Sports, Football, Fall

ACC Power Rankings: BC Continues to Climb, While Florida State Maintains Its Top Spot

  1. Florida State (8–0, 6–0 Atlantic Coast) ↔ 

No. 4 Florida State has been absolutely dominant this season, and that dominance continued this past weekend in Winston-Salem, N.C. Florida State rolled over the Demon Deacons 41–16, and the margin of victory could have easily been much greater. Florida State piled up 508 total yards of offense while allowing just 210 yards on the other side of the ball. Wide receiver Keon Coleman had another monster performance with two touchdown receptions. The Seminoles’ offense, which is averaging 41.5 points per game, is a handful for any team in the country.  

Next Up: at Pittsburgh, Saturday, 3:30 p.m.

  1. Louisville (7–1, 4–1) ↑2

No. 15 Louisville bounced back from its first loss of the season in a big way against Duke in Week Nine. The Cardinals looked rejuvenated off the bye week and posted a 23–0 shutout against the Blue Devils. Jawhar Jordan has looked like the conference’s top running back for most of the year, and he had another stellar showing, rushing for 163 yards and two touchdowns. Louisville has an important matchup against Virginia Tech this weekend that could significantly impact the top of the ACC standings. 

Next Up: vs. Virginia Tech, Saturday, 3:30 p.m.

  1. Miami (6–2, 2–2) ↑3

The Hurricanes averted disaster this past weekend when they narrowly defeated Virginia in overtime 29–26. Quarterback Tyler Van Dyke struggled, and the Cavaliers outplayed Miami for a large part of the game, easily winning the time of possession battle. Kicker Andres Borregales was Miami’s best player, converting on all three of his attempts, each from 45-plus yards. Despite a rough start to conference play, the Hurricanes have rebounded with two consecutive victories. 

Next Up: at NC State, Saturday, 8 p.m.

  1. North Carolina (6–2, 3–2) ↓2

North Carolina’s great season has taken a turn these past few weeks. After falling to Virginia at home in Week Eight, the Tar Heels suffered another surprising defeat on the road at Georgia Tech this past Saturday. UNC’s defense has been underperforming during this two-game stretch, and it allowed 635 yards of offense in the 46–42 loss to the Yellow Jackets. A favorable non-conference matchup this weekend presents itself as a bounce-back opportunity for North Carolina.  

Next Up: vs. Campbell, Saturday, 12 p.m.

  1. NC State (5–3, 2–2) ↑3

The Wolfpack picked up an important win in Week Nine. For just the second time in its last 10 meetings, NC State upended Clemson. It was a nice rebound from a poor showing in Durham, N.C. the week prior. Despite totaling just 202 yards of offense, the Wolfpack’s defense secured two big interceptions to contribute to the winning effort. Kevin Concepcion accumulated 134 total yards and two touchdowns in the game. 

Next Up: vs. Miami, Saturday, 8 p.m.

  1. Duke (5–3, 2–2) ↓3

Saturday’s 23–0 thrashing at the hands of Louisville marked the Blue Devils’ second consecutive loss. Though the opposition has been strong these past two weeks, Duke has seriously struggled on the offensive side of the ball. Quarterback Riley Leonard has not looked like the same player he was before injuring his ankle, and the Blue Devils haven’t put up many points. Mike Elko has a short week to prepare his squad for another ACC opponent. 

Next Up: vs. Wake Forest, Thursday, 7:30 p.m.

  1. Boston College (5–3, 2–2) ↑2

Winners of four straight, BC is rolling. Its schedule hasn’t been full of world-beaters lately, but the Eagles are stacking up wins, regardless. This past weekend’s 21–14 win over Connecticut wasn’t as pretty as it could’ve been on the scoreboard, but the Eagles still posted 433 yards and 30 first downs. Jeff Hafley has righted the ship over the last four weeks, and turnovers are one of only a few concerns currently for BC. Another beatable opponent awaits in Week 10. 

Next Up: at Syracuse, Friday, 7:30 p.m.

