extreme storylines, newcomers to look at

the largest convention storyline that has dominated the headlines (completely different than the biggest strategy forward for the league) is whether or not or not the ACC has two teams with legit faculty soccer Playoff probabilities in Clemson and Florida State. each teams have a terrific deal of inquiries to answer first.

At Clemson, new offensive coordinator Garrett Riley enters the combo to try to restore a unit that has misplaced its fastball. After making six straight playoff appearances, Clemson has not made the playoff the previous two years, and that has led to questions about whether or not this methodology has prolonged-time period endurance. The transfer Dabo Swinney made to herald Riley is a clear indication he believes there’s loads Clemson has left to show.

In Tallahassee, Florida State has despatched expectations hovering, due to a ten-win season plus all of the starters coming again. however that is extra seemingly to be a program that had a three-sport dropping streak inside the course of final season and has not overwhelmed Clemson since 2014. If the Seminoles can get previous a troublesome September, as quickly as they play each LSU and Clemson, expectations is extra seemingly to be even larger.

whereas playoff appearances usually decide the biggest strategy conferences are perceived, the ACC has been a strategy extra balanced league than in years previous. maybe that finally ends up taking half in a job in what occurs in 2023, when the ACC performs with out divisions.

extreme storyline: The Eagles are going with a distinctive starting quarterback this spring and a distinctive offensive strategy following a three-9 season that was plagued with accidents and inconsistency. Emmett Morehead takes over as a consequence of the starter after taking half in at a extreme stage in 2022 rather than the injured Phil Jurkovec. Quarterbacks coach Steve Shimko supplies the title of offensive coordinator, however no matter who’s trying the performs, it is crucial for the Eagles to get again to working the soccer. BC might by no means hold the identical offensive line collectively a yr in the past as a consequence of they had been so youthful and banged-up. however that ought to current a strategy extra expert unit this yr, particularly with the return of attainable first-spherical decide Christian Mahogany.

Newcomer to look at: there isn’t any question receiver Zay Flowers leaves behind large sneakers to fill. look forward to UCF change Ryan O’Keefe to study from his alternative. O’Keefe was an monumental-time playmaker for the Knights (2,002 receiving yards), however there is extra seemingly to be completely different alternatives to get him the ball in house past lining him up at huge receiver. He additionally reunites with BC receivers coach Darrell Wyatt, who coached him at UCF.

extreme storyline: This spring supplies our first glimpse at what new offensive coordinator Garrett Riley will do to assist quarterback Cade Klubnik get the Clemson offense again on monitor. with out question, Dabo Swinney’s choice to hire Riley from TCU was amongst the numerous largest inside the faculty soccer offseason — an admission that fixing the offense wished to be dealt with by somebody exterior this methodology. The turning level was seemingly a loss to Tennessee inside the Capital One Orange Bowl, when Clemson scored simply 14 factors on one zero one performs. Riley’s offensive scheme has labored all by way of the place he has been, however for the important time in his profession, he is extra seemingly to be at a program that has persistently pulled in extreme-10 recruiting packages. The expertise is there for Clemson to be a extreme-powered offense as quickly as extra.

Newcomer to look at: we’ll carry on the offensive facet of the ball and go together with freshman receiver Noble Johnson, an early enrollee who was truly one of many extreme offensive recruits Clemson signed in its 2023 class. Not solely does Clemson should get extra consistency from its receivers, it additionally wants an monumental-play goal who can stretch the sector. Johnson, at 6-foot-three, 205 kilos, has an alternative to swimsuit that class after averaging 17.2 yards per catch in highschool.

extreme storyline: In Mike Elko’s first yr as head coach, Duke’s protection went from the worst inside the ACC — and amongst the numerous worst inside the nation — to being respectably center-of-the-pack due to drastically improved tackling, a larger cross rush and 26 takeaways, almost twice its 2021 whole. constructing on that success is extra seemingly to be key to the Blue Devils’ progress, however they’re going to should do it with a mannequin new defensive coordinator. Robb Smith left after simply one yr, and Elko launched in his former Texas A&M assistant Tyler Santucci to take over the D. There’s work to be carried out for a unit that additionally allowed 7.2 yards per cross, however when Santucci can get the protection to take one other step forward, there isn’t any purpose the Blue Devils can not repeat final yr’s stunning 9-win advertising campaign.

