Voting Criteria: Player's importance to the team in 2013, talent and potential for the upcoming season. A player's long term/NFL potential was not taken into consideration. True freshmen were not considered for this poll.
Voting Panel: EagleAction.com senior analyst Eric Hoffses, EagleAction.com staff writers Greg Joyce and Austin Tedesco
11. Andy Gallik
Analysis- Gallik started all 12 games at center as a sophomore and three the year before. If Gallik goes down with an injury someone completely untested will have to replace him. Gallik is one player that could really excel in the new offense. The 306 pounder is quite agile for a player of his girth and should be used on pull blocks more than he was under the previous staff.
12. Spiffy Evans
Analysis- It's no secret that the BC roster is lacking playmakers that can put six on the scoreboard on any given play. Evans is one of those few guys that can. While Spiffy has to work on being more consistent catching passes you can't question his big play ability, especially on special teams. Evans earned Phil Steele's preseason All-America third-team honors as a punt return specialist and also was picked as an All-ACC first-team member as a punt returner as well.
13. Sean Sylvia
Tedesco's Take: Sylvia ranked 3rd most important - I have Williams and Louis-Jeans ranked 1 and 2 because their ceilings are much higher, and I can't see anyone being more important than Williams, but Sylvia may have the wider spectrum of play.
Even if ALJ comes back healthy and plays out of his mind, the BC corners are, as a whole, going to struggle a decent amount and will need to be bailed out by the safeties, especially if the pass rush doesn't take a major step forward. This should terrify new defensive coordinator Don Brown. Flip through the Heights photo archives from last season, and you will find that there are far too many instances where an opposing wide receiver is celebrating in the end zone while Sylvia is holding his head a few yards away with no one else nearby. He has a tendency to give up big plays in key situations and it could be detrimental to this defense.
With that being said, he isn't a bad player. Steve Addazio pointed out that he is incredibly tough and aggressive, and he is. If he plays at his best he won't entirely make up for mistakes by the corners, but he also won't make those mistakes worse. If he plays at his worst, though, he will make those mistakes deadly. The offensive line and the defensive line need a ton of improvement, but it's hard to pinpoint that improvement on a single player. A wide receiver needs to step up, but it could be any one of Spiffy Evans, Harrison Jackson, or Dan Crimmins. Sylvia is so high on my list because there is no one else there. It's only him. He will lose BC games if he plays at his worst. He will keep them in games if he plays at his best.
14. Nate Freese
Analysis- Freese is on the preseason watch list for the Lou Groza award, presented annually to the nation's top kicker. Last year, Freese was 18-of-20 on field goal attempts and a perfect 24-of-24 on extra points. Aside from Clemson and Florida State, there is a ton of parody in the ACC. That means that every field goal attempt can determine the outcome of just about any game. The Eagles will need Freese to at least match his production from last year if they are going to get to a bowl game.
15. Bobby Vardaro
Analysis- It's no secret that Addazio and Day are going to place a lot more emphasis on the run this year. That means that guard is a more important position on the offensive line than it has been in quite some time. Vardaro will be a very important piece to the puzzle at left guard.
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