Tigers Tabbed Fifth by ACC Media

Clemson hoping to improve on 24-10 final record from 2007-08 season.

The Clemson men's basketball team was predicted to finish fifth in the ACC preseason poll, according to media members in attendance at Sunday's operation basketball event at the Marriott Marquis. North Carolina was a unanimous choice as the ACC's #1 team, followed by Duke, Wake Forest, and Miami.

The Tigers are coming off an impressive 2007-08 season. Clemson was third place in the ACC regular season race, then advanced to the championship game of the ACC Tournament for the first time since 1962. Clemson also earned a berth in the NCAA Tournament, its first in 10 seasons.

Clemson is under the direction of sixth-year Head Coach Oliver Purnell. The Tigers' mentor holds a 94-68 record in his five seasons with the Tiger program, which includes a school-record 49 wins in the past two years alone. Purnell has guided the program to an improvement in its overall winning percentage each of the last four seasons.

The team returns three starters from last year's squad, including 2008 first-team All-ACC Tournament players Trevor Booker and K.C. Rivers. The third returning starter for the Tigers is sophomore point guard Demontez Stitt. Clemson also returns 11 letterwinners, including double-digit scorer Terrence Oglesby.

The team will play host to Division II foe USC Aiken in its only public exhibition on Thursday, November 6. The game, which will start at 7:30 PM, will be free admission to the general public. Clemson's first regular season game will be November 14 against Hofstra in the Charleston Classic.

Preseason Men's Basketball Poll - ACC Sportswriters
1. North Carolina (40) 480
2. Duke 436
3. Wake Forest 354
4. Miami 344
5. Clemson 306
6. Virginia Tech 298
7. Maryland 192
8. Georgia Tech 186
9. NC State 179
10. Florida State 145
11. Boston College 123
12. Virginia 79

Number in parenthesis is first-place votes.

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