Four Tigers land in ESPN top-25 players in ACC


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Tyler Davis returns as a key starter on the Clemson D-line.
Tyler Davis returns as a key starter on the Clemson D-line.

After a slew of All-American honors this offseason, the top-two players in the ACC weren't much in question. ESPN filled out the rest of the top-25 in the conference ahead of ACC action starting Thursday night with UAB at Miami.

Of course those top-two are Clemson's dynamic offensive duo of QB Trevor Lawrence and RB Travis Etienne.

"With the new rules in place allowing for players to gain an extra year of eligibility due to the pandemic, Dabo Swinney dangled the idea that Lawrence could play three more seasons in Clemson. Forgive the rest of the ACC if it shuddered in horror," ESPN writes. "Lawrence has lost just one game as a starter -- last year's national championship against LSU -- and after some minor setbacks as a sophomore in 2019, he finished the year playing as well as anyone in college football, completing 68% of his throws with 22 TD passes and no picks over his final eight games. The only question now is what Lawrence will do in what -- despite Swinney's hopeful projection -- figures to be his final college season before becoming the top pick in the draft."

Clemson is set to face another top-5 member in Florida State defensive tackle Marvin Wilson this season, who ranked third behind the two Tigers. Temporary ACC football member Notre Dame had players check in at No. 10 (S Kyle Hamilton) and No. 11 (LB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah).

The Tigers' reps were rounded out by CB Derion Kendrick, at No. 12, and DT Tyler Davis, at No. 14.

"In his first year in the secondary after beginning his Clemson career at receiver, Kendrick was a revelation. He allowed just 5.3 yards per target and surrendered just two completions of more than 20 yards on the season," ESPN said of Kendrick. "As a true freshman, Davis joined a completely renovated Clemson defensive line and immediately made an impact. He finished the season with 27 pressures, and an 8.7% pressure rate, 6.5 sacks and 10 tackles for loss -- all numbers that bested All-America candidate Marvin Wilson -- while allowing just one missed tackle for the season," they added on Davis.

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