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June 20, 2014

Ranking the ACC: Quarterback

As Boston College prepares for another run through the ACC, EagleAction.com will get you ready with ranking analysis pieces breaking down each position in the league. Today, we look at the top Quarterbacks in the ACC heading into 2014.

1. Jameis Winston, Florida State, 6-4, 235, So.
Winston is an obvious choice for the top spot on this list. FSU's quarterback had an illustrious freshman campaign that saw him become the youngest player to win the Heisman Trophy and the only freshman quarterback to win the BCS National Championship. Winston passed for 4,057 yards, 40 touchdowns and 10 interceptions on his way to taking home almost every award. Winston is looking to become the only player besides Archie Griffin to win two Heisman Trophies. It looks like the only possible thing that could derail him is the off-field issues that he continues to have.
2. Marquise Williams, North Carolina, 6-2, 220, Jr.
Williams was somewhat of an unknown heading into last season since Bryn Renner had solidified himself as the starting quarterback. Williams impressed during summer camp though and the UNC staff felt like they needed to get the young quarterback into select packages each game. Williams played well in his limited role early in the year, which included a 55 yard rushing performance against BC. Williams also threw an absolutely game changing 17-yard TD pass in the 3rd quarter of that game. When Renner was lost for the year midway through the season, Williams got an opportunity to play full-time and took advantage of the opportunity. The QB led his team in rushing yards on the year and continued to develop his passing game. While not as good of a passer than Winston, Williams is a more dangerous runner.
3. Anthony Boone, Duke, 6-0, 230, Sr.
Boone was named the starter last year and led the team on a 2-0 start before getting injured. When Boone returned after a three game hiatus the Blue Devils went on to win seven straight before falling to FSU in the ACC Championship game. Boone returns as the 3rd leading passer in the ACC.
4. Terrel Hunt, Syracuse, 6-3, 233, Jr.
Hunt's ranking might be somewhat inflated since our eyes might tell us more than the stat sheet. Hunt had his best game of the season against BC when he passed for a season-high 270 yards to go along with 90 yards rushing. That performance was his best combined rushing and passing game of the year. When Hunt had to go against some of the best defenses in the ACC he struggled. Against FSU he had a combined 61 yards of offense and against Clemson he had 109. Hunt has the potential to end up a little higher on the list, but he has to perform better against the good defenses.
5. Tyler Murphy, Boston College, 6-2, 214, Sr.
When you compare the rest of the quarterbacks in the ACC there aren't any who have had more impressive performances against good competition like Murphy. In six starts, Murphy passes for 1,216 yards and 6 touchdowns. If Murphy had as many weapons at receiver as some of the other teams in the ACC he would be considered an All-ACC candidate.
6. Will Gardner, Louisville, 6-5, 226, S0.
There wasn't a lot to choose from in this slot. There isn't any other team in the ACC that returns a QB with more than a game or two of starting experience. With Bobby Petrino back at Louisville, Gardner should put up huge numbers this year in his offense.

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