This week it counts.. What? Last week counted too. Well crap.
Okay, time to put what happened last week behind us. There is nothing we can do about the way most of the conference performed and we head into this week with renewed optimism about that a new slate of opponents will bring. The problem is I am not sure it is going to get much better, at least for those teams that lost last week save NCSU and Virginia Tech.
The game of the week is the Thursday night conference affair between Clemson and Georgia Tech. These two usually put on a show. In this one we will see Clemson's defense attempt to handle whatever funky spread, flex, etc, etc, etc offense Paul Johnson thought up after having too many cups of coffee Monday morning. While this is an intra-divisional game in the ACC, no one wants to be 0-1(hello FSU!) even if it does not impact a potential tiebreaker. For the record UNC fans ought to be pulling for Clemson in this one given the Yellow Jackets are in the Coastal.
Among the competitive games against non-league foes, UNC takes on UConn at Hartford and Wake Forest tries to dust itself off against Stanford. Neither one of those promises to be easy, especially for Wake since Stanford rolled up Washington St. 39-13 in their opener. UNC will have their defensive front tested against the Husky running back while attempting to continue their winning ways against the Big East after going 2-1 last season.
The cupcake games this week are NCSU vs Murray St, FSU vs Jacksonville St and technically speaking Boston College vs Kent State. All of those should be easy wins. Likewise Virginia Tech is taking on Marshall which should be a win for the Hokies, I just did not want to call the Thundering Herd out as a cupcake since they "are Marshall" or something.
Because of what happened last week, the way I would normally look at the following games is dramatically altered. Normally I would regard Maryland vs James Madison as a little talked about matchup that the Terps should win even if they struggle a little start. However the Terps' beatdown at the hands of Cal and the fact the CAA clocked two wins on the ACC last week gives me pause. Maryland should win but if they do not I suggest the ACC not play the CAA anymore...ever. Likewise I have no idea what to do with Army vs Duke given that Duke is wearing Pull-ups again and this game is on the road. Also, Army beat Eastern Michigan last week which happens to be a I-A and that was more than Duke did against I-AA.
Finally, UVa is going to get smoked by TCU. The "Groh must go" chants in Charlottesville are going to be even louder if this one gets out of hand.
GT 24 Clemson 20
UNC 28 UConn 13
Stanford 21 Wake 17
Army 24 Duke 21
Virginia Tech 35 Marshall 10
BC 34 KSU 23
TCU 35 UVa 17
FSU 49 JSU 10
Maryland 21 JMU 20
NCSU 31 Murray St. 10