Win tickets to see the smash hit musical Mamma Mia at the Roanoke Civic Center. Two winners will each receive four tickets!
Associated Press | File 2012
Virginia Tech's Ronny Vandyke (36) and Ksyhoen Jarrett (34) try to stop Miami's Duke Johnson (8) from scoring a touchdown.
Associated Press | File 2011
Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd delivers a pass against Troy at Memorial Stadium in Clemson, S.C.
Associated Press | File 2011
North Carolina QB Bryn Renner threw for 3,356 yards and 28 TDs as a junior last season.
Courtesy of Pitt
Pitt coach Paul Chryst will lead the Panthers into the ACC this fall.
Associated Press | File 2011
Wake Forest quarterback Tanner Price (10) carries the ball as Boston College linebacker Kevin Pierre-Louis (24) defends in Boston.
Courtesy of Florida State
QB Jameis Winston is one of three contenders to replace E.J. Manuel at Florida State.
Associated Press | File 2011
Boston College quarterback Chase Rettig looks to pass as snow falls against Maryland in College Park, Md..
Courtesy of Maryland
Maryland coach Randy Edsall is concerned about his offensive line.
Courtesy of N.C. State
Dave Doeren replaced Tom O'Brien as head coach at N.C. State.
Sunday, April 28, 2013
It's a time of new beginnings for some ACC football teams.
Syracuse and Pittsburgh are preparing for their new conference. North Carolina State, Boston College and Syracuse have new head coaches. Florida State, N.C. State, Syracuse, Pitt, Georgia Tech and Duke will be turning to new starting quarterbacks in the fall.
Spring practice has concluded for the ACC, although it ended without a spring game at BC.
On April 19, while the Boston area was on lockdown during the manhunt for Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, BC opted to cancel its April 20 spring game.
"We were all kind of bunkered down [on April 19]," BC coach Steve Addazio said. "They hadn't caught Suspect No. 2 yet, and really all the law enforcement, police officers had been working around the clock and people were fatigued. ... We just didn't feel like it was fair to all of law enforcement ... [to] worry now about a spring football game. It just didn't seem appropriate."
Here's how the rivals of Virginia Tech and Virginia look following spring practice.
Outlook: Addazio, formerly the coach at Temple, replaced Frank Spaziani. QB Chase Rettig, WR Alex Amidon and RB Andre Williams are back. But Addazio is concerned about a lack of depth at many positions.
Coach Steve Addazio says: "I want you to see a team that's physical, that's passionate, that plays like a team, that's high energy. I want you to watch an attack-style defense and I want you to see a diverse offense."
Outlook: QB Tajh Boyd and WR Sammy Watkins are back. Adam Humphries, Charone Peake and Jaron Brown are candidates to replace Houston Texans draft pick DeAndre Hopkins at the other WR slot. Coach Dabo Swinney said a committee of Roderick McDowell, D.J. Howard and Zac Brooks will replace RB Andre Ellington, an Arizona Cardinals draft pick.
Coach Dabo Swinney says: "We're a very big sophomore/junior football team, but they've won 21 games in the last two years. To me, the exciting thing about that is they've been through the battles."
Outlook: Anthony Boone will succeed QB Sean Renfree. The offense also will miss WR Conner Vernon, but coach David Cutliffe likes receivers Issac Blakeney, Erich Schneider, Jamison Crowder and Max McCaffrey. The secondary is a concern.
Coach David Cutcliffe on Boone: "He can extend plays with his running ability and his quickness and his strength. He's a 235-pound guy that's very quick. I haven't had a lot of guys that have a cannon as an arm, and he's got that."
Outlook: The defending ACC champs had five players drafted in the first two rounds. Jameis Winston, Jacob Coker and Sean Maguire are the contenders to succeed QB E.J. Manuel, a Buffalo Bills draft pick. The entire starting defensive line must be replaced, including Indianapolis Colts draft pick Bjoern Werner and San Francisco 49ers draft pick Cornelius Carradine. But coach Jimbo Fisher is high on DTs Demonte McAllister and Timmy Jernigan and DEs Mario Edwards, Dan Hicks and Giorgio Newberry.
