1. Clemson Tigers: Huh… well… umm… I did not expect that to happen.
Clemson lost to Syracuse, 24-27. Clemson’s Bryant is banged up and losing their starting kicker to injury might be a bigger problem than anticipated after two missed field goals at the Carrier Dome arguably cost them the game. Clemson lost to an offensively minded team last year (Pitt) during the regular season and still won the national championship. The loss is a setback, but Clemson remains the most complete team in the ACC.
2. N.C. State Wolfpack: Whelp, despite the loss to South Carolina the ‘Pack is the only team in the Atlantic that controls their own destiny. If they win out, in the conference, they are in the ACC Championship. NCST was paced by the Panthers in the first half, but took off and dominated after halftime, defeating Pitt, 35-17. N.C. State has a break this weekend, but will next face the No. 13 Notre Dame Fighting Irish in South Bend. That game should do a lot to show how far NCST has progressed since their opening game loss to the Gamecocks.
3. Florida State Seminoles: Another close one for the Seminoles. No win is going to be simple for FSU this season, and it took all four quarters for Florida State to defeat Duke, 17-10.
4. Syracuse Orange: Man… what was that?! Almost exactly one year after upsetting the No. 17 Hokies the Orange earned another upset, defeating the No. 2 Tigers. If people didn’t know who Eric Dungey was on Friday they do now. Dungey shredded the vaunted Tiger defense, throwing for 278 yards, three TDs, and no INTs. They have quite a few challenging games ahead of them, but it wouldn’t be unrealistic for ‘Cuse to find two wins somewhere and qualify for a bowl.
5. Wake Forest Demon Deacons: Wake was on a bye this week. Next week they face the Yellow Jackets.
6. Louisville Cardinals: Lamar Jackson is a great football player. Lamar Jackson is the best QB in the ACC. The Cardinals are a horrific football team. The Cards get to be just above the Eagles in the rankings simply because BC is a bad team without a Lamar Jackson. Louisville better figure themselves out quickly or they might find themselves playing for a bowl deep into the season.
7. Boston College Eagles: Freshmen RB A.J. Dillon ran 39 times for 272 yards and four TDs. That’s impressive at the FBS level, but unfortunately for Mr. Dillon his performance is more an indication of the ineptitude of the Cardinal’s defense rather than his talent. Upsetting Louisville is unexpected for BC, but Addazio and company will be hard pressed to rustle up three more wins this season.
1. Miami-Florida Hurricanes: The loss of starting RB Walton for the season didn’t seem to slow the Miami rushing attack during their 25-24 victory over GT. Sophomore Travis Homer stepped up into the RB position to the tune of 170 yards and a TD over 20 carries. He also caught a TD. The Hurricanes are the only undefeated team left in the ACC, and will next face a surprising and dangerous Syracuse team.
2. Virginia Tech Hokies: VT was on a bye, but thanks to the multitude of upsets that occurred this past weekend they managed to climb back into the Top 15 of the AP and Coaches polls. This weekend the Hokies host UNC.
3. Virginia Cavaliers: UVA escaped Chapel Hill with a 20-14 victory over the Tar Heels and improved to 5-1 on the season. They’ve also garnered some attention in the polls, receiving 10 votes in the AP and 42 in the Coaches. Pretty sure dinosaurs ruled the earth the last time that happened. Anyway, the Hoos are clearly improved from last year’s abysmal offering. Unless there is some sort of complete meltdown the Cavaliers should become bowl eligible for the first time in a decade next week when Boston College visits Cville.
4. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets: Ouch… another one-point loss to a ranked team...
GT still needs an impressive win to hang their hat on. They are a dangerous team, but aren’t going to be considered a good team if all they can do is beat up on squads like UNC, Pitt, and Jacksonville State. GT’s upcoming match against Wake Forest is one of the more interesting ACC games this weekend.
5. Duke Blue Devils: Duke is like GT in the sense that they are dangerous and almost have some nice victories. They don’t have any easy games left on the schedule, but barring any significant injuries should make a bowl.
6. Pittsburgh Panthers: Pitt finally didn’t allow a team completely stream roll their defense, but they are still a bad team. This squad could easily finish the season 2-10.
7. North Carolina Tar Heels: The only thing that Pitt can say is, “Hey at least we aren’t UNC!”
The dregs of the ACC, North Carolina is the president of the Basement Club. They had a surging third quarter and almost upset UVA (that sounds weird), but still lost. Their mid-November match against Wester Carolina looks like the only sure win left on their slate. They could easily join Pitt in going completely defeated in ACC play.
1. (No. 7 AP / No. 8 Coaches) Clemson Tigers (6-1, 4-1 ACC) – Static
2. (No. 8 / No. 7) Miami-Florida Hurricanes (5-0, 3-0 ACC) – Static
3. (No. 14 / No. 14) Virginia Tech Hokies (5-1, 1-1 ACC) – Static
4. (No. 16 / No. 17) N.C. State Wolfpack (6-1, 4-0 ACC) – Static
5. Virginia Cavaliers (5-1, 3-0 ACC) – Up Two
6. Florida State Seminoles (2-3, 2-2 ACC) – Up Two
7. Syracuse Orange (4-3, 2-1 ACC) – Up Four
8. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (3-2, 2-1 ACC) – Down Three
9. Wake Forest Demon Deacons (4-2, 1-2 ACC) – Up One
10. Duke Blue Devils (4-3, 1-3 ACC) – Down One
11. Louisville Cardinals (4-3, 1-3 ACC) – Down Five
12. Boston College Eagles (3-4, 1-3 ACC) – Static
13. Pittsburgh Panthers (2-5, 0-3 ACC) – Static
14. North Carolina Tar Heels (1-6, 0-4) – Static