Banchero, No. 9 Duke headline preseason ACC basketball picks

GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) — Ninth-ranked Duke is the preseason favorite to win the Atlantic Coast Conference in its final season under Hall of Fame coach Mike Krzyzewski, while touted Blue Devils freshman Paolo Banchero is the pick to be the league’s player and freshman of the year.
The ACC released results Monday from voting by 81 media members at last week’s men’s basketball preseason media day in Charlotte.
Duke received 47 first-place votes to finish ahead of No. 20 Florida State, while No. 19 North Carolina was picked to finish third in its first season under Hubert Davis after the retirement of Hall of Famer Roy Williams.
No. 25 Virginia was picked fourth, followed by Virginia Tech, Louisville, Syracuse, Notre Dame, North Carolina State, Georgia Tech, Clemson, Miami, Wake Forest, Pittsburgh and Boston College.
The 6-foot-10, 250-pound Banchero received 28 votes for player of the year to finish ahead of Virginia Tech’s Keve Aluma (16) and Syracuse’s Buddy Boeheim (13). Banchero earned 64 votes for top freshman, with Duke teammate Trevor Keels second with five.
Boeheim was the leading vote-getter on the preseason all-ACC first-team, joining Banchero, Aluma, North Carolina’s Armando Bacot and Miami’s Isaiah Wong.
Georgia Tech’s Michael Devoe headlined the second team, joined by Virginia’s Kihei Clark, Notre Dame’s Prentiss Hubb, Duke’s Mark Williams and Wendell Moore Jr., North Carolina’s Caleb Love and Louisville’s Malik Williams. Moore, Love and Williams tied for the final spot.
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