It marks the 17th time in program history that the Wolfpack has been ranked in the AP's preseason poll. The last time NC State began the year ranked was prior to the 2007-08 season, when it was No. 21. The Wolfpack's highest preseason ranking was No. 1 entering the 1974-75 campaign after it captured its first national championship the year before.
NC State is the preseason favorite to win the ACC title in the conference's annual media survey and the inaugural league coaches' poll. Coincidently, the last time the Pack was selected to win the conference was prior to the start of the 1974-75 season as well.
The Wolfpack returns four starters – Lorenzo Brown, Richard Howell, C.J. Leslie and Scott Wood - from last year's Sweet Sixteen squad and features the talented freshman trio of Tyler Lewis, Rodney Purvis and T.J. Warren.
Leslie was named the preseason ACC player of the year, while Purvis claimed conference's preseason rookie of the year honors by the media and coaches' voting. Leslie was also selected to preseason all-conference teams along with Brown.
NC State has also been ranked fourth by Blue Ribbon Yearbook and sixth by the Sporting News and ESPN/USA Today coaches polls.
The Wolfpack faces Belmont Abbey in its only exhibition contest on Nov. 3. The game is set to begin 30 minutes following the conclusion of the football game with Virginia, which is set for a 12:30 kickoff. Admission is free to the public for the basketball contest.
NC State opens the regular season on Nov. 9 against Miami of Ohio at PNC Arena at 7 p.m. For season ticket information, call (919) 865-1510.
ESPN: Top 25 Polls
NC State is the highest-ranked ACC team, joining Duke (No. 8), North Carolina (No. 11), and Florida State (No. 25).