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ACC Week #1: Preview

And thus began the 2009 football season.

In all honesty there are basically four games in the ACC that are going to matter. All the rest save NCSU-SCAR, VT-Alabama, MD-Cal and FSU-Miami are glorified extensions of training camp. Boston College, Georgia Tech, UNC, Clemson, UVa and Duke all have cupcakes during the first week while Wake Forest gets a little stiffer challenge versus Baylor. All should win, well that is unless BC and UVa's QB issues are far worse than is actually known then things might get dicey.

Concerning the games that matter: Maryland shocked Cal last season and ultimately led to the saving of the Terps season. A road game on the west coast to start the season is a tall order for Maryland and likely will not end well against the 12th ranked Bears. NC State opens the season for the 2nd straight year against SCAR and coming off a hot conclusion to 2008, the Wolfpack would love to get a signature win on national television. SCAR thoroughly dominated the Pack last season and NC State will be looking to send a signal that the 3rd season under Tom O' Brien means the Pack has arrived. Likewise when Virginia Tech takes on Alabama in a battle of top ten teams, the Hokies are looking to establish themselves as a bona fide top ten team with a take notice win to lead off the season. The problem the Hokies face is all sorts of injury issues in the backfield and questions of whether Tyrod Taylor is finally ready to both run and pass well. That may not matter in the end since VT has always been about defense and special teams. At any rate what NCSU and VT do has the potential to lend the ACC some credibility on the national stage should both of them win.

Miami and FSU square off on Labor Day in a game that really used to beckon the college football world to sit up and pay attention. That is no longer the case but this matchup has ACC standings implications. One of these two teams will end up behind the eight ball out of the gate and given what has been happening in Miami, Randy Shannon is really hoping it ain't the Canes.


GT 48 Jacksonville St 10
BC 31 Northeastern 14
Wake Forest 28 Baylor 17
UNC 35 Citadel 3
Clemson 37 Middle Tenn. St 10
Duke 24 Richmond 6
UVa 30 W&M 17
Alabama 21 VT 16
Cal 31 Maryland 20
FSU 23 Miami 20

One final note. What a change for Duke fans that they can now go into a game against a I-AA opponent with confidence of actually winning the game.