ACC names Football Players of the Week
Florida State quarterback Everett Golson and Pitt running back Qadree Ollison have been recognized as Atlantic Coast Conference Football Players of the Week following their performances in their teams’ season openers on Saturday.
Golson was selected the ACC Offensive Back of the Week, while Ollison earned ACC Rookie of the Week honors. Ollison was one of three Pitt players to earn weekly honors.
Golson, a recent graduate of Notre Dame seeing his first action for FSU, threw for 302 yards and matched his career high with four touchdown passes in the Seminoles’ 59-16 win over Texas State. Ollison, forced into action after injuries to the two running backs ahead of him on the depth chart, rushed for 207 yards on just 16 carries to lead Pitt to a 45-37 victory over Youngstown State.
Other ACC honorees include North Carolina senior Landon Turner (Offensive Lineman of the Week), Duke junior Johnell Barnes (Receiver of the Week), Boston College redshirt senior Mehdi Abdesmad (Defensive Lineman of the Week), Pitt redshirt senior Nicholas Grigsby (Linebacker of the Week), Louisville safety Josh Harvey-Clemons (Defensive Back of the Week) and Pittsophomore Avonte Maddox (Specialist of the Week).
OFFENSIVE BACK – Everett Golson, Florida State, Sr.-r., QB, 6-0, 200, Myrtle Beach, S.C.
Golson played a starring role in his debut as a Seminole, completing 19 of 25 passes for 302 yards and matching his career high with four touchdown passes in a 59-16 win over Texas State. He posted his seventh career game with 300 or more passing yards as he led the Seminoles’ offense to its fifth-highest total yardage output (636) of the Jimbo Fisher era (since 2010). His passer rating (230.27) ranked fourth highest in the country during the opening weekend and led the ACC. Golson’s yards per attempt (12.1), and touchdowns (4) also led the ACC and ranked among the leaders nationally.
OFFENSIVE LINEMAN – Landon Turner, North Carolina, Sr., OG, 6-4, 325, Harrisonburg, Va.
A preseason All-America selection, Turner lived up to his billing with a standout performance in last Thursday’s 17-13 loss to South Carolina, posting a 90 percent grade and registering 10 knockdown blocks. The Tar Heels ran for 208 yards and averaged 6.5 yards per carry against the Gamecocks.
RECEIVER – Johnell Barnes, Duke, Jr., WR, 6-0, 170, Lehigh Acres, Fla.
Barnes caught 11 passes for 109 yards and a touchdown in the Blue Devils’ 37-7 win at Tulane. The Florida native set career single-game highs for receptions and receiving yards. The 11 receptions marked the fourth-highest single-game total among FBS schools nationally and led all ACC players in week one.
DEFENSIVE LINEMAN – Mehdi Abdesmad, Boston College, r-Sr., DT, 6-7, 286, Montreal, Quebec
Abdesmad returned to the gridiron for the 2015 season opener after missing most of the 2014 and 2013 seasons with a knee injury. Abdesmad recorded 1.5 sacks for a loss of nine yards, 2.5 tackles for a loss of 14 yards and finished the day with four tackles, including three solo stops in a 24-3 win over Maine. His efforts helped the Eagles allow just seven rushing yards and 91 total yards – their fewest total yards allowed in 23 years and fewest rushing yards allowed since yielding four against Kent State on Sept. 11, 2010.
LINEBACKER – Nicholas Grigsby, Pitt, OLB, Sr.-r, 6-1, 220, Trotwood, Ohio
Grigsby delivered a a high-impact day in the Panthers’ 45-37 win over Youngstown State, compiling 10 tackles, two quarterback sacks and three total tackles for loss – all career highs. He also broke up a pass and registered one quarterback hurry. Grigsby’s TFLs resulted in 19 total lost yards.
DEFENSIVE BACK – Josh-Harvey Clemons, Louisville, Jr., S, 6-5, 230, Valdosta, Ga.
In his first career start after transferring from Georgia, Harvey-Clemons recorded a career-high 14 tackles and two interceptions in the Cardinals’ 31-24 loss to sixth-ranked Auburn. Harvey-Clemons, starting at safety, helped hold the Tigers to just 327 yards, including 137 yards through the air.
SPECIALIST – Avonte Maddox, Pitt, So., DB, 5-9, 170, Detroit, Mich.
Maddox made the most crucial special teams play of the game in helping Pitt turn back persistent Youngstown State. Following a YSU touchdown interception return that pulled the Penguins to within 17-13 with 48 seconds to go until halftime, Maddox took the ensuing kickoff 89 yards for a touchdown to put the Panthers back up by double digits. It marked Pitt’s first kickoff return for a touchdown in four years. Maddox, who battled leg cramps during the game, averaged 46.7 yards on three kick returns (140 yards).
ROOKIE – Qadree Ollison, Pitt, r-Fr., RB, 6-2, 230, Niagara Falls, N.Y.
Ollison ripped off 207 yards and a touchdown on just 16 carries – all in the second half – after entering Saturday’s 45-37 win over Youngstown State following injuries to James Conner and Chris James. Ollison set a Pitt record for rushing yards by a freshman in a season opener (the prior mark was held by Dion Lewis, who had 129 against Youngstown State in 2009). Ollison’s first career carry was a 46-yard sprint and his third carry was a 71-yard touchdown. He later added a 52-yard run and finished the game averaging 12.9 yards per carry.