Famed basketball statistician Ken Pomeroy — or, KenPom — released his projections for the 2017-18 basketball season. It’s like Christmas for hoops junkies — myself included.
As usual, the ACC is well-represented. Two ACC programs — Duke and Virginia — land inside the top 10. The Blue Devils check in at No. 6 overall while the Cavaliers of Tony Bennett rank No. 9. In a fun contrast, KenPom’s numbers project Duke’s offense to be the most efficient in the nation: 116.9 points per 100 possessions. Virginia’s defense is projected to be the most stingiest unit in Division I ball, too: 86.8 points per 100 possessions.
The Big 12 and SEC both have two teams in the projected top 10, too.
How does the rest of the ACC rank?
- No. 6 Duke
- No. 9 Virginia
- No. 12 North Carolina
- No. 16 Louisville
- No. 23 Notre Dame
- No. 27 Miami
- No. 44 Georgia Tech
- No. 47 Clemson
- No. 53 Virginia Tech
- No. 55 Florida State
- No. 57 Wake Forest
- No. 68 Syracuse
- No. 95 Boston College
- No. 109 NC State
- No. 121 Pittsburgh
- Along with Duke, two other ACC teams rank inside the top 10 of projected offensive efficiency: Notre Dame (No. 8) and UNC (No. 10)
- KenPom numbers project Louisville to be the league’s second best defense, after UVA: No. 13 (90.9 points per 100 possessions)
- Virginia has never led the nation in defensive efficiency, but the Cavs have five times ranked inside the top 10 since Bennett arrived (2012, 2014-17)
- As is customary for Virginia, too, the Cavs are projected to once again play at the nation’s slowest pace — ranking dead last in adjusted tempo
- NC State and Pitt are rated as the league’s two worst teams; KenPom projects the Wolfpack and Panthers to both win only four ACC games this season
- The Wolfpack are pegged as the No. 89 team in Division I, which is exactly where the team ended last season, too