The News & Observer‘s ACC Now blog has put together a great list (with hotlinks) to all of the former Atlantic Coast Conference football players now playing football in the NFL.

NC State currently ranks 6th in the ACC with 20 former players in the NFL.

For those fans that always want to compare NC State to UNC-CH, we suggest that you wait just two or three more years before expecting to see the Pack ahead of the Heels in this category. The composition of most of NC State’s NFL players is much more recent than the composition of the bulk of the Tarheels, who are living largely off of the players from the Mack Brown days of almost a decade ago. Names like Ethan Albright, Ebenezer Ekuban, Greg Ellis, William Henderson, Vonnie Holliday, Jeff Saturday and others just don’t have that many more years left in the league.

We will link this entry for you in our “ACC Blogs & Resources” Category on the right side of the front page of SFN. We work hard to keep all of those categories updated with vital links for quick access to good information. We ask that you surf some of those links and use our work to your benefit.

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27 Responses to ACC in NFL

  1. tvp 10/01/2006 at 2:19 PM #

    I took a few minutes to compare when the NC State players and UNC players entered the league. The numbers are startling.

    NC State (Amato became head coach in 2000)
    06 – 7 (Tulloch, TJ, Manny, Mario, McCargo, Hudson, Hoyte)
    05 – 3
    04 – 3
    03 – 2
    02 – 1
    01 – 2
    older – 2

    UNC (Bunting became head coach in 2001)
    06 – 0
    05 – 5
    04 – 2 (One being Willie Parker)
    03 -2
    02 –5
    01 -1
    older – 10

    Amazing numbers. Virtually all of our NFL players were coached by Amato and the majority were recruited by him. Meanwhile only a handful of the UNC players were recruited by Bunting. Ever since the Julius Peppers class he inherited from Mack, he’s put virtually no one in the league. Even the 5 players in the ’05 class is a little inflated – one is a long snapper, the other is Sensabaugh, a transfer who only spent one year at UNC.

  2. joe 10/01/2006 at 4:25 PM #

    At least Brown got a few 2nd place finishes in the ACC before he left town.

  3. WolfPup35 10/01/2006 at 4:51 PM #

    Hell, at least Brown got a few WINS when he was in CH!!
    And those were against 1A schools, not 1AA schools.
    When Brown DID play 1AA schools, they did NOT score 40+!!

  4. packpigskinfan23 10/01/2006 at 8:29 PM #

    hey tvp~ that long snapper happens to be a buddy of mine… its a difficult job… dont play it off.

  5. class of 74 10/02/2006 at 6:36 AM #

    It is an interesting trend for sure, but would we rather be known as a school that produces NFL talent or a school that wins ACC championships? So far the upgrade in talent hasn’t gotten us close to an ACC title yet, so could it be the coaching?

  6. Wulfpack 10/02/2006 at 8:31 AM #

    Huge day for the Pack in the NFL yesterday!

  7. Wolf-n-Atl 10/02/2006 at 9:32 AM #

    So judging by talent, FSU & Miami should have been head and shoulders above the rest of the ACC for the last few years which for the most part has been true.

    After that, VT & UNC and UVA should have been next with a slight advantage over NC State and Mary on down to BC & GT.

    Then Wake & Duke bring up the rear.

    So what this tells me is that some teams are underachieving such as UNC, UVA. State & Maryland and others BC, Clemson, Tech & Wake are overachieving. VTech seems to be about right.

  8. noah 10/02/2006 at 10:06 AM #

    “so could it be the coaching?”

    NC State hasn’t won an ACC title since 1979. UNC hasn’t won an ACC title since 1980.

    Dick Sheridan and Mack Brown were two pretty damn good coaches and neither won an ACC title.

    You want to see bad coaching? Look at Miami. They’ve had top 5 recruiting classes every year since Coker took over. They’ve got NFL talent all over the place. Not only do they have stud recruits at every position, they’ve got REALIZED talent at every position.

    Kyle Wright was the #1 QB in the country as a senior. They’ve got Edgerin James’ little brother at tailback. Their left tackle was the top tackle prospect in the country. Olsen at TE is going to be a first round draft pick. Kenny Phillips at safety was the #1 prospect at his position and is going to be an NFL star. They’ve got several defensive linemen that run sub-4.8s at 280+ pounds. Their loaded with athletic freaks.

    There aren’t any holes on Miami’s roster.

    Compare that with us….we’ve got two tackles that have no business playing D1 football. They don’t even belong on the bench (if you were wondering why we offered them, we took both of them very late in the recruiting process after missing out on countless other people and were desperate and throwing darts at a board) at Rice or Nevada St.

    At linebacker, we’ve got a third-string tailback whose starting. We’re playing true freshmen. And at middle linebacker, we’re playing a guy whose smart, but athletically limited and probably ought to be a really dependable backup.

    We all know our QB situation.

