Last bowl season was a coronation for the ACC -- which led the nation with nine wins -- and this time around, its' about strengthening it's claim to being the premier conference.
With 10 bowl bids -- the most of any Power 5 conference -- and a litany of stars to shine in them, these are the most important players in the ACC's bowl schedules. Of course, there are those key players who are sitting out (Florida State's Derwin James) and another (NC State's Bradley Chubb), who probably won't, but these are the faces to focus on in the coming weeks.
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10. Joe Giles-Harris, Duke LB
Just as easily could have went with QB Daniel Jones here. But he's been wildly inconsistent, and away from Durham has an efficiency rating of 93.82, which doesn't rank in the top 100 in FBS. So instead we'll go with Giles-Harris, who is in the top 20 in tackles (112) and has 15 tackles for loss (26th).
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9. AJ Dillon, Boston College RB
The ACC's newly-crowned Rookie of the Year, who was the second freshman in league history with two 200-yard games, Dillon gets a crack at an Iowa defense in the Pinstripe Bowl that was burned for 211 yards by Penn State's Saquon Barkley and 157 from Wisconsin's Jonathan Taylor. That Badgers RB is the only freshman who has more yards than Dillon does.
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8. John Wolford, Wake Forest QB
The four-year starter, who has been at the center of the Demon Deacons' rise under Dave Clawson, sees his career comes to a close against Texas A&M in the Belk Bowl. Since Oct. 28, the Demon Deacons senior has put up some numbers largely resigned for Lamar Jackson when we're discussing ACC passers. He's gone over 390 yards of offense three times, including 475 in taking on Louisville.
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7. Ryan Finley, QB NC State
NC State kept its coach in Dave Doeren -- who got a new five-year deal -- and figures to open next season as one of the ACC's favorites behind its potent offense. Finely and Co. are facing an Arizona State squad in the Sun Bowl that's 108th in total defense, 120th vs. the pass and has gone through a coaching change and lost both of its coordinators. It's an opportunity for Finley, who has thrown for more than one TD in just one of the last eight games, to tee off in El Paso.
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6. Cam Akers, RB Florida State
The Seminoles rallied to make a bowl game ... and now it seems that their being there is akin to a clerical error. Regardless, it's 36 straight for Florida State, but just how emotionally invested will it be to face Southern Miss in the Independence Bowl after their coach, Jimbo Fisher, bolted for Texas A&M? This is a chance, though, for the Seminoles to set the tone for a quick turnaround in 2018 and freshman Cam Akers is on the cusp of a 1,000 yards season.
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5. Josh Jackson, QB Virginia Tech
Jackson has the misfortune in the Camping World Bowl of going up against the nation's leader in passing yards when No. 22 Virginia Tech meets No. 19 Oklahoma State and Mason Rudolph. Also, the Hokies' first-year starter will be without his top pass-catcher in Cam Phillips -- the program's all-time leading receiver -- who is out following sports hernia surgery. But he is facing a 120th-ranked Cowboys defense that has allowed over 400 yards vs. Top 25 teams, and if Virginia Tech is going to keep pace, it's on Jackson.
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4. Jaquan Johnson, S Miami
He's Mr. Turnover Chain, wearing it in five straight games, and has four interceptions on the season. The turnover battle has defined the No. 10 Hurricanes this season and it's going to loom large in the Orange Bowl against sixth-ranked Wisconsin. Miami has averaged four in each of its wins since Oct. 21 and the Badgers have turned the ball over just four times in true road games ... and this one is being played at the Hurricanes' house, Hard Rock Stadium.
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3. Lamar Jackson, QB Louisville
Is this it for the Heisman Trophy winner? Probably, though Jackson isn't making his decision about leaving early for the NFL until after he and Louisville take on No. 23 Mississippi State in the TaxSlayer Bowl. The Bulldogs are not only dealing with a coaching change, but are also without their QB, Nick Fitzgerald. Nonetheless, the Bulldogs boast a top-10 defense, though they've not faced a playmaker quite like the FBS leader at 411 yards of offense per game.
How to chose from the Tigers trio of All-Americans along the defensive line? Considering how good they've been as a group in helping to limit opponents to 229 yards the last four games, that's not an easy proposition, so we'll lump them together. They'll loom large as Clemson tries to build on its nation-best 44 sacks and keep Alabama QB Jalen Hurts -- who has 768 yards on the ground -- from doing damage with his legs in the Sugar Bowl.
1. Kelly Bryant, QB Clemson
Let's face it, every quarterback at Clemson will be playing in Deshaun Watson's shadow, but it was even more of a reality for his immediate successor. Bryant has stepped up, throwing for 230-plus yards in his last three games and his confidence will be key. Alabama is getting linebackers Christian Miller, Terrell Lewis and Mack Wilson back, aiding a defense that ranks second in FBS at 257.8 yards per game.