In the hands of unproven QBs
There’s plenty of buzz around the Atlantic Coast Conference with the addition of a new team, the latest Heisman Trophy winner and the reigning national champion.
Top-ranked Florida State’s run to the national title and the arrival of fast-rising Louisville have raised the ACC’s national profile.
But the strength of the league as a whole this season could depend on the arms of numerous unproven commodities at quarterback — besides Jameis Winston, the Seminoles’ Heisman winner, of course.
At least 10 schools will debut new starting QBs this week, including three transfers and a pair of true freshmen.
Those concerns might be unfounded, new Clemson starter Cole Stoudt said.
“I think people are going to be shocked by what we’re going to do,” he said. “People are underestimating what we have, looking at all the negatives instead of the positives we have.”
The numbers perhaps tell a different story: According to STATS, only nine current ACC quarterbacks have made at least one career start.
Only one ACC QB — Duke’s Anthony Boone — ever started a game for his current school before last season.
And no one in the league has made more career starts than Winston — all 14 of his came during his big redshirt freshman season in 2013.
The league’s only other returning full-time starter is Terrel Hunt of Syracuse. North Carolina is still deciding between Marquise Williams — who started six games — and redshirt freshman Mitch Trubisky.
David Watford started all 12 games of Virginia’s 2-10 finish last year. But backup Greyson Lambert, a redshirt sophomore, beat Watford for the starting job with all of 75 college passes on his resume.
Plenty of other first-time starters also will get their chance this weekend.
Two transfers from Florida — Jacoby Brissett at North Carolina State and Tyler Murphy at Boston College — are pegged to start their new teams’ openers along with ex-Texas Tech backup Michael Brewer, who’s now at Virginia Tech.