Thanks as always to the sports information directors throughout the league for this week’s notes:
ACC: ACC players accounted for one-third of the total number of players chosen to be semifinalists for the prestigious Butkus Award, which is presented annually to the nation’s top linebacker. Boston College’s Luke Kuechly, Miami’s Sean Spence, North Carolina’s Zach Brown and NC State’s Audie Cole all made the cut, the most of any league.
BOSTON COLLEGE: Linebacker Luke Kuechly extended his streak of games with 10 or more tackles to 29 in Saturday’s loss at Virginia Tech. Kuechly had 19 stops against the Hokies. He’s not the only Eagle on a streak, as receiver Bobby Swigert has caught at least one pass in 19 straight games.
CLEMSON: Defensive end Kourtnei Brown became only the third player since the NCAA began keeping records on defensive touchdown returns in 2000 to return a fumble and an interception for scores in the same game. Brown returned an interception 20 yards for a touchdown in the second quarter of Clemson’s 59-38 win over North Carolina and added a 26-yard fumble return for a score in the third quarter. He was named the Walter Camp Defensive Player of the Week.
DUKE: Receivers Donovan Varner and Conner Vernon are both chasing the school’s all-time receptions leader, Clarkston Hines, who set the school record with a then ACC-record 189 catches from 1986-89. Varner is right behind Hines with 180 grabs while Vernon is in third place with 175 receptions.
FLORIDA STATE: Freshman tailback Devonta Freeman has had consecutive 100-yard rushing performances in back-to-back wins by the Seminoles. Freeman, who ran for 109 yards at Duke and 100 on 11 carries against Maryland, is the first FSU true freshman to reach 100 yards in consecutive games since Chris Parker did it in 1988. The Seminoles host NC State on Saturday, where Freeman will try and match Greg Allen, who in 1981 was the last FSU true freshman to eclipse the 100-yard rushing mark in three consecutive games. Allen did it with 202 at LSU, 322 against West Carolina and 109 against Miami.
GEORGIA TECH: With their next ACC win, the Jackets will secure their 17th straight season at .500 or better in the league. That’s a conference record.
MARYLAND: Receiver Quintin McCree established career highs in catches with nine and yardage with 177 against Florida State last weekend. He entered the game with 269 career receiving yards. His total against FSU was the second-highest by a Terrapin in any game in the past decade. Torrey Smith had 224 against NC State last season.
MIAMI: Entering Thursday night’s game against Virginia, receiver Tommy Streeter ranked fifth nationally with 20.4 yards per reception. Of Streeter’s 28 receptions on the season, 12 have gone for 25-yards or more, including catches of 57, 51 and 26 yards against Virginia. The 6-foot-5 speedster also has seven touchdowns receptions on the season, leading the team.
NORTH CAROLINA: Freshman T.J. Thorpe leads the ACC and is 15th in the nation with a 29.3 kickoff return average. He returned a third-quarter kickoff against Clemson 100 yards for a touchdown. It is just the second 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown in school history. The other was Tyrell Godwin at Stanford in 1998. It is just the 14th time in ACC history that a player has returned a kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown. The last player to do so was Maryland's Josh Wilson against Georgia Tech in 2006.
NC STATE: The last six times that the Pack has played FSU when they were ranked, NC State has pulled off four victories. Florida State was not ranked in 2007, '08 or '09 and State dropped all three of those contests. The series is tied 5-5 in the past 10 matchups, and in nine of those games, the score was decided by 10 points or less. The average margin in those 10 games has been just 7.1 points.
VIRGINIA: Virginia held Miami scoreless in the first quarter. UVa has now held seven of eight opponents in 2011 scoreless in the first quarter. Only Southern Miss managed one touchdown, serving the only points yielded against UVa in the first quarter.
VIRGINIA TECH: Running back David Wilson has five straight 100-yard rushing games; he is the second Hokie (Ryan Williams, 2009) to do so. Wilson has totalled between 123 and 136 yards in all five games. He has seven 100-yard performances on the year. The ACC record is 10, held by Williams in 2009 and North Carolina’s Don McCauley in 1970.
WAKE FOREST: Coach Jim Grobe earned the 100th win of his career last weekend with a 24-23 win over Duke. Grobe posted a 33-33-1 record in six seasons at Ohio University from 1995-2000. He has gone 67-62 in 11 seasons at Wake Forest. Grobe has a record of 36-49 in ACC games during his tenure, a winning percentage of .424. Prior to Grobe’s arrival, Wake Forest had managed just a .282 winning percentage in ACC games. Overall, Grobe’s winning percentage at Wake Forest stands at .519 while his predecessors had managed just a .398 winning percentage.