Boyd, Werner named players of the year

Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd edged out North Carolina running back Giovani Bernard for ACC Player of the Year and Offensive Player of the Year honors, winning both awards by one vote.

Meanwhile, Florida State defensive end Bjoern Werner was the overwhelming choice for ACC Defensive Player of the Year on Wednesday. The players were selected in voting done by the 46 members of the Atlantic Coast Sports Media Association.

Boyd and Bernard had truly outstanding seasons this year, so it's no surprise the vote was close. Bernard led the ACC in rushing with 1,228 yards and 12 touchdowns, despite playing in only 10 games. He also led the league in scoring, punt return average and all-purpose yards and was one of the most dynamic players in the league.

But voters felt Boyd was slightly better. Boyd really has had a remarkable Wednesday. Earlier in the day, he was voted first-team All-America by the American Football Coaches Association. On the season, Boyd leads the ACC and ranks fourth in the nation in passing efficiency with a 168.5 rating, on pace for a Clemson record. He has gone 251-of-377 for 3,550 yards and 34 touchdowns, and added nine scores on the ground. His 43 overall touchdowns are tied for first in the nation.

Boyd also leads the ACC and ranks eighth in the nation with 336.8 yards per game.

"I can’t tell you how proud I am of Tajh Boyd. He has had a terrific year in leading us to a second straight 10-win season. It has been 25 years since a starting quarterback has done that," Clemson coach Dabo Swinney said in a statement.

"He has broken just about every record out there to the point where he is breaking his own records. I really believe he is the best quarterback in the nation and I am glad to see the American Football Coaches agreed with that today. This award means a lot to him because he has great respect for the players and teams in this league. He has also been a great leader all season. He is very deserving."

Werner is tied with South Carolina's Jadeveon Clowney for the most sacks in the nation this season with 13. He also has 18 tackles for loss. Werner also was named to the AFCA All-America team Wednesday, and is one of five finalists for the Bronko Nagurski Trophy.

"There is not a more well-deserving award than this one for Bjoern, who’s had an unbelievable year for us and his statistics prove it ... but his worth goes well beyond his statistics," Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher said in a statement.

"The value he has to his team … the effect he has on his teammates, off the field and in the classroom and as a team leader is tremendous, and the things he’s sacrificed to give up for other guys to make plays on our defense. He’s a tremendous team player, he’s a tremendous leader and he’s a tremendous winner and I think he’ll go down as one of the great football players in Florida State football history. He has had a tremendous year this year and I can’t be happier for him."

Here is how the voting went down:


  • Tajh Boyd, QB, Clemson (20)

  • Giovani Bernard, RB, North Carolina (19)

  • DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Clemson (2)

  • Cornellius Carradine, DE, Florida State (2)

  • Bjoern Werner, DE, Florida State (1)


  • Tajh Boyd, QB, Clemson (22)

  • Giovani Bernard, RB, North Carolina (21)

  • EJ Manuel, QB, Florida State (2)

  • DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Clemson (1)