Coming at you to start your work week! We are full of surprises here on the ACC blog.
Kevin in Washington, D.C., writes: AA, I'm loving the road trip series. So far, three games include GT as must see football. But, they were only somewhere around 6 or 7 in the power rankings, I think. To me there's a bit of a disconnect there. Is it safe to say you and HD think GT could be a pretty good team if they can show up in big games and overcome weaknesses at WR?
Andrea Adelson: Thanks, Kevin! Georgia Tech actually checked in at No. 5 in our post-spring power rankings, so hopefully this gives you some indication that both Heather and I think the Jackets should be one of the better teams in the conference. We chose those Jackets games in the road trip series because they were the best on the docket, and also because they are going to essentially determine what happens to this team this season. If they can handle their business in those games, Georgia Tech could be back in the ACC title game.
Jason in Orlando writes: Can Roberto Aguayo truly live up to all the hype as a FSU kicker? Even with all of the history with wide lefts and rights?
Adelson: Great question, Jason. I took some heat last week when I listed kicker as the weakness for Florida State, because there are questions at other positions -- namely quarterback and defensive line. But I think Jameis Winston will do very well, and I also think the Noles are extremely talented up front despite losing some of their best players to the draft. I chose kicker because I honestly have no idea what to expect out of Aguayo. I know he came in hyped and had a nice spring, but with kickers, you just never know until the lights come on and there are 3 seconds left on the clock and you need to nail a kick to win a game.
Duane in South Florida writes: This is a bit late, but regarding your article about the Phil Steele ranking and receivers unit. There may no be any nation wide "household" names, but don't forget about Rashad Greene. I will take him before KB.
Adelson: You are not alone there, Duane!
Colby Lanham in Clemson, S.C., writes: Andrea, What are your thoughts on Clemson's running game? I think Andre Ellington was a highly undervalued part of our offense. Rod McDowell is the projected starter thus far, but how could the competition for playing time shake up? Will D.J. Howard or Zac Brooks emerge as the primary backup? Or could the new freshman backs Tyshon Dye and Wayne Gallman earn snaps as well?
Adelson: I could not agree more with your assessment of Ellington. Hands down the most underrated player in the ACC, if you ask me. So the running game is a slight concern for me going into the season just because Ellington was so dependable, you never really had to worry. But I will say coaches had nothing but praise for McDowell and the way he has matured and stepped up in the second half of last season behind Ellington. He seems ready for his moment. Having said that, I expect there to be more running-back-by-committee approach this season, and I wouldn't be surprised if Clemson relied on one of the incoming freshmen. Maybe both. All depends on how they do in fall camp.
Aaron in Missoula, Mont., writes: Hey with five commitments a week after the NCAA hearing, is it safe to say the ugly cloud over Miami head's has dissipated?? I know Miami has lost a few player do to off the field issues and has a few extra scholly's to give, but it seem as if Miami isn't to worried about over extending itself. What do you think?
Adelson: I have to give Miami coach Al Golden a tremendous amount of credit for being able to recruit incredibly well in the face of these NCAA sanctions. He is working his tail off to convince these players Miami is still the place to be no matter what happens. To see Miami up in the top 10-15 of the latest recruiting rankings means Golden is doing a masterful job, in my opinion.
Jonathan in West Palm Beach, Fla., writes: Great article about Blake James of Miami. Just curious where you went to school. It's not often a national journalist is accurate about covering Miami and you were both accurate and fair as opposed the typical negativity out there. Thanks (from a proud alum).
Adelson: Chomp! See, I am living proof that objective journalists do exist.