Since Jeremy and I didn’t get any comments or emails over the Power Rankings’ absence last week, I can only assume you’re all capable of great restraint. Life has gotten busy around IoT headquarters lately; all apologies.
There’s been plenty of turnover at the top of the conference since we last checked in. Miami held first place for a week, only to yield to Georgia Tech after an overtime home loss to Clemson. After two straight losses, Virginia Tech is falling, but not freely enough to give anyone new a shot at the top three. Clemson is the first time all season to hold onto our fourth spot, defending it with a 49-3 win over Coastal Carolina.
|1 (2)||Georgia Tech (8-1, 5-1)
Jonathan Dwyer just had his best game of the season. Nesbitt’s doing just enough with his arm to keep defenses honest. But the defense needs to get right for Tech to enter the national conversation.
Last week: W at Vanderbilt (56-31)
This week: vs. Wake Forest
|2 (1)||