- Andrea Adelson, College Football
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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.
No. 6 Trevardo Williams, DE, UConn
Twitter handle: @lado0088
Making the case: Williams used his incredible athleticism and speed to emerge as one of the best pass rushers in the nation last season, finishing No. 5 in the country with 12.5 total sacks. He made the Big East second team despite his big numbers, probably because he struggled with consistency at times. But he is looking for even more this season -- a spot on the first team -- and he has set a goal of 16 sacks.
He has 19 career sacks. If he has another season like he had in 2011, he will close in on the school sack record of 27, set by Mark Michaels from 1982-85.
Folks will definitely be watching. Williams has already made three preseason watch lists -- Bednarik Award (best defensive player), Lombardi Award (best lineman) and the Nagurski Award (best defensive player). Here is an assessment from teammate Sio Moore: "His burst and explosion is great. Some people think he gets to the quarterback just because he's fast, but he sets himself apart with his great technique."
No. 7 Logan Ryan, CB, Rutgers
No. 8 Hakeem Smith, S, Louisville
No. 9 Justin Pugh, OT, Syracuse
No. 10 Lyle McCombs, RB, UConn
No. 11 Ryne Giddins, DE, USF
No. 12 Montel Harris, RB, Temple
No. 13 DeDe Lattimore, LB, USF
No. 14 Sio Moore, LB, UConn
No. 15 Walter Stewart, DE, Cincinnati
No. 16 Duron Harmon, S, Rutgers
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