We are now through week nine of the college football season. The Atlantic Coast Conference had a very exciting weekend of football games and news. Lets recap how teams in the ACC performed and see who earned my player of the week honors.
North Carolina (7-1) 26-19 No.23 Pittsburgh (6-2): The final score indicates a much closer contest, but the truth is North Carolina was in control for most of the game. The Tar Heels scored twenty unanswered points after falling down 3-0 early in the first. UNC quarterback Marquise Williams had another effective outing. He threw for 270 yards, two touchdowns and also had 52 yards rushing. Pittsburgh has overachieved this year, and might be a year or two away from really competing in the coastal division. Head coach Pat Narduzzi has made an immediate impact, and improved this team drastically. It will be interesting to see what he does over the next couple of years.
No.3 Clemson (8-0) 56-41 N.C. State (5-3): For the second week in a row, Clemson has scored over 50 points. The offense has been very efficient these past two weeks. Tigers quarterback Desahun Watson threw for over 300 yards and five touchdowns. Wayne Gallman had another great day and finished with 172 yards rushing and a touchdown. Both teams were going back and fourth with one another for most of the game and N.C. State seemed to just run out of gas. Wolfpack quarterback Jacoby Brissett played very well against a very talented defense. He finished with 254 yards passing and three touchdowns. North Carolina State needs one more win to get bowl eligible and they should get that next week at Boston College. Dave Doeren's job has to be in jeopardy after the season started with such high hopes. Dabo Swinney and Clemon might have been caught looking ahead to Florida State next week. The defense has to play better if they want to beat FSU.
Syracuse (3-5) 21-45 No. 17 Florida State (7-1): I am just going to come right out and say it. Jimbo Fisher may have a little bit of a controversy at the quarterback position. Right before kickoff, it was announced that Everett Golson would sit out due to concussion symptoms. Second stringer Sean Maguire played very well and honestly moved the offense much better than Golson has done all year. Maguire finished with 348 yards and three touchdowns. Syracuse might not be the most talented team, but those are still impressive numbers. The Orangemen fought hard and kept it within one score for most of the first half before FSU ran away with it. Syracuse has now lost five in a row after opening the year 3-0. They will have a tough time winning another game on their schedule this season.
Georgia Tech (3-6) 21-27 Virginia (3-5): Georgia Tech once again did not play up to their potential and lost to a Virginia squad that only had two wins on the year. If not for last weeks win against FSU, fans might of called for Paul Johnson's to lose his job after Saturday. This is a horrible loss for the Yellow Jackets and now they must win out just to become bowl eligible. I wrote last week that Virginia is a team that always fights hard, but just can't seem to earn a victory. That was not the case this past weekend. You have to hand it to Virginia head coach Mike London. The Cavaliers might not be competing for ACC championships, but he gets his team prepared and they play hard every week.
Louisville (4-4) 20-19 Wake Forest (3-6): The Cardinals did everything in their power to lose this game. Wake Forest had leads of ten and nine, but couldn't hold on to complete the upset. Louisville forced five turnovers in the second half alone. Cardinal quarterback Lamar Jackson threw two touchdown passes and overcame a bad start to win a much needed game on the road. Wake Forest has now lost three in a row and things won't get any easier next week when they face Notre Dame. Dave Clawson needs to get the Demon Deacons playing better on offense. He is getting inconsistency from both John Wolford and Kendall Hinton ath the quarterback position. Both players combined to throw four interceptions. Lousiville has really bounced back after the opening the year 0-3.
Virginia Tech (4-5) 26-10 Boston College (3-6): It wasn't pretty, but Virginia Tech took care of business on the road against a stingy opponent. Michael Brewer played well at times, but overall he was inconsistent. Brewer threw a horrible interception in the first half that looked like a pass a freshman would make. Travon McMillian rushed for over 100 yards and the Hokies snapped a two game losing streak. Boston College defense seems to be getting very fatigued. The Golden Eagles offense is very bad. Head coach Steve Addazio will need to address that problem in the offseaon.
Miami (5-3) 30-27 No.22 Duke (6-2): Once again the Miami Hurricanes are apart of a controversy in college football. Duke fought back from an early 14-0 deficit to take the lead with just six seconds left on the clock. Unfortunately for the Blue Devils that was too much time. Duke kicked the ball off and Miami proceeded to lateral the ball for several minutes before winding up in the end zone with zeroes on the clock and a Hurricane Victory. It was so bad, that the referees calling the game are now suspended. Miami was playing for the first time since head coach Al Golden was fired. Interim coach Larry Scott, got his squad motivated and this team looked completely different from a week ago. The Hurricanes had the lead for most of the game. Quarterback Brad Kaaya sat out due to injury and redshirt freshman Malik Rosier played very well in his first start. He finished with 272 yards passing and two touchdowns. Duke still controls their own destiny in the coastal division, but they should of never lost this game.
Most Impressive ACC Win: North Carolina over Pittsburgh - Larry Fedora has never been able to get his team over the hump since he has arrived in Chapel Hill. Now, the Tar Heels sit at the top of the ACC coastal division and control their own destiny. UNC has never made it to the ACC title game.
Least Impressive ACC Team: Georgia Tech - Paul Johnson has done a terrible job getting is team prepared each week. The Yellow Jackets seem so out of sync when you watch them. It will be interesting to see how they perform over the last three weeks.
MY ACC Player of the Week:Deshaun Watson - The best quarterback in the conference threw for five touchdown passes this weekend. He only had seven incomplete passes. Clemson will have a shot to win it all this year if Watson keeps playing this well. Next weeks matchup against FSU will be a very tough test for the sophomore.
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