Kyrie Irving joined such ACC legends as Ralph Sampson and David Thompson when he became the 10th ACC player to be taken first overall pick in the NBA Draft on Thursday. The Cleveland Cavaliers, as expected, chose the Duke freshman over Arizona forward Derrick Williams with the No. 1 pick.
Irving is the ACC's first No. 1 pick since Duke's Elton Brand in 1999 and the 10th in conference history. Only the Big Ten, with nine first overall picks, is even close.
"Looking forward to getting to Cleveland, feels good to finally put a hat on," Irving told reporters at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J.
Duke teammate Nolan Smith, who was projected by many experts to be a second-round pick, went 21st to the Portland Trail Blazers, while Duke's Kyle Singler was expected to be a first-round pick but went with the third pick of the second round, 33rd overall to the Detroit Pistons.
Smith's late father Derek played in the NBA for nine seasons with five teams. Nolan went 11 picks earlier than his father, a second-round pick in 1982.
Irving became the third Duke player drafted first overall, joining Brand and Art Heyman (1963), and it was the fifth time two or more Duke players have been drafted in the first round.
After Irving, it was a long wait until the next ACC player came off the board: Georgia Tech guard Iman Shumpert to the New York Knicks with the 17th pick. It was an ACC pick one way or another - the Knicks' other option at the spot was former Florida State forward Chris Singleton, who went with the next pick to the Washington Wizards.
Boston College guard Reggie Jackson went 24th overall to the Oklahoma City Thunder, giving the ACC five first-round draft picks, the same as last year.
A total of nine ACC players were drafted last year, with seven going this year after Singler and Maryland forward Jordan Williams were selected in the second round.
It was a solid year for Duke, but a year after Wake Forest's Al-Farouq Aminu and North Carolina's Ed Davis were first-round picks and two years after the Big Four produced six first-round selections, the other three ACC schools in North Carolina were shut out.
First-year N.C. State coach Mark Gottfried even got into the act, even though the Wolfpack hasn't had a player drafted since J.J. Hickson in 2008.
Tracy Smith, who put his name into the draft pool as a junior a year ago before withdrawing it and returning to school, was not selected.
"I look forward to the day when we have multiple Wolfpack players going into the NBA Draft," Gottfried posted on Twitter on Thursday.