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Tuesday, May 19, 2009
Big East names to remember after spring practice


Posted by ESPN.com's Brian Bennett

You already know the stars in the Big East. We've talked about some potential emerging stars. Here are some other players who might not have been household names before the spring, but you should remember who they are come the fall:

Chris Neild, West Virginia: It's not like Neild was a complete unknown going into the spring. He started at nose guard last year and had a nice season. Still, the coaching staff heaped praise on his effort this spring and are predicting a big year for the junior.

Derek Wolfe, Cincinnati: Speaking of nose guards, the 6-foot-5, 295-pound Wolfe emerged as a disruptive force along the Bearcats front this season. The sophomore could help a defense that lost all four starting linemen.

Ed Alcin, South Florida: He had only two catches last year but worked as a starting wide receiver most of the spring. And he's one of the fastest Bulls on the team.

Aundre Wright, Pitt: Wright made his impact on special teams last year, averaging 21 yards per kickoff return. The speedster could see more time at wideout as a sophomore with T.J. Porter no longer around.

George Johnson, Rutgers: Overshadowed at times by other big-name players on defense, Johnson had a solid year as a junior at end. Now as a senior, he looks ready to assert himself as one of the team leaders.

Ryan Nassib, Syracuse: Barely known before spring practice, he was anointed the starting quarterback. Now he'll be the guy who'll try to keep Greg Paulus on the sidelines.

Twyon Martin and Kendall Reyes, UConn: These two did not get enough attention for their standout work at defensive tackle as freshmen. They could pose problems for opposing offenses for a long time to come.