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Nov. 4, 2002

GREENSBORO, N.C. – The University of Virginia men’s basketball team is picked to finish fifth in the Atlantic Coast Conference for the 2002-03 season and the Cavaliers’ Travis Watson finished second in preseason Player of the Year voting on Sunday (Nov. 3) at the ACC’s Men’s Operation Basketball media gathering.

Duke received 79 first place votes (852 points) and was the pick of media representatives to finish first in the conference standings. Maryland (nine first place votes, 686 points) was picked to finish second followed by North Carolina State (four first place votes, 595 points), Georgia Tech (one first place vote, 548 points), Virginia (488 points), Wake Forest (380 points), North Carolina (348 points), Clemson (168 points) and Florida State (138 points).

Watson, a 6-8 senior forward/center from Brookneal, Va., received the most votes in the voting for preseason first-team All-Conference. He received 85 votes while Steve Blake (Maryland) and Chris Duhon (Duke) each had 83 votes. The other players voted preseason first-team All-ACC were Josh Howard (Wake Forest, 78) and Julius Hodge (North Carolina State, 62). The second team was comprised of Dahntey Jones (Duke), Edward Scott (Clemson), Tahj Holden (Maryland), Marcus Melvin (North Carolina State) and Raymond Felton (North Carolina).

Duhon was first in the preseason ACC Player of the Year voting with 26 votes followed by Watson (23), Howard (20), Blake (9) and Hodge (5).

Felton was first in the preseason ACC Rookie of the Year voting.

Virginia plays its first exhibition game of the 2002-03 preseason practice period on Sunday (Nov. 10) when the Cavaliers host Big Apple Basketball at University Hall. The game is scheduled to begin at 3:00 p.m.

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