RamblinRed's ACC 2005-2006 Preview

RamblinRed provides a solid primer for everyone for the upcoming ACC season. For each team he will provide a roster, potential starting lineup, key reserves, ACC strength of schedule and an outlook for the season.

RamblinRed's ACC 2005-2006 Preview

I hope to provide a solid primer for everyone for the upcoming ACC season. For each team I will provide a roster, potential starting lineup, key reserves, ACC strength of schedule and an outlook for the season.

With the advent of the unbalanced schedule I am starting to pay more attention to who each team has to play and where as it could play a role in how teams finish the regular season. To calculate the strength of schedule I took the ACC Pre-Season poll and assigned each team the points equal to its ranking. Lowest number equates to a greater strength of schedule (as it means you are playing more of the pre-season top teams).


Boston College

Marquez Haynes 6'3, 185 FR G
Craig Smith 6'7, 250 SR F 18 ppg, 8.5 rpg, 34.6 mpg
Jared Dudley 6'7, 225 JR F 16.5 ppg, 7.5 rpg, 36 mpg
Tyrese Rice 6', 183 FR G
Akida McLain 6'8, 220 SO F 3.9 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 8.4 mpg, 9 games
Louis Hinnant 6'4, 190 SR G 5.3 ppg, 4.8 apg, 2.4 A/TO, 29.6 mpg
Sean Marshall 6'6, 212 JR G/F 11.1 ppg, 2.7 rpg, 24.6 mpg
John Oates 6'10, 255 SO F 0.8 ppg, 1.2 rpg, 2.5 mpg, 6 games
Evan Neisler 6'7, 205 FR F
Sean Williams 6'10, 230 SO F 4.1 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 17.2 mpg

Possible Starters – Hinnant, Marshall, Dudley, Smith, Williams (2nd Semester)
Key Reserves – Rice, Haynes, Oates, McClain

ACC Preseason Rank: 2
ACC SOS – 107 (10th), Home 53 (T7), Away 54 (T8)

Outlook: BC has been picked 2nd in the preseason. A lot of that may depend upon the outcome of Sean Williams who is suspended for the 1st semester and taking classes in Houston hoping to return to the team in December. If he does it allows Smith and Dudley to play at their natural PF and SF positions. If he isn't allowed to return then they have to shift. Hinnant is an excellent returning guard. Marshall had a solid year on the wing last year. Dudley and Smith are as good as a twosome in the frontcourt as there is in the ACC. This is a talented and experienced team, especially the starters. BC has a favorable ACC schedule that includes just a home game against Duke.

Key Question: Just how good will BC be in its first ACC go-round?



Akin Akingbala 6'9, 220 SR F 5.8 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 15.3 mpg
Steve Allen 6'10, 230 SR C 1.0 ppg, 1.1 ppg, 3.5 mpg
Vernon Hamilton 6', 192 JR G 6.8 ppg, 2.9 apg, 25.5 mpg
Cliff Hammonds 6'3, 175 SO G 10.6 ppg, 3.6 rpg, 2.8 apg, 30.3 mpg
Troy Mathis 6', 200 RFR G
James Mays 6'9, 215 SO F 4.3 ppg, 3.4 rpg, 16 mpg
Sam Perry 6'5, 190 SO F 4.0 ppg, 2.7 rpg, 14.7 mpg
Julius Powell 6'7, 190 FR F
K.C. Rivers 6'5, 180 FR G
Shawan Robinson 6'2, 183 SR G 10.8 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 2.9 apg, 26.1 mpg
Raymond Sykes 6'9, 200 FR F

Possible Starters – Hammonds, Robinson, Perry, Mays, Akinbala
Key Reserves – Hamilton, Mathis, Rivers, Powell

ACC Preseason rank: 10
ACC SOS – 111 (12th), Home 53 (T7), Away 58 (T11)

Outlook: Clemson continues its climb to respectability under Coach Purnell. Clemson has a big hole to fill in the middle with the departure of Ford but has some solid talent on the wings. Hammonds is a gritty player and Robinson is back for a final go-round. Mays and Perry will be expected to fill larger roles as sophomores. Rivers is a dangerous 3-pt threat on the wing that Clemson sorely needs. Depth and experience could be an issue on a pretty young team that consists of mostly freshmen and sophs. Clemson does get a break with the easiest conference schedule. Just single games against 4 of the top 5 teams in the league.

Key Question: Will someone step up inside to complement the wings and guards?



