Every year, Phil Steele, a sportswriter and analyst of both the collegiate and professional football game, takes a look around the country at standout performers.
With his eye on the newly-renovated Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), Steele has pegged four Syracuse Orange players as worthy of making his All-ACC teams.
Finding himself on the Steele's All-ACC First Team on the defensive end is linebacker Dyshawn Davis. Davis has been on the field since he stepped foot onto the Syracuse campus. Known for his speed and elusiveness when attacking the quarterback, Davis has created an outside threat at the linebacker position.
On the All-ACC Second Team for offense is Orange running back Jerome Smith. Smith returns atop the post-Spring depth chart on the heels of a 1,000-yard rushing season. Known for his power in pushing the pile and breaking through tackles, Smith has also shown an increase in speed in Spring practices.
Making the All-ACC Third Team on defense is linebacker Marquis Spruill. Spruill has been asked to play both outside and in the middle of the linebacker core. With the departure of Siriki Diabate, he is currently back inside, where he will reassume the "defensive quarterback" role. Spruill has more than 25 tackles for a loss heading into his senior season, with nine of those tackles coming in the 2012 campaign.
Rounding out the four is defensive tackle Jay Bromley, placed on the All-ACC Fourth Team for defense. Bromley is an integral piece of the defensive line this season, with his experience and leadership of necessity moving forward. Bromley returns in 2013 after being a two-year starter having stuffed the run, negated yards, and taken down the opposing quarterback. His aid on special teams in the 2012 New Era Pinstripe Bowl resulted in a blocked field goal attempt by the West Virginia Mountaineers en route to an overpowering Syracuse victory.