Chalk-up another record for Atlantic Coast Conference Basketball.
With the Virginia Cavaliers – projected to finish 8th in this year’s ACC – entry into this week’s Associated Press men’s college basketball Top 25, the ACC ties the record for having the most ranked teams in a single poll with seven teams.
The Big Ten had seven teams ranked for one week in January 1993, and for four weeks in January 1999. The ACC did it for two weeks in December 1997.
It is somewhat poetic that the ACC ties the mark with the Big 10 on the eve of the 6th Annual “ACC-Big 10 (not such a) Challenge”. The ‘Challenge’ has come to epitomize the ACC’s continued dominance of college basketball as the conference has won each of the 5 previous challenges while accumulating an overall record of 27-17.
(Note: After NC State’s 60-53 victory over Purdue tonight in Raleigh, the ACC’s lead has stretched to 28-17).
Until expansion brought Virginia Tech and Miami to the league this year, the ACC historically functioned with only 9 teams compared to the Big 10’s eleven teams. The seven teams that are currently ranked in the Top 25 are all “pre-expansion” teams, leaving only Clemson and Florida State out of the poll of from the pre-expansion ACC. Ultimately, the ACC has achieved this record (twice) by having 7 of 9 teams ranked as opposed to 7 of 11. Wow!