Eric Boateng 6'10, 235 FR C
Jamal Boykin 6'7, 230 FR F
Sean Dockery 6'2, 185 SR G 6.5 ppg, 2.3 apg, 26.7 mpg
David McClure 6'6, 205 SO F 1.8 ppg, 1.4 rpg, 7.6 mpg
Josh McRoberts 6'10, 230 FR F
Lee Melchionni 6'6, 205 SR F 7.6 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 21.7 mpg
DeMarcus Nelson 6'3, 195 SO G 6.2 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 19.3 mpg
Greg Paulus 6'1, 185 FR G
Martynas Pocius 6'4, 185 FR G
J.J. Redick 6'4, 190 SR G 22.1 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 2.6 apg, 37.2 mpg
Shelden Williams 6'9, 250 SR F 15.4 ppg, 11.3 rpg, 33.7 mpg

Possible Starters – Dockery, Reddick, Nelson, McRoberts, Williams
Key Reserves – Paulus, Pocius, Melchionni, Boykin, Boateng

ACC Preseason Rank: 1
ACC SOS – 110 (11th), Home 56 (11th), Away 54 (T8)

Outlook: Duke has all the pieces to make a final four run. Three returning senior starters as well as a very strong freshmen class bridged by the sophomore Nelson. Dockery will likely get the starting nod but could be pushed all year by the more natural PG Paulus. McRoberts and Williams form potentially the best starting post group in the league and then you add a dangerous shooter like Redick and a dangerous slasher like Nelson. This team has depth, experience and it is no wonder why they are the pre-season #1. David McClure will redshirt this season after an injury. Duke has the potential to go 16-0 with a favorable ACC schedule with a particularly light home schedule.

Key Question: Will there be any chemistry issues between Paulus and Dockery?


Florida State

Jerel Allen 6'4, 195 JR G
Casaan Breeden 6'8, 195 FR F
Uche Echefu 6'9, 220 FR F
Todd Galloway 5'11, 178 SR G 6.1 ppg, 3.0 apg, 25.9 mpg
Alexander Johnson 6'10, 250 JR F 6.8 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 17.5 mpg
Ralph Mims 6'2, 200 SO G 2.8 ppg, 1.2 rpg, 9.2 mpg
Jason Rich 6'3, 185 SO G 5.4 ppg, 2.0 rpg, 19.5 mpg
Diego Romero 6'10, 240 SR F 3.8 ppg, 2.5 rpg, 14.2 mpg
Isaiah Swann 6'1, 197 SO G 5.2 ppg, 1.9 rpg, 16.5 mpg
Al Thornton 6'7, 208 JR F 9.1 ppg, 4.4 rpg, 18.0 mpg
Andrew Wilson 6'6, 206 SR G/F 3.5 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 21 mpg

Possible Starters – Rich, Galloway, Thorton, Johnson, Romero
Key Reserves – Swann, Allen, Breeden, Wilson, Echefu

ACC Preseason Rank: 11
ACC SOS – 106 (T6), Home 58 (12), Away 48 (2)

Outlook: Coach Hamilton has plenty of talent on hand to make a big run in a conference that is reloading, can he get his players all on the same page? There is a nice mix of youth and experience in Tallahassee and it is time for FSU to produce victories. If they can find someone to provide solid PG play they could be a surprise sleeper in the conference. Swann, Rich and Galloway all have experience from last year. In the frontcourt Thorton could have a breakout year and Johnson has reportedly come back in great shape. They have a mixed bag conference schedule with a very light home schedule (No BC, NC ST or Wake) mixed with a very difficult road schedule.

Key Question: is FSU ready to step up in league play and play to their talent level?


Georgia Tech

Alade Aminu 6'9, 210 FR F/C
D'Andre Bell 6'5, 200 FR G/F
Lewis Clinch 6'3, 190 FR G
Paco Diaw 6'6, 190 FR G
Ra'Sean Dickey 6'9, 255 SO F/C 5.1 ppg, 3.2 rpg, 11.0 mpg
Zam Frederick II 6', 209 SO G 1.7 ppg, 6.7 mpg, 19 games
Anthony Morrow 6'5, 205 SO G 5.7 ppg, 1.9 rpg, 12.6 mpg
Jeremis Smith 6'6, 232 SO F 2.9 ppg, 4.4 rpg, 16.4 mpg, 14 games
Theodis Tarver 6'9, 245 SR F/C 1.2 ppg, 1.7 rpg, 8.6 mpg
Mario West 6'4, 208 RJR G 2.1 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 9.8 mpg

