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ACC announces plan for spring sports

It'll be a busy spring for Duke Athletics.
It'll be a busy spring for Duke Athletics.

For months, we’ve known that the NCAA’s decision to move fall championships to the spring, coupled with the ACC’s decision to compete in the fall, would create an unprecedented spring athletic season.

The conference’s official spring sports plan, released Tuesday afternoon, only confirmed this.

Overall, not only will the conference’s nine spring sports be in competition this spring, but so will its five fall Olympic sports. We break down the schedule and ACC Championship plans for each below, including when Duke plans to begin each season.

For the full release, click here.

Note- Each of the sports listed below will include an NCAA Championships in the spring for eligible teams as well, with exact dates determined by the NCAA

Baseball

The regular season will start the weekend of Feb. 19-21, with conference play starting the following weekend. The ACC Baseball Championship will take place May 25-30 following the conclusion of the regular season, with the conference’s 14 teams vying for the tournament’s 12 spots. The Blue Devils have already released their ACC schedule, which will begin Feb. 26 against Boston College.

Men’s Golf

While the ACC Championship is set to take place April 23-26, each program must put together its own schedule for the regular season. Duke began its regular season slate last week at the Camp Creek Seminole Invitational.

Women’s Golf

The ACC Championship will take place April 15-18, and similar to the format for men’s golf, each ACC program is in charge of putting together its own regular season tournament schedule. Duke starts its season Feb. 21 at the Palmetto Spring Intercollegiate.

Men’s Lacrosse

Regular season play will start Feb. 5-7, with six games making up the ACC schedule and the number of nonconference games being determined on a school-by-school basis. There will be no ACC Men’s Lacrosse Championship tournament this season—instead, the ACC regular-season champion will be the official conference champion. The Blue Devils open the season against Denver Feb. 5

Women’s Lacrosse

Regular season play will begin Feb. 12-14, with a 10-game ACC schedule and a nonconference slate determined on a school-by-school basis. The ACC Championship will take place from April 28-May 2, with all eight teams making the tournament. Duke will hit the road to face in-state rival Davidson on the first day of the regular season. 

Rowing

Similar to men’s and women’s golf, all regular season regattas are scheduled by the programs themselves, with the ACC Championship set for May 14-15. The Blue Devils open their season March 6 in the Carolina Cup against Clemson. 

Softball

Like women’s lacrosse, regular season play will begin Feb. 12-14. Official conference play will begin March 5-7, but like all other sports, teams may schedule their own nonconference games at the discretion of individual schools. The ACC Championship is scheduled for May 12-15. Duke begins its season Feb. 12 against Central Arkansas.

Tennis

In this case, the men’s and women’s teams are the same boat. During the regular season, all nonconference games are to be scheduled by each individual program, while the ACC schedule will be a round-robin format. The ACC Championships are set for April 21-25. Both Duke men’s and women’s tennis began play over the last few weeks.

Men’s Soccer

The Blue Devils will begin their “second” ACC season on the weekend of March 5-7, although individually scheduled nonconference games may take place before then. In conference play, Duke will participate in five Coastal division games and one Atlantic Division match. 

Following the regular season, the winner of each division will play each other, with the winner of that match facing Clemson (who won the ACC tournament in the fall) to determine the ACC’s automatic bid to the NCAA tournament. If Clemson wins its division, that last match would not be played. Duke is yet to release its spring schedule.

Women’s Soccer

There’s a more limited schedule for women’s soccer this spring—no conference games are scheduled to occur, and Florida State (which won the ACC tournament in the fall) will be the conference’s automatic qualifier for the NCAA tournament. Any team is permitted to schedule its own nonconference matches, however. The Blue Devils have scheduled five nonconference games, starting with a trip to UNC-Wilmington March 6.

Outdoor Track and Field

It is up to each program to schedule its own events. While Duke is currently in the midst of its indoor track and field season, its outdoor season will begin March 19 at the Bon Davidson Invitational. The ACC Championships will take place May 13-15.

Cross Country

Starting Feb. 1, all ACC teams are permitted to start their regular season, but there will be no conference-scheduled events and it is up to each individual program to create their own schedule. Duke will compete at the FSU Winter Cross Country Classic Feb. 5 and if it builds a strong enough resume, could be competing in the NCAA Championships March 15 as well.

Field Hockey

ACC competition will restart the first week of March, with each team playing six ACC games and any nonconference contests that a program has scheduled on its own. The top finisher within the conference schedule will face North Carolina, which won the ACC Championship in the fall, for the conference’s automatic bid to the NCAA tournament. The Blue Devils open their spring slate March 5 at Virginia.

Volleyball

Regular season play began Jan. 22, with ACC play starting March 5. After the fall season was organized by region, each ACC squad will now face the 10 teams that were outside of the regions they played in during the fall. Any nonconference matchups can be scheduled at the discretion of each school. The overall regular-season winner will be named the ACC Champion and receive an automatic bid to the NCAA tournament, and teams will have to suit up for at least 75% of their games to qualify for that automatic bid. Duke starts Feb. 9 with a road match against VCU. 


Max Rego

Max Rego is a Trinity junior and sports managing editor for The Chronicle's 117th volume.

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