We know the ACC had a banner football season in 2013. Florida State’s National Title, Clemson’s Orange Bowl win, Duke’s resurgence, and tons of individual awards. It was a great year for the ACC, but just how good?
Florida State Jimbo Fisher had some comments to say about that recently. This is from the Atlanta Journal Constitution…
“No conference has ever had as dominant a year as the ACC had last year.”
“Eleven (ACC) teams had winning records and went to bowl games. (The ACC) won the national championship, won another BCS game, and you look at the top 150 players (in the NFL draft), it’s ACC 32, SEC 26. We actually had better players. I think getting that marketed out is a critical thing, and I think it’s just a matter of knowledge and getting people educated.”
Now, it only makes sense that Fisher pumps up the ACC. It makes sense for any ACC football Coach to do that. With the upcoming playoffs, SOS will be factor. Coaches have to market their teams first, obviously, but it doesn’t hurt to market your conference as well.
That said did Fisher make a coach-speak exaggeration or was he on to something? OK I think there clearly was some exaggeration. The ACC was particularly weak in the middle of conference, but I think the ACC’s 2013 measures up well against any conference in the era.
In the BCS era…
How many times has a conference won a national title and an additional BCS game?
SEC – 1998, 2006, 2007, 2009,
ACC – 2013
Individual Awards in a season?
No reason to compare to any other conference, it was the best season ever for a conference in terms of individual awards.
For the first time ever, nine of college football’s most coveted honors belong to one conference. The ACC became the first conference to have a player win the Heisman Trophy, the Davey O’Brien Award for the nation’s top quarterback (FSU’s Winston) the Doak Walker Award for the nation’s top running back (Boston College’s Andre Williams), the Rimington Award for the nation’s top center (Florida State’s Bryan Stork), the Lou Groza Award for the nation’s top placekicker (Florida State’s Roberto Aguayo), the Outland Trophy for the nation’s top interior lineman (Pitt defensive tackle Aaron Donald), the Nagurski Trophy for the nation’s top defensive player (Donald), the Lombardi Award for the nation’s top lineman or linebacker (Donald) and the Bednarik Award for the nation’s top defensive player (Donald) in the same year.
NFL Draft? 5th Best Draft for a conference in History
1) SEC 2013 – 63
2) SEC 2014 – 49
3) SEC 2010 – 49
4) Big 10 2004 – 44
5) SEC 2012 – 42
5) ACC 2014 – 42
In some aspects Fisher’s comments were not an exaggeration. It was a record setting 2013 for the ACC in several categories, but like I said lack of depth especially in the middle hurt the conference. Fisher is doing what he’s supposed to though, and that is bringing attention to the positives of ACC Football.