Not that you can ever put too much stock in preseason rankings, or conference selections, but seeing Carolina picked to finish second was a mild surprise. Roy Williams' has guided the program to a outright or share of the regular season in 3 of the last 4 years, but this season presents a different challenge. Carolina lost 4 starters, and it's top 5 scorers from last years' Sweet 16 team. Gone are ACC veterans Luke Maye, Kenny Williams and Cameron Johnson. The Heels also had 2 freshmen leave for the NBA, the first time they had a "one and done" since Tony Bradley 3 years ago. Factor in the fact the ACC is the deepest conference in college basketball, there is the possibility that Carolina isn't the cream of the crop this season. The ACC features the defending national champions in Virginia, Louisville which figures to be preseason top 5 team, and Duke who was picked to win the league. We'll learn about how Carolina will fare in conference play early, as they open the season against Notre Dame in roughly 3 weeks. The Tar Heels will also travel to Charlottesville in December, before conference play ramps up in January.
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