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2017 ACC Rankings Week Five

Clemson v Virginia Tech Photo by Michael Shroyer/Getty Images


1. Clemson Tigers: The Clemson Tigers are the best college football team in America. Three of their first five games are wins against top 15 squads. Two of those are road wins. Bryant continues to develop into a dangerous passer and is already a substantial threat on the ground. Clemson’s defense is elite on all levels. They are fast, physical, and extremely deep. There are still respectable challengers left on the schedule, but the Tigers are on a different level than the rest of the ACC.

2. Louisville Cardinals: The Cardinals beat up on a bad Murray State team, 55-10. Lamar Jackson had 349 yards of total offense and four TDs. Next week is an interesting matchup against NCST.

3. N.C. State Wolfpack: The ‘Pack survived an improving Syracuse squad. Since their opening day loss NCST has strung together four wins. Their Thursday night game against Louisville will show us much about both programs.

4. Florida State Seminoles: FSU was outplayed by Wake for most of the game, but the Seminoles survived to collect their first win of the season. The FSU offensive line is a significant limiting factor. Until Florida State can find some answers up front their offense will continue to struggle. Next week the ‘Noles host in-state rival Miami who will absolutely be looking to punish FSU.

5. Wake Forest Demon Deacons: SO CLOSE. I think the only people that wanted to see Florida State win this matchup were FSU die-hards. I have a serious crush on WF. Florida State was the first of a brutal four game stretch that next sees WF traveling to face Clemson.

6. Syracuse Orange: Dino and company again showed an ability to make fantastic second half adjustments, but once more it was not enough to make up for poor performance in the first half. Dungey is quite the offensive weapon, accounting for 429 offensive yards and three total TDs. The Orange next host a shaky Pitt squad.

7. Boston College Eagles: BC defeated Central Michigan. Their passing attack only managed 85 yards, but their ground attack posted a respectable 224 yards and three TDs. Next up the Eagles will seek revenge against a VT squad that blanked them in 2016.


1. Virginia Tech Hokies: Big wins and big losses are always an emotional time and easily lend themselves to hyperbolic reactions. The Hokies are not a bad football team. Clemson is a really good football team. VT is still a few seasons and a few recruiting classes from being able to compete with a squad like Clemson. Problems that we have known about all season became readily apparent, but those challenges are things that the Hokies can and will improve on. The largest complication facing VPI is that of depth and experience. There is plenty of talent and experience amongst the defensive starters, but one level down there simply isn’t a lot of experience. The offense has several first-year starters and true / redshirt freshmen filling the ranks. Before we start lamenting the death of the Hokie season let’s keep things in perspective. The Hokies lost to the best team in college football, they didn’t implode against some lesser squad. On to Boston College.

2. Miami-Florida Hurricanes: Miami collected a dominant win over an undefeated Duke squad, 31-6. The ‘Canes look competent and capable, but I am not going to put them over VT until they’ve faced some greater challenges. We won’t have to wait long. Next week Miami travels to Tallahassee and take on a struggling Florida State team.

3. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets: GT might be developing into the best team in the Coastal. After a very close opening loss to Tennessee the Yellow Jackets have systematically dominated lesser competition. They are going to need a win over an FBS team with a winning record before I am going to consider placing them over VT or Miami though.

4. Duke Blue Devils: Miami’s defense marginalized Daniel Jones and the Duke offense was unable to adjust. Next week presents a very interesting matchup against UVA.

5. Virginia Cavaliers: UVA had a bye this past week. Last year the only conference victory that the Hoos managed was against Duke. Next week Virginia will look to improve to 4-1 behind a surprising offensive attack.

6. Pittsburgh Panthers: Yay! Pitt earned their first victory over an FBS squad this past week when they beat up on a woeful Rice team. I am absolutely not buying the offensive performance of Pitt. Rice is not good at football. Let’s see what Pitt can do against Syracuse.

7. North Carolina Tar Heels: The wheels are off the bus. There simply isn’t five wins left on their schedule. The only “easy” game remaining is their penultimate match against Western Carolina University. Without some immediate improvement this team could easily finish the year with zero conference wins.


1. (No. 2 AP / No. 2 Coaches) Clemson Tigers (5-0, 3-0 ACC) – Static

2. (No. 17 / No. 17) Louisville Cardinals (4-1, 1-1 ACC) – Up One

3. (No. 16 / No. 19) Virginia Tech Hokies (4-1, 0-1 ACC) – Down One

4. (No. 13 / No. 12) Miami-Florida Hurricanes (3-0, 1-0 ACC) – Static

5. (No. 24 / No. 24) N.C. State Wolfpack (4-1, 2-0 ACC) – Up One

6. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (3-1, 2-0 ACC) – Down One

7. Florida State Seminoles (1-2, 1-0 ACC) – Static

8. Wake Forest Demon Deacons (4-1, 1-1 ACC) – Up One

9. Duke Blue Devils (4-1, 1-1 ACC) – Down One

10. Virginia Cavaliers (3-1, 0-0 ACC) – Static

11. Syracuse Orange (2-3, 0-1 ACC) – Static

12. Boston College (2-3, 0-2 ACC) – Up One

13. Pittsburgh Panthers (2-3, 0-1 ACC) – Up One

14. North Carolina Tar Heels (1-4, 0-3 ACC) – Down Two


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