Of Polls and Quotes: ACC’s Operation BasketballPosted by KCarpenter on October 20th, 2011
The Atlantic Coast Conference likes to get a little fanciful sometimes. What most conferences would simply call a “media day” gets a grander name in the ACC: Operation Basketball. A little over the top, but what can you do? In any case, it’s a fun event where all the coaches and a handful of players commit to talking to the press all day long, giving interview after interview while the media expresses its gratitude the only way it knows how: by taking a pre-season poll and naming preseason all-ACC Teams!
The short story of the poll and the preseason awards is unsurprising: North Carolina was tabbed as the number one team, though not unanimously as two rogue voters put Duke at the number one spot. In a somewhat surprising development, Wake Forest was not picked to finish last. That honor instead went to Steve Donahue’s ultra-young Boston College. Equally surprising was the vote for Player of the Year where Harrison Barnes was not the unanimous pick. That’s not really too shocking by itself but the the only other player receiving POY votes was John Henson , who received the only two other votes that didn’t go to his teammate. At least a couple of ACC beat journalists must really love defense.
Harrison Barnes was picked as a unanimous all-ACC selection, with his UNC front court partners John Henson and Tyler Zeller receiving the second and third most votes, respectively. Malcolm Grant of Miami, who apparently is not one of the top one hundred college players in America, got the fourth spot, while Seth Curry of Duke and Mike Scott of Virginia tied for the fifth and final spot. Finally, in the last bit of voting, Duke freshman Austin Rivers fell two votes shy of a unanimous selection for Freshman of the Year. North Carolina’s James McAdoo and Maryland’s Nick Faust received one vote apiece.
In terms of the interviews and quotes: there are simply too many to choose from. There are going to be lots of interesting stories and analysis to come out of media d… I mean Operation Basketball. For now though, enjoy a selection of fan questions answered by the coaches and a delightful potpourri of stand-alone bon mots from ACC coaches and players.