    For all of his faults, Mike O’Cain actually had a pretty good record in finding offensive tackles. Maybe it was someone on his staff…but we always managed to pull one out of nowhere. Ian Rafferty was never a highly recruited player in SC. Same with Jarvis Borum. Todd Boyle was a marginal prospect from Virginia. We found some enormous kid while recruiting Rashon Spikes in Connecticutt and convinced him to walk-on here. And the kid with the shoulder problems (whose name I’m completely blanking on….got drafted by Tampa Bay) missed most of his senior season in high school in Long Island.

    Now just take two of those kids. Take Borum and Rafferty and plug them into our OL. At linebacker, bring Stephen Tulloch back for his senior year. And at QB, just delete the recruitment of Marcus Stone completely. A guy we were hot and heavy after before we landed Stone was Tyler Palko (whose now the top-rated QB in the country)…but you don’t even need someone that good. Just give us a quality QB. Terry Jordan. Ryan Hart, who we recruited and played at Rutgers. Not a pro QB prospect….just a quality college QB. A guy who can throw it from here to there and have someone catch it and who won’t throw 25 interceptions.

    Just add those four player-types to this squad and it wins nine games this year. THAT is how close we are to being a good team. Now, we’re not going to add any of those players to the squad this year….we’ll be lucky to win six games this year.

    Add those four players to this squad (again, I’m not saying ‘add four future NFL players’….just four quality college players at those positions) and everyone thinks Amato walks on water. Look back at all the guys we recruited over the last four years. Narrow the list down to players who had NC State as their second-choice. You can find four players off that list who meet those criteria. Four guys who probably flipped a coin as to what school they were going to attend. Four guys that we did everything right with. We found them, we offered them, we said all the right things and did all the right things. They just chose someone else when it was all said and done.

    That’s the difference between being a “good coach” and a “bad coach.”

    Compare that with John Bunting. Someone who spent the last four or five years filling up his recruiting lists with early commitments with players who had no business in the ACC. We’re not talking about having to take a fallback recruit after you missed out on an all-american. We’re talking about choosing to target a kid whose too small or too slow. And of the all-americans he has locked up, they’ve either had drug problems or were guys who were incredibly overrated (Ian Firestone — I’ve never coached a day in my life, but I could tell that guy was five steps too slow).

    NC State’s team is a like a structure that’s got a critical fault in the foundation. If you’re bad at QB and LB and off. tackle, it’s damn near impossible to cover that up. On defense, you might have a pass rush, but you can’t really expect your DL to make every tackle. Linebackers almost always lead the team in tackles. On offense, if you can’t block on the edge, you’re in deep trouble. There’s just about no way to compensate.

    We’re recruiting the right people. Anyone who thinks Amato can’t spot talent has NO idea what he or she is talking about. Look at the people who have gotten offers from NCSU and the people we’ve skipped and you’ll see a pretty incredible record.

    Eventually, our unlucky streak at tackle and linebacker is going to end. I’m hearing nice things about Vogt and Ray Michel, so I’m hopeful they’ll be able to help us next year. We sort of carpet-bombed the east coast looking for tackles a couple of years ago. Hopefully, Julian Williams and the big tall kid out of Va. Beach are quality players. Curtis Crouch is going to be an excellent guard and I think the coaches like Andy Barbee in time at center.

    At QB, we’ve got Evans (hopefully, he’ll be the “at the very least, decent” QB I mentioned earlier), Burke, Harrison Beck and the Wilson kid out of VA that everyone seems to like. And Rodney Cox, probably…if he gets his grades together.

    Both Jay Davis and Marcus Stone were top-25 QBs nationally. Statistically speaking, you can go 0-for-2 in having top-25 QBs bomb for you. Going 0-for-6 seems highly-unlikely.

    Carolina…their structure is flawed all the way through. They’ve got a decent running back who can’t stay healthy. They’ve got bad QB play. Their OL is not very good anywhere. They’ve got a guy playing tackle who probably needs to be at center, for example. Their DL is awful. Their linebackers (minus Larry Edwards) are too slow and their secondary is, at best, average. Their kickers are talented, but terribly inconsistent.

    They just need to tear down the whole thing and start over. Unfortunately, that’s kind of what Bunting has been doing EVERY YEAR since he got there.

  9. RickJ 10/02/2006 at 10:56 AM #

    ^Great post. Colmer is name of the tackle with shoulder problems.

    We are so bad at tackle I would gladly accept 2 false starts a game to have Derrick Morris back.

  10. statered 10/02/2006 at 12:38 PM #

    noah – for guys like 74 it’s about being ragged on by their Kerliner friends about shoes and sunglasses. Or the fact that the coach drives a Corvette (believe it or not I heard that one on here last week. What it has to do with football I have no idea).

    The prereq for having a chance at an ACC title is having the talent. Once you start getting talent if the stars align and the timing is right you can win it (at least for programs like ours). We have started to get the talent but our timing has not been there yet.

