As schools’ academic years are wrapping up, last season’s juniors are about to become this season’s seniors, and with that comes extra responsibility and expectations. In the ACC, while there were plenty of players selected in the NFL Draft, the conference still returns a strong group of seniors — many of whom are set to make a strong impact in their final seasons of eligibility.
Over the next few weeks, we’ll be going team-by-team in the ACC to identify the “standout senior” that’s key to his respective squad, and why he’s so important. Think we should’ve featured another player, though? Feel free to weigh in with your own thoughts in the comments.
In total, 11 ‘Noles were drafted last month — a staggering number and a program record. Lamarcus Joyner would have been one of them, but he had other goals in mind. As he told the Orlando Sentinel back in January:
“Coach Fisher and I aren’t finished with what we started here. He said from Day 1 I was going to be one of those guys that was going to help turn the program around. We’ve started down the right path so far, but we’re still not finished.”
… And it’s going to be that type of fire this very young team needs if they hope to come close to last year’s 12-2 finish. With so much turnover with the roster and coaching staff, Joyner’s presence will be one of the few familiar faces on the Seminoles this year and one of the only remaining veteran leaders. But it’s a role he’s completely comfortable in, and in fact, thrives upon. Joyner considers himself not just the “quarterback of the secondary” anymore, but the “quarterback” for the entire defense; something that carries equal amounts of pressure and reward with it.