ACC: Brett Hodges

ACC's lunchtime links

April, 21, 2009
4/21/09
12:40
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Heather Dinich

Around the ACC we go ...

Former Wake Forest backup quarterback Brett Hodges will transfer to UCF and is eligible to compete for the starting job immediately. How? By using the same NCAA transfer rule Duke guard Greg Paulus will have to use if he wants to be an FBS quarterback, too. 

At Virginia Tech, Marcus Davis might not have been ready to be the No. 2 quarterback, but quarterbacks coach Mike O'Cain thinks Davis is a more talented athlete than Ju-Ju Clayton.

Here are five questions Maryland still needs to answer on defense.

Bobby Bowden's spring tour has begun, and Andrew Carter of the Orlando Sentinel has the play-by-play.

And two leftovers for you ...

Thanks to one reader for providing this link on Monday: Maryland coach Ralph Friedgen wasn't shy about his feelings regarding the NCAA sanctions FSU is facing. Friedgen's take? Bowden should vacate the wins.

How much could fans tell about Virginia's new spread offense from its spring game? Not much, and that was exactly how coach Al Groh wanted it.

Checking in from Wake Forest

March, 24, 2009
3/24/09
7:54
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Heather Dinich

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- A few quick updates from Wake's practice today ...

  • Cornerbacks Brandon Ghee and Josh Bush collided and Ghee could be out for the spring with a torn MCL. It won't require surgery, so the coaches aren't in panic mode, but it's never good to lose a starter on the first day of spring practices.
  • There were a lot of short passes and basics, as the coaches didn't want to overload a lot of the younger players with too much too fast. Wake did a lot of team drills and went after each other pretty good in shorts.
  • All of the quarterbacks are getting significant reps since Brett Hodges decided to concentrate on academics. Quarterbacks coach Tom Elrod told me today he wrote a letter of recommendation for Hodges' application to Purdue. (Not to play, to study forensic computer CSI kind of stuff.) Coach Jim Grobe said Skylar Jones has matured since last season, but he also thinks Ted Stachitas could be a special player.
  • Alphonso Smith and Aaron Curry were both at practice helping out a bit since they were around on Monday for pro day.

ACC's lunchtime links

March, 24, 2009
3/24/09
12:45
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Heather Dinich

ACROSS THE HALL FROM JIM GROBE'S OFFICE -- Hello, ACC fans, from Winston-Salem, where Grobe's assistant, Bonnie, was nice enough to find a room for me to set up shop for the daily links. Welcome to my mobile office, complete with a flat-screen TV, NFL helmets and pictures of all of the Deacs who have gone pro.

Speaking of which, former Wake linebacker Aaron Curry stole the spotlight on Monday at Wake's NFL pro day -- and he hardly did a thing. Why should he? The Butkus Award winner has already proven himself as a top pick.

In addition to Wake Forest, Maryland also starts spring practice today. Here are five things to watch in College Park this spring.

Newsday questioned the quarterbacks in the ACC and ranked them. I'll have to respectfully agree to disagree with the list, as Russell Wilson and Tyrod Taylor give defenses the most trouble, and Brett Hodges is no longer on Wake's team.

It appears Dan Brooks is on the verge of being hired at Clemson.

Here's a shocker (seriously) -- Virginia cornerback Vic Hall is starting the spring exclusively as the Cavaliers' No. 1 quarterback.

There was plenty of news that came out of Georgia Tech on its first day of spring practice. The good news? Josh Nesbitt looked sharp.

Wake's backup quarterback leaves team

March, 2, 2009
3/02/09
2:31
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Heather Dinich

Add Wake Forest to the list of ACC programs in need of a backup quarterback this spring.

I spoke with Brett Hodges, who told me Monday he has decided to forgo his senior season in favor of concentrating on his education and internship opportunities. It was a decision that came as a shock to starting quarterback Riley Skinner, and one coach Jim Grobe obviously wasn't excited about.

"A lot of people are saying that I quit, and that's really not a word that I like to say," Hodges said. "In my mind, I've never quit anything in my life. I don't feel this is quitting, it's more just me taking the next step in my life."

This is a pretty significant blow to the Deacs because they don't have anyone with experience behind Skinner. Hodges proved his worth in 2007, when he had to start in place of Skinner, who suffered a separated shoulder in the season opener against Boston College.

That will make this spring even more interesting in Winston-Salem, where there will be a good competition going on behind Skinner. Skylar Jones, who will be a redshirt sophomore, is the fastest quarterback on the roster. He was clocked at 4.43 in the 40-yard dash. Ted Stachitas redshirted last year and could be another option, along with holder Ryan McManus, who will be a senior.

Wake Forest recruiting needs

January, 14, 2009
1/14/09
1:30
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Heather Dinich

Wake Forest coach Jim Grobe reaped the rewards of his redshirting philosophy over the past few years, but now he is tasked with replacing a plethora of fourth- and fifth-year seniors who leave as the winningest class in school history.

With only four starters returning, defense was the staff's main focus, particularly at linebacker and defensive back. Wake Forest will lose three fifth-year senior starters at linebacker, and the secondary will lose three four-year starters and the top backup. Ouch. Wake is expecting to sign four defensive backs and three linebackers.

The two biggest names the staff will have to replace are corner Alphonso Smith and Butkus Award winner Aaron Curry.

Offensively, only nine starters are back. The offensive line was also an emphasis, as the Demon Deacons needed to add more quality depth. Wake will return five fifth-year seniors, three of whom will be starters, a fourth-year junior and a true sophomore in Joe Looney.

Wake learned to live without injured punter/placekicker Sam Swank this season, but will sign another to help out Shane Popham. The Demon Deacons would also like to secure a quarterback, as Riley Skinner's backup, Brett Hodges, is a fifth-year senior because they took two quarterbacks in the same class.

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