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Syracuse and NC State ruined the ACC’s ‘best player’ bracket

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(or made it better?)

Syracuse University Orangemen Photo by Syracuse/Collegiate Images via Getty Images

With sports on hiatus, the sports internet is desperate for content. We’re no exception given what’s been going on around here for awhile, and everyone’s up for trying out bracket-related ideas.

Among that “everyone” is the ACC, which asked fans to vote on the best men’s basketball players from the past 50 years. Rather than limiting it to players who actually participated in ACC games, the league decided it applied to players from the current 15 teams. The Syracuse Orange are one of those 15 teams.

As the ACC has since learned, that was probably a mistake.

The event’s Elite 8 started on Sunday, and in those matchups, you’ll find four Syracuse players. And four NC State players.

Because while the idea behind this bracket was fine: naming the best players from the last 50 years. It also assumes that every fan is rational, and that all fan bases are equally engaged. Unlucky for the ACC, this wound up being a perceived #DISRESPECK beacon for the two league fan bases most likely to die in a fight for their teams’ honor, Syracuse and NC State.

As of this writing, the Orange had seemingly fired up the #DISRESPECK cannon to the greatest effect in the first two Elite 8 matchups, with Carmelo Anthony leading T.J. Warren, 77% to 23% and Pearl Washington leading Julius Hodge, 67% to 33%. You can see both polls below and vote if you haven’t already.

Those matchups wrap up in the afternoon, and then David Thompson and Derrick Coleman face off in one matchup while Rodney Monroe and Billy Owens face off in the other. Coleman’s fresh off upsetting Michael Jordan on Sunday, so obviously he’s the team of destiny in that region now.

So if you have a Twitter account or know friends that do, make sure they get in some votes here. If you don’t have a Twitter account, make one just to vote in this poll and then never log in again.

I’m honestly not sure the ACC will even go through with this if Syracuse winds up with all four spots in the Final Four, but there’s only one way to find out: by making it happen.