ACC: Morgan Moses

Reviewing the ACC pro days

April, 4, 2014
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Pro days are now in the rearview mirror, with a month remaining between now and the NFL draft. With that, let's take a look back at some notable performances from ACC pro days this year.

Boston College (March 12)
Big name: RB Andre Williams. Representatives from 29 NFL teams were on hand to see the nation's top running back from last season. Williams says he improved on his combine 40-yard-dash time of 4.56. Also of note: Nate Freese, who went 20 of 20 last season on field goal tries, did not disappoint in front of his future employers, hitting a 60-yard try.

[+] EnlargeSammy Watkins
AP Photo/Michael ConroyClemson WR Sammy Watkins in all likelihood will be the first ACC player drafted in May.
Clemson (March 6)
Big name: WR Sammy Watkins. Watkins stood on his 40 time of 4.43 from the combine but was there to help out quarterback Tajh Boyd, doing little to change the general consensus that he is the top receiver in this year's draft. Boyd said scouts told him his performance was much better than his showings at the combine and Senior Bowl, as he connected on short, intermediate and deep routes with familiar receivers in familiar environs.

Duke (March 26)
Big name: CB Ross Cockrell. Cockrell improved on his combine results, with Duke saying that his 40 time was sub-4.4, which is better than what he ran in Indianapolis (4.56).

Florida State (March 17)
Big name: Where to begin? DL Timmy Jernigan slightly improved his combine 40-time from 5.06 to 5.03. S Terrence Brooks, LB Telvin Smith, DB Lamarcus Joyner and LB Christian Jones all drew a crowd, but they declined to run the 40 in front of reps from all 32 NFL teams, content to sit on their combine performances.

Georgia Tech (March 28)
Big name: LB Jeremiah Attaochu. Attaochu ran drills at both linebacker and defensive lineman, recovering nicely from a hamstring injury in the Senior Bowl that forced him out of the combine. He said his 40 time was in the 4.5s. DB Jemea Thomas also impressed, reportedly running a 4.38 40.

Louisville (March 17)
Big name: QB Teddy Bridgewater. With scouts from 29 teams watching, Bridgewater was off target with several of his throws. He ran an unofficial 4.78 40 time, but the potential No. 1 pick misfired on at least 10 passes, leaving some questions lingering heading into the draft.

Miami (April 3)
Big name: OT Seantrel Henderson. This is the name that is going to stick out, as Henderson did not finish his workouts. His agent later told reporters that it was due to dehydration. With 30 NFL teams represented, quarterback Stephen Morris took a strong step forward, reportedly completed almost all of his 67 throws.

North Carolina (March 25)
Big name: TE Eric Ebron. Ebron stood on his 40 time from the combine of 4.60, but his pro day was marred by several dropped passes, though the always upbeat tight end was not stressed about the drops when speaking to reporters afterward.

NC State (March 25)
Big name: CB Dontae Johnson. Johnson showed his versatility, as he can play corner or safety, and he said he felt better than he did at the combine, where he ran a 40 time of 4.45 and jumped 38.5 inches in the vertical.

Pittsburgh (March 3)
Big name: DT Aaron Donald. College football's best defensive player rested on his combine numbers in the 40 (4.68) and bench press (35 times), but teammates Tom Savage and Devin Street helped themselves. Savage impressed during a scripted 100-throw workout while Street said he ran a sub-4.5 40.

Syracuse
Big name: LB Marquis Spruill. Spruill recovered nicely from a combine snub, weighing in at 231 pounds, nine pounds heavier than his playing weight. He did not disclose numbers. Running back Jerome Smith, meanwhile, said he ran in the 4.5-4.6 range, which would be an improvement over his combine time of 4.84.

Virginia (March 17)
Big name: OT Morgan Moses. A considerably different-looking Moses showed up at 311 pounds, roughly 20 pounds lighter from his playing days with the Cavaliers. After clocking in at 5.35 in the 40 at the combine, he unofficially ran between 4.9 and 5.06 at his pro day, though he pulled a hamstring during one of the runs, forcing him to miss the remainder of his drills.

Virginia Tech (March 19)
Big name: QB Logan Thomas. Thomas remains a fascinating prospect to keep an eye on in the NFL, and he threw well in front of NFL scouts at pro day. Corner Antone Exum impressed as well, running 40 times of 4.53 and 4.55.

Wake Forest (March 17)
Big name: WR Michael Campanaro. After seeing his final year end prematurely because of a shoulder injury, Campanaro, the only Demon Deacon to have garnered a combine invite, again impressed in receiver drills, making his case to become a potential mid-round pick. Nose guard Nikita Whitlock, meanwhile, saw himself lining up as a fullback for the first time in his career. Weather conditions were less than ideal for the NFL hopefuls.

