Implications abound, emotions will be high, and whatever other cliches I can come up with between now and the end of this post.
#10 Clemson at Virginia Tech, Thursday, 7:30 ESPN
As much as you can have a must win, this fits the bill where Jacksonville is concerned. VT with three losses will not see the inside of a Jacksonville hotel room in December. Clemson with two losses will be on shaky ground because when you factor in the tiebreaker with Boston College they are theoretically a game back of the Eagles. BC has Wake Forest and Miami on the road with Duke and Maryland at home. I would think their chances of going 3-1 on the rest of the ACC schedule is really good and 4-0 is not out of reach. Clemson needs this win to stay in control and still hope for a 3-1 BC. The major factor tonight is the shoulder injury to James Davis after scorching the earth under the Georgia Tech defense last week for over 200 yards.
Clemson 28 Virginia Tech 17
Miami at #21 Georgia Tech, 3:30 PM, ABC
The winner of this game assumes outright control of the Coastal division and controls the tiebreaker between these two teams. Obviously we will have an idea after tonight if GT and Miami are in a two horse race or if a two loss VT is still viable. Miami gets the dirty dozen from the FIU brawl back for this game and have wide receiver Ryan Moore available even though he is still facing charges connected to an assault he committed in August. It would seem that Miami has learned the lessons of the FIU brawl well. I just do not think Miami has a viable enough offense to hang with the Yellow Jackets.
Georgia Tech 34 Miami 14
Florida State at Maryland, 7:00 PM, ESPN2
By the way, Maryland only has one loss which means they are still alive and well in the Atlantic division. Now granted they will probably lose to Clemson and Boston College down the road but a win against FSU would not only five FSU an unprecedented four ACC losses but keep the Terps in the mix, for now. A win would also make Maryland bowl eligible and give their fans some inkling that the whole thing is not crashing down around them.
Maryland 21 FSU 20
#24 Wake Forest at UNC, 3:30 PM, ESPNU
Bunting is in his final five games so look for tons of adrenaline and players trying to win one for the Bunter or something cheesy like that. Unfortunately they will fail.
Wake Forest 35 UNC 10
Vanderbilt at Duke, 1:00 PM
Duke had two chances last week beat Miami and could not get it done. This week offers another chance against a team that is not even on the same level as Wake Forest, Alabama, or Miami. So Duke should have a shot, playing at home to get of the big fat 0 in their record. Then again Vandy did beat Georgia so it may not be as easy as people think. I still have trouble seeing Duke winning a game.
Vanderbilt 20 Duke 10
NC State at Virginia, 12:00 PM, Raycom/LF
Since NC State can only win against I-A opposition when playing at Carter Finley at night on ESPN then we must assume that they are already behind the eight ball considering they are 0-3 in noon starts versus I-A teams. UVa played Maryland close, beat UNC handily(not a big deal mind you), but even NC State should not have problem here. If they do they will be 3-5 and have a very tough road to being bowl eligible.
NC State 24 UVa 21
Buffalo at Boston College, 1:00 PM
And that is not the Buffalo Bills, apparently there is actually a college there too. They are also not very good in football. In fact Tom O'Brien should give serious thought to play Matt Ryan sparingly in this one to further heal that foot ahead of the big showdown in Winston-Salem next week.
Boston College 42 Buffalo 0
Last Week: 5-1
This Season: 46-15