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ACC Basketball POWER Rankings: Virginia keeps top spot heading into Gameday

The ACC is chaotic except for the Cavaliers and Pittsburgh

Virginia v Syracuse Photo by Rich Barnes/Getty Images

We’re now two-thirds of the way through conference play and while the cream has risen to the top and the dumpster fires have been exposed, everything else is beyond chaotic. As it sits right now, six teams have underperformed from their preseason rankings, most notably Duke and North Carolina while four teams have over performed with Virginia and Clemson emerging as the class of the ACC.

This week 13 Streaking the Lawn staff members tried to put teams in their place after another roller coaster week in the league. Scroll to the bottom for full rankings from each writer, as well as overall means and standard deviations for each team.

1. Virginia Cavaliers (23-1, 12-0, KenPom #1)

The Cavaliers embarrassed Syracuse on their home floor - holding them to a Carrier Dome low 44 points - and survived a nail biter on the road against Florida State on Wednesday. Virginia increased their chances of running the table in ACC play to 36.7% per KenPom. Virginia will host College Gameday this Saturday when they take on the Gobblers from Blacksburg with the chance to overtake Villanova for the AP #1 ranking come Monday. Should the Cavaliers take that one, they would be the first team in ACC history to go from unranked in the preseason to the number one spot in the AP poll.

2. Clemson Tigers (20-4, 9-3, KenPom #17)

Following Duke’s loss at North Carolina last night, Clemson jumped to the second spot in our POWER rankings. Somehow, Brad Brownell has kept the Tigers winning without Devonte Grantham and Clemson has established itself as the second most consistent team in the ACC. They have a tough week coming up as they will travel to Florida State and then host Duke in Little John.

3. Duke Blue Devils (19-5, 7-4, KenPom #5)

The Blue Devil band of One-and-Dones continues to cause massive amounts of head scratching and Coach K “injuries”. Duke was up by as many as nine on North Carolina but continued to allow easy buckets and wide open threes. The talent on this roster will keep Duke relevant and dangerous as we head into the most exciting part of the season.

4. North Carolina Tar Heels (18-7, 7-5, KenPom #12)

Four guys scored 15+ for the Tar Heels last night but Roy Williams’ squad only got 4 points off the bench. Joel Berry and Luke Maye continue to keep Carolina in the mix but it took all kinds of hot shooting from Kenny Williams and Cameron Johnson to pull off the big win last night. The most fun part about this team is Joel Berry claiming they’ve started using tactics from Tony Bennett’s packline.

5. Miami Hurricanes (18-5, 7-4, KenPom #28)

Winners of three in a row, the ‘Canes survived Wake Forest on Wednesday and have put together a string of decent performances following the loss of their best player, Bruce Brown. Without Brown, Lonnie Walker IV has gotten more touches and averaged 19.7 ppg over Miami’s last 5 games. 4 of Miami’s last 7 games will be against sub .500 teams in ACC play. Expect them to finish conference play on a high note.

6. Florida State Seminoles (17-7, 6-6, KenPom #19)

The Seminoles gave Virginia their toughest test of the season and have the athletes to give any team in the country fits. Florida State is tough to rank based on their inconsistent play. In their last 3, they’ve lost to Wake Forest, beaten Louisville and taken Virginia down to the wire. I wonder if Dwayne Bacon, Jonathan Issac and Xavier Rathan-Mayes wish they’d stayed…ya know...considering none of them are getting minutes in the NBA right now…

7. Louisville Cardinals (17-8, 7-5, KenPom #34)

Louisville rose as high as second in the ACC standings before dropping three in a row. The Cardinals have an exciting team but haven’t quite put it together against the league’s best teams, with four of their five losses coming against KenPom top 30 teams. It’s incredibly difficult to get a solid read on this team as first year coach David Padgett has yet to establish an identity.

8. Virginia Tech Hokies (17-7, 6-5, KenPom #42)

9. North Carolina State Wolfpack (16-8, 6-5, KenPom #61)

Kevin Keatts’ squad finds themselves squarely on the bubble. The Wolfpack haven’t been good away from home this year, with four of their five losses coming on the road. While their offensive efficiency numbers have been solid at 114.1, their defense has been abysmal in ACC play, giving up 81 ppg in their losses. However, Kevin Keatts has managed to keep the Wolfpack in the NCAA tournament hunt and ends the season with four games against sub .500 teams in ACC play.

Boston College v Syracuse Photo by Rich Barnes/Getty Images

10. Syracuse Orange (16-8, 5-6, KenPom #46)

Ahhhhhh yes, here we are again. The college basketball season wouldn’t feel right if Jim Boeheim wasn’t making confused faces and the Orange weren’t in the purgatory that is the Last 4 In and the First 4 Out. Syracuse’s offense has been beyond bad, posting a 108.0 efficiency rating, good for 119th in the country and third to last in the ACC (ahead of only Georgia Tech and Pitt-iful-sburgh). But on the bright side, their game against Virginia drew the largest attendance of this season at a massive 27,803.