Possible Starters – Fredrick, West, Morrow, Dickey, Smith
Key Reserves – Clinch, Bell, Aminu, Tarver

ACC Preseason Rank: 9
ACC SOS – 93 (1st), Home 44 (1st), Away 49 (3rd)

Outlook: GT is in a major rebuilding year with 8 out of 10 scholarship freshmen being underclassmen. GT has a talented group of underclassmen but precious little experience and some potential depth issues with only 10 scholarship players. GT has no players returning who started a game last year. It is a very athletic group but will likely be up and down as it prepares for a much bigger year next year. Dickey and Smith will be expected to hold down the fort inside while Morrow, Clinch and Fredrick take the perimeter. The schedulers did GT no favors either with the hardest ACC schedule including the toughest home slate (top 5 teams come to ATL) and the 3rd toughest road slate. Welcome to the ACC youngsters.

Key Question: Who will provide leadership on a young team that lost its top 6 players?



Will Bowers 7'1, 262 JR C 2.8 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 12.5 mpg
Parrish Brown 6'1, 175 JR G
Nik Caner-Medley 6'8, 240 SR F 16.0 ppg, 6.2 rpg, 31.5 mpg
Travis Garrison 6'8, 241 JR F 10.1 ppg, 6.5 rpg, 243.3 mpg
James Gist 6'8, 223 SO F 6.2 ppg, 3.9 rpg, 17.2 mpg
Ekene Ibekwe 6'9, 220 JR F 8.4 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 21.5 mpg
Mike Jones 6'5, 204 JR G 7.2 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 13.7 mpg
Sterling Ledbetter 6'4, 198 SR G 3.4 ppg, 2.0 apg, 17.1 mpg
Chris McCray 6'5, 192 SR G 14.1 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 3.2 apg, 30.8 mpg
Dave Neal 6'7, 245 FR F
D.J. Strawberry 6'5, 201 JR G 7.1 ppg, 2.0 apg, 21.4 mpg, 14 games

Possible Starters – Strawberry, McCray, Caner-Medley, Gist, Ibekwe
Key Reserves – Jones, Bowers, Garrison, Ledbetter, Brown

ACC Preseason Rank: 5
ACC SOS – 106 (T6), Home 48 (2nd), Away 58 (T11)

Outlook: With 9 of its top 10 players being Jrs and Srs the time is now for Maryland. After last season's disappointment this team should be motivated to play well. They will welcome the return of Strawberry from a medical redshirt as his hustle and defense should help tremendously and he might even play PG. McCray, Strawberry and Caner-Medley should all start. The key may be who steps up in the frontcourt to go with their solid perimeter players. They have a very tough home schedule with the top 3 teams coming to College Park but the easiest road schedule with no BC or Wake.

Key Question: Was last season's disappointment due mainly to disgruntled PG play?



Brian Asbury 6'7, 210 FR G/F
Denis Clemente 6', 165 FR G
Guillermo Diaz 6'2, 192 JR G 18.6 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 2.6 apg, 34.3 mpg
Jimmy Graham 6'8 245 FR F
Gary Hamilton 6'10, 265 SR F/C 4.1 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 21.6 mpg
Anthony Harris 6'2, 187 JR G 12.4 ppg, 4.6 apg, 29.6 mpg
Raymond Hicks 6'7, 230 SO F 1.7 ppg, 1.1 rpg, 6.4 mpg
Robert Hite 6'2, 190 SR G 17.3 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 33.4 mpg
Anthony King 6'9, 235 JR F/C 6.3 ppg, 8.0 rpg, 28.8 mpg
Adrian Thomas 6'7, 220 FR F
Eric Wilkins 6'4, 197 SR G 1.5 ppg, 1.1 rpg, 10.5 mpg

Possible Starters – Diaz, Harris, Hite, Hicks, King
Key Reserves – Asbury, Clemente, Graham, Hamilton

ACC Preseason Rank: 7
ACC SOS – 99 (T2), Home 49 (3rd), Away 50 (T4)

Outlook: Miami returns 4 starters and a lot off experience to a team that surprised last year, Once again this team will be paced by a very talented three guard attack. Diaz is a pro prospect and when Harris returns from injury early in the season he gives them a steadying influence at PG. If King continues to step up his game inside it will be a very tough team to face. Hite is sort of the anonymous assassin in the group. Miami has a nice group of freshmen to help provide depth. Miami has the second toughest schedule in the ACC pretty well balanced home and away.