Newcomer to look at: talking of the cross protection, Duke added a attainable distinction-maker this offseason in Miami change Al Blades Jr. The onetime blue-chip recruit started 14 video games in 2019 and 2020, however an harm-plagued 2021 and the mannequin new teaching workers at Miami in 2022 saved him off the sector for prolonged stretches. he is nonetheless immensely gifted, nonetheless, and a modern start with the Blue Devils might equate to a distinctive shot at stardom for Blades and an monumental enchancment for Duke’s secondary.

extreme storyline: The Seminoles rank No. 1 inside the nation in returning manufacturing, collectively with bringing again their quarterback (Jordan Travis), main rusher (Trey Benson) and main receiver (Johnny Wilson). There usually are not many extreme-profile place battles that should be addressed inside the spring. the largest storyline facilities round how this group handles the elevated expectations and hype following a ten-win season. Florida State is a legit risk to win the ACC this yr for the important time in seven years. nobody is talking about scorching seats and whether or not Florida State can ever get again as a program. Now the discuss is whether or not or not this group can contend for the playoff. How Mike Norvell and his group handles all that exterior noise is extra seemingly to be fascinating to look at.

Newcomer to look at: as quickly as as quickly as extra, Florida State has no scarcity of transfers as Norvell and his workers proceed to rely on a mannequin that permits them to combine veteran playmakers into their group. It has labored wonders since Norvell arrived. amongst this yr’s gifted group of transfers, hold watch over Virginia change cornerback Fentrell Cypress II, who ranked No. 1 inside the ACC and ninth nationally in cross breakups in a breakout season in 2022. He has the potential to be truly one of the biggest shutdown cornerback inside the ACC.

extreme storyline: Did final yr’s 4-4 finish signify progress or a put up-teaching change blip? Brent Key did ample down the stretch to earn the whole-time head-teaching job, however now the true work begins. Key should develop some explosiveness on an offense that usually lacked any downfield risk, proceed to develop an O-line that is been amongst the numerous league’s worst for years and reignite a floor sport that was the signature of Georgia Tech’s mannequin however in 2022 averaged simply three.seventy five yards per rush. discovering an offensive id this spring will go an prolonged approach to figuring out how aggressive the Yellow Jackets is extra seemingly to be. Key helped flip throughout the protection in 2022. Now it is time for the offense to take an identical leap forward.

Newcomer to look at: Haynes King spent three years in Jimbo Fisher’s offense, worthwhile the starting job three completely different occasions, and but it by no means appeared to pretty work. whether or not attributable to accidents or inconsistency, King wrapped his Aggies profession with simply 10 touchdown passes to go together with 10 picks. nonetheless, he brings some critical expertise to Georgia Tech, which dealt with its personal irritating inconsistency by way of three years with Jeff Sims. Out from beneath Fisher’s prolonged shadow, it is simple to examine a situation the place the change of environment and a lot much less strain to fulfill sky-extreme expectations current King an alternative to lastly thrive. If he does, it could be a boon for the Yellow Jackets and probably truly one of many largest portal additions of the yr.

extreme storyline: It feels as if all people in America described the hire of Jeff Brohm as a “slam dunk” for the Cardinals, and for good purpose. he is Louisville soccer royalty, and he had good success as head coach at Purdue earlier than lastly deciding to get back again to his alma mater. if truth be instructed, that has put a terrific deal of the give consideration to the Louisville offense, which had stagnated beneath coach Scott Satterfield. Brohm is sure to get the offense bounce-started, particularly as regards to taking half in with extra tempo. He was additionally ready to maintain onto a extreme-tier recruiting class, so how the gamers on the roster mesh with what Brohm wishes to do is amongst the numerous largest storylines to look at.

Newcomer to look at: There are two quarterbacks to look at: Incoming freshman Pierce Clarkson, a 4-star recruit and large pickup for the playing cards, and change Jack Plummer. Brohm made it a stage to bolster the depth in his quarterback room as quickly as he arrived. Bringing Plummer in does simply that — particularly since Plummer has expertise with Brohm. Plummer started his profession at Purdue and spent 4 years there earlier than transferring to Cal final season. His familiarity with Brohm might give him a bonus. however both strategy, there is extra seemingly to be rivals for this spot, and that is precisely what Brohm wishes.

extreme storyline: Miami opened the 2022 season amid a lot fanfare with the return of Mario Cristobal, a renewed funding from the faculty in soccer, an all-star forged of assistant coaches and an incumbent QB poised for stardom. The consequence: 5-7. This offseason noticed an exodus of assistants and gamers, however people round Miami suppose it is extra seemingly to be larger for it. notably, QB Tyler Van Dyke appears to be like like he’ll be a a lot larger slot in new OC Shawn Dawson’s offensive scheme. There are nonetheless a terrific deal of large questions for Miami, nonetheless the largest accomplishment the group might obtain this spring is extra seemingly to be merely placing 2022 inside the rearview mirror for good.

