite, Butler, and (not that he was great but he played a lot) Wilkes. Maybe Baba Miller turns out to be an impact player, but more likely he plays less than 20 mpg in Hamilton's system. They should have good guards/wings, but they'll be really questionable up front (which was their undoing this past year). I would definitely rate FSU behind UVa at this point.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Quote Originally Posted by CDu View Post
    I was driving the "UVa is mediocre" bandwagon this past year. But not so much this coming year.

    They return basically their entire team from last year, but upgrade their backup PF/C spot with Vander Plas and a talented freshman Troudt, and they upgraded their backup wing spots with talented freshmen McNeely and Bond.

    They return a super senior former All-ACC PG (Clark), super senior All-ACC PF (Gardner), a junior All-defense and fringe All-ACC PG/SG who led the ACC in assists (Beekman), a multi-year double-digit scoring wing (Franklin), and both of their centers: one a bruising big in the Jack Salt mold (Caffaro); the other a very athletic shotblocker (Shedrick).

    But most importantly, they have the thing that is manna to Bennett: experience and continuity. They return their entire starting 5 plus their sixth man, and they added a 4th big with a ton of experience to an already experienced big man rotation. It's an old team with experience together, and that's usually worked out well for Bennett.

    As far as the players themselves, they'll be lightning quick on the perimeter with Clark, Beekman, and Franklin. They'll be bruising and experienced and deep inside with Caffaro, Gardner, Shedrick, and Vander Plas. And they have talented young wings that they can sprinkle in as necessary in Murray, McKneely, Bond, and Dunn.

    In general, Bennett's teams have tended to overperform in conference play. Even in recent years, when they've finished 1st in the ACC in 2021 and 4th in 2020; last year with an inexperienced team they finished 6th. Combine that with a talented and experienced team, and you have a recipe for a team that overachieves in conference. I'd be fairly surprised if they aren't a top-4 team in the ACC. And #2 is definitely not out of the question as Duke will likely hit some conference play speed bumps.

    To be clear, I think Duke will be the better team by season's end, and will most likely be a higher seeded team in the NCAA tournament. But I could certainly see a scenario in which UVa eeks out a better conference record. They will be notably better than last year, and the ACC looks like it might take a step back.

    I'm not sure what you see in FSU; they were bad this past year and lose Osborne, Evans, Polite, Butler, and (not that he was great but he played a lot) Wilkes. Maybe Baba Miller turns out to be an impact player, but more likely he plays less than 20 mpg in Hamilton's system. They should have good guards/wings, but they'll be really questionable up front (which was their undoing this past year). I would definitely rate FSU behind UVa at this point.
    Another step? Let's hope not. I know we had some terrific results in the tournament, but as we all have discussed many times, that is something from which it is problematic to draw firm conclusions about a conference's strength. I sure hope last season as a whole was the anomaly for the league and this year the conference will return to top tier status. The conference's reputation can't really stand experiencing another really down year.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by TywinBlue View Post
    David Lowder of howtheyplay.com believes Duke will finish third behind kerolina and UVA during the regular season, but then advance to the Final Four.

    https://howtheyplay.com/team-sports/...etball-Preview
    Thanks for this link. This guy knows more than I about ACC rosters. Mostly. Not sure why he omits any mention of the return of Miami RS-Jr Harlond Beverly, Ď19 RSCI #56, who played starter minutes his first 2 years. Lousy 3-pt shooter, but surely solidly in the Canesí rotation in Ď22-Ď23, Iíd think.

    Also, this writer says new UL coach Kenny Payne ďis stepping into a strong roster.Ē Huh? Do they have 10 recruited scholarship guys? Do they have more than 2 guards, period?

    Still, I do have to say that this writerís analysis suggests Iíve got VT too low, UL and Cuse a little low, Pitt and BC a little high, and NCSt way way too high. Pack to finish last, he thinks. Really?

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by CDu View Post
    I was driving the "UVa is mediocre" bandwagon this past year. But not so much this coming year.

    They return basically their entire team from last year, but upgrade their backup PF/C spot with Vander Plas and a talented freshman Troudt, and they upgraded their backup wing spots with talented freshmen McNeely and Bond.

    They return a super senior former All-ACC PG (Clark), super senior All-ACC PF (Gardner), a junior All-defense and fringe All-ACC PG/SG who led the ACC in assists (Beekman), a multi-year double-digit scoring wing (Franklin), and both of their centers: one a bruising big in the Jack Salt mold (Caffaro); the other a very athletic shotblocker (Shedrick).

    But most importantly, they have the thing that is manna to Bennett: experience and continuity. They return their entire starting 5 plus their sixth man, and they added a 4th big with a ton of experience to an already experienced big man rotation. It's an old team with experience together, and that's usually worked out well for Bennett.

    As far as the players themselves, they'll be lightning quick on the perimeter with Clark, Beekman, and Franklin. They'll be bruising and experienced and deep inside with Caffaro, Gardner, Shedrick, and Vander Plas. And they have talented young wings that they can sprinkle in as necessary in Murray, McKneely, Bond, and Dunn.

    In general, Bennett's teams have tended to overperform in conference play. Even in recent years, when they've finished 1st in the ACC in 2021 and 4th in 2020; last year with an inexperienced team they finished 6th. Combine that with a talented and experienced team, and you have a recipe for a team that overachieves in conference. I'd be fairly surprised if they aren't a top-4 team in the ACC. And #2 is definitely not out of the question as Duke will likely hit some conference play speed bumps.

    To be clear, I think Duke will be the better team by season's end, and will most likely be a higher seeded team in the NCAA tournament. But I could certainly see a scenario in which UVa eeks out a better conference record. They will be notably better than last year, and the ACC looks like it might take a step back.

    I'm not sure what you see in FSU; they were bad this past year and lose Osborne, Evans, Polite, Butler, and (not that he was great but he played a lot) Wilkes. Maybe Baba Miller turns out to be an impact player, but more likely he plays less than 20 mpg in Hamilton's system. They should have good guards/wings, but they'll be really questionable up front (which was their undoing this past year). I would definitely rate FSU behind UVa at this point.
    Great analysis. This year's UVa team is built like the ones that always finish at the top of the ACC standings. Clark is a key returnee. Last years team beat FF bound Duke in Cameron and only lost by 4 in Charlottesville. They will be a tough out for most of the ACC.

  8. #8
    The link provided a couple weeks back ^ by TywinBlue to early ACC Ď22-Ď23 predictions is the only such preview posted so far in this thread.

    https://howtheyplay.com/team-sports/...etball-Preview

    As Iíve said before, this guy has compiled good info about next seasonís ACC rosters, but some of his predictions donít make sense to me.

    If the ACC is expected to be generally stronger, I donít see Wake, having lost Williams and LaRavia, up at #8.

    More puzzling still is the characterization of ULís roster as ďstrong.Ē I expect them to be bottom tier, below, for example, improving Pitt and BC. The Cards are probably set on the interior with 4 bigs. But 3 of those 4 in Ď21-Ď22 played sparingly, and not one of them averaged more than 7 ppg. UL seems to have but a single PG on next seasonís roster, no SGís at all. Its nominal wing/SFs are 2 frosh, Ď22 RSCI-ranked 59 (2 spots above our Jaden Schutt) and 80; plus a RS-Fr, Ď21 RSCI-ranked 76. I donít doubt that 2 of these 3 SFís will probably have ďbetterĒ frosh seasons than Schutt, but thatís mostly because theyíll likely play meaningful minutes.

    This UL depth chart is not impressive on paper. Doesnít strike me as better than Pittís or BCís.

    https://www.si.com/college/louisvill...ter-outlook-30

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