Key Question: Will someone other than King step up inside to complement the guards?


North Carolina

Mike Copeland 6'7, 233 FR F
Bobby Frasor 6'3, 195 FR G
Marcus Ginyard 6'5, 200 FR G/F
Danny Green 6'5, 202 FR F/G
Tyler Hansborough 6'9, 235 FR F
Wes Miller 5'11, 185 JR G 1.1 ppg, 3.8 mpg
David Noel 6'6, 232 SR F 3.9 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 16.9 mpg
Byron Sanders 6'9, 240 SR F 0.8 ppg, 0.9 rpg, 3.0 mpg
Reyshawn Terry 6'8, 228 JR F 2.3 ppg, 0.7 rpg, 4.5 mpg
Quentin Thomas 6'3, 190 SO G 0.8 ppg, 1.3 apg, 6.3 mpg

Possible Starters – Thomas, Green, Terry, Noel, Hansborough
Key Reserves – Ginyard, Fraser, Sanders

ACC Preseason Rank: 6 ACC SOS – 101 (4th), Home 50 (4th), Away 51 (T6)

Outlook: Coach Williams has the first huge rebuilding job of his career with a very young, but talented squad. He will rely on holdovers Noel, Terry and Thomas to step up and help the freshmen acclimate quickly to ACC play. There is no shortage of talent here, just experience. Hansborough could be one of the best post players in the ACC from day one while they brought in a bevy of talent on the wings. Terry had a strong pre-season. UNC has one of the tougher schedules though it is well balanced.

Key Question: How quickly can the young talent adjust to playing in the ACC?


North Carolina State

Engin Atsur 6'4, 200 JR G 9.4 ppg, 2.5 apg, 32.6 mpg
Cameron Bennerman 6'4, 205 SR G/F 9.6 ppg, 2.7 rpg, 23.1 mpg
Tony Bethel 6'1, 185 RSR G 8.0 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 2.5 apg, 25.6 mpg
Andrew Brackman 6'10, 235 SO F 7.4 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 18.7 mpg
Brandon Costner 6'8, 230 FR F
Ilian Evtimov 6'8, 222 SR F/C 9.8 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 30.4 mpg
Courtney Fells 6'5, 194 FR G
Gavin Grant 6'7, 212 SO F/G 4.2 ppg, 2.4 rpg, 13.1 mpg
Ben McCauley 6'9, 235 FR F
Cedric Simmons 6'9, 233 SO C 3.5 ppg, 1.8 rpg, 10.0 mpg

Possible Starters – Bethel, Bennerman, Evtimov, Brackman, Simmons
Key reserves – Grant, Atsur, Fells, Costner, McCauley

ACC Preseason Rank: 4
ACC SOS – 99 (T2), Home 53 (T7), Away 46 (1st)

Outlook: While Coach Sendek loses the heart and soul of the program in Jules he returns a lot of talent and brought in an excellent freshmen class. Playing the modified Princeton offense the squad is filled with big men who can shoot (Brackman, Evtimov, Costner, McCauley) as well as guards that can shoot and slash. Getting a healthy Bethel back from his groin injury may be an early key. This squad has the talent and experience to make a run in the NCAA's if it gets solid leadership. With baseball a future possibility for Brackman taking advantage of him this year is important. NC ST has the second toughest schedule in the ACC with a relatively benign home schedule but the toughest road schedule with 5 of the top 6 on the road.

Key Question: Who will be the leader with the departure of Hodge?



T.J. Bannister 5'10, 176 JR G 4.3 ppg, 3.7 apg, 22.6 mjpg
Jason Cain 6'10, 212 JR F 2.6 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 11.9 mpg
Billy Campbell 6', 184 SR G
Mamadi Diane 6'5, 185 FR G/F
Adrian Joseph 6'7, 195 SO F 4.2 ppg, 1.2 rpg, 14.0 mpg
Laurynas Mikalauskas 6'8, 241 FR F
Donte Minter 6'8, 250 JR F/C 1.3 ppg, 0.5 rpg, 4.6 mpg, 18 games
J.R. Reynolds 6'2 ½, 197 JR G 10.7 ppg, 2.5 rpg, 32.3 mpg
Sean Singletary 6', 174 SO G 10.5 ppg, 3.9 apg, 29.9 mpg
Tunji Soroye 6'11, 212 SO C 0.6 ppg, 1.3 rpg, 5.7 mpg, 20 games

