I'm just curious now but is it not true that you can use HW acceleration by using openGL with SDL?
Yes. Or, you could use an API that is already built on top of OpenGL, and does the HW accelration for you, and you odn't have to learn 2 API's (SDL and OpenGL).
I wonder what API set does this? Oh, I know, SFML! ;)
As an added bonus, you can also use OpenGL with SFML if you need more detail.