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Six Heels Named All-ACC

RB Gio Bernard, LB Zach Brown and DE Quinton Coples were named to the All-ACC First Team by the Atlantic Coast Sports Writers Association. WR Dwight Jones, OG James Hurst and OT Jonathan Cooper were tapped for the second team. Receiving honorable mention were DT Tydreke Powell and specialist T.J. Thorpe

The ACC’s official site has the full list here.

Gio Bernard capped off a brilliant rookie campaign on Saturday with 165 yards versus Duke which earned him rookie of the week honors. Bernard finished the regular season with 1222 yards for 101.8 yards per game and 13 touchdowns. He became the first Tar Heel in 14 years to eclipse the 1000 yard mark in rushing. Quinton Coples followed up his All-ACC performance from a year ago with his second straight appearance on the first team. Coples finished the season with 51 tackles, 13 of them for a loss and 7.5 sacks. Linebacker Zach Brown was an absolute beast all season leading the Heels in tackles with 91. Brown had 11.5 tackles for a loss, 5.5 sacks and two interceptions.

The Heels appearing on the second team raise, in my opinion, some questions. First is Dwight Jones who led the ACC in receptions with 79 and receiving TDs with 11. Jones was third in receiving yards with 93.1 ypg behind the two players slotted on the first team Clemson’s Sammy Watkins and Wake Forest’s Chris Givens. Watkins inclusion was a no brainer and he will also likely end up being rookie of the year. Givens led the ACC in receiving yards with over 100 per game which likely trumped Jones receptions and touchdown totals. The other two Heels on the second team were James Hurst and Jonathan Cooper, both offensive linemen. That’s right, UNC got two players on the All-ACC second team from an offensive line unit which underperformed all season long. I suppose there is some logic at work here involving Gio Bernard’s rushing total and the assumption that he could not have gotten to 1200 yards without a solid OL helping him except he sort of did. Either Cooper and Hurst were really good and the rest of the line was crap or voting for offensive linemen is a complete crapshoot because you don’t have as many concrete numbers to work with as you do other positions. In other words voting for offensive linemen on all conference teams is a little like voting for defensive POY awards in basketball. Absent block or steal totals, there is not much to go on there.

Congratulations to these Tar Heels on being recognized and being a big reason for the team’s success this year.


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6 comments to Six Heels Named All-ACC

  • Heel To The End

    i guess they figured SOMEone had to open the holes for Gio. i dont think they watched us carefully, tho.
    that 2nd team award will look good amongst their 12 Bad/Ugly trophies that Doc handed out.
    Gio almost didnt make 1st team, so i guess we shouldnt get too mad at Jones slipping to 2nd.
    the voting is weird tho. there arent ANY QBs that got Honorable Mention. really? not Renner or Price?

    any word on whether our punters received participation ribbons? (too soon?)

  • teddyjackeddy

    Don’t really see Logan Thomas as 2nd team all-acc qb. Pretty pedestrian stats was good against a weak schedule certainly not great. I think only reason Graham got specialist is he is a senoir , he was not nearly as good as last year.

  • Andy In Omaha

    Dwight Jones didn’t get first team? What a crock….no issue with Watkins on the list, but you could make a case that Jones was the best receiver I’mtheb conference.

  • 52bgJ

    wha, no DB’s???

    ^I’m with you on DJ!

  • Jones got robbed, he’s an NFL player right now, maybe all three are but you have to have a place in your heart for the guy that scores points and wins games. That’s how you win games last time I checked - score more points than the other guy.

    HTTE - never too soon. I was in awe when during the Michigan game, before the boggled punt they mentioned weak punting and kicking as a flaw. How can field position be under rated? I just don’t see why this position is always short changed. If anyone has some insight on this please let me know - “Thanks for taking the time and interest to spend a few minutes with me, I really appreciate it.” Mr. BD

  • Andy In Omaha

    There were holes for Gio? I thought most of his yards came from bouncing outside because running to the inside would mean a concussion and some broken ribs.
    Hurst is probably our best OL right now. Cooper, I’m not sure of. I know the interior of the line is horrible. I think that’s where most of the sacks on Renner came from.
    At any rate, is there any movement on the coaching search, or will that be dead until after bowl season?

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