ACC's lunchtime links

February, 28, 2014
Feb 28
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Buh-bye, February ...

ACC's lunchtime links

February, 24, 2014
Feb 24
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My oldest son will be four next month. Only 10 more years until he can commit!

ACC's lunchtime links

February, 20, 2014
Feb 20
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At long last, Bonnaroo is finally bringing Kanye, Elton John, Lionel Richie and Skrillex together in one place. Our long national nightmare is over.

ACC and the NFL combine

February, 11, 2014
Feb 11
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The NFL draft combine at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis will be held from Feb. 19-25 and will feature workouts, medical examinations, psychological testing and interviews for the 335 invited prospects. The ACC has a total of 46 players who will participate, including at least one player from every school (we included Maryland and not Louisville in this post, because it is from the 2013 season). National champion Florida State led the league with eight players heading to the combine, but UNC was right behind with seven. Don't cry ... you're gonna miss some of these names next year. Good luck to these guys.

Here is the official list of the ACC attendees:

BOSTON COLLEGE (5)
CLEMSON (4)
DUKE (1)
FLORIDA STATE (8)
GEORGIA TECH (2)
MARYLAND (1)
MIAMI (5)
NORTH CAROLINA (7)
NC STATE (1)
PITTSBURGH (3)
SYRACUSE (2)
VIRGINIA (2)
VIRGINIA TECH (4)
WAKE FOREST (1)

ACC's lunchtime links

January, 31, 2014
Jan 31
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Enjoy Super Sunday, gang.

ACC players in the Senior Bowl

January, 21, 2014
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Senior Bowl practices are underway this week, and wouldn't you know it -- scouts have their eyes on the quarterbacks.

That means Stephen Morris, Logan Thomas and Tajh Boyd are firmly in the spotlight this week among featured ACC players participating in the college all-star game, a critical first step in evaluations for the NFL draft in May. Scouts Inc. lists Thomas as the highest rated quarterback among the three and broke down what each has to accomplish this week.

For Thomas: The need to "thrive with an even playing field."

For Morris: More consistency with footwork and ball placement as a passer.

For Boyd: "Show improvement throughout the week with pro-style progressions and anticipation as a pocket passer."

Scouts Inc. also lists Miami offensive tackle Seantrel Henderson and Virginia offensive tackle Morgan Moses as having the most to prove.

Here is a look at all the ACC players participating in the Senior Bowl, with the game set for Saturday. Boston College running back Andre Williams was invited but pulled out so he can continue to rehab his injured shoulder.

ACC Week 7: Did you know?

October, 11, 2013
10/11/13
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Thanks again to ESPN Stats & Info and sports information departments from all of these schools for the tidbits.

Pitt: The Panthers have played 12 different true freshmen this season, and they are led by rookies in seven different categories. James Conner is their top rusher (353 yards), and receiver Tyler Boyd is their top pass-catcher (23 receptions), scorer (30 points), kick returner (178 yards) and all purpose threat (701 yards). Kicker Chris Blewitt, meanwhile, is the team's top kick-scorer (26 points), while defensive back Terrish Webb is tied for the team lead in fumble recoveries (1).

Virginia Tech: Virginia Tech has allowed just 30 points in the second half, the second-fewest in the ACC. Pitt has scored just 38 points in the second half, the fewest in the ACC. Quarterback Logan Thomas has faced a lot of criticism over the last two seasons but has stepped up his play recently for the Hokies, as he has not thrown an interception in his last two games after getting picked off in each of his previous five games.

Duke: The Blue Devils have displayed remarkable consistency on their offensive line in recent years, as they started Perry Simmons (RT), Laken Tomlinson (RG), Dave Harding (LG) and Takoby Cofield (RT) together in 18 straight games. Simmons, Tomlinson and Harding have started 28 o the past 30 games together. Duke's starting offensive linemen have a combined 128 starts, the most in the ACC. Simmons' 42 straight starts leads the ACC. Center Matt Skura is the only newcomer to the grope this year.

Virginia: Speaking of offensive lines, and upperclassmen ... the Cavaliers have actually gone the opposite way of Duke this season, using three freshmen on their offensive line this season, the most in the nation. Eric Smith started at right tackle last week against Ball State, making him the fourth true freshman in Virginia history to start at offensive tackle. The others are D'Brickashaw Ferguson (2002, LT), Brad Butler (2002, RT) and current starting left tackle Morgan Moses (2010, RT).

