Who Is The ACC Rookie of The Year?

Ben GibsonSenior Analyst IMarch 9, 2009

With the all-freshman team announced today, there really appear to be only two options.

Two unanimous selections beg the question, who is the freshman of the year in the ACC?

Comparing these two men is like comparing apples to oranges since the men play different positions and have two very different roles on their respective teams.

In the end, this may boil down to the old-fashioned MVP debate of, "Can you be the best even if your team is horrible?"

Well let's see.


Sylven Landesberg (G)

Six Time Rookie of the Week

16.8 PPG (9th in ACC)

6.0 RPG (19th in ACC)

Shooting Percentage: 43.9% ( 32% from behind the arc)

Free Throw Percentage: 83%

Assists: 74

Biggest moments:

Hit game-tying shot vs. Clemson to force overtime where he scored six of Virginia's eleven points.

Had 28 points in his freshman debut, the second highest in ACC history.

Scored the game-clinching baskets in two consecutive games in early November and the game-winning assist against Maryland.

Why he should win?

Landesberg has 12 twenty-point games this season, the most in UVA history and behind only Tyler Hansbrough for most ever by a freshman. 

He was the only bright spot on a terrible year for the Cavaliers who showed mental toughness throughout, hitting big shots in big moments.

Landesberg led his team in scoring more than any other freshman in the country and, even with defenses geared to stop him, has continued to make coaches scratch their head in amazement.  He is a complete player.

Al-Farouq Aminu (F)

Five Time Rookie of the Week

13.0 PPG

8.3 RPG (6th in ACC)

Shooting Percentage: 52.7%

Free Throw Percentage: 66.2%

35 Blocks

Biggest Moments:

Aminu ended the regular season with two consecutive double double performances, including 21 points and 10 rebounds against the Clemson Tigers.

Had a career-high 26 points (on 8-of-9 shooting) against Boston College.

Scored 21 points in his freshman debut, second most in school history.

Why he should win?

Aminu has ten double-doubles on the year, more than double all the other rookies combined.

Aminu may not be the solitary star like Landesberg is, but he is a mismatch for any team and he is a freakish athlete.  Aminu has the size and the speed to be a great player on both the offensive and defensive end.

Even as a heralded power forward, Aminu is a solid ball handler and does a great job running down the court in the fast-paced Wake Forest system.  On talent alone, he is one of the best in school history.

Let the debate begin...