ACC signal callers face monumental task

Click Here to view this Link.There's an e-mail making its way around the Internet with the acronym "ICE" in the subject. And unlike so many of the annoying chain letters you'll be sent, this one actually is worthwhile.
ICE stands for "in case of emergency," and the e-mail urges you to put ICE in front of a contact name in the list of numbers stored in your cell phone. That way, if some tragedy befalls you paramedics quickly know whom you would like them to call.
Hopefully this e-mail has been forwarded to quarterbacks in the Atlantic Coast Conference this season, especially those at Clemson and Wake Forest. They're headed for peril, and there simply is no way around it.
If you look at's Preseason All-ACC team, released Thursday, you'll notice the defense has some similarities to's Preseason All-America team.
Both defensive ends on our All-America first team are ACC players, as is one of the linebackers. In all, six of 22 players on our first- and second-team defenses come from the ACC, and an injury kept that from being seven.
Clemson coach Tommy Bowden and Wake Forest coach Jim Grobe should be complaining the loudest because they and their QBs have the most to fear. They all have to face the "QB to X-ray Row" of Florida State, Miami, N.C. State and Boston College.
Just how fraught with danger is that stretch? According to the The Sporting News College Football Preview's rankings of defensive lines, N.C. State is No. 1, Miami is No. 3 and FSU is No. 8. No, that's not in the ACC, that's in the country.
"This conference is very strong defensively," Clemson QB Charlie Whitehurst said at ACC Media Days. "I would not want to be a rookie quarterback in the conference this year. It's tough enough on any quarterback."
Boston College didn't crack TSN's top 10 lines, but it has consensus first-team All-American Mathias Kiwanuka prowling the outside at end.
"With Miami, Boston College and Virginia Tech, the ACC expanded with quality," said Mike Farrell, a national recruiting analyst for "You add schools like that and you're going to get the talent that they've picked up."
According to TSN, the ACC has four of the top eight defensive ends and four of the top 14 defensive tackles in college football. Sound like a little trouble for a QB? Kiwanuka and N.C. State's Mario Williams each go 6 feet 7. The end opposite Williams is Manny Lawson, and he's 6-5.
"Kiwanuka and Williams, both of those guys have NFL size and speed and come off the edge very well," Farrell said. "They'll see lots of double-teams, but at N.C. State that's a really scary proposition because all their other guys are so good."
Which makes it really scary for any QB in the ACC. So if one should call for ICE, make sure he's looking for his mom and not something cool to put on all those aches and pains.
Bob McClellan can be reached via email at