CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — The Latest on Atlantic Coast Conference media days (all times local):
Duke coach David Cutcliffe isn’t losing any sleep over the challenge of replacing Daniel Jones, the first quarterback selected in April’s NFL draft.
That’s because he has fifth-year senior Quentin Harris ready to take reigns.
Cutcliffe said Wednesday during ACC media days that he has “great confidence” in Harris, calling him a “brilliant” player who is well prepared to position the Blue Devils to compete for the Coastal Division title this season.
Cutcliffe says Harris has a great grasp of the team’s pass play concepts and now it’s only a matter of zeroing in on the plays he’s most comfortable with. Harris should also get plenty of help offensively from running backs Brittain Brown and Deon Jackson, who ran for 847 yards last season — the most by a running back in the Cutcliffe era.
Replacing high-profile QBs is familiar territory for Cutcliffe, who previously helped Peyton Manning, Eli Manning and Heath Shuler become first-round NFL draft picks. Jones might have been the most surprising pick of the NFL draft, taken sixth overall by the New York Giants.
The Atlantic Coast Conference concludes its preseason media days Thursday with a focus on the always unpredictable Coastal Division.
The division hasn’t produced a repeat champion since Virginia Tech won it in 2010 and 2011. That’s left six of the seven division teams to earn a spot in the league championship game each year since, with Pittsburgh breaking through last season.
The only division team not to win it in that time is Virginia, though the Cavaliers return nine defensive starters from an eight-win team.
The division also features three new coaches in North Carolina’s Mack Brown, Miami’s Manny Diaz and Georgia Tech’s Geoff Collins. For Brown, it’s his second tenure with the Tar Heels after building a top-10 program from 1988-97 before his 16-season stint at Texas.
More AP college football: https://apnews.com/Collegefootball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25