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A look at what has happened to the ACC in 2021

There was no big offseason program this year, but there are extra restrictions on what athletes can and cannot do.
Credit: AP
Syracuse's Kiara Lewis (23) passes the ball away from the pressure by Louisville's Ahlana Smith (2) during the first half an NCAA college basketball game in the semifinals of Atlantic Coast Conference tournament in Greensboro, N.C., Saturday, March 6, 2021. (Ethan Hyman/The News & Observer via AP)

Did anyone outside of North Carolina even notice that Duke and North Carolina played each other this weekend? The powerhouse college basketball conference has been mostly quiet this season and only has three ranked teams in number 21 Virginia Cavaliers, number 11 Florida State Seminoles, and number 22 Virginia Tech.

All three of those teams are usually in the mix in the ACC but usually accompanied by Duke, North Carolina. Louisville and Syracuse. None of those teams are ranked, and unless they win the ACC Tournament, they aren’t going to the NCAA Tournament.

“You saw with the Duke’s and North Carolina’s of the world that they are having Freshman guard’s kind of lead them blindly. They are learning a lot on the fly.” Candace Cooper from Locked on Tarheels explains why some blue blood schools are having such a hard time in the latest episode of Locked On Today.

This year, there was no big offseason program. There are extra restrictions on what athletes can or cannot do, and the teams with a lot of upper-classmen have been having success over the typical one-and-done schools.

Was this a product of COVID-19, or are we on the brink of a massive changeover in college basketball? Duke Head Coach Mike Krzyzewski is 74, North Carolina Head Coach Roy Williams is 70, and Syracuse Head Coach Jim Boeheim is 76. Could this be the beginning of the end of the ACC as the powerhouse we knew?

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