ACC Media Day is a whirlwind of press opportunities for the conference’s 15 schools, their coaches and player representatives. So it’s no surprise that while Jim Boeheim was down in Charlotte for the Syracuse Orange, he’d end up on SportsCenter for a brief segment.
During the quick chat with ESPN’s Matt Barrie, he discussed why Syracuse could be better, but he’s also tempering expectations a bit:
For those who’d rather just read the remarks, those are below:
“Well I think we are going to be better. We lost 14 games last year in the regular season – that’s the most we’ve ever lost. You always hope you’re not going to lose 14 games. But as far as how we finished, I’m not going to say this team’s going to be better than last year because that team finished as well as you could ask for.
We have a good group, we have more depth, more size than we’ve had. And a little bit better overall shooting than we’ve had the last few years. We’ve got a lot of pluses. But at this stage in the year, every coach thinks they’re going to be good. There’s not too many coaches out there that say “oh we’re not that good.” Everyone thinks they’re going to be pretty good. And our league is the best I’ve seen it. We’ve talked about the ACC for three years being the best league in college basketball, and we’ve proven it each year in the tournament. But I think this year is the best year for the ACC. It’s the best I’ve seen. Almost like the year we had 11 teams in the old Big East. We’re close to that. I don’t know if we’ll get that many teams in. But I think that many teams will have a shot.”
As you’ll recall, the season he’s discussing here is the 2010-11 campaign. With an unprecedented 11 teams from one league in the NCAAs, the committee struggled to avoid early rematches. Syracuse, a three-seed, was one of the casualties, falling in the second round to fellow Big East team Marquette.
This year’s ACC has a chance to challenge, and might actually have more depth at the top as well. Five teams (Duke, North Carolina, Virginia, Louisville and Syracuse) could be considered among the nation’s top 20. That 2011 Big East season might’ve had more overall depth, even if not the same brutal five-team top third.
Not much surprising from Jim, which is to be expected. There will be plenty more to share from ACC Media Day between today and tomorrow.