ACC: Oh The Weather Outside

By Jessica Garrison - July 23, 2006

Looks like we won’t be spending the afternoon outside by the pool. As thunderstorms start to roll over the Sawgrass, but the news inside is mostly spinning sunny. After the players’ interviews, in the cautiously or freely optimistic eyes of the ACC’s best players, each team has a crack at success this season. Sure Florida State, Miami and Virginia Tech know they’re the teams to beat, sure N.C. State and Virginia and others know that their recent shine is starting to dull, but everyone’s got the words “we can” on their lips in the interviews.

There was still a small storm cloud over Duke’s table, where the Blue Devils, already the obvious underdog of the conference, are dealing with the suspension of quarterback Zack Asack for academic missteps. Wide receiver Deon Adams, safety Andreas Platt and offensive lineman Joe Suder were also suspended for the year for violating team rules. It’s an especially low blow to a team that is routinely played as the bottom-feeder of the conference, whose players sit at a player with a couple of reporters while the mobs surround the Florida schools right next to them.

“It’s unfortunate,” Duke senior defensive end Eli Nichols said of the suspensions. “We’re going to miss Zack and the other guys this year.”

Still, the Blue Devils can find a little light at the end of the tunnel in their preseason preparation: “It hasn’t shown to the outside world, but to us there’s a difference,” Nichols said. “The whole attitude is where it needs to be, hopefully we can get the loss columns to reflect that.

Right now, around the interview tables, hope is one thing that’s not in short supply.

Posted by Jessica Garrison at 05:15 PM on July 23, 2006

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