Hokies’ Green earns ACC player of year
Erick Green earned a place in ACC history on Tuesday.
Green, the Virginia Tech guard who leads the nation in scoring average at 25.4 points per game, became the first player from a last-place team to be voted the conference’s player of the year.
Green, bidding to become just the second player from the ACC to lead the nation in scoring, won the honor by a wide margin, being named on 38 of the 76 votes cast by the Atlantic Coast Sports Media Association. Shane Larkln, the guard who helped lead Miami to an unexpected first-place finish, placed second with 23. Mason Plumlee of Duke, who was the favorite early in the season, wound up third with 12 votes.
Green’s selection means that Maryland’s Len Bias is no longer the only player picked from a school with a losing conference record. The Terps went 6-8 and finished sixth when Bias was chosen as the best player for the 1985-86 season.
“This young man has put in numerous hours and has relentlessly worked on his game to put himself in this position,” Tech coach James Johnson said in a statement. “To have the respect of the media and for people to recognize what he has done for this team, in such a tough conference against very good players and very good coaches, says a lot about Erick as a player. Erick is a great kid on and off the floor and the award couldn’t come to a better person.”
Jim Larranaga was the near unanimous choice for coach of the year, being named on 75 of 77 ballots. Olivier Hanlan of Boston College, the top freshman scorer in the conference, was named freshman of the year. He named on 43 ballots. Rasheed Sulaimon was named on 15 to finish a distant second with T.J. Warren named on 12 to finish third.
When tournament time rolls around next year, the ACC will have at least 15 teams in all sports except football.
The Fighting Irish announced they reached agreement with the Big East to become an ACC member on July 1. Notre Dame had planned to join the ACC in 2014 before seven non-Division 1 football members of the Big East gained permission to leave on July 1. In a release, Notre Dame said it and the Big East agreed it would be best for Notre Dame to leave at the same time.
The ACC now has 12 teams but will also add Syracuse and Pittsburgh on July 1. Louisville will join in 2014 unless it gains early exit from the Big East.
“From the time of our decision to join the ACC we have stressed our commitment to ensuring that our departure was achieved in a collegial manner,” Notre Dame vice president and director of athletics Jack Swarbrick said in a statement. “This agreement realizes that intention and we are very grateful to the members of the Big East and Commissioner Mike Aresco for helping to facilitate this orderly and timely transition.”
Notre Dame will not become a member in football but will play five ACC teams each year on a rotating basis. That plan will not go in effect until 2014 as previously announced.