GREENSBORO – Florida State's fifth-year senior quarterback Christian Ponder gushes when asked about his offensive line, one he considers "the best in the nation."
"I couldn't be more comfortable," Ponder said on Sunday at the ACC's media kickoff. "I have to say I'm spoiled."
Spoiled with good reason. FSU returns it's entire 2009 offensive line, one of the league's most experienced groups with 142 starts between them. They cleared the way for the Seminoles to compile 421.4 yards per game, which ranked as the conference's second most total yards.
Senior left guard Rodney Hudson (6-2, 282), redshirt senior center Ryan McMahon (6-1, 284), junior left tackle Andrew Datko (6-6, 303), junior right tackle Zebrie Sanders (6-6, 288) and junior right guard David Spurlock (6-4, 286) were all named to All-ACC teams.
"It gives me a lot more confidence," said Ponder, who has recovered from season-ending surgery in 2009. "Everything on the offensive side of the ball is really dictated by the offensive line. They have to control the line of scrimmage. ... The good thing for us, they're great."
What's makes this group so formidable?
"They've performed together for three years now," he said. "They are by far the hardest working group on this team. Everything they do, they deserve. ... They work extremely hard and they care about the game."