USA Today released their list of the 2014 College Football Preseason All-Americans, and there were no surprises.
Ten players from the Pac-12 conference were named to the list, six players to the first team and four players to the second team. The Oregon Ducks and USC Trojans each had three players named to the list, with two from the Stanford Cardinal and one each from the Washington Huskies and UCLA Bruins respectively.
Ducks quarterback Marcus Mariota led all players on the list, with the Heisman Trophy front-runner being named to the first team. Mariota returns to Oregon for his junior season with “unfinished business.” The Ducks were also represented on the list by two seniors, first-team offensive lineman Hroniss Grasu and second team defensive back Ifo Ekpre-Olomu.
Grasu is one of the Ducks’ leaders on offense and the best center in college football. Ekpre-Olomu looks to shut down opponents this season as the best college football player in the secondary.
All three of the Trojans players were named on the first team, wide receiver Nelson Agholor, defensive lineman Leonard Williams and defensive back Su’a Cravens took the honors. Agholor is a big playmaker and has the potential to be one of the best receivers for USC in decades. Williams, who is only a junior, is the most dominant defensive lineman in college football. Cravens made an impact as a defensive back and can also play linebacker for the Trojans with ease.
The defending Pac-12 champion Stanford had linebacker A.J. Tarpley and return specialist Ty Montgomery both named to the second team. Tarpley has the opportunity to step up as a leader for the Cardinal this season. Montgomery is still recovering from shoulder surgery, but a force to be reckoned with on the field when healthy.
Huskies senior defensive lineman Danny Shelton and Bruins sophomore linebacker Myles Jack finish the list for the Pac-12, both players were named to the season team.
If USA Today’s list is any indication of this season’s competition level in Pac-12, it will be very exciting to watch. The conference is stocked with talent and this season being called the “Year of the quarterback”.