Newcomer to look at: Miami signed a pair of 5-star offensive linemen, and each gamers — Francis Mauigoa and Samson Okunlola — will take part in spring ball. Given the Hurricanes’ offensive woes final season, which included simply 1.forty two yards earlier than contact per carry, including dimension and energy up from is important. If Mauigoa and Okunola develop as Cristobal hopes they’re going to, they’d match properly proper into a gaggle that additionally contains veteran Zion Nelson and UCF change Matt Lee.

extreme storyline: When NC State launched in Virginia change quarterback Brennan Armstrong, the pure assumption was that he would take over the starting quarterback job with Devin Leary off to Kentucky. particularly collectively with his former offensive coordinator, Robert Anae, coming to NC State as properly. however coach Dave Doeren has made it clear there is extra seemingly to be an open rivals this spring between Armstrong and returning quarterbacks MJ Morris and Ben Finley. Morris and Finley performed final season after Leary obtained damage and confirmed their very personal flashes of potential. How the rivals goes this spring might decide how the NC State offense appears to be like shifting forward.

Newcomer to look at: the apparent various right here is Armstrong, who put up large numbers when he was with Anae at Virginia. In 2021, their final season collectively, Armstrong threw for 4,449 yards (a single-season Virginia passing doc) and accounted for forty whole touchdowns. His capacity to run makes him a exact twin-risk. however with out Anae at Virginia final season, he struggled. This modern start with the Wolfpack might get him again on monitor, if he is ready to win the rivals.

extreme storyline: In Mack Brown’s first season with the Tar Heels in 2019, UNC’s protection had a fifty eight.three% worthwhile play cost. the subsequent yr, fifty seven.1%. the subsequent, fifty five.2%. And final season? A dismal fifty two.2%, good for 121st nationally. are you able to discover the enchancment? The Heels had a exact Heisman Trophy contender in Drake Maye and a ton of capacity place expertise in 2022. They posted large numbers on offense. And finally, the woeful state of the D left UNC with a 4-sport dropping streak to close out the season. Afterward, a bunch of defensive mainstays hit the portal, and Brown and DC Gene Chizik should start modern. That finally means getting larger manufacturing up entrance and taking half in extra aggressively to disrupt the opposing QB — one factor the Heels had been atrocious at in 2022. Can the D-line make an monumental bounce this spring? Will modern faces deliver a mannequin new vitality? Or will it is extra of the identical as Maye’s heroics are offset by a paper-skinny protection in 2023?

Newcomer to look at: After three years working Brown’s offense, Phil Longo left for Wisconsin this offseason. In his place, Brown employed former UCF offensive coordinator Chip Lindsey, who obtained here up beneath Gus Malzahn. will most seemingly be fascinating to see how Lindsey’s style of play works with Maye, who excelled beneath Longo’s up-tempo, Air Raid guidelines. Lindsey led a stellar dashing assault at UCF a yr in the past, however UNC’s offensive id has on a daily basis started with the QB.

extreme storyline: The offense can have a completely new really feel in 2023 with the departure of final yr’s main passer, rusher and receiver. inside the case of the underside sport, changing Izzy Abanikanda is extra seemingly to be no straightforward job, nonetheless the Panthers obtained a style of what Rodney Hammond Jr. might deliver inside the photo voltaic Bowl as he rushed for ninety 4 yards and two touchdowns, incomes sport MVP honors. LSU change Derrick Davis Jr. might additionally add some pop this spring. discovering a alternative for explosive receiver Jared Wayne and a bunch of veteran O-linemen is extra seemingly to be important, too. however, if truth be instructed, the QB room figures to grab the majority of the headlines.

Newcomer to look at: The Panthers suppose they hit a house run by including hometown product Phil Jurkovec by way of the change portal this offseason. as quickly as a blue-chip signee for Notre Dame, then a burgeoning prospect with first-spherical draft decide potential at Boston faculty, Jurkovec has battled accidents the previous two seasons and struggled behind a woeful Eagles O-line in 2022. At Pitt, he might have found the appropriate touchdown spot on an offense that can permit him to make the most of his athleticism and large arm, whereas taking half in with a protection that ought to protect him in every sport.

extreme storyline: This has been an offseason full of transition for Syracuse, which wished to revamp its teaching workers after 5 assistants left for completely different jobs. Jason Beck takes over as offensive coordinator, however his familiarity with quarterback Garrett Shrader and the system they should run ought to make for an straightforward transition. The extra fascinating transfer was hiring veteran defensive guru Rocky prolonged to change Tony White as defensive coordinator. White found the three-three-5 defensive scheme from prolonged, and since coach Dino Babers wished Syracuse to proceed working that scheme, he decided to go after the creator himself.

