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ACC Blogging: Where Everybody's Better Than Average

I'm still working on the project to uniformedly pick every ACC football game before the season starts, but it's been slow going, and life keeps intervening. But while writing the next post, I came across this ACC preview, where blogging fans of each ACC team preview the season and pick every game. It's one of those ideas that's good in theory - after all, who follows the teams closer than their most rabid fans? Unfortunately, when their all compiled together, you start to notice something. Everybody's really bullish on their team.

Here's the projected ACC standings as SportProjections, well, projects:

Boston College (6-2)
Florida State (6-2)
Maryland (6-2)
Clemson DNP
N.C. State (4-4)
Wake Forest (4-4)

Virginia Tech (7-1)
Georgia Tech (5-0-3)
Miami (5-1-2)
Virginia (4-4)
North Carolina (3-5)
Duke (2-6)

(The Clemson blogger didn't pick individual games, but said "Clemson will have a shot to play in the ACC Championship game, but will probably have to settle for the Champs Sports Bowl or the Gator Bowl," which to me translates to... about 6-2. And the Georgia Tech and Miami bloggers labelled some games as toss-ups, which I signified in the above list as not-attainable-under-current-rules-ties. Also, the Wake Forest summary doesn't appear to be written by a Wake Forest blogger, which might explain their poor showing.)

It's an interesting pyschological experiment. All the bloggers are reasonably high on their teams - with the possible exception of Duke, unless you count 2-10 as "high on Duke" - but no one wants o come across as a blatant homer, so everyone ends up clustered in the same spot. You end up with 10 bloggers saying their team will be bowl eligible, but only one (Boston College) willing to confidenty state they'll see a BCS bowl bid. In fact, here's how often the various bowls are mentioned (some folks listed two):

BCS: 2
Chick Fil-A Bowl: 4
Gator Bowl: 4
Champs Sports Bowl: 1
Meineke Car Care: 2
Gaylord Hotels Music City Bowl: 1

You can also see in the place each blogger thought their team would end up in the standings (again, no Clemson):

1st: 2 (Boston College, Virginia Tech)
2nd: 4 (FSU, Miami, Georgia Tech, Maryland)
3rd: 1 (Virginia)
4th: 2 (N.C. State, Wake Forest)
5th: 1 (UNC)
6th: 1 (Duke)

That pretty much sums up prediction-by-fans: everybody contends for the ACC title, and nobody wins it. I tossed a couple of more interesting facts below the cut.

Full Disclosure: The guys at SportsProjections asked me to write the UNC preview, which I declined, as I barely had time to keep up with this blog. Other SBNation bloggers did write for the site, and my predictions would probably have been pretty close to Carolina Water Cooler's anyway.

Projected Maryland Finish by Maryland Blogger: 2nd
Projected Maryland Finish by Everyone Else: 3rd (1), 4th (3), 5th (3), 6th (3)

Projected N.C. State Finish by N.C. State Blogger: 4th
Projected N.C. State Finish by Everyone Else: 3rd (2), 5th (3), 6th (5).

Number of Bloggers Who Predicted BC Would Finish 1st: 2 (Boston College and FSU)
Number of Bloggers Who Predicted BC Would Finish 5th or 6th: 5

Number of Bloggers Who Predicted Virginia Tech to Finish 1st: 11
Number of Bloggers Who Predicted Duke to Finish 6th: 11
Number of Bloggers Who Predicted UNC to Finish 5th: 9
Those Who Didn't: The Maryland (3rd) and FSU (2nd!) bloggers.