UNC picked to win ACC

FROM ACC PRESS RELEASE
GREENSBORO, N.C. – Defending Atlantic Coast Conference champion North Carolina is favored to repeat as the league champion in 2008, as determined by a vote of the league’s 12 head coaches. The back-to-back national runner-up Tar Heels were also picked to win the Coastal Division for the third-straight year, while Florida State was predicted to capture its second Atlantic title.

With 67 points and nine first-place votes, North Carolina garnered the top spot in the Coastal Division. Among the 21 letterwinners returning to the Tar Heel lineup this year include preseason All-America selections Dustin Ackley, Tim Federowicz, Adam Warren and Rob Wooten. In 2007, UNC returned to the College World Series for the second year in a row but later fell to defending champion Oregon State in the first two games of the championship series. The Tar Heels concluded their campaign with an NCAA-best and school record 57 victories, as UNC posted an overall record of 57-16 (21-9 in the ACC) last year.

Tabbed to finish atop of the Atlantic Division this year, Florida State collected 66 points and seven first-place votes. The Seminoles return 13 letterwinners and five position starters, including first team All-American catcher Buster Posey and starting right fielder Jack Rye. Last year, the Garnet and Gold went 24-6 in the ACC to clinch their first Atlantic title, earned a bid and a national seed (No. 6) in the NCAA Tournament and concluded the season with a 49-13 overall mark.

2008 marks the third year of divisional play in the ACC, as the Atlantic Division has produced two different winners in Clemson (2006) and Florida State (2007). North Carolina has laid claim to both Coastal titles.

The ACC Baseball Championship, which takes place May 21-25, 2008 at the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville in Jacksonville, Fla., will be played in a round-robin format for the second year in a row.

Below is a listing of the preseason coaches’ poll by divisions with 2007 records.

ACC Overall Champion:
North Carolina – 7
Florida State – 2
Miami – 2
Virginia – 1

Atlantic Division
School ……………………. Points ………………. Record
1. Florida State (7)……. 66………….. 49-13, 24-6 ACC
2. Clemson (4)………….. 61………… 41-23, 18-12 ACC
3. NC State (1)………….. 45………… 38-23, 16-14 ACC
4. Wake Forest…………. 44………… 34-29, 14-16 ACC
5. Boston College……… 20………… 24-27, 12-17 ACC
6. Maryland……………… 16………….. 26-30, 7-23 ACC

Coastal Division
School ……………………. Points ………………. Record
1. North Carolina (9)…. 67………….. 57-16, 21-9 ACC
2. Miami (2)……………… 59………… 37-24, 17-13 ACC
3. Virginia (1)…………… 52………….. 45-16, 19-9 ACC
4. Georgia Tech…………. 37………… 32-25, 15-14 ACC
5. Virginia Tech………… 23………….. 23-31, 7-23 ACC
6. Duke……………………. 14………….. 29-25, 8-22 ACC