Newcomer to look at: Syracuse signed three key additions from the change portal. All three have an alternative to make a direct impression. Nebraska change cornerback Jaeden Gould and Notre Dame change cornerback Jayden Bellamy (former highschool teammates) fill a direct wished for the Orange, who should change each Garrett Williams (NFL draft) and Duce Chestnut (change). most seemingly the most intriguing is extra seemingly to be Alabama change defensive lineman Braylen Ingraham, who has the risk to assist transform a defensive entrance that was usually overmatched final season.

extreme storyline: Few teams have ever wished to navigate a spring simply like the one Virginia is about to undertake. final season ended abruptly after 10 video games when 4 members of the soccer group had been shot, collectively with three who had been killed, by one other Virginia pupil following a subject journey in November. The season had already been a large quantity on the sector as a mannequin new teaching workers tried to weave veteran expertise with a mannequin new strategy, and the off-subject tragedy rightfully shifted all focus away from soccer. How does Tony Elliott decide up the gadgets as he enters yr 2 as head coach? Can he refocus his group on wished enchancment whereas not dropping sight of the immense emotional toll of the previous yr? Elliott has spent months making ready to get your hands on the proper steadiness.

Newcomer to look at: Elliott preached the want for a extra balanced offense in 2022 than the cross-completely happy assault the Cavaliers had run beneath Bronco Mendenhall, however discovering a productive working sport remained elusive for the Hoos. This offseason, Elliott turned to a properly-acknowledged face to try to fill the void, bringing in former Clemson again Kobe tempo to anchor the underside sport. tempo break up starting reps with Will Shipley in 2021, when Elliott was Clemson’s offensive coordinator, dashing for 641 yards and 6 touchdowns. An harm sidelined him for a lot of 2022, nonetheless, however he might current a wished spark for this yr’s Cavaliers whereas serving to to mentor youthful expertise similar to sophomore Xavier Brown.

extreme storyline: final yr was a large quantity offensively for Virginia Tech, however that wasn’t fully stunning. Brent Pry was rebuilding from the underside up, and that meant a terrific deal of studying on the job for the Hokies. This offseason, each QB coach Brad Glenn (Cincinnati) and OL coach Joe Rudolph (Notre Dame) left for completely different jobs, extra complicating the enlargement course of. The continued enchancment of Grant Wells at QB is paramount, however nothing would assist the Hokies extra of their push again to bowl eligibility in 2023 than getting the underside sport going. A yr in the past, Virginia Tech accomplished thirteenth inside the ACC in dashing yards, with Wells offering a healthful chunk of their whole. discovering working lanes for change Bhayshul Tuten and up-and-comer Malachi Thomas. There’s not a lot depth right here, so preserving Thomas healthful and discovering extra holes up entrance is extra seemingly to be important.

Newcomer to look at: The Hokies appeared to have found a exact star final season in receiver Kaleb Smith, solely to see him go away this offseason for Notre Dame. What did Pry do to fill that hole? He launched in maybe most seemingly the biggest participant out there, touchdown outdated Dominion‘s Ali Jennings III, who hauled in fifty 4 catches for 959 yards and 9 touchdowns final season for the Monarchs. At 6-2, Jennings supplies a enticing goal, and he might assist Wells and the passing sport take an monumental leap in 2023.

extreme storyline: Sam Hartman set a plethora of faculty information all by way of his time as Wake Forest quarterback, collectively with an ACC-doc a hundred and ten touchdown passes. however his change to Notre Dame marks the start of a mannequin new period for the Demon Deacons offense, one which can function Mitch Griffis as a consequence of the starting quarterback. the good information right here is that Griffis has starting expertise, taking half in rather than Hartman final season in opposition to VMI and throwing for 288 yards and three touchdowns. He can have a terrific deal of assist, too, as Wake Forest returns 4 of its extreme 5 receivers from a yr in the past.

Newcomer to look at: Wake Forest was ready to hire cornerbacks coach Chip West away from Syracuse, and that would repay rapid dividends. West and head coach Dave Clawson go strategy, strategy again (to Fordham in 2003) and West additionally has expertise working with defensive coordinator Brad Lambert. In three years with the Orange, all of his cornerbacks earned All-ACC honors. Wake Forest has struggled in safety recently, giving up 29 passing touchdowns in 2022, amongst the numerous worst inside the nation. It should even be famous Wake Forest signed ESPN 300 cornerback Antonio Robinson to assist at this place as properly.


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