THE FLATS – In what is sure to be the first of many accolades for Georgia Tech’s Dedrick Mills (Waycross, Ga./Ware County) going into the 2017 season, the sophomore B-back has been named first-team preseason all-Atlantic Coast Conference by Southern Pigskin.
Mills led Georgia Tech with 771 rushing yards, 12 rushing touchdowns and 13 total touchdowns in just nine games as a true freshman last season. His 12 rushing touchdowns were tied for third among all freshmen nationally and, if he had played enough games to qualify for national per-game rankings, he would have also ranked second nationally in freshman scoring (8.7 ppg) and fourth nationally in freshman rushing (85.7 ypg).
The first true freshman to start a season opener for Georgia Tech since 2008, Mills was named ACC Rookie of the Week twice, becoming the first Yellow Jacket to win the award on multiple occasions since Calvin Johnson claimed it four times in 2004.
Mills capped his freshman campaign in style by being named MVP of the 2016 TaxSlayer Bowl after rushing for a career-high 169 yards and a score in Georgia Tech’s 33-18 triumph over Kentucky.
Of the 28 players recognized on Southern Pigskin’s preseason all-ACC team, Mills is one of only four sophomores. He joins Miami junior Mark Walton as the first-team running backs.
Coming off a 9-4 campaign and the 25th bowl victory in school history, Georgia Tech returns 16 starters (eight on offense, eight on defense) in 2017. The season opens on Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 4, when the Yellow Jackets take on Tennessee in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game at brand-new Mercedes-Benz Stadium in downtown Atlanta.