The Starting Fives: ACC

October 6th, 2008

Unlike the NBA, where most starting lineups are set in stone weeks before the season, NCAA starting fives are highly unsettled and constantly in flux. Going through the BCS leagues this week, I'll be projecting the starting fives for each team. Also included is the team's most important bench option, and some notes on other possible lineups.

In the case where a quality player is ineligible for the fall semester or suspended for the opening few games, I've still included them in the projections. These are really supposed to be projections of how lineups will look in February and March.

Next week, based on these lineups, I'll be throwing out statistical projections for major BCS contributors.


Boston College

G Biko Paris So
G Tyrese Rice Sr
F Rakim Sanders So
F Corey Raji So
C Josh Southern So

6 Joe Trapani (PF)

Notes: BC's lineup is pretty well settled. Tyler Roche could be just as important as Southern or Trapani in the frontcourt. Freshman guards Reggie Jackson and Dallas Elmore should also figure into the regular rotation.


G Demontez Stitt So
G Terrence Oglesby So
G KC Rivers Sr
F Raymond Sykes Sr
C Trevor Booker Jr

6 Andre Young (PG)

Notes: The freshman Young is well-hyped, but Clemon's returnees are too solid for him to sneak into the starting five. David Potter and Jerai Grant should be the other reserves seeing major minutes.


G Greg Paulus Jr
G Jon Scheyer Jr
G Gerald Henderson Jr
F Kyle Singler So
C Brian Zoubek Jr

6 Lance Thomas (PF)

Notes: Compared to the above teams, Duke's minutes are up for grabs. Scheyer isn't a lock to start, as both Elliot Williams and Nolan Smith will push him for minutes. I put Thomas as the 6th man because he'll inevitably see major minutes when Zoubek gets tired, hurt, or in foul-trouble.

Florida State

G Toney Douglas Sr
G Derwin Kitchen So
F Chris Singleton Fr
F Uche Echefu Sr
F Solomon Alabi Fr

6 Ryan Reid (PF)

Notes: The Noles will be relying on youth as much as any ACC team. Alabi is a raw, talented freshman, but it wouldn't suprise me if Reid ends up starting at some point. Another freshman, Deividas Dulkys, could be the team's highest scoring option off the bench.

Georgia Tech

G Maurice Miller So
G Lewis Clinch Sr
F Iman Shumpert Fr
F Gani Lawal So
C Zack Peacock Jr

6 D'Andre Bell (G/F)* Alade Aminu (F)

Notes: Unless he's a bust, there's no reason Shumpert won't start from day one. Bell could be one of the ACC's best reserves*, while senior Alade Aminu is the best forward off the bench.

* Bell injured himself and is out for the year.


G Greivis Vasquez So
G Eric Hayes Jr
F Landon Milbourne Jr
F Jerome Burnley So
C Braxton Dupree So

6 Sean Mosley (SG)

Notes: The only possible change from this lineup is that Dino Gregory beats out Burnley for the PF spot. Cliff Tucker and Adrian Bowie will also get major reserve minutes, and could possibly start if Milbourne falters.


G Lance Hurdle Sr
G Jack McClinton Sr
F James Dews Jr
F Dwayne Collins Jr
C Jimmy Graham Sr

6 Brian Asbury (PF)

Notes: Miami has more experience and more depth than most ACC teams. Asbury is good enough to start, and could relegate either Dews or Graham to a reserve role. Arkansas transfer Cyrus McGowan could also take minutes from Graham. Edwin Rios will be the backup point guard, while freshman swing-man DeQuan Jones should also see 15-20 mpg.

NC State

G Farnold Degand Jr
G Courtney Fells Sr
F Tracy Smith So
F Brandon Costner Jr
C Ben McCauley Sr

6 Julius Mays (G)

Notes: This seems to be the consensus starting five that everyone expects. The addition of freshman Mays is big, because he should allow the Pack to play quicker three-guard lineups (perhaps relegating Smith to the bench). Dennis Horner should be the first of State's weak frontcourt reserves to see action.

North Carolina

G Ty Lawson Jr
G Wayne Ellington Jr
F Marcus Ginyard Sr
F Deon Thompson Jr
F Tyler Hansbough Sr

6 Danny Green (SF)

Notes: This lineup should be familiar, since it returns untouched from last year. Bobby Frasor will be the other piece of UNC's seven-man core.  One of either freshman Ed Davis or Tyler Zellar will emerge as the first big off the bench.


G Calvin Baker Jr
G Jeff Jones So
F Mamadi Diane Sr
F Mike Scott So
C Tunji Soroye Sr*

6 Sylven Landesberg (SG)

Notes: UVA has some options, unfortunately most of them aren't very good. Sammy Zeglinski is a possible starter at the point, but I expect Baker to win the job. The freshman Landesberg could replace Jones, but might be better as a super-sub to start. Up front, Jamil Tucker will probably be the first big man off the pine. *Soroye will be back for a 5th season, while potential starter Laurynas Mikalauskas was kicked off the team during the summer.

Virginia Tech

G Malcolm Delaney So
G AD Vassallo Sr
F JT Thompson So
F Jeff Allen So
F Victor Davila Fr

6 Lewis Witcher (PF)

Notes: This lineup is definitely not set in stone.  Davila and Witcher could swap starting spots, but I'm going with Davila because he's the better offensive player. Hank Thorns (who began last year as the starting PG) could regain a starting spot, pushing Vassallo to the wing and Thompson to the 6th man role.

Wake Forest

G Ishmael Smith Jr
G Jeff Teague So
F Al-Farouq Aminu Fr
F James Johnson So
C Chas McFarland Jr

6 LD Williams (G/F)

Notes: Wake is getting a lot of hype due to its freshmen, but the returning players aren't bad either. Harvey Hale will join Williams as the two main guards/wings off the bench. Front-court minutes are up for grabs. Besides newcomers Ty Walker and Tony Woods fighting for the backup center role, you also have PF Jamie Skeen who would start for most teams. Junior big David Weaver might be the odd man out.

Think my projections are off, let me know below where you differ!




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