Maryland: Andre Monroe had a sack against Florida State, raising his season total to 3.5. The Terrapins are now the only team in the ACC and one of only three teams in the nation (Louisville, USC) to have three different players with at least three sacks on the season, Marcus Whitfield has 5.5 and Yannik Cudjoe-Virgil has three. Maryland's 18 sacks on the season are third in the ACC and and fourth nationally.

Syracuse: The Orange are making their ACC road debut this weekend at NC State. Their last conference road debut came at Pitt in 1991, when Syracuse beat the Panthers in its Big East debut, the first of six straight conference road wins the Orange had to start their Big East tenure. Conversely, the Wolfpack are 6-0 all-time against the Orange, most recently beating them 38-17 in 1998. Syracuse was ranked in the top-20 in each of the last two meetings.

NC State: The Wolfpack call it "Rushing Roulette," as they have had five different players lead them in rushing through their first five games. None of those players, however, have eclipsed the 100-yard mark. Matt Dayes (84) led NC State on the ground against Louisiana Tech, followed by Tony Creecy (56) against Richmond, Bryan Underwood (54) against Clemson, Shad Thornton (71) against Central Michigan and Pete Thomas (60) against Wake Forest.

Boston College: The Eagles have lost four of their last five meetings with Clemson, but there have been some key BC wins against the Tigers — notably, BC’s first ACC win in 2005, at Clemson. And in each of the next two years, BC beat ranked Clemson teams. Those BC wins all came before Dabo Swinney took over as Clemson’s head coach. The last time BC knocked off a team ranked third or higher in the AP Poll was 1993, when it beat No. 1 Notre Dame on the road on a last-second field goal. The win landed Boston College on the cover of Sports Illustrated. Since then, BC is 0-6 against teams ranked third or higher, though the Eagles did beat No. 4 Notre Dame 14-7 in 2002.

Clemson: Tajh Boyd continues to light it up and will look to follow up his performance last week against Syracuse when he threw for a school-record 455 yards. That broke his own record, which he set last season against Wake Forest, by 27 yards. This week he needs just 220 yards of total offense to pass Georgia Tech’s Joe Hamilton for second place on the ACC career total offense list.

Georgia Tech: Georgia Tech leads the FBS in rushing yards by the quarterback position (718), while BYU is second with 579 yards. But the Yellow Jackets' passing offense, never a strong suit since Paul Johnson became head coach, has been awful lately, even by program standards. During its last two games, Georgia Tech has completed just 30.2 percent of its throws, the nation's worst mark during that stretch, while averaging just 105 passing yards per game. They have tallied no passing touchdowns and four interceptions, with a total QBR of 30.9.

ACC's lunchtime links

August, 26, 2013
8/26/13
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Game face is already on.

Video: Morgan Moses on UVA's future

August, 13, 2013
8/13/13
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Heather Dinich talks to Morgan Moses about his offseason conditioning, his desire to help turn things around in his final season, the difficult schedule, the quarterbacks, and how the staff changes have helped the team.

Virginia season preview

August, 8, 2013
8/08/13
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Today we look at the Virginia Cavaliers, who look to rebound after finishing last in the Coastal in 2012.

Virginia Cavaliers

Coach: Mike London (40-26 overall, 16-21 at Virginia)

2012 record: 4-8 (2-6)

Key losses: QB Phillip Sims, QB Michael Rocco, RB Perry Jones, DT Chris Brathwaite, LB Steve Greer, LB LaRoy Reynolds

Key returnees: RB Kevin Parks, LT Morgan Moses, WR Darius Jennings, CB Demetrious Nicholson, S Anthony Harris, DE Jake Snyder

[+] EnlargeTaquan Mizzell
Soobum Im/USA TODAY SportsWith questions at quarterback, the Cavaliers may need Taquan Mizzell to help in the run game quickly.
Newcomer to watch: RB Taquan Mizzell. The talented tailback, nicknamed "Smoke" because of his elusiveness on the field, is perhaps the top recruit London has landed at Virginia. With veteran runner Parks on the roster, Mizzell won't need to carry the load in his first season, but given the serious question marks at quarterback, the Cavaliers figure to run the ball often. Mizzell's speed and athleticism should make for a valuable weapon immediately, and if the offensive line can take a step forward, he could be one of the league's top rookies in 2013.

