ACC riding wave of buzz from FSU's title, Winston

Published on NewsOK Modified: July 20, 2014 at 3:50 pm •  Published: July 20, 2014
Advertisement
;

GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) — It's been a while since the Atlantic Coast Conference entered a season with this much buzz.

The realigned league has the defending national champion, a Heisman Trophy winner and a national coach of the year.

The ACC stumbled through much of the BCS era, but enters the first year of the four-team college football playoff with a secure future among the power-five conferences and boasts a favorite to contend for another title in Florida State.

"I think we've got as good a shot as anybody to be in the top four the first year," commissioner John Swofford said Sunday, the first of the league's two-day preseason kickoff event.

"We will have teams in the mix to be in the four-team playoff every year, and any time we don't have one, we'll be disappointed."

At least on paper, that sure looks like the Seminoles.

The defending BCS champions are trying to keep themselves at a high level. The rest of the league is hoping to piggyback off Florida State's success, hopeful that the Seminoles' rising tide will lift the league's other 13 boats.

"Anybody can shock this ACC ... and that's what impresses me," North Carolina quarterback Marquise Williams said. "Everybody's going to come to compete this year — everybody feels like they have a lot of energy and a lot of confidence since Florida State won the national championship. That builds a lot of conference teams' hype and getting more swag."

The ACC won a total of two BCS games from 1998-2011 before combining to win three in the past two years.

Two of them belong to the Seminoles, who captured the final BCS championship back in January when Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston led a touchdown drive in the final seconds to beat Auburn.

Boston College defensive back Dominique Williams called it "a good look for the ACC" and Winston began his hour-long sit-down session with reporters by asking them to clap.

"How does it feel to have an ACC team come in here with a national championship?" Winston asked. "Can we get us, the ACC, a round of applause? Finally. We took it away from the SEC, man. It's a blessing."

That wasn't all. Duke's David Cutcliffe earned a handful of national coach of the year awards after guiding the Blue Devils to a school-record 10 wins and a most unlikely Coastal Division title.

Continue reading this story on the...


Trending Now


AROUND THE WEB

  1. 1
    Tulsans flock to official groundbreaking for A Gathering Place
  2. 2
    VIDEO: FSU's Jameis Winston sent to locker room by Jimbo Fisher after dressing out for Clemson game
  3. 3
    Big 12 football: K-State's Snyder among nation's most underrated coaches in ESPN poll
  4. 4
    Texas A&M fan wearing what appears to be a chain mail jersey
  5. 5
    Satanic black mass seeks to free people from influence of God, organizer says
+ show more