With ACC media days behind us, fall camps are starting soon and the season is a mere month away.
One of my favorite parts of media festivities is the release of the All-ACC team. This year's squad looks stellar, with more than a few guys who will be making a living on Sundays.
It comes as no surprise that NC State sophomore QB Russell Wilson is first-team. He blew up the scene in '08, leading the ACC in passing efficiency and had an eye-popping 17-to-1 TD and INT ratio.
The running back slots are taken by 2008 Player of the Year Jonathan Dwyer and Heisman hopeful CJ Spiller from Clemson. They are hands down the best backs in the conference, but both are easily top five in the nation.
The wide receiver position is lacking a little this year with a slew of graduations and drafts. Clemson's Jacoby Ford and his sub-2.0 40-speed (yes, that's an exaggeration; driving home exactly how fast this guy is) should see a significant rise in catches with Aaron Kelly gone, and Demaryius Thomas should benefit from Georgia Tech apparently planning on passing more.
The tight end slot is pretty steady with Virginia Tech's Greg Boone. If QB Tyrod Taylor can manage to pass a little more in '09, Boone will be a great option.
The offensive line is as steady as any all-conference team in the nation. The running backs at Boston College have to be smiling ear to ear with two of their big guys good enough to make all-conference.
I have to give a nod to Miami's Jason Fox as top OL though, he did not allow a sack last season—impressive to say the least.
His teammate, kicker Matt Bosher, rounds out the offense. Bosher was deadly accurate last year, nailing all 40 PATs and hitting on 18 of 20 attempts, including a 52-yarder.
|QB||Russell Wilson||NC State|
|RB||Jonathan Dwyer||Georgia Tech|
|WR||Demaryius Thomas||Georgia Tech|
|TE||Greg Boone||Virginia Tech|
|OT||Anthony Castonzo||Boston College|
|OG||Sergio Render||Virginia Tech|
|OG||Rodney Hudson||Florida State|
|C||Matt Tennant||Boston College|
The defensive line for the ACC is pretty good for 2009. Jason Worilds tallied almost 19 tackles-for-loss for Virginia Tech last year, and Vince Oghobaase is an NFL caliber player on a Juco team.
Behind the line, the linebacker spot is solid. Everyone knows about Dekoda Watson, but Quan Sturdivant from North Carolina and Alex Wujciak from Maryland need a spotlight.
Sturdivant led the nation in unassisted tackles last year and Wujciak is a hard hitter with a nose for the ball, averaging a little over 10 tackles a game, which was No. 13 nationally.
I think the real strength of the defense are the pass defenders and deep men. Ras-I Dowling is a true shut-down corner and in the safety slot, Georgia Tech's Morgan Burnett is the all-star (preseason All-American by three sources.)
Travis Baltz from Maryland got the nod for punting. He led the ACC in average last season at 41.1.
On a side note, kudos to Clemson RB CJ Spiller, who was elected not only First-Team All-ACC for running back, but specialist also.
|DE||Jason Worilds||Virginia Tech|
|DE||Willie Young||NC State|
|DT||Marvin Austin||North Carolina|
|LB||Dekoda Watson||Florida State|
|LB||Quan Sturdivant||North Carolina|
|CB||Kendric Burney||North Carolina|
|S||Morgan Burnett||Georgia Tech|
|S||Kam Chancellor||Virginia Tech|