Biggest games in 2013: vs. Oregon, Sept. 7; vs. Clemson, Nov. 2; at Miami, Nov. 23; vs. Virginia Tech, Nov. 30

Biggest question mark heading into 2013: It's London's fourth season at Virginia, and he's facing his fourth quarterback battle. That's an unlikely scenario given the talent on the depth chart at the position just a year ago, but the transfer of Rocco and the dismissal of Sims served to reshuffle the deck once again. Redshirt sophomore David Watford looks to be the favorite to grab the starting job. He's more athletic than redshirt freshman Greyson Lambert, which could be a necessity given last year's woes on the offensive line, and Watford did gain limited playing time in 2011.

Forecast: London's tenure at Virginia started well enough, but the Cavaliers have now lost 10 of their past 14 games, and the hot-seat rumors have begun for the coach. Add in the serious questions at quarterback and a tough early slate that includes nonconference games against BYU and Oregon, and things could get ugly fast for Virginia.

Still, there is reason for optimism. Mizzell may be the most talented runner Virginia has had in a decade, and with Parks back after racking up nearly 1,000 yards from scrimmage last season, the running game should be a strength. Meanwhile, the offensive line certainly left ample room for improvement a year ago, but Moses is one of the conference's top blockers and the unit does return four starters.

A massive overhaul of the coaching staff also figures to shake things up in Charlottesville, and none of the new faces will bring as much enthusiasm as new coordinator Jon Tenuta. He has built a reputation for being aggressive, and after finishing 2012 dead last in the ACC in takeaways, that's good news for the Cavaliers. Last year, Virginia defenders managed just four interceptions all season. A strong and experienced secondary should make it easier for Tenuta to use blitz packages liberally, and a solid group of pass-rushers led by Snyder and Eli Harold figure to be an improvement on last year.

Of course, the biggest challenge Virginia may face is not simply improving its own production on both sides of the ball, but the daunting schedule. In addition to the grueling nonconference start, Virginia wraps up the year with November showdowns against Clemson, Miami and Virginia Tech. A loss in 2013 would be the 10th straight to its in-state rival.
Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd, the reigning ACC Player of the Year and preseason Player of the Year, leads the 2013 Preseason All-ACC Football Team announced on Wednesday.

Boyd, who enters his senior season with 8,053 career passing yards and 73 career touchdown passes, was the overwhelming choice at quarterback in voting by media at the 2013 ACC Football Kickoff, held this week at Greensboro’s Grandover Resort.

Boyd is one of three Clemson players on the 25-member team. Florida State led all schools with six players, and North Carolina had four. Duke, Miami and Wake Forest followed with two selections each, while Boston College, Georgia Tech Maryland, Pittsburgh, Virginia and Virginia Tech each placed one player on the team.

Here is the full team:

OFFENSE

WR Sammy Watkins, CL (57) 6-1 205 Jr. Fort Myers, Fla.

WR Michael Campanaro, WF (20) 5-11 190 Sr. Clarksville, Md.

TE Eric Ebron, UNC (35) 6-4 245 Jr. Greensboro, N.C.

T James Hurst, UNC (37) 6-7 305 Sr. Plainfield, Ind.

T Morgan Moses, UVa (35) 6-6 325 Sr. Richmond, Va.

G Tre' Jackson, FSU (46) 6-4 330 Jr. Jesuup, Ga.

G Brandon Linder, UM (28) 6-6 317 Sr. Southwest Ranches, Fla.

C Bryan Stork, FSU (29) 6-4 298 Sr. Vero Beach, Fla.

QB Tajh Boyd, CL (59) 6-1 225 Sr. Hampton, Va.

RB Duke Johnson, UM (58) 5-9 194 So. Miami, Fla.

RB James Wilder Jr., FSU (23) 6-2 229 Jr. Tampa, Fla.

DEFENSE

DE Jeremiah Attaochu, GT (39) 6-3 242 Sr. Washington, D.C.

DE Kareem Martin, UNC (37) 6-6 265 Sr. Roanoke Rapids, N.C.

DT Nikita Whitlock, WF (35) 5-11 250 Sr. Wylie, Texas

DT Timmy Jernigan, FSU (34) 6-2 294 Jr. Lake City, Fla.

LB Jack Tyler, VT (42) 6-1 236 Sr. Oakton, Va.

LB Christian Jones, FSU (38) 6-4 232 Sr. Winter Park, Fla.

LB Kevin Pierre-Louis, BC (21) 6-1 215 Sr. Norwalk, Conn.

CB Ross Cockrell, DU (48) 6-0 180 Sr. Waxhaw, N.C.

CB Lamarcus Joyner, FSU (32) * 5-8 190 Sr. Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.

