July 29, 2009
GREENSBORO, N.C. – The 2008 Player of the Year and Rookie of the Year and four members of the defending champion Virginia Tech Hokies were among the 24 players named to the preseason All-ACC football team Monday. Media members attending the 2009 ACC Football Kickoff at the Grandover Resort cast 44 ballots for the teams.
Georgia Tech running back Jonathan Dwyer, who is seeking tobecome the league’s first two-time Player of the Year since 1992and ’93, led all candidates with 41 votes. Dwyer averaged 107rushing yards per game as the Yellow Jackets quickly adapted tocoach Paul Johnson’s spread option offense last season. C.J. Spiller of Clemson appearstwice on the chart. He’s Dwyer’s running mate in the backfield andthe media’s choice at specialist. In 2008, he placed 14thnationally in kickoff-return average at 27 yards an attempt. N.C.State’s Russell Wilson, who threw 249 consecutive passes without aninterception over his final nine games as a redshirt freshman ayear ago and became the first freshman in league history to earnfirst-team All-ACC honors as a quarterback, was the top vote-getteramong signal callers.
Three players topped the defensive honorees with 34 votes apiece: Duke defensive tackle Vince Oghobaase, widely considered among the best five players nationally at his position; Florida State linebacker Dekoda Watson; and Georgia Tech safety Morgan Burnett, a second-team All-American according to three sources last season. Virginia Tech led the way with four selections: tight end Greg Boone; defensive end Jason Worilds, who made 18.5 tackles for loss in 2008; safety Kam Chancellor; and offensive guard Sergio Render. Three teams had three selections.
North Carolina was represented by linebacker Quan Sturdivant,whose 87 unassisted tackles led the nation last year; tackle MarvinAustin; and cornerback Kendric Burney. Georgia Tech wide receiverDemaryius Thomas, who made 39 of his team’s 74 pass receptions onthe season, joined Dwyer and Burnett among the Jackets’ honorees.Clemson got two of its three appearances from Spiller. Widereceiver Jacoby Fordprovided the other.
In all, 17 players who earned first or second-team or Honorable Mention All-ACC honors in 2008 were chosen for the 2009 pre-season team including 2009 first-team honorees Wilson, Dwyer, Spiller (as specialist), Florida State guard Rodney Hudson and Maryland punter Travis Baltz.
Nine members of the 2009 preseason team earned second team All-ACC honors last year including Spiller (as a running back), Worilds, Burnett, Boston College offensive tackle Anthony Castonzo, Virginia Tech offensive guard Sergio Render, Miami placekicker Matt Bosher (who actually earned 2nd-team ALL-ACC as a punter and placekicker), Maryland linebacker Alex Wujciak, Virginia cornerback Ras-I-Dowling and North Carolina cornerback Kendric Burney.
The 2008 honorable mention All-ACC selections were Duke’s Oghobaase, Boston College center Matt Tennant and NC State defensive end Willie Young.
Specialist: C.J. Spiller, Clemson
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