  11. PackBacker001 10/02/2006 at 1:09 PM #

    ^ RickJ:
    2 false starts, I could live with. It’s the lining up offsides that I couldn’t take anymore. Didn’t we have 4 of those against Clemson last year?

  12. class of 74 10/02/2006 at 2:29 PM #

    No for guys like me it is about accountability. Our celebrated coach has the best facilities in the history of the school. He has by most accounts the best talent accrued in school history. And inspite of this we struggle to beat App. State, lose to Akron, get blown out at So. Miss and but for one miracle play against BC could be 1-3. I know, I know he is not 1-3 but he is too close for comfort.

    IMHO in your seventh season you should not be struggling against this portion of our schedule. But many others seem to think we are oh so close to having a real quality football program under Amato. Well I think he has underperformed now for three seasons and his trend is not upward but just the opposite. I have seen enough of this act to know he, Amato, is not the guy to take us to a perennial ACC contender level.

  13. Pack Laddie 10/02/2006 at 3:19 PM #

    74—to be completely fair, you could also say that he is one goal line play from being 3-1. But the Akron play went the other way, and the BC play went the Pack’s way. So, it is not 1-3, or 3-1, but 2-2.

  14. cfpack03 10/02/2006 at 3:34 PM #

    ^^I’m not taking that bait today…

  15. class of 74 10/02/2006 at 3:45 PM #

    ^^ I agree you can make that case and that would be fair. And the record will always reflect a 2-2 start. I’m very disappointed in the past three seasons and this one looks very shaky too. Possibly Daniel Evans and some good fortune will save Chuck’s bacon but at some point he must be called to account for the underperformance.

  16. noah 10/02/2006 at 4:14 PM #

    “I have seen enough of this act to know he, Amato, is not the guy to take us to a perennial ACC contender level.”

    to KNOW that?

    Okay, well, first of all….no you don’t. Secondly, I like how your trend line assumes the quality of the ACC over the last seven years has been completely static. That’s interesting….since the # of teams IN the league hasn’t even stayed the same.

    Third, there are all kinds of teams that have rebuilding years. The fact that Amato is in his seventh year is not relevant. Did we not just see Joe Paterno go through a downturn? What…you can’t have a rebuilding year after six years, but you’re allowed one after sixty??

    Fourth, we aren’t in a “rebuilding” year. Carolina is in a rebuilding year. We’re critically flawed.

  17. packpigskinfan23 10/02/2006 at 4:38 PM #

    obviously we expected a little drop off from the defense this year, and we all knew our OL was still shaky… so how could we really say we expected to be so much better this year than last year?!

    give Amato a break…. lets not turn every thread into a “fireamato” thread.

    the fact that we had some much NFL talent last year and did not preform is saddening… but all that talent was on one side of the ball. the one that was on the feild for the most of all of the games we played. Of course they had a rough season last year as well… but I think its safe to say that the cause of most of our L’s last season was our inability to score.

  18. statered 10/02/2006 at 4:48 PM #

    In my mind we have been critically flawed every year since he got here in some area. We have just been better at disguising it some years more than others.

  19. packpigskinfan23 10/02/2006 at 5:00 PM #

    ^under what coach havent we?

  20. class of 74 10/02/2006 at 5:07 PM #

    Yes to know that! I don’t need to see the same movie six times to figure out what the ending will be. I don’t believe 5-7, 6-6 or 7-5 will be contending for the ACC title game this year. Or maybe you saw something in those first four games that no one else has yet seen!

    You are correct on one thing though. We are critically flawed from a head coaching standpoint. I prefer to call it a classic example of the Peter Principle.

  21. class of 74 10/02/2006 at 5:20 PM #

    If putting players in the NFL is our goal, and going to Boise or Charlotte 7 out of every 10 years makes you feel warm and fuzzy, well look no further, we have our man! Give him a lifetime contract.

  22. statered 10/02/2006 at 5:21 PM #

    I would say that has maybe been the case since Holtz ’74. Come to think of it Holtz was critically flawed – he wouldn’t stay!

  23. RAWFS 10/02/2006 at 5:56 PM #

    Noah, some of your recent comments are as good or better than a lot of stand-alone posts. Well done, sir!

    “Holtz was critically flawed – he wouldn’t stay!”

    Because we wouldn’t give him the tools for major success, or so some folks say.

  24. statered 10/02/2006 at 6:31 PM #

    Do you really think he wold have stayed? I mean look at the guy’s history, he’s almost as transient as Larry Brown.

  25. noah 10/03/2006 at 10:05 AM #

    Holtz would have retired at Notre Dame had they not changed the academic criteria for admittance for his football players. He loved it there. Once they made it impossible for him to win a national title, he quit.

    As far as staying at NC State, I doubt it. He does admit that taking the Jets job was one of the worst mistakes of his life. But eventually, a Michigan or a Notre Dame or USC would have taken him.

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