Blue Ribbon Panel Predictions
#1 NC St.
Fifth-ranked North Carolina State will open the season as the Atlantic Coast Conference favorite, while senior center Elissa Cunane is the preseason player of the year.
The 6-foot-5 Cunane was a second-team All-American pick for The Associated Press last year after averaging 16.3 points and 8.3 rebounds. She helped the Wolfpack win a second straight ACC Tournament title and earn the program's first No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.
Picked as player of the year in both votes, Cunane is the headliner for a team that returns its top eight scorers while adding sophomore transfers Diamond Johnson from Rutgers and Madison Hayes from Mississippi State.