The twelve baseball coaches of the Atlantic Coast Conference recently released their 2013 preseason poll and the North Carolina State Wolfpack are, by far, the favorite to win the conference entering the season. The Wolfpack took home six of the possible twelve first-place conference votes and ten of the possible twelve Atlantic Division votes. The Duke Blue Devils, meanwhile, were picked to finish at the bottom of the Coastal Division, collecting all twelve last-place votes.
North Carolina State’s praise is well deserved, as the team returns 2012 ACC Freshman and Pitcher of the Year Carlos Rodon, a 6’2 lefty coming off a year in which he achieved a 9-0 record to go along with a 1.57 ERA and a .62 WHIP. The Wolfpack also have Trea Turner, a Preseason All-American third-baseman who finished his freshman campaign with 57 steals, a .432 OBP, and a consensus Freshman All-American award. This team doesn’t have many weaknesses, if any.
Duke, meanwhile, have a lot to prove to everyone, even their own coach. They’re coming off a down year in which they went 21-34 with an ugly 9-21 conference mark. They lost their head coach, Sean McNally, who resigned after seven seasons and their best player, Marcus Stroman, after he was selected in the first-round of the MLB Draft by the Toronto Blue Jays.
Duke’s 2013 schedule isn’t giving them any pity, either. To go along with an always brutal ACC schedule, they open the season with a three-game series against #24 Florida.
Here is the rest of the poll (courtesy of TheACC.com):
2013 ACC BASEBALL COACHES PRESEASON POLL
OVERALL CHAMPION: NC State (6)
Also receiving votes: North Carolina (4), Florida State (1), Virginia (1)
|NC State (10)||69|
|Florida State (1)||60|
|North Carolina (9)||69|
|Georgia Tech (1)||55|