With basketball season just around the corner (first exhibition game for Wake Forest is next Friday when it hosts Belmont Abbey), Ken Pomeroy has unveiled his annual pre-season rankings.
For those unfamiliar with the rankings, they are tempo-free rankings based on the four factors of basketball: effective field goal percentage, turnover rate, rebounding rate, and free throw rate.
There is a bit of guesswork in the model as it projects certain freshmen, transfers, and injured players with Division I experience as contributing to each team.
The top 30 freshmen or so have an impact on a team’s rating, but beyond that the system basically does not count freshmen because historically, as a whole, those freshmen do not usually result in average to above average players. There are obviously exceptions to this since it is a large model, but usually works out well.
Wake Forest enters the rankings at 91st to start the year. For reference, the Deacs finished last season at 89th.
This team is an especially difficult team to predict because of the attrition from last season. Just three scholarship players (four if you count recently “shipped” former walk-on Anthony Bilas) return to the team this year, which produces a ton of uncertainty, especially with the grad transfers and freshmen joining the squad.
I don’t want to give away too much because it is behind a paywall at kenpom.com (which I highly recommend you all subscribe to if you love basketball and the stats behind it, but he predicts Wake to go 12-16 overall (doesn’t have the two extra tournament games that will be played ), and 5-13 in the ACC.
This pus Deacs at 13th in the ACC, ahead of only Georgia Tech (92nd) and Pittsburgh (139th, wooooof). There are four top ten teams nationally (Duke, UNC, Virginia, and Syracuse), and eight top 25 teams (Clemson, FSU, Virginia Tech, Miami). The league is loaded again folks.
Honestly this is very similar to what I had when I went down the schedule a few weeks back, as I got 14-16 even when being slightly optimistic.
As the season gets closer we will have much more on this year’s iteration of Wake Forest basketball. Media day is today in Charlotte, and we will have the Blogger So Dear All-ACC teams and predictions out bright and early tomorrow as well.
What do you all think about this? Does he have “correctly” ranked, or do you think we will be much better or worse than where he has us slotted?