Defensive flavor to Pitt’s preseason ACC picks

With safety Paris Ford and defensive tackle Jaylen Twyman both being named preseason All-Americans by Athlon Sports, it's no surprise the juniors also earned All-ACC honors from the publication heading into the 2020 season.

And they are joined by eight of their Pitt teammates, giving the Panthers seven defenders selected.

Ford and Twyman earned first-team all-conference honors along with center Jimmy Morrissey, who is entering his senior season and was a first-team All-ACC pick in 2019.

A pair of defenders -- defensive end Patrick Jones II and safety Damar Hamlin -- were second-time preseason picks by Athlon.

Offensive lineman Bryce Hargrove, cornerback Damarri Mathis and defensive end Rashad Weaver, who missed last season with a knee injury, received third-team honors. Wide receiver Taysir Mack and linebacker Phil Campbell III were fourth-team picks.

Athlon Sports All-ACC Team

First-team offense  

QB --  Trevor Lawrence, Clemson

RB -- Travis Etienne, Clemson, Javian Hawkins, Louisville

All-purpose --Tutu Atwell, Louisville

WR -- Sage Surratt, Wake Forest, Tamorrion Terry, Florida State, Justyn Ross, Clemson (injured, out for season)

TE -- Brevin Jordan, Miami

C  -- Morrissey

OL -- Jackson Carman, Clemson, Christian Darrisaw, Virginia Tech, Ben Petrula, Boston College, Tyler Vrabel, Boston College

First-team defense 

DL  -- Twyman, Gregory Rousseau, Miami, Carlos Basham, Wake Forest, Marvin Wilson, Florida State

LB -- Rayshard Ashby, Virginia Tech, Chazz Surratt, North Carolina, James Skalski, Clemson

CB -- Caleb Farley, Virginia Tech, Asante Samuel, Florida State

S -- Ford, Hamsah Nasirildeen, Florida State

First-team specialists          

K -- Nick Sciba, Wake Forest

P -- Oscar Bradburn, Virginia Tech

KR  -- Damond Philyaw-Johnson, Duke

PR -- Tayvion Robinson, Virginia Tech

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