ACC Offseason Lookback & Lookaheads
Virginia Tech QB Tyrod Taylor
Virginia Tech QB Tyrod Taylor
Posted Feb 23, 2010

The ACC should be interesting with a loaded North Carolina, a strong Georgia Tech, Tyrod Taylor and Virginia Tech, and several more dangerous teams. Check out the 2009 Lookback & 2010 early pre-spring Lookahead for each ACC team. (Click on each team for its expanded Lookback & Lookahead.


Spring 2010

Lookbacks & Lookaheads ... ACC

- 2010 ACC Team-By-Team Schedule Breakdown
- 2010 ACC Composite Schedule & Rankings 
- 2010 ACC Pre-Preseason Rankings 
- 2010 ACC Recruiting Rankings 

Click on each team for the 2009 Lookback & 2010 Lookahead
Atlantic Boston Coll | ClemsonFlorida St | Maryland | NC State | Wake Forest
Coastal Duke | Georgia Tech | Miami | North Carolina | Virginia | Virginia Tech


Boston College  Click for the Lookback & Lookahead
After enduring all kinds of hurdles and still winning eight game, the Eagles are poised to contend for a third Atlantic Division title in the last four years. There'll be at least eight returning starters on both sides of the ball, and QB David Shinskie should be far more comfortable in his second season as the regular. Oh, and if LB Mark Herzlich does indeed make a successful return from cancer, the corps of linebackers will be among the best in the country.

Clemson  Click for the Lookback & Lookahead
When S DeAndre McDaniel and NG Jarvis Jenkins opted to return for their senior seasons, it ensured that Clemson would again have one of the ACC's toughest defenses. Yeah, both starting corners need to be replaced, but the safeties will be among the nation's best and the defensive line will make life easier until the defensive backfield gets up to speed. If DE Da'Quan Bowers can emerge into a force, the Tigers will be in great shape up front.
Florida State  Click for the Lookback & Lookahead
Now that the speculation about Bobby Bowden's future has ended, the Seminoles can move full steam ahead with Jimbo Fisher and his new staff. That's good news for a program that had been stuck in a holding pattern for far too long. There's also good news about the offense, which gets back emerging QB Christian Ponder, leading rusher Jermaine Thomas, three of the top four receivers, and the entire starting offensive line.

Maryland  Click for the Lookback & Lookahead
The Terrapins went with a lot of youth in 2009, which should benefit the program next fall. WR Torrey Smith has blossomed into a playmaker, and RB Da'Rel Scott is as good as there is in the league when he's healthy. The linebackers are going to be the backbone of the defense, if not the entire team. Alex Wujciak and Adrian Moten are terrific, and an injury to Demetrius Hartsfield opened the door for Ben Pooler to show he deserves more reps. Depth will not be an issue for this group.

NC State  Click for the Lookback & Lookahead
Assuming QB Russell Wilson is back in the saddle and not playing baseball full-time, the Pack could have the ACC's most prolific passing game. Not only is Wilson a two-time all-star, but he's loaded with accomplished receivers. Receivers Owen Spencer and Jarvis Williams combined for 17 touchdown catches, and George Bryan was the league's first team tight end. If LB Nate Irving can return to his old form after suffering injuries from last summer's car accident, it'll give a big boost to the defense.

Wake Forest  Click for the Lookback & Lookahead
Last year was an inevitable rebuilding year for the defense. Next year will start paying dividends for using so many first-year starters. There isn't an Aaron Curry or Alphonso Smith on the roster, but there is a smattering of All-ACC candidates. With a little seasoning, ends Tristan Dorty and Kyle Wilber, CB Kenny Okoro, and S Cyhl Quarles have a chance to be the spine of a sturdy defense. Whoever gets the ball from Jim Grobe will delight in having access to Marshall Williams, Devon Brown, Chris Givens, and the best receiving corps in school history.


Duke  Click for the Lookback & Lookahead
Even in just two years, the impact of having David Cutcliffe in Durham has really started to produce benefits. The Blue Devils were No. 9 nationally in passing a year ago, a trend that shouldn't change even after the graduation of QB Thaddeus Lewis. Duke is loaded at wide receiver, with last year's top six pass-catchers back, and Cutcliffe has done a great job of stocking the quarterback cupboard. Out of Sean Renfree and Sean Schroeder, he ought to have a worthy successor to Lewis.
Georgia Tech  Click for the Lookback & Lookahead
Just two seasons into Paul Johnson's tenure, the Yellow Jackets are already the defending ACC champs. The longer this staff is in Atlanta, the more comfortable the program becomes with the offensive system and the expectations of the coaches. There'll be no worries over who'll be piloting Johnson's triple-option. Josh Nesbitt returns for his senior year after rushing for 18 scores and earning a spot on the all-conference first team.

Miami Click for the Lookback & Lookahead
After playing the last two seasons with a ton of underclassmen, the Hurricanes go into 2010 loaded with veterans everywhere. Jacory Harris is back for his third season as the starter under center, and presumably ready to play with more consistency and fewer mistakes. When star DT Allen Bailey decided to pass on the NFL, it meant the defense would lose just a couple of players from last year's two-deep, giving it a chance to be the best in the Randy Shannon era.

North Carolina  Click for the Lookback & Lookahead
As other schools were being ruined by graduations and early departures to the NFL, the Tar Heels were celebrating. In a surprising show of unity, all five of Carolina's All-ACC junior defenders have decided to return to Chapel Hill for one more season. Add in league sack leader Robert Quinn and this D, which ranked No. 6 nationally a year ago, is going to be among the nation's best in 2010. With just a couple of starters to replace on this side of the ball, this could be a championship unit.

Virginia  Click for the Lookback & Lookahead
With head coach Mike London comes new hope and a promise that the defense will remain the backbone of the program. In two seasons as a defensive coordinator in 2006 and 2007, he had Virginia playing some of the best D in the ACC. London caught a break when Ras-I Dowling, the team's best pass defender and only returning all-star, opted to put off the NFL until 2011. He'll be the centerpiece of a secondary that brings back four regulars and promises to be very physical.

Virginia Tech  Click for the Lookback & Lookahead
The Hokies just might have their best backfield since Michael Vick was in Blacksburg. Tech is so loaded at the skill positions, Frank Beamer's biggest challenge might be keeping everyone well-fed. Tyrod Taylor is coming off his best season and begins his fourth year as the starting quarterback. In backs Ryan Williams and Darren Evans, the Hokies boast 1,000-yard rushers and the last two ACC Freshmen of the Year. Heck, even the wideouts are deep, bringing back last season's top three receivers.