- Andrea Adelson, ESPN Staff Writer
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Time to move on in our preseason countdown of the top 25 players in the Big East.
If you need a quick refresher, I am projecting the best of the best in the league for this upcoming season, and I am including freshmen and transfers as well.
No. 16 Duron Harmon, S, Rutgers
Twitter handle: @dharm32
Making the case: Harmon entered his first year as a starter last season, along with the majority of the Rutgers secondary. As one of three new starters in the defensive backfield, there were questions about how the group would play together. But almost immediately, he made his presence felt and emerged as one of the top safeties in the league. Harmon had two interceptions in the season opener -- including one he returned for a touchdown -- serving notice that he had arrived.
Harmon ended up second in the Big East with five interceptions, and earned All-Big East first team honors. His crucial interception of B.J. Daniels in overtime allowed Rutgers to complete its furious comeback victory. Going into his senior season, expectations are even higher for Harmon considering all he accomplished in his first year as a starter. Safety is a pretty deep group in the Big East this season. But any list of the top safeties in the league must include him.
No. 17 Mario Benavides, C, Louisville
No. 18 Jarred Holley, S, Pitt
No. 19 Scott Vallone, NT, Rutgers
No. 20 Ryan Griffin, TE, UConn
No. 21 Adrian Bushell, CB, Louisville
No. 22 Alec Lemon, WR, Syracuse
No. 23 Steve Beauharnais, LB, Rutgers
No. 24 Blidi Wreh-Wilson, CB, UConn
No. 25 Ryan Nassib, QB, Syracuse