11. Boston College Eagles (14-10, 4-7, KenPom #86)

The brightest spot for Boston College this year has been Jerome Robinson. The junior guard is averaging 20 ppg and is on pace to shoot 50% from the field, 45% from three and 85% from the line. Outside of Robinson’s consistency, BC’s season has been a roller coaster and not a fun one. After starting the season strong with a win over Duke and a nailbiter with Virginia, BC has fallen off with not much time to recover.

12. Notre Dame Fighting Irish (14-10, 4-7, KenPom #41)

Poor Notre Dame… With Bonzie Colson and DJ Harvey missing almost all of conference play and Matt Ferrell in and out of the lineup with various injuries, Notre Dame can’t catch a break and their season quickly fell apart. Not much else to say here besides how the heck does a 6’5 forward make this much of a difference to a team???

13. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (11-13, 4-7, KenPom #111)

Is Josh Pastner a good coach? Survey says…no. The Yellow Jackets have some talent on their roster but never put it together in conference play. Now, with more allegations against their head coach, focusing on ending the season strong might be difficult for the program.

14. Wake Forest Demon Deacons (9-15, 2-10, KenPom #91)

So far this season, the Demon Deacons have earned the award for most disappointing ACC team. Sitting at 2-10 in conference play, Danny Manning’s squad has been downright terrible and played some sloppy basketball. One would expect Manning to be able to develop some offensively talented big guys but Wake’s only production has come from its guard play.

15. Pittsburgh Panthers (8-17, 0-12, KenPom #209)

Do I have to?

KenPom gives the Panthers a 30.3% chance to go winless in conference play and isn’t projected to win any of their remaining six games. In the words of Will Campbell, “Is Pitt going to score 20 against Virginia?”

Summary

Rank Team Avg Ranking St Deviation
Rank Team Avg Ranking St Deviation
1 Virginia 1 0
2 Clemson 2.62 0.65
3 Duke 2.77 1.17
4 North Carolina 4.54 1.13
5 Miami 4.69 0.75
6 Florida State 6.15 1.14
7 Louisville 6.77 1.48
8 Virginia Tech 8.15 0.8
9 NC State 8.69 1.03
10 Syracuse 9.62 0.77
11 Boston College 11.92 0.76
12 Notre Dame 12.15 0.9
13 Georgia Tech 12.23 1.3
14 Wake Forest 13.69 0.48
15 Pittsburgh 15 0

Full Voting

Caroline Will Brian S Brian L Tim Tiki Neckel Wiley Ryan Hobeck Alex Luke Pierce
Caroline Will Brian S Brian L Tim Tiki Neckel Wiley Ryan Hobeck Alex Luke Pierce
Virginia Virginia Virginia Virginia Virginia Virginia Virginia Virginia Virginia Virginia Virginia Virginia Virginia
Clemson Duke Duke Duke Duke Duke Duke Clemson Clemson Clemson Clemson Clemson Duke
Duke Clemson Clemson Clemson Clemson Florida State Clemson North Carolina North Carolina Duke Duke Duke Clemson
North Carolina Miami Miami Miami Miami Clemson North Carolina Miami Duke North Carolina North Carolina North Carolina Miami
Miami North Carolina North Carolina North Carolina Louisville Louisville Miami Florida State Louisville Miami Miami Miami North Carolina
Louisville Florida State Florida State NC State North Carolina Miami Florida State Duke Miami Louisville Louisville Florida State Florida State
Florida State Louisville Louisville Florida State Florida State North Carolina Louisville Virginia Tech Florida State Florida State Florida State Louisville Virginia Tech
Virginia Tech Syracuse Syracuse Virginia Tech NC State Virginia Tech Virginia Tech NC State Virginia Tech Virginia Tech Virginia Tech Virginia Tech NC State
NC State Virginia Tech NC State Louisville Virginia Tech NC State Syracuse Louisville NC State NC State NC State NC State Louisville
Syracuse NC State Virginia Tech Syracuse Syracuse Syracuse NC State Syracuse Syracuse Syracuse Syracuse Syracuse Syracuse
Boston College Georgia Tech Georgia Tech Georgia Tech Notre Dame Boston College Notre Dame Georgia Tech Notre Dame Boston College Boston College Georgia Tech Georgia Tech
Georgia Tech Notre Dame Boston College Boston College Boston College Notre Dame Boston College Notre Dame Boston College Notre Dame Notre Dame Boston College Notre Dame
Wake Forest Boston College Notre Dame Notre Dame Georgia Tech Wake Forest Wake Forest Boston College Georgia Tech Georgia Tech Wake Forest Notre Dame Boston College
Notre Dame Wake Forest Wake Forest Wake Forest Wake Forest Georgia Tech Georgia Tech Wake Forest Wake Forest Wake Forest Georgia Tech Wake Forest Wake Forest
Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Pittsburgh