NGSC Sports

2014 National signing day in the ACC

If it’s the first Wednesday in February, then it can only mean one thing if you are a college football fan, signing day has arrived. For the Atlantic Coast Conference it was a good day as seven of the league’s 14 teams ended up being ranked in the top 40. All fourteen teams were ranked in the top 63, there was talent to be had and the ACC got their fair share and then some.

Here is a breakdown of how the teams in the conference did.

The defending national champions Florida State Seminoles reloaded, as they always do, with 29 committed and five already in school. The Seminoles now seem poised to make a run at back to back championships. The class is led by Travis Rudolph, a WR from West Palm Beach Florida, Cardinal Newman High School. Rudolph finished his senior year with 63 catches for 1,237 yards and 15 touchdowns and is considered the top wide receiver in the class. He will be joined on offense by RB Dalvin Cook from Miami Central High School. Cook, who originally chose Florida, is the nation’s second best running back prospect in the country. He finished his outstanding high school career with 4,268 yards rushing and 64 touchdowns.

The Miami Hurricanes class was rated ninth by Rivals with 26 committing. It featured DE Chad Thomas of Booker T. Washington High School in Miami. Thomas considered the number one defense player on that team led the squad with 12 sacks. On offense, Joseph Yearby, a RB from Miami Central, should help out the Canes running attack. Yearby’s senior season went very well thank you, with 19 TD’S and 1,700 yards rushing. He was named offensive player of the year as well as 2014 All-American by 247 sports. He could be a welcome addition to a ground game that is hoping for a healthy return from Duke Johnson.

The Clemson Tigers will welcome 23 recruits for the 2014 season. This group marks the fourth straight year that the Tigers class has been rated in the top 15. Players like Korie Rogers from Buford High School in Flowery Branch, GA. started on consecutive state championship teams at Buford. He also played in the U.S. Army All-American game. He is ranked in the top 20 as a linebacker by several services. WR Demarre Kitt, from Sandy Creek High School in Fayetteville GA., could help to replace the departing Sammy Watkins. Kitt had 48 receptions good for 861 yards and 7 touchdowns. He averaged a career best 18 yards a catch during his senior year and was rated in the top 200 players in the nation by four different services.

The Duke Blue Devils got 18 on signing day and among them was Trevon Lee WR from Cardinal Gibbons Prep School in Plantation Florida. Lee is Duke’s first ESPN 300 recruit in school history. He hauled in 83 passes for 1,447 yards and 16 TD’S over his final two seasons. He has a national ranking of 33 among WR by ESPN.com. With returning wide out Jamison Crowder back for his senior year, the duo could give Duke a serious passing game to go along with their balanced running attack. On defense Zavier Carmichael, from St. Paul’s Episcopal High School in Eight Mile, Alabama is listed as one of the top 30 outside LB’s in the country. He was named as one of five finalists for the Watkins Award, giving annually to the top African-American high school student athlete in the country.

Virginia, coming off a disappointing 2-10 season, welcomes 17 players to the fold. Defense was the focus of this class. Safety Quinn Blanding, of Bayside High School in Virginia Beach, was rated the top safety by three different services. He played in the Under Armour All-American game finishing his senior campaign with 118 tackles. He will be joined by fellow defense player Andrew Brown from Oscar Brown High School in Chesapeake VA. Brown, who enrolled at Virginia in January, is considered a 5-star recruit by most services. For his high school career, Brown had 93 tackles, 30 for loss, 18 sacks and forced nine fumbles.

Wake Forest’s new head coach Dave Clawson got a late start in recruiting, but still was able to find 26 players to come to Wake. Safety Cameron Glen of Stephenson High School in Georgia should help to shore up a defensive backfield that needs some help. Glen recorded more than 150 tackles over his last two seasons at Stephenson, was named 1st team All-American Dehalb Country, as well as in the top 30 for safeties by ESPN. On offense, WR Kameron Uter who was originally headed to Vanderbilt, brings a multi-dimension to the Wake attack. As a WR, Uter averaged more than 12 yards a catch last season and accumulated more than 800 total yards as a punt and kick returner.

Georgia Tech brings in 21 to the fold and most notable is WR Myles Autry, from Norcross High School in Georgia. He led his team to a state championship last fall and he has drawn attention from several schools for his ability to play several positions. On defense, Tyler Meriwether from Forkland High School in Demopolis, Alabama will compete with other players for playing time come spring. His strength and physically quickness is what the Yellow Jackets like most about him. He will compete with other players for playing time come spring.

