VT’s Williams among ACC players of the week

Staff Report
ACC sports: www.theacc.com

Virginia Tech freshman running back Ryan Williams—this week’s Atlantic Coast Conference Rookie of the Week—scored four touchdowns against Virginia to tie the ACC single-season record for rushing touchdowns and set the ACC freshman record for scores, while Wake Forest senior quarterback Riley Skinner had a career day in his final game as a Demon Deacon to highlight this week’s class of ACC Players of the Week.

Joining Williams and Skinner are three Hurricanes in junior offensive lineman Orlando Franklin, senior middle linebacker Darryl Sharpton, and junior kicker/punter Matt Bosher. Boston College freshman outside linebacker Luke Kuechly rounds out the final group of ACC Players of the Week of the 2009 season.

OFFENSIVE BACK – Riley Skinner, Wake Forest, QB, Sr., 6-1, 210, Jacksonville, Fla. (The Bolles School)
Wake Forest senior quarterback Riley Skinner completed 28-of-38 passes for a career-high 372 yards and a school record five touchdown passes in the final game of his career, a 45-34 win at Duke. Skinner threw for scoring strikes of 28, eight, 54, 13, and 49 yards. His first two touchdown passes tied the game at 7-7 and 14-14, respectively, while his third gave the Demon Deacons the lead for good. Skinner finished the season with 3,160 passing yards, becoming the first Wake Forest quarterback to eclipse the 3,000-yard mark in school history, and finished his career in fourth place in league history with 9,762 passing yards and 9,923 yards of total offense. He is also seventh with 60 touchdown passes.

OFFENSIVE LINEMAN – Orlando Franklin, Miami, OL, Jr., 6-7, 318, Delray Beach, Fla. (Atlantic)
Miami junior offensive tackle Orlando Franklin, making his first career start at left tackle, helped anchor the Hurricane offensive line that paved the way for 401 total yards of offense, the fifth time in the last games Miami has racked up at least 400 total yards, in a 31-10 win over in-state rival South Florida. Franklin also cleared space for a Hurricane rushing attack that recorded 240 yards, including 100-yard rusher Damien Berry, and graded out at 95 percent with four pancake blocks. He also limited South Florida’s two-time All-American defensive end Georgie Selvie to three tackles.

DEFENSIVE LINEMAN – Darryl Sharpton, Miami, Sr., MLB, 6-0, 235, Coral Gables, Fla. (Coral Gables)
Miami middle linebacker Darryl Sharpton was honored as the Defensive Lineman of the Week for the second time in a row as he matched a career-high with 12 tackles in Miami’s win over South Florida. Sharpton also notched 12 tackles last week in the Hurricanes’ win against Duke. He also caused a fumble, which led to Miami’s second touchdown of the game and a 14-0 lead over the Bulls. Sharpton leads all Hurricanes with 91 tackles, including 55 solo stops, and seven tackles for loss this season.

DEFENSIVE BACK – Luke Kuechly, Boston College, OLB, Fr., 6-3, 220, Cincinnati, Ohio (St. Xavier)
Boston College freshman outside linebacker Luke Kuechly earned his second consecutive Player of the Week honor (Rookie) and second Defensive Back of the Week accolade of the season for his efforts in a 19-17 win over Maryland in which he registered a game-high 16 tackles, including seven solo stops. He now leads the ACC and ranks second nationally with 142 total tackles, and has recorded 10 or more hits in nine games this season, including the last eight straight. Kuechly came up with a big stop for the Eagles as Maryland trailed 16-10 and faced a fourth-and-inches with less than five minutes to when he hurdled the Terrapin offensive line to tackle Maryland quarterback Jamarr Robinson. The turnover set up a Boston College field goal that gave the Eagles a nine-point lead.

SPECIALIST – Matt Bosher, Miami, K/P, Jr., 6-5, 205, Jupiter, Fla. (Jupiter)
Miami junior kicker/punter Matt Bosher’s second Specialist of the Week honor of 2009 comes after he connected on a 32-yard field goal and converted all four of his point-after-touchdown attempts in the Hurricanes’ victory against South Florida. His made kicks extend his streak to 12 consecutive field goals, which ranks second both for a single season and a career, and 88 consecutive PATs, which ranks third all-time in school history. Bosher also punted four times and totaled 179 yards for a 44.8 yards per punt average, and landed two kicks inside South Florida’s 20-yard line.

ROOKIE – Ryan Williams, Virginia Tech, RB, Fr. 5-9, 205, Manassas, Va. (Stonewall Jackson)
For the seventh time this season, Virginia Tech freshman running back Ryan Williams had the top performance by a freshman with a season-high 183 rushing yards on 24 carries for a 7.6 yards per rush average in a 42-13 win at Virginia. Williams scored four touchdowns in the game for the second straight week to break the ACC freshman record for touchdowns with scoring runs of five, 20, four, and two yards and became just the second Hokie in school history to accomplish the feat. Williams’ 19 rushing touchdowns this season are tied for the most in a single season in ACC history and his 1,538 rushing yards leave him 110 yards away from breaking the school single-season record, and rank as the fourth most in ACC history.


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