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ACC Football Week #6: Preview

Everyone has a power poll so what the heck.

12. Virginia

Really, really, really bad.  Words cannot describe how bad Virginia is.  The offense is...well...offensive.  So far Virginia has averaged nine points per game.  That means if you can go up 10-0 in the first quarter you have likely won the game. Needless to say the seat for Al Groh is approaching supernova range.

11. NC State

The Wolfpack actually have a good defense but cannot overcome the fact Chuck Amato left nothing on the offensive line and injuries abound.  Speaking of which what is the deal with starting QB Russell Wilson?  Is he hurt?  In trouble? Protecting his baseball career? Did a high speed pass over five air control towers and one Admiral's daughter?  The truth is no one knows and the demeanor of Tom O'Brien when it comes to answering questions about Wilson is circumspect and cautious.  Anyone's guess at this point but with Daniel Evans being ineffective and Harrison Beck hanging out with Brandon Costner in the offseason, Wilson is needed back at a bad way.

10. Boston College

We'll have fun, fun, fun until Tommy's recruits go away.

Quick name a good team BC has beaten?  Yeah, but it is one big carnival up there regardless.

9. Duke

Quick name a good team Duke has beaten?  Oh, right, they beat Navy.  I am still not smelling what Cutcliffe is cooking over there.  Obviously the team is better, mainly because they already had a good QB and David Cutcliffe is the master QB developer-type-person.  However, Duke is 3-1 with all those games coming at home.  Now, the Devils face five road games out of the eight left.  The three home games?  Miami, NCSU and UNC.  It is entirely possible Duke finishes 3-9 at which point many will be shamed for thinking Duke was going to a bowl.  Still three wins is an improvement over whatever the heck they had done for the past three years.

8. Florida State

Despite the win over Colorado, FSU has very little to show for themselves.  A paltry three points against Wake Forest and no one is counting the previous two games versus cupcakes.  It is clear the Seminoles have major issues that are rooted in the fact Bobby Bowden needs to walk away.  Jimbo Fisher has to be wondering what he has gotten himself into, running the offense in a program that is clearly spinning out of control because while the snake still has his head attached, the head is given to checking out from time to time.

7. Miami

Miami is young and talented.  The defense is playing at a high level and basically needed one more stop on Saturday to knock off UNC.  They came up a bit short.  The offense still has a ways to go, especially considering it was nearly non-existent in the 2nd half on Saturday thanks in part to a Tar Heel defense that stepped it up in the second half.  The recruiting train is moving through Coral Gables with plenty of talented players making the stop.  It is only a matter of time before they hop up off the mat.

6. Georgia Tech

I think Georgia Tech is a good team and obviously acclimated to the Paul Johnson offense.  Outside of a win over Mississippi State and Boston College, GT has not really beaten anyone and lost in much the same manner as UNC lost to Virginia Tech.  That means the two are even at present with the nod going to UNC because I am biased.

5. North Carolina

To think, had UNC beaten Virginia Tech they would be #1 in this poll and likely many others.  If there is one thing you can say about UNC's schedule is it does not shy away from testing this team.  The gauntlet that began with a road game at Rutgers on September 11th continues with #23 UConn.  Cam Sexton has to show he can be consistent and whatever playing time Mike Paulus gets better darn well be productive.  Another step up awaits the Heels if they can win this one.

4. Clemson

Calls for the detachment of Tommy Bowden's head from his torso are coming hot and heavy after Clemson somehow blew a 17-3 lead at home to Maryland.  Granted UNC did that but they were playing Virginia Tech, lost their starting QB and was not picked to win the ACC title.  I would also say UNC does not posess Clemson's level of talent and certain nothing close to their running game which they were bludgeoning Maryland with for half the game then failed to use it in the 2nd half.  That is a pretty clear sign the coaches lost that one.  The upside for Clemson is they get a bye week to work on matters.  The downside is they have to travel to Winston-Salem the following Thursday night to play a team that plays very efficient football, unless Navy is the opponent.

3. Maryland

Maryland opened up the season with some rather horrific offensive performances that have apparently been sorted out since Chris Turner has been given the reins of the offense in place of Jordan Steffy.  Turner's one bad game was the loss to Middle Tennessee but since then he played well enough to win.  The problem I see with Maryland is they are just as likely to beat Clemson as they are to lose to Virginia.  As bad as UVa is, them beating Maryland would not shock me because Maryland seems to be in possession of that sort of maddening inconsitency that leads fans to episodes of ripping their hair out.  Maryland can bury that sort of crazy talk with a convincing win putting them at 5-1 and in good position for the Atlantic Division.

2. Wake Forest

I am willing to consider the Navy loss a complete fluke.  Six turnovers was not a great Navy defense it was Riley Skinner being possessed by the aliens.  Or he was possessed by aliens during the past nine months when he did not throw a single INT and the aliens left him for Cam Sexton.  Seriously, I think Skinner had played so well for so long, a game like this was bound to happen.  If I am Jim Grobe I prefer to lose this game, out of conference, than an ACC matchup since Clemson's apparent ineptitude has left the Atlantic wide open.  Wake also has the bye week to prep for Clemson next Thursday night.

1. Virginia Tech

The Hokies are really annoying.  As bad as their offense is, they still find a way.  So far, VT has won two games they probably should have lost to GT and UNC.  They lost on a fluke kick block to ECU in a game they should have won.  No such drama against Nebraska and while the Huskers are in a bit of a rebuilding mode, it is still impressive to go on the road to a traditional power and win, even if said traditional power is down from previous highs.  VT is the team to beat right now, until someone steps up and proves otherwise.

Predictions This Week:

GT 30 Duke 14
BC 24 NCSU 10
VT 38 WKU 7
Miami 13 FSU 10(Wide Left!)
UNC 30 UConn 21
Maryland 14 UVa 7

Record Last Week: 4-4
Record This Season: 32-12