Virginia Tech received 28 commitments. QB Trevon McMillan from Hylton High School in Virginia will compete for the quarterback job now that Logan Thomas has graduated. A duel threat, McMillan threw for 1,472 yards and 17 touchdowns while running for 1,537 and scoring 20 more TD’s. He was a first team All-State selection by Virginia preps as a senior. For his career McMillan totaled 3,000 yards and 37 touchdowns. Raymond Minor, LB from Bernadine High School in Virginia, is a first team All-State by VISAA. As a senior he recorded 58 total tackles, 11 for loss, 1 sack, forced two fumbles and recovered a fumble.

North Carolina has 22  that will be enrolling come fall. Among them is M.J. Stewart from Yorktown High School in Arlington, VA. He is rated #13 as a defensive back last season and finished his senior campaign with 77 tackles, 10 interceptions (returned 1 for a TD). He was also a deadly punt returner with three returns for scores. Tyrell Thomas, a LB from Marietta High School in Marietta GA., had a monster senior season. He posted 109 tackles, 4 INT’s, (returned 1 for a touchdown) and a sack. In his final game at Marietta, Thomas recorded a school record 23 tackles.

North Carolina State brings in Kentavios Street from J.H. Rose High School in Greenville, N.C.  He was invited to play in the U.S. Army game. Had four sacks and 23 tackles for loss during his senior year. Jalen McClendon QB from West Mecklenburg High School in Charlotte, N.C. runs a 4.7 40 yard dash. He is rated in the top 20 by three different services could be red shirt by the Wolf Pack.

The Notre Dame Fighting Irish begin their first year in the conference by bringing 23 to South Bend. Alex Bars is an offensive lineman from Montgomery Bell Academy, Nashville. He won the Rotary Lombardi Chip off the Block award for the south region as the nation’s top high school lineman in seven region and states. Jonathan Boomer LB from Parkway Central High School in Chesterfield, Missouri was named the St. Louis Post Dispatch Defense player of the year. Made 70 tackles, and 17 sacks as a senior.

Also beginning their first year in the ACC is the Louisville Cardinal, without QB Teddy Bridgewater and with a new head coach in Bobby Petrino. WR Cameron Pok from Hamilton Southeastern High School in Fishers, Ind. was rated the 10th best player in the state. He caught 18 passes, for 295 yards and two touchdowns during his senior year. Sherriff Rhaheed Muhammad is a LB from Fort Pierce Central High School in Fort Pierce, Florida. He ranked in the top 60 overall prospects in the state of Florida and only played six games last season due to a wrist injury. Still, he put up pretty solid numbers despite the injury. He had 33 tackles, 8 for loss, 2 sacks, an INT. For his career he totaled 155 tackles, 22 for loss, 17 sacks, 2 fumbles recovered, and an INT, in 25 games played.

The Pittsburgh Panthers will welcome 23 to the program come this fall. Among them is Patrick Amara, DB from West Catholic High School in Lansdowne, PA. He was named first team defense on four different services, compiled 43 tackles, 22 passes defended and three interceptions. He played in two All-Star games and was one of the top performers in both games. Adam Bertke, QB of Marion Local High School in Maria Stein, Ohio, was 41-4 as the starting quarterback and a three-time state champion. He threw for 6,272 yards with a 61% completion rate, ran for 1,690 yards and 28 touchdowns for his career. He did miss four games his senior year due to a broken bone in his throwing hand.

The Boston College Eagles will be looking to build upon last season’s success with a combination of recruits and graduated students. Tyler Murphy, a QB who last season play six games for the Florida Gators, has already enrolled at BC as a grad student. Murphy was 2-4 in the six games he played for the Gators, but was injured in a late October in a game at LSU and did not return to the Gator lineup. The QB job is wide open at BC due to the graduation of Chase Rettig and Murphy is hoping that by enrolling now at the Heights he could be eligible to practice in the spring. He might put himself at the head of the class when it comes to next year’s starting quarterback. There’s another Flutie coming to BC and his name is Trey. He played his high school ball at Natick High School where he was the QB of the team. At BC, his role could change as Flutie is being projected as a WR for the Eagles. A position the Eagles need some help in.

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