For a while, Lamar Patterson not only looked like a lock for the ACC's First Team, but was even considered as a favorite by some to win the conference's Most Valuable Player Award. When the dust cleared, though, Patterson was named as a Second Team performer by the Atlantic Coast Sports Media Association (ACSMA - not to be confused with the ASPCA) and the league's coaches.
I didn't have a huge problem with the voting, though you could certainly make a good case for Patterson on the first team. Jabari Parker and T.J. Warren were first team All ACC players for both organizations and are more deserving than Patterson IMO. Other than them, though, you can make a good case for Patterson over the other players.
North Carolina's Marcus Paige and Syracuse's C.J. Fair were on each first team, but Patterson averaged more points and shot better than both. The Pitt forward also averaged more rebounds than Paige and just as many assists as the guard. He also averaged more assists than Fair. And when you consider what Pitt has looked like without him or with him playing poorly, you can make a good case that he's more valuable to his own team than those players as well.
The two other players that made one of the First Teams were Clemson's K.J. McDaniels (ACSMA) and Virginia's Malcolm Brogdon (coaches).
Brogdon making the team was a bit ridiculous to me and was clearly on the basis of Virginia's team strength. He averages by far the fewest points of anyone on either First Team (12.6 ppg) and Patterson also shot better than him and dished out significantly more assists. It just screams of wanting a player from the conference's top rated team. McDaniels' selection to the coaches' First Team was far easier to understand. That kid carried Clemson to respectability practically by himself, but even in that case, you can make a good argument for Patterson over him.
For the record here are the key numbers of the five players leaving out Parker and Warren. I'm really not sure three of these guys should have been taken over Patterson. The Pitt forward topped everyone in scoring, field goal percentage, and assists, and was third in rebounds and second in steals.
Really, a lot of this seems to have come down to whose team had more success than who was more valuable to his team. To me, there's not much question that Patterson's value surpasses that of Fair, Paige, and Brogdon since Pitt has looked like such a wreck without him at full strength. McDaniels is the lone exception there when it came to picking players from the top teams, but in terms of value, he's probably the only one on the list more valuable to his team than then Pitt star.
Patterson had his share of bad games, but by the numbers, he looks like a First Teamer. If Pitt would have won a few more games, it would have been harder to leave him off.
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