First up was Tyus Battle, who was the sixth-leading vote-getter for All-ACC honors, headlining the second-team. He lost out to Virginia’s Kyle Guy by just nine votes (168 to 159). The sophomore Orange guard averaged 20 points per game this year, vs. 13.9 points per game for Guy. In league play, Battle also scored 20 points per game, while Guy had just 12.4. Guy, the formerly man-bunned leader of the first-place Virginia Cavaliers, was a slightly more accurate shooter. This isn’t necessarily a “snub,” but Battle probably deserved the nod over Guy.
Along with Guy, your first teamers included Marvin Bagley III (Duke), Jerome Robinson (Boston College), Luke Maye (North Carolina) and Joel Berry II (North Carolina).
Also honored was Syracuse freshman Oshae Brissett, who made the All-Freshman team. The frosh put up 14.7 points per game plus 8.7 rebounds while being part of SU’s “big three” along with Battle an Frank Howard. Brissett was 16th in the conference in terms of points-per-game scoring, and was top-10 in the conference in rebounds per game.
Not to be completely left out, Howard received five votes for Most Improved Player of the Year -- an honor that ended up going to UNC’s Maye. The SU junior tied for second in the category, along with NC State’s Omer Yurtseven, Notre Dame’s Martinas Geben and Wake Forest’s Doral Moore. While Howard’s leap from 4.5 points per game last year to 15.2 this year (15th in the ACC) was impressive, Maye went from 5.5 to 17.7 and was a potential player of the year candidate.
Congrats to the Orange players for being recognized. No votes went to Jim Boeheim for coach of the year, which is not surprising at all since Virginia’s Tony Bennett obviously deserves the win. However, it’s still miraculous what Boeheim and Syracuse have been able to accomplish this season with just five healthy players (at best).