Boston College Eagles: Freshman phenom AJ Dillon highlights all-ACC mentions


Freshman AJ Dillon was honored for his fantastic freshman season, one of nine players for the Boston College Eagles to lock down an all-conference nod.

The Boston College Eagles outperformed expectations in 2017. One has to look no further than running back AJ Dillon to see why.

Dillon took care of business in grand fashion, rushing for 1,432 yards and 13 touchdowns in 2017. The freshman soared to great heights thanks to two 200-yard games and totaling 1,099 rushing yards over the season’s last six games.

Dillon’s body of work did not go unnoticed. The All-ACC teams were announced earlier this week and Dillon’s name was at the forefront of the winners.

Great players have graced the Boston College program over the years, but Dillon was the first to be named the ACC Rookie of the Year. In addition, he was also named as the Offensive Rookie of the Year in the ACC.


The accolades didn’t stop there as Dillon was all named to the All-ACC First Team. He didn’t barely sneak onto the team, either, as he garnered the same amount of votes as 2016 Heisman winner Lamar Jackson.

Dillon was a main factor for Boston College’s 7-5 season, but he certainly wasn’t the only factor. A youth movement, plus a couple of seasoned vets, helped turned the Eagles from a three-to-four win team into a bowl eligible surprise.

And for that reason, eight other players alongside Dillon were recognized for their efforts.

All-ACC honors for Boston College Eagles

Dillon was the lone first-team representative and could not have achieved that without the aid of a strong offensive line.

Juniors Chris Lindstrom and Sam Schmal were both selections from an offensive line that allowed only 13 sacks in 2017. Lindstrom (2nd team) and Schmal (honorable mention) also helped a running attack that was 25th nationally in rushing yards per game.

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Joining Lindstrom on the second team was free safety Lukas Denis. Denis, a junior, anchored a secondary who were selected to awards and pestered quarterbacks all season long. He led the team with seven interceptions and had 17 pass break-ups.

The All-ACC third team was highlighted by two seniors, defensive end Harold Landry and linebacker Ty Schwab. Landry, despite missing the past four games, had five sacks while Schwab led the team with 101 tackles. Schwab added 8,5 tackles for loss, 4 sacks, and 2 interceptions.

Joining them on the third team were juniors Tommy Sweeney and Michael Walker. Tight end Sweeney was a top target and Walker, named as a specialist, had 1,110 combined return yards in 2017.

Allen snubbed

Last, but certainly not least, was an honorable mention nod for junior defensive end Zach Allen. The ACC has NFL talent across the board, but a selection for Allen this far down the list is a bit of a slap in the face. Allen led all defensive ends (nationally) with 93 tackles and was a dynamic force in the opposition’s backfield. Allen had 14.5 tackles for loss and 5 sacks.

Next: Boston College: The top ten Eagles players in the NFL

Looking at the All-ACC teams and it’s nice to see six of the nine players should be back in 2018. Combined with a returning quarterback and top receiver, both freshman, the Eagles might make some noise in 2018.

First, though, is finishing the season strong in a bowl game. A game in which a national audience can see Dillon and the Eagles shine.