Notre Dame Named ACC Women’s Basketball Preseason Favorite


Blue Ribbon Panel and Head Coaches pick Irish to repeat as champion, Turner as Player of Year

GREENSBORO, N.C. (theACC.com) – Two-time defending champion Notre Dame is once again the Atlantic Coast Conference Women’s Basketball preseason favorite, according to separate polls of the league’s Blue Ribbon Panel and its 15 head coaches.

This marks the third consecutive season that the Fighting Irish have been rated the ACC preseason favorite since joining the conference prior to the 2013-14 season.

Notre Dame, which welcomes back four starters and 10 monogram recipients from last year's 36-3 team that reached the NCAA Championship title game, received 41 first-place votes from Blue Ribbon panel members to emerge as the clear-cut favorite. Florida State, which joined the Fighting Irish in the Elite Eight of the 2015 NCAA Championship, received eight first-place votes and placed second. Louisville (two first-place votes) placed third.

Duke finished fourth in the Blue Ribbon panel voting, followed by Syracuse (5th), Miami (6th) and North Carolina (7th). Virginia and NC State placed eighth and ninth respectively, while Pitt (10th), Georgia Tech (11th), Boston College (12th), Virginia Tech (13th), Wake Forest (14th) and Clemson (15th) rounded out the voting.

The ACC Coaches’ balloting exactly mirrored that of the Blue Ribbon panel in predicted order of finish. Notre Dame received 11 coaches’ first-place votes, with the remaining four going to Florida State.

Sophomore forward Brianna Turner of Notre Dame was named the 2015-16 ACC Preseason Player of the Year in both the Blue Ribbon Panel and the coaches’ balloting.  The 2015 ACC Freshman of the Year, Full Court Press National Freshman of the Year and a 2015-16 preseason All-America selection by numerous media outlets, Turner set the ACC single-season record for field-goal percentage by a freshman (.652) while averaging 13.8 points, 7.9 rebounds, 2.5 blocks and 1.1 steals per game during the 2014-15 season.

Turner is joined on both the 2015-16 Blue Ribbon Panel and the Coaches’ Preseason All-ACC teams by Duke’s Rebecca Greenwell and Azura Stevens, Florida State’s Adut Bulgak and Leticia Romero, Louisville’s Mariya Moore, Miami’s Adrienne Motley, Notre Dame’s Lindsay Allen, Syracuse’s Alexis Peterson and Virginia’s Faith Randolph.

The Blue Ribbon Panel’s Newcomer Watch List features Duke’s Angela Salvadores, Louisville’s Asia Durr, North Carolina’s Destinee Walker and the Notre Dame tandem of Arike Ogunbowale and Marina Mabrey.

Salvadores, Durr, Walker and Ogunbowale were also named to the ACC Coaches’ Newcomer Watch List, along with Duke’s Kyra Lambert and North Carolina’s Stephanie Watts.

Predicted Order of Finish (as selected by the Blue Ribbon Panel)

  1. Notre Dame – 753 points (41 first place votes)
  2. Florida State – 695 (8 first place votes)
  3. Louisville – 649 (2 first place votes)
  4. Duke - 638
  5. Syracuse - 544
  6. Miami – 477
  7. North Carolina – 435
  8. Virginia – 364
  9. NC State – 336
  10. Pitt – 329
  11. Georgia Tech – 328
  12. Boston College – 204
  13. Virginia Tech – 148
  14. Wake Forest – 139
  15. Clemson – 81

Preseason Player of the Year (as selected by the Blue Ribbon Panel)
Brianna Turner, So., F, Notre Dame

Preseason All-ACC Team (as selected by the Blue Ribbon Panel)
Rebecca Greenwell, R-So., G, Duke
Azura Stevens, So., F/G, Duke
Adut Bulgak, Sr., C, Florida State
Leticia Romero, Jr., G, Florida State
Mariya Moore, So., G,  Louisville
Adrienne Motley, Jr., G,  Miami
Lindsay Allen, Jr., G, Notre Dame
Brianna Turner, So., F, Notre Dame
Alexis Peterson, Jr., G, Syracuse
Faith Randolph, Sr., G, Virginia

Newcomer Watch List (as selected by the Blue Ribbon Panel)
Angela Salvadores, Fr, G, Duke
Asia Durr, Fr, G, Louisville
Destinee Walker, Fr., G, North Carolina
Marina Mabrey, Fr., G, Notre Dame
Arike Ogunbowale, Fr., G, Notre Dame

Predicted Order of Finish (as selected by the Head Coaches)

  1. Notre Dame – 221 points (11 first place votes)
  2. Florida State – 212 (4 first place votes)
  3. Louisville - 190
  4. Duke - 185
  5. Syracuse - 162
  6. Miami – 146
  7. North Carolina – 118
  8. Virginia – 113
  9. NC State – 105
  10. Pitt – 93
  11. Georgia Tech – 85
  12. Boston College – 57
  13. Virginia Tech – 52
  14. Wake Forest – 43
  15. Clemson – 18

Preseason Player of the Year (as selected by the Head Coaches)
Brianna Turner, So., F, Notre Dame

Preseason All-ACC Team (as selected by the Head Coaches)
Rebecca Greenwell, R-So., G, Duke
Azura Stevens, So., F/G, Duke
Adut Bulgak, Sr., C, Florida State
Leticia Romero, Jr., G, Florida State
Mariya Moore, So., G, Louisville
Adrienne Motley, Jr., G, Miami
Lindsay Allen, Jr., G, Notre Dame
Brianna Turner, So., F, Notre Dame
Alexis Peterson, Jr., G, Syracuse
Faith Randolph, Sr., G, Virginia

Newcomer Watch List (as selected by the Head Coaches)
Kyra Lambert, Fr, G, Duke
Angela Salvadores, Fr., G, Duke
Asia Durr, Fr., G, Louisville
Destinee Walker,  Fr., G, North Carolina
Stephanie Watts, Fr., G, North Carolina
Arike Ogunbowale, Fr., G, Notre Dame
*due to a tie in voting, an extra member was added to the Newcomer Watch List