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ACC men's basketball power rankings: Duke takes back sole possession of No. 1, North Carolina on the rise

Duke scored a big win Wednesday at Wake Forest with Jon Scheyer as acting head coach.
Duke scored a big win Wednesday at Wake Forest with Jon Scheyer as acting head coach.

With another full week of conference play in the books, our beats are here with another installment of The Chronicle's Power Rankings of each team vying for the ACC crown:

1. Duke (14-2, 4-1)

Previous ranking: T-1 // Average ranking: 1.0

I’m glad my fellow voters came to their senses. Yes, the Miami loss was bad, but Duke is far and away the best team in the ACC and proved that this week. First came a victory on the road at Wake Forest Wednesday, where the Blue Devils played perhaps their best basketball of the year during a 22-1 run to end the first half/open the second. And then came another convincing win against N.C. State, this one at home, in which Duke’s starters played perhaps their best all-around game of the season. Consistency will be key if the Blue Devils want to bring home the regular-season ACC crown outright, but there shouldn't be any doubt about who sits atop these power rankings. -Evan Kolin

T-2. Miami (13-4, 5-1)

Previous ranking: T-1 // Average ranking: 2.6

The Hurricanes saw the court just once in the week following their gigantic win against Duke at Cameron Indoor Stadium, and it didn’t go their way: Miami came out on the wrong side of a thrilling finish at Florida State, falling 65-64 on a last-second pair of free throws by the Seminoles. The loss marked the end of Miami’s nine-game winning streak in gut-wrenching fashion, but in reality, it was just another instance of the surprising team going toe-to-toe and looking the part against a formidable opponent. Simply competing against the ACC's best teams likely won’t be enough to keep pace with Duke, but it’s enough to keep the Hurricanes in the top tier once again. -Jonathan Levitan

T-2. North Carolina (12-4, 4-1)

Previous ranking: 4 // Average ranking: 2.6

Sorry Duke fans, but that North Carolina game Feb. 5 is looking to be a tougher matchup by the week. Junior forward Armando Bacot is dominating in the paint, and he has muscled his way to seven consecutive double-doubles. The big man is doing it on ridiculous efficiency as well, shooting 64% from the field and making his early case for ACC Player of the Year. His supporting cast played well in the Tar Heels’ lone game this week, with RJ Davis posting 21 points to go along with six assists and Caleb Love chipping in 14 points on a 3-of-5 3-point clip. I know North Carolina is just two games removed from the loss to Notre Dame, but if you get this team firing in unison, it’s not a squad you want to come across. -Jake Piazza

4. Florida State (10-5, 4-2)

Previous ranking: 8 // Average ranking: 4.4

The Seminoles have been much better than their early-season woes indicated. Florida State is riding a three-game win streak and has lost just once in 2022. This past week, freshman guard Matthew Cleveland helped the Seminoles take down Miami, which itself had beaten then-No. 2 Duke three days earlier. Another win against Syracuse on Saturday has launched Florida State into the upper echelon of ACC teams. The Seminoles have improved considerably from their rocky start, and we may see Florida State climb even higher on this list in the coming weeks. -Glen Morgenstern

5. Wake Forest (14-4, 4-3)

Previous ranking: 5 // Average ranking: 4.9

These rankings have had Wake Forest as high as No. 2 back when it started the season 11-1. Since then, however, the Demon Deacons have taken a few tough conference losses, including one this week to the Blue Devils. However, it’s hard to knock a team that’s been as much of a surprise as the Demon Deacons—they were the ACC’s preseason No. 13—for falling to a top-10 team in the nation. With Alondes Williams leading the conference in both points and assists per game and Jake LaRavia scoring in double digits like clockwork, Wake Forest is a team to watch this season, especially after notching a solid win against a decent Virginia team. The Demon Deacons still have some question marks, but expect them to stay in the upper ranks of the ACC. -Sasha Richie

Complete rankings:

1. Duke (PR: T-1 // AR: 1.0)

T-2. Miami (PR: T-1 // AR: 2.6)

T-2. North Carolina (PR: 4 // AR: 2.6)

4. Florida State (PR: 8 // AR: 4.4)

5. Wake Forest (PR: 5 // AR: 4.9)

6. Notre Dame (PR: 7 // AR: 6.6)

7. Louisville (PR: 3 // AR: 7.8)

8. Virginia (PR: 9 // AR: 9.3)

9. Syracuse (PR: 11 // AR: 9.8)

10. Clemson (PR: 6 // AR: 10.0)

11. N.C. State (PR: 12 // AR: 10.1)

12. Virginia Tech (PR: 10 // AR: 10.4)

13. Boston College (PR: 14 // AR: 13.3)

14. Georgia Tech (PR: 13 // AR: 13.6)

15. Pittsburgh (PR: 15 // AR: 13.8)

Take a look at last week's Power Rankings here.


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