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August 22, 2011
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August 22, 2011


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DANNY O'BRIEN QB, Maryland, Sophomore

The 2010 conference rookie of the year had 22 TD throws and just eight interceptions last fall; he already ranks 19th on the school's alltime passing list with 2,438 yards.

QUINTON COPLES DE, North Carolina, Senior

He had 10 sacks last year as a defensive tackle. Back at his natural position this fall, the 6'6" 280-pounder has the speed to be even more effective coming off the edge.

Extra Points

The conference is stocked with NFL-caliber pass rushers and defensive backs, which will make it a baptism of fire for the seven (or more) new starting quarterbacks, including Bryn Renner (North Carolina), Tajh Boyd (Clemson) and Mike Glennon (N.C. State).... New Clemson offensive coordinator Chad Morris is a former high school coach whose spread attack at Tulsa was one of the nation's best last fall. The hope in Death Valley is that Morris can re-create the success enjoyed by one of his close friends who also rose quickly from the high school ranks, Auburn coordinator Gus Malzahn.... First-year Maryland coach Randy Edsall, in an effort to restore discipline, has banned earrings and caps indoors. To inspire team unity he also removed the players' names from the backs of their jerseys. In 1961, Maryland became the first team in college football to put names on uniforms.... Even in the run-first, triple-option offense of Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson, the completion rate for the passing game in 2010 (38.1%) didn't cut it. New starter Tevin Washington doesn't look like the answer, though: The junior connected on just 41.0% of his throws in part-time duty last fall.

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