Someone is getting snubbed.
Brennan Armstrong from Virginia is third with 3,557 passing yard. Pittsburgh’s Kenny Pickett is the Heisman Trophy candidate. He has 32 touchdown passes this season. Wake Forest’s Sam Hartman may lead the Demon Deacons into Atlantic Coast Conference championship game. Devin Leary from N.C. State has thrown for 29 touchdowns.
At least one of these quarterbacks will not be there when the All-ACC team is announced.
The All-ACC selections will be announced in the early part of next month. There will be a first, second, and third team. That means three slots at each position, meaning there are no shortage of ACC quarterbacks who are going to see their name on the honorable-mention list — or not at all — and probably not be overly thrilled about that development.
“I don’t think there’s another quarterback in the country doing more for his team than what Brennan is doing for us,” Virginia coach Bronco Mendenhall said.
Interestingly, Armstrong’s value might have been on its most prominent display this past weekend — when he couldn’t play because of a rib injury. Virginia’s offense has averaged 39 points in Armstrong’s nine games this season; the Cavaliers managed three points without him in a lopsided loss to Notre Dame.
It’s unclear if Armstrong can go this week when Virginia faces Pitt in a game that might end up deciding the ACC Coastal title. If Armstrong plays, it could be an Armstrong vs. Pickett shootout.
Pickett’s numbers make it easy to conclude that he’s had a great season. But the biggest contribution he made to Pitt’s success, arguably, was when he called a team meeting after a disappointing early loss to Western Michigan.
“It comes down the senior leadership, Kenny Pickett Leadership,” Pitt coach Pat Narduzzi stated. “You’re only as good as your team. If you’re a player-led team, you have a chance with Kenny. I hope that all our young men learn from Kenny Pickett.”
Hartman is a common subject at Wake Forest.
He’s now the Demon Deacons’ recordholder for career (63) and single-season (30) touchdown passes, is the catalyst for the highest-ranked team in the conference and can wrap up Wake’s first trip to the ACC title game since 2006 this weekend with a win over Clemson.
It was on July 22 when Wake Forest coach Dave Clawson said this: “We’d love to get to that second to last game in November against Clemson with it meaning a lot for both football teams.”
Hartman ensured that the scenario would be exactly as Clawson imagined, but defers much responsibility to his receiving corps.
“It’s been kind of the message all year that we’ve got a two-deep of guys that know what they’re doing, go get the ball and make plays and make plays after they catch the ball as well,” Hartman said. “It’s an honor to kind of be in my position.”
No matter which way the All-ACC race pans out, it’ll serve as a reminder that preseason polls and award lists often fall well short in their quest to accurately pick the future.
The ACC’s preseason player of the year — by an overwhelming margin in the voting — was North Carolina quarterback Sam Howell, who started the season as a Heisman front-runner but a slow start by the Tar Heels doomed those plans. Miami quarterback D’Eriq King, Clemson quarterback D.J. Preseason ACC player awards were also awarded to Uiagalelei, Boston College quarterback Phil Jurkovec.
King’s season was cut short due to injuries. Jurkovec was hurt and missed two months. Uiagalelei was also injured and had to take time for his recovery.
“He’s had a challenging year, but that’s just part of growing up,” Clemson coach Dabo Swinney said. “It’s just part of being a young quarterback and learning how to handle disappointment and things like that. Early part of the year, he certainly wasn’t playing well, and we weren’t playing well around him. And we’re getting better. We are more consistent around him.”
Uiagalelei, who is just 248 yards away at 2,000 this year, will be the ACC’s ninth quarterback to reach that mark by 2021. Armstrong, Pickett, Hartman, Leary and Howell are there already, as are Louisville’s Malik Cunningham, Miami’s Tyler Van Dyke and Duke’s Gunnar Holmberg.
And all those numbers will give award voters much to consider when it’s time for those All-ACC quarterback picks to be made.
Mendenhall stated, “You must be exceptional in that position.”
Source: Fox News