  1. Georgia Tech (4–4, 3–2) ↓1

Georgia Tech has been an up-and-down team all season long. Saturday’s 46–42 upset of then–No. 17 North Carolina was another reminder of that. The Yellow Jackets have now beaten two then-ranked teams, Miami and North Carolina, but they have also lost to Bowling Green at home. Quarterback Haynes King was tremendous against the Tar Heels, and the sophomore has carried Georgia Tech at times. If they take care of business, the Yellow Jackets could be headed to a bowl game by season’s end. 

Next Up: at Virginia, Saturday, 2 p.m.

  1. Virginia Tech (4–4, 3–1) ↑1

The Hokies demolished Syracuse 38–10 in Week Nine, and it wasn’t that close. Virginia Tech racked up 528 yards of offense while holding the Orange to 137 total yards, including zero rushing yards. Running back Bhayshul Tuten recorded his second 100-plus yard rushing performance of the season, and wide receiver Da’Quan Felton hauled in two touchdown passes. The Hokies currently sit at No. 3 in the conference standings and have a tough road test this weekend.

Next Up: at Louisville, Saturday, 3:30 p.m.

  1. Clemson (4–4, 2–4) ↓5

Clemson’s season has completely unraveled. With Saturday’s 24–17 defeat at NC State, the Tigers have lost four games in the regular season for the first time since 2010. Clemson’s offense just has not been good enough, and it starts with the disappointing play of quarterback Cade Klubnik, who threw two more interceptions in the Tigers’ loss to NC State. The Tigers are averaging just 19.3 points per game in ACC play, which does not cut it. Clemson’s reign atop the ACC appears over—at least for now.

Next Up: vs. No. 12 Notre Dame, Saturday, 12 p.m.

  1. Virginia (2–6, 1–3) ↑3

A week after pulling off what could be considered the year’s biggest upset, with a win in Chapel Hill, N.C., Virginia took Miami all the way to overtime before losing 29–26. The Cavaliers have had a different level of energy and competitiveness the past two weeks, and they look totally different from how they did at the start of the year. Wide receiver Malik Washington has blossomed this season, and he had another standout performance on Saturday with 12 receptions for 152 yards. Tony Elliott’s team has positive momentum for the first time in a long time.  

Next Up: vs. Georgia Tech, Saturday, 2 p.m.

  1. Wake Forest (4–4, 1–4) ↑1

The Demon Deacons were totally overmatched in their 41–16 loss to Florida State this past Saturday. Wake Forest had virtually no passing game, with quarterback Mitch Griffis completing just six of 16 passes for 82 yards, and its defense wasn’t any better, allowing 508 total yards. The deficiencies on offense have been a common theme for the Demon Deacons, who rank last in the ACC in points per game. Wake Forest has a challenging game on the road on a short week in Week 10. 

Next Up: at Duke, Thursday, 7:30 p.m.

  1. Pitt (2–6, 1–3) ↓2

Pitt head coach Pat Narduzzi is searching for answers. This entire season for the Panthers has been an unmitigated disaster, and it got worse this past weekend when Notre Dame shellacked them, 58–7, in South Bend, Ind. Pitt had one third-down conversion all game and turned the ball over five times. The Panthers’ quarterback play has been brutal all season, and the offense has likely been hard to watch for many. Things will likely not improve this weekend, as Florida State comes to town.  

Next Up: vs. Florida State, Saturday, 3:30 p.m.

  1. Syracuse (4–4, 0–4) ↓2

Syracuse has missed the mark since ACC play has begun. The Orange are the only team winless in conference play, and it has been blown out in every single one of those games. In four ACC games, Syracuse has been outscored 150–34. In this past weekend’s game against Virginia Tech, the Orange totaled a mere 137 yards of offense and did not convert a third down. It’s as bad as it gets in Syracuse right now, and Dino Babers’ seat is getting hot quickly. 

Next Up: vs. BC, Friday, 7:30 p.m.

November 3, 2023