Coach Jimbo Fisher on his six new assistants: "Most of them have got national championship rings or pedigrees in the NFL. Kids want to know they've coached other great players. That excites players."
Outlook: Vad Lee is the front-runner to succeed QB Tevin Washington, but Justin Thomas remains a contender. Coach Paul Johnson said there is not a wide gap between them.
Paul Johnson on the defense under new coordinator Ted Roof: "It's a different scheme. We worked a ton on tackling and fundamentals. I'm encouraged by what I saw. I think the guys enjoy playing this kind of style - it's aggressive, uptempo. We'll see if we're better. I hope we will be and think we will be."
Outlook: QB C.J. Brown, who missed last season with a torn ACL, saw non-contact action in spring practice. He was held out of the spring game. Coach Randy Edsall is pleased with Brown's progress but is concerned with the offensive line.
Coach Randy Edsall on his running backs: "Wes [Brown] wasn't out there due to injury. But Albert Reid is such a worker. Brandon [Ross], you could see that he got stronger over the winter.
"We're developing more depth and more competition at each position, and I think that's what we have at running back."
Outlook: QB Stephen Morris and RB Duke Johnson are back. The new offensive coordinator is James Coley, formerly the offensive chief at FSU. He replaced Jedd Fisch, who left for the Jacksonville Jaguars. The new punter will be Pat O'Donnell, who is planning to transfer from Cincinnati as a grad student.
Coach Al Golden says: "We only lost two starters off the fall roster, so this was a unique spring in that we had an experienced group and a mature group."
Outlook: OG Jonathan Cooper and DT Sylvester Williams were drafted in the first round, but QB Bryn Renner is back. The offense will miss RB Giovani Bernard, a Cincinnati Bengals draft pick.
Coach Larry Fedora on the running backs: "A.J. Blue has emerged as a team leader. A.J.'s about 215, 220 pounds, a guy that's going to finish off all his runs. He's going to be the bruiser-type of runner. But the guy that probably had the best spring was Romar Morris. He's got special speed and skills. And we had Khris Francis on campus, who graduated [high school] early and really did a nice job."
NORTH CAROLINA STATE
Outlook: Dave Doeren, formerly the coach at Northern Illinois, replaced Tom O'Brien. Pete Thomas, who transferred from Colorado State, is the front-runner to succeed QB Mike Glennon, a Tampa Bay Buccaneers draft pick. Manny Stocker is the other contender.
Coach Dave Doeren says: "We're a no-huddle offense that operates from the pistol and the shotgun, so that part of our offense is a lot different from [last year]. There's a lot of similar passing concepts and a lot of similar formations, but how we get into them and the tempo we run them at is a lot different."
Outlook: Pitt, coming off a 6-7 season, must replace QB Tino Sunseri and All-Big East RB Ray Graham. Rushel Shell was the top contender at RB, but he is transferring to UCLA. There are also off-the-field issues. On Friday, coach Paul Chryst suspended TE Drew Carswell, DT Khaynin Mosley-Smith and DB Eric Williams after their house was raided following a drug sting.
Coach Paul Chryst on joining the ACC: "There certainly is excitement. Guys understand that we better be getting to work. We've got to be better if we want to have a chance to compete."
Outlook: Scott Shafer was promoted from defensive coordinator to head coach after Doug Marrone left to coach the Buffalo Bills. Terrel Hunt, John Kinder and Charley Loeb are candidates to replace QB Ryan Nassib, a New York Giants draft pick who helped Syracuse win eight games last year.
Coach Scott Shafer on changing conferences: "We've played a lot of teams in the ACC over the years, both here at Syracuse and at different schools I've been at, so I'm real familiar with the quality of the athletes and the quality of coaching in that conference. It'll definitely be a hell of a challenge for us."
Outlook: QB Tanner Price will run the ball more than he did last fall. WR Michael Campanaro also returns from a 5-7 team, although he missed spring practice because of ankle surgery.
Coach Jim Grobe says: "I thought last year we were a bowl-capable football team. We dropped the ball in the middle of the season, lost a couple games I thought were within reach, and then by the end of the year we were not a very good football team. The good news is a lot of those kids that were banged up are back. I felt great about the spring. I really feel like we potentially have a good football team."
Weather JournalStorm track isn't very snowy for us