ACC has seven selected to John Mackey preseason watch list

Greensboro, NC – The Atlantic Coast Conference had seven tight ends—the most of any conference nationally—named to the preseason watch list for the John Mackey Award, which is given annually to the top tight end in the nation.

The total preseason watch list of 33 collegiate tight ends was announced Wednesday by the Mackey Award.

Nick OLeary - 2014  John Mackey Award WinnerThe 2013 Mackey Award winner hailed from the ACC in former Florida State tight end Nick O’Leary. O’Leary was the fourth player from a current ACC school to win the Mackey. He was preceded by Clemson’s Dwayne Allen, the 2011 award-winner; Virginia’s Heath Miller (2004) and Miami’s Kellen Winslow (2003), who earned his honor just prior to the Hurricanes joining the conference.

ACC student-athletes on the Mackey Award watch list include Duke senior Braxton Deaver (Charlotte, N.C.), NC State junior David Grinnage (Newark, Del.), Virginia Tech sophomore Bucky Hodges (Virginia Beach, Va.), Pitt senior J.P. Holtz (Pittsburgh, Pa.), Clemson junior Jordan Leggett (Navarre, Fla.), Virginia Tech senior Ryan Malleck (Point Pleasant, N.J.) and Wake Forest sophomore Cam Serigne (Ashburn, Va.).

With Hodges and Malleck both selected from Virginia Tech, the Hokies are the only team nationally with two players on the preseason Mackey watch list.

Duke’s Deaver was the only repeat for the ACC from last year’s initial preseason watch list.

The award recipient is selected by vote of the John Mackey Award Selection Committee and the 2015 Mackey recipient will be announced on Dec. 9, and then presented live on Dec. 10 at the Home Depot College Football Awards Red Carpet Show on ESPNU. Other key dates include the announcement of the 2015 Mackey Midseason Watch List on Oct. 12; the 2015 Mackey Semifinalists on Nov. 16; and the 2015 Mackey Finalists on Nov. 24. All future announcements can be found at

NFL Hall of Fame member John Mackey is considered to be the best to have played the tight end position. A tight end by whom all others are measured, Mackey was a role model on and off the field as demonstrated by his Super Bowl Championship, his commitment to community and his place in history as the first president of the National Football League Players Association (NFLPA).

The ACC members of the 2015 preseason John Mackey Watch List are:

Player                                           School                            Ht.          Wt.        Cl.               Hometown

Braxton Deaver                        Duke                               6-5          240         Sr.-R          Charlotte, N.C.

David Grinnage                         NC State                        6-5          274         Jr.-R           Newark, Del.

Bucky Hodges                            Virginia Tech                6-6          244         So.-R         Virginia Beach, Va.

J.P. Holtz                                      Pitt                                   6-4          250         Sr.               Pittsburgh, Pa.

Jordan Leggett                          Clemson                        6-5          250         Jr,               Navarre, Fla.

Ryan Malleck                             Virginia Tech                6-5          242         Sr.-R          Point Pleasant, N.J.

Cam Serigne                               Wake Forest                6-3          245         So.-R         Ashburn, Va.