Possible Starters – Singletary, Reynolds, Joseph, Soroye, Minter
Key Reserves – Diane, Bannister, Mikalauskas, Cain

ACC Preseason Rank: 12
ACC SOS – 106 (T6), Home 52 (T5), Away 54 (T8)

Outlook: Coach Leitao has a few pieces to work with in his first season at UVA. He has excellent wings with Singletary, Reynolds, Joseph and Diane. Singletary could be one of the best PG's in the conference as a sophomore. The key will be to getting something from his post players. He has a couple that have shown defensive promise, but not much on the offensive end. Virginia has a moderate schedule that has just one game against each of the top 4 teams in the league that will give this team the chance to win a few games.

Key Question: Who will provide scoring and rebounding in the post?


Virginia Tech

Zabian Dowdell 6'3, 200 JR G 14.4 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 2.7 apg, 32.6 mpg
Wynton Witherspoon 6'7, 185 SO G/F 2.4 ppg, 1.3 rpg, 10 mpg
Deron Washington 6'7, 195 SO G/F 7.9 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 24.1 mpg
Robert Krabbendam 6'9, 267 SO C/F 1.0 ppg, 1.2 rpg, 7 mpg, 22 games
Terrance Vinson 6'8, 210 FR F
Jamont Gordon 6'3, 200 JR G 10.9 ppg, 5.1 rpg, 4.1 apg, 33.9 mpg
Marcus Sailes 6'5, 210 JR G redshirted in 04-05, 4.9 ppg in 03-04
Coleman Collins 6'9, 235 JR F 11.4 ppg, 7.0 rpg, 29.8 mpg
Cheick Diakite 6'8, 230 FR F
A.D. Vassallo 6'6, 213 FR F/G
Chris Tucker 6'7, 220 JR F 1.5 ppg, 1.1 rpg, 7 mpg, 22 games

Possible Starters – Washington, Collins, Dowdell, Gordon, Vassallo
Key Reserves – Sailes, Tucker, Witherspoon, Krabbendam

ACC Preseason Rank: 8
ACC SOS – 106 (T6), Home 52 (T5), Away 54 (T8)

Outlook: VT will work hard to show its first year performance in the ACC was no fluke. They return 4 starters with a strong post in Collins and an excellent backcourt in Dowdell and Gordon. Washington is a top flight wing. Getting help for Collins inside and depth for the perimeter will be key. The team is hurt early with the injury losses of Witherspoon and Krabbendam. The schedule is moderate with single games against most of the middle of the pack teams.

Key Question: Can VT follow-up on its first year ACC success with another strong season?


Wake Forest

Michael Drum 6'6, 204 JR F
Shamaine Dukes 6'1, 175 FR G
Chris Ellis 6'9, 267 SR F 3.8 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 12.1 mpg
Justin Gray 6'2, 194 SR G 16.0 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 29.8 mpg
Harvey Hale 6'2, 186 FR G
Cameron Stanley 6'6, 214 RFR F
Trent Strickland 6'5, 216 SR G/F 5.9 rpg, 3.5 rpg, 16.9 mpg
Kevin Swinton 6'7, 224 FR F
Kyle Visser 6'11, 244 JR C 3.2 ppg, 1.5 rpg, 7.6 mpg
David Weaver 6'10, 224 FR F/C
Eric Williams 6'9, 280 SR C 16.1 ppg, 7.7 rpg, 28.8 mpg

Possible Starters – Gray, Williams, Visser, Drum, Strickland
Key Reserves – Ellis, Swinton, Hale, Stanley, Dukes

ACC Preseason Rank: 3
ACC SOS – 102 (5th), Home 52 (T5), Away 50 (T4)

Outlook: Wake is in the first year of the post Paul era and they have a lot of talent, but do they have the right pieces. Will playing Gray at PG strengthen the backcourt or play out like Donald Hand at UVA. If Wake can find consistent perimeter production from someone other than Gray then Williams and Visser to be huge inside. Strickland looks like he may be ready to realize his potential on the wing. Just like the last couple of Wake teams the real key may be is this team willing to play the kind of defense necessary to win tough close games. The schedule is fairly tough with home and away against the top 3 teams it faces.

Key Question: Will WF improve on its defensive performance of the last 2 seasons?

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