Tuesday, November 13, 2012
ACC awards tracker: Week 12
By Andrea Adelson
Let us take another look at how the awards races are shaping up headed into Week 12:
Offensive Player of the Year
1. Tajh Boyd, QB, Clemson. I think Boyd has emerged as the slight favorite for this award, thanks in particular to his recent tear -- 13 touchdown passes to three interceptions with 1,033 yards in his last three games. He now ranks second in the nation in passing efficiency. On the season, Boyd is 210-of-309 for 2,941 yards with 28 touchdowns to nine interceptions. And Clemson is 9-1.
2. Giovani Bernard, RB, North Carolina. Bernard has had an outstanding season, and ranks No. 3 in the nation in average all-purpose yards per game, with 208.8. He just became only the second player in ACC history to rush for 1,000 or more yards in each of his freshman and sophomore seasons, particularly impressive when you consider he missed two games with a knee injury.
3. EJ Manuel, QB, Florida State. Manuel has already thrown for a career-high 19 touchdowns this season, and needs just 26 yards to set a new single-season career high for passing yards. The way he led the Seminoles down the field on their game-winning drive last week against Virginia Tech showed how far he has come.
Defensive Player of the Year
1. Tank Carradine, DE, Florida State. I am giving a slight edge to Carradine after his dominating performance against Virginia Tech last week, when he had 11 tackles and a sack. Carradine has just been terrific since he entered the starting lineup in place of All-American Brandon Jenkins. He has won ACC weekly honors three times this season, and now leads the ACC with nine sacks.
2. Bjoern Werner, DE, Florida State. I think this race is going to come down to Carradine and Werner, which speaks volumes about what the Seminoles have in their two starting defensive ends. They have both been outstanding this season. Werner has eight sacks, just behind Carradine, and 12.5 tackles for loss.
3. Joe Vellano, DL, Maryland. Vellano has done a great job this season, and is tied for first in the ACC with 14 tackles for loss, and third in sacks with six. He also recorded his first fumble recovery of the season last week against Clemson. But given the way Carradine and Werner have played, not sure how much consideration Vellano will get.
Coach of the Year
1. David Cutcliffe, Duke. The Blue Devils are going bowling for the first time since 1994 and will win the Coastal Division if they win out. At this point, he could be a unanimous choice.
2. Dabo Swinney, Clemson. The Tigers' only loss on the season came on the road at Florida State. They have taken care of business pretty easily in most every other game -- and have not pulled a proverbial "Clemson." If Swinney can win out, with a victory over South Carolina, to get this team an at-large BCS berth, he will have had an outstanding year.