RALEIGH, N.C. - North Carolina State is starting the year in an unusual position: favored to win the Atlantic Coast Conference.
Coach Mark Gottfried returns four starters from a team that reached the NCAA round of 16 to go with one of the nation's top recruiting classes. N.C. State is the preseason favorite in the ACC for the first time since the 1974-75 season and ranked No. 6, the program's highest ranking since 1983.
Gottfried says his team will have to tune out the expectations and focus on what it can control -- namely, how hard it works to reach its potential.
Junior C.J. Leslie is the preseason ACC player of the year. He's joined by junior point guard Lorenzo Brown, and seniors Richard Howell and Scott Wood to form the Wolfpack's core.
AP/ WFMY News 2 Sports