In 2011, Clemson's breakout player was quarterback Tajh Boyd and then All-American freshman receiver Sammy Watkins. Last season, it was DeAndre 'Nuk' Hopkins, the unquestioned No. 1 receiver who made opposing defensive backs pay week after week. By the end of the season, Hopkins had racked up 1,405 yards with 18 touchdowns.
But who will break out for Clemson in 2013?
On offense, everyone knows what to expect of the main duo in the record-setting quarterback Boyd and the dynamic Watkins at receiver. But this offense, even without Hopkins on the outside or All-ACC running back Andre Ellington in the backfield, still remains one of the most dangerous in the country.
A lot of eyes are on the remainder of the receiving corps. Charone Peake, who filled in nicely during Watkins' absences in 2012, could take that next step as a starter. With both Hopkins and Jaron Brown both gone, Peake is the favorite to win one of those two positions.
The Clemson Tigers have always had a pretty goo dplan for its running backs, and the fans have generally had a pretty good idea of who was going to carry the load.
After James Davis departed in 2008, everyone knew CJ Spiller would keep the ground game alive. and when Spiller left, everyone knew Jamie Harper and Andre Ellington could get the job done. And even when Harper departed a year early, everyone knew Andre Ellington would be better as the main feature back in this offense.
Now, fans can't really say that there will be that one feature, 20-25 touch running back currently on the roster to shoulder the running game as the feature back in an offense that has featured a 1,000 running back the last two seasons since Chad Morris became the offensive coordinator. The spring gives the Tigers an opportunity to see what they have at the position with the departure of Ellington and who could step up before the recruits arrive.
Known to be one of the more illustrious football schools in the country, the Miami Hurricanes have never been a real force in college basketball. After a mediocre first season under new head coach Jim Larranaga, the team is off to their best start in school history and undefeated in ACC Conference play. The Hurricanes currently sit eighth in the AP Top 25, and with a win this weekend over North Carolina, coupled with losses to three of the top five teams in the AP poll, could move into the top five for the first time ever with a win.
Since rejoining Division One in 1985, the Canes basketball program has only made the NCAA Tournament five times. Of their five trips to the big dance, the Canes have made it past the first weekend of the tournament once, a Sweet Sixteen appearance in 2000. The school has one regular season conference title over the same time period. A title with which they share with Syracuse from the 1999-2000 season.
No.1 Duke Blue Devils Travel to No. 20 NC State in Early ACC Clash: Preview And Where To Watch Online
On Saturday, the No. 1 ranked Duke Blue Devils travel across the research triangle to play in-state rival, No. 20 NC State Wolfpack.
Hall of Fame coach, Mike Krzyzewski has the Blue Devils 15-0 and atop the college basketball world. They are standing undefeated thanks to impressive wins over three top 5 teams: Kentucky (UK was #3 at the time, though now it doesn't look like as impressive), Ohio State and Louisville. Their average margin of victory is 19 points and are coming off of a 68-40 drubbing of fellow ACC member, Clemson.
The UNC Tar Heels make their first trip to Tallahassee this season to face fellow ACC rival Florida State.
North Carolina (10-5, 0-2), hasn’t played well in their past five games going (2-3), including two straight losses (Miami & Virginia) to ACC opponents for the first time since the 2008-09 season.
Florida State (10-5, 2-0), which is (4-1) in their last five games. Unlike the Tar Heels, the Seminoles have pulled out two close gritty wins over fellow ACC rivals Maryland and Clemson.
Even though the Tar Heels don’t possess a dominant offensive low post presence they are ranked fourth in the Nation in Rebounds Per Game (43.3) and Assists Per Game (18.5).
If North Carolina wants to avoid going 0-3 in the ACC they are going to need big games from sophomore James Michael McAdoo and junior Reggie Bullock. Many critics and fans are awaiting another dominating performance from McAdoo much like the first two games of the season.