S Tre Boston, UNC (30) 6-1 205 Sr. Ft. Myers, Fla.

S Jason Hendricks, PITT (18) 6-0 180 Sr. Brooklyn, N.Y.

SPECIALISTS

PK Chandler Catanzaro, CL (41) 6-2 195 Gr. Greenville, S.C.

P Will Monday, DU (41) 6-4 210 So. Flowery Branch, Ga.

SP Stefon Diggs, MD (34) 6-1 185 So. Gaithersburg, Md.

* FSU's Joyner also received 11 votes at the safety position
The watch list for the Rotary Lombardi Award, which is presented to the college lineman of the year by the Rotary Club of Houston, was announced today. Here are your ACC candidates:
Two big names left off the list: Syracuse NT Jay Bromley and Miami OT Seantrel Henderson. Both have a chance to be among the ACC's best this fall.

ACC media days primer

July, 12, 2013
7/12/13
10:01
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Andrea Adelson and I are gearing up for the 2013 ACC Football Kickoff, two days of interviews with players and coaches from every school in the conference. For us (and most members of the media), we consider this the unofficial start of the season. Vacations are over and the previews begin. Here’s a quick look at what you need to know:

When: July 21-22

Where: The Grandover Resort, Greensboro, N.C.

Who will be there: Two players and the head coach from every school, and ACC commissioner John Swofford. Highlights from this year’s player attendees include: Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd; North Carolina quarterback Bryn Renner; Georgia Tech defensive end Jeremiah Attaochu; Miami quarterback Stephen Morris; Wake Forest receiver Michael Campanaro; Florida State DB Lamarcus Joyner; Virginia offensive tackle Morgan Moses; and Pitt defensive lineman Aaron Donald.

Who won’t be there: 2012 ACC Rookie of the Year Duke Johnson; Clemson wide receiver Sammy Watkins; FSU quarterback Jameis Winston (and understandably so, because he hasn’t played yet); Wake Forest DL Nikita Whitlock (he was there last year, along with quarterback Tanner Price); Maryland wide receiver Stefon Diggs and half the quarterbacks in the league (most of whom will be first-time starters).

Five storylines/things to watch:

1. The Clemson spotlight. Bring your shades. Not that FSU coach Jimbo Fisher won’t have a crowd at his table -- he will -- but expectations are even higher for Clemson. Many predict the Tigers will be chosen the preseason favorite to win the conference. Boyd could be a Heisman contender again, and the Tigers will be playing in the league’s marquee matchup of the nonconference season when they open the season at home against Georgia.

2. The addition of Pittsburgh and Syracuse in the room. This will be the first football kickoff that includes the entire conference with its two newest members, Pittsburgh and Syracuse, which officially joined July 1. It will be the first chance for those four players to interact with their new opponents, and for coaches Paul Chryst and Scott Shafer to talk to reporters about their expectations for Season 1 in the ACC.

3. The media circle around Virginia Tech. Quarterback Logan Thomas and coach Frank Beamer are sure to be a big story after such a disappointing 2012 season. Once a projected first-round draft pick, Thomas struggled last year to do it all, but he didn’t have the supporting cast or the accuracy to make another run at the Coastal Division title. Whether the Hokies can rebound this fall after Beamer made sweeping changes to his staff is sure to be a hot topic.

4. Miami’s questions. Many expect the Hurricanes to be very good this season, but nobody knows if they’ll even be eligible to win a title. The NCAA still hasn’t ruled on their highly publicized case, but those within the program keep plodding on. Coach Al Golden appears to have put this year’s roster in contention to win the division, but defensive improvement is a must -- and so is closure from the NCAA.

5. Three new head coaches. Shafer was promoted at Syracuse after spending the past four seasons as defensive coordinator, and this also will be the first ACC Football Kickoff for first-year NC State coach Dave Doeren and Boston College coach Steve Addazio. The three have inherited different challenges, and all are in the Atlantic Division with league heavyweights Clemson and Florida State. What are their plans for keeping their programs relevant in the ACC race?
The Football Writers Association of America today announced the watch list candidates for the Outland Trophy, which is awarded to the best interior lineman in college football. The ACC tied the Pac-12 for the second-most nominees with 12 players. The SEC led the watch list with 16 players.

Here are your ACC representatives:
The FWAA also today announced the watch list for the Bronko Nagurski Trophy, presented annually to the national defensive player of the year by the FWAA and the Charlotte Touchdown Club. The ACC (12) had the fourth-most players on the list behind the SEC (16), Pac-12 (14), and Big Ten (13).

Here are your ACC reps:

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