- Matt Fortuna, ESPN Staff Writer
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Nine players from the ACC made Phil Steele's preseason first-team All-America squad Friday, trailing the SEC by one for most first-teamers. The ACC had the most total players across all four of Steele's teams, edging the SEC 27-26.
The ACC's biggest returning star found himself on the second team, as reigning Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston was beaten out for the No. 1 quarterback spot by the man Steele is predicting to win the Heisman in 2014: Oregon's Marcus Mariota.
Winston, however, had five Florida State teammates who made the first team, giving the Seminoles the most first-teamers in the nation. (Oregon was second with three.) FSU's 11 total players across Steele's four teams were the most nationally as well. (Alabama was second with eight.)
Every ACC school except Boston College and Syracuse landed at least one player on the 120-man list. Reigning Coastal Division champion Duke had the second-most players in the ACC on Steele's four teams, with three.
The ACC landed seven players on special teams alone.
Notre Dame, which had three preseason All-Americans, is not included in that 27-man league total.