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Thursday, June 6, 2019

Who Is The Best in The ACC? -- Thursday CARDINAL COUPLE


GRABBING THE TITLES


Paulie asked me to fill in for him today here at "the Couple" and it's always a pleasure to grace these honorable pages for me. When deciding on a topic for today, I went back to a conversation I had recently. A question that surfaced between me and one of my SEC friends that was based on 'who has the best women's sports program in the ACC?'.

We started it out by pondering which school was better than FSU. I decided to do a bit of research and just see how the 'Noles stacked up with the rest of the ACC -- plus how Louisville did in these sports. 

-- David Watson --  

I have two ACC schools in my state of residence. FSU and Miami. Neither won that clear cut title of 'best of'-- but the Noles tied for it. Louisville is my favorite ACC women's program. Unfortunately, they didn't take the title. 

Based on the 12 sports and 13 different titles available (track and field has an indoor and outdoor title up for grabs) the title is shared by NORTH CAROLINA and FLORIDA STATE. Both laid claim to three each of those 15 overall titles-- counting ties.

Cross Country, Field Hockey and Tennis for UNCFSU in soccer, softball and outdoor track.

We'll award a silver to NOTRE DAME. They had two titles. Seven schools won one title each. Out of the 15 ACC schools, no titles were earned by CLEMSON, DUKE, VIRGINIA TECH or GEORGIA TECH. 

To toss even more sawdust in the transmission, DUKE won the NCAA Championship in women's golf, but did not take the ACC Championships. 

I also found it interesting that, although tennis is played indoors and outdoors, there is just one championship for that sport

Here's a breakdown for you, by sport, in alphabetical order of the winners and how Louisville did in each sport. I left out fencing, since Louisville does not participate in this ACC sport. I need a fence repaired, though, as a sidebar. 


WOMEN'S BASKETBALL

Louisville and Notre Dame tied for the regular season title and the Irish, of course, went on to take the tournament and finish second the NCAA Tournament. I gave each school a "point" here...so the Cards would get at least one point. Irish fans will probably howl about that. 


CROSS COUNTRY

Notre Dame barely "ran away" with the ACC Championship title, scoring one point less than North Carolina 67 to 68. Yes, in cross country, the less points the better -- like in golf. Louisville was 14th. They had 324 points. The Cards need to pick up the running game.  


FIELD HOCKEY

North Carolina showed their dominance last season with a perfect 6-0 conference slate, 22-0 overall record and ACC and NCAA championship titles. Louisville finished third at 3-3 and 13-6 overall. Justine Sowry loses a strong goalie but has tons of talent returning.


GOLF

Wake Forest took the ACC Championships in the links sport. The Cards shot their way to a fifth place finish and did qualify for the NCAA Regionals, where they finished 11th. The Cards welcome Whitney wade Young as their new head coach. She's a good one so be excited.


LACROSSE

Boston College picked up the title in the ACC Championships. The Cards, still rebuilding under Scott Teeter, placed 7th and last but showed signs of improvement in this very competitive sport. A strong lineup returned and Teeter has recruited quite well. 


ROWING

Virginia has been the squad to beat for the last several years here and defended their title again in the ACC Championships. Louisville ended up seventh in the ACC standings. Derek Copeland can only continue to do the best he can against several ACC powerhouses. 


SOFTBALL

Florida State hosted the ACC Championships, Florida State won and also took the regular season title. Louisville finished third in the regular season at 12-12 in conference and was knocked out of the tournament by UNC. I look forward to season two of "HollyBall". 


SOCCER

North Carolina gathered 20 points to win the regular season competition but Florida State took the ACC Conference Tournament so we give the title to the Noles. The Cards were fifth at 6-4 and 18 pts. Louisville returns a lot of starters. They should improve.


SWIMMING and DIVING

North Carolina State outswam the competition in the ACC Tournament to lay claim to the title. Louisville had a third place finish in the tournament. Arguably, with considerations to basketball, one might say that Arthur Albiero has the best squad on campus in Louisville women's sports. You decide. I'll go with "hoops". 


TENNIS

NORTH CAROLINA served and returned their way to the ACC Championships. The Cards were 13th. out of 15 with a 2-12 regular season conference record and 10-15 overall. Mark Beckham has to step up the talent level for the Cards to be competitive in the ACC


TRACK AND FIELD

Miami claimed the indoor season title championship with 95 points while the Cards finished fourth with 63 points. Outdoors, it was FSU taking the top spot with 134 points. UofL with ninth with 45 points.


VOLLEYBALL

Pittsburgh nudged out the competition in the conference standings with a 17-1 mark. Louisville grabbed third with a 15-3 ACC mark. The ACC does not have a conference tournament in this sport. Dani returns some very good players, excellent newcomers -- now she has to unseat Pitt. 


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SUMMATION



So - in conclusion -- the Cards have a bit of work to do if they want to lay claim to this "best of" title in the 2019-20 athletic schedules. The coaches are in place, the facilities certainly are not lacking and the talent is quite impressive as you check each roster. Can Louisville lay claim to the title in the upcoming season? 



I wouldn't bet against them. 

(Thanks to Paulie for proof-reading and (hopefully) adding a few photos).

Dave-O
David Watson













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