NCF Nation: Melvin Williams

ACC helmet stickers: Week 11

November, 15, 2009
Posted by's Heather Dinich

Here are the ACC's top five performers for Week 11:

Florida State offensive coordinator Jimbo Fisher: Not only did Fisher recruit rookie quarterback E.J. Manuel, but he put him in position to succeed, and he had the players around Manuel prepared in the Seminoles' 41-28 win over Wake Forest. Manuel threw for a touchdown and ran for another in his first career start, but Jermaine Thomas helped take some of the pressure off of him with 149 rushing yards and a touchdown. It was smart playcalling on Fisher's part, and the offensive line paved the way for everyone, and Manuel outplayed veteran quarterback Riley Skinner to boost the Seminoles' chances of a bowl appearance.

UNC cornerback Kendric Burney: He intercepted three passes and returned them for an ACC single-game record 170 yards, including one for a 77-yard touchdown, in Carolina’s 33-24 win over No. 12 Miami. The 170 yards also broke the UNC record for interception return yardage in an entire season. The 170 yards increased Burney’s career interception return yardage to 317 to break the UNC career record held previously by Kareen Taylor (206) from 2003-06. Burney's 77-yard return was the seventh-longest in school history, and Burney now has two of Carolina’s eight longest interception returns. Burney became the first Tar Heel with three interceptions in a game since Dre’ Bly against Georgia Tech in 1996. On his third interception, Burney returned it 46 yards, then pitched the ball to teammate Melvin Williams for the final 44 yards and a touchdown.

Georgia Tech B-back Jonathan Dwyer: He had his fourth consecutive 100-yard game, as the Yellow Jackets clinched the Coastal Division with a 49-10 drubbing of Duke on Saturday. Dwyer finished with 110 yards rushing and two touchdowns of three and 13 yards.

Clemson running back C.J. Spiller: There wasn't much he didn't do in the Tigers' 43-23 win over NC State. He ran for a touchdown. He caught a touchdown reception. And he threw a touchdown pass. Nobody else in Clemson history had ever done that. Spiller rushed for 97 yards on 18 carries and made three catches for 48 yards to help the Tigers keep the lead in the Atlantic Division.

Virginia Tech quarterback Tyrod Taylor: He threw for 268 yards and a career-high three touchdowns in the Hokies' 36-9 win at Maryland on Saturday. He helped build a 24-point lead against the Terps, and threw each of his touchdown passes in the opening 23 minutes to help Virginia Tech go up 27-3. He finished 13 for 23 and also ran for 81 yards on eight carries.

Posted by's Heather Dinich

There was some progress in the ACC this spring, and each team got a little bit of help at certain positions. Here's a look at who found some help this spring and where:

BOSTON COLLEGE: Marcellus Bowman and Wes Davis are two safeties who should help make the Eagles' secondary one of the best BC fans have seen in recent years. Four players return to the secondary with starting experience.

CLEMSON: It's amazing what a year of experience can do, and the Tigers' offensive line needed it. The only direction for this group to go is up, and it started to do that this spring. All five starters return.

DUKE: The return of running back Re'quan Boyette will give the Blue Devils' running game a more potent punch. He could be a difference maker on the field this fall, and Duke will need him to be.

FLORIDA STATE: Leading rusher Antone Smith is gone, but FSU fans can rest assured Jermaine Thomas and Ty Jones can carry the load for the Noles. Both had several breakaway runs this spring.

GEORGIA TECH: On a defense that lost its leaders up front, defensive end Derrick Morgan and safety Morgan Burnett established themselves as the new captains of the ship this spring, and they should be the Jackets' top two defenders.

MARYLAND: Phil Costa helped ease the transition of the graduation of longtime leader Edwin Williams at center. The Terps lost three starters up front and have four players in new positions, but Costa proved he can be the new leader of the group.

MIAMI: This "got help" award goes to new offensive coordinator Mark Whipple. He had an immediate impact on the offense this spring and has Jacory Harris' full attention.

NORTH CAROLINA: Da'Norris Searcy and Melvin Williams gave the staff some confidence in life without Trimane Goddard. Searcy played well in the Meineke Car Care bowl as a fifth defensive back and played with confidence this spring.

NC STATE: Mike Glennon answered the distress signal at backup quarterback, a position that had been exposed far too many times in the past. Glennon completed 23 of 38 passes for 272 yards and one touchdown in the Kay Yow Spring Game.

VIRGINIA: The return of Jameel Sewell at quarterback and addition of Vic Hall no doubt helped the Cavaliers. At this point last year, they didn't have one quarterback who had any starting experience. Now they've got three.

VIRGINIA TECH: Confidence grew in the linebackers this spring, and that's because of the efforts of Barquell Rivers and Jake Johnson. Bruce Taylor and Quillie Odom are still learning, but there was progress at this position.

WAKE FOREST: Kenny Okoro and Josh Bush both proved to be dependable players at a position that just lost Alphonso Smith. Okoro in particular stood out, but both of them got a lot of reps with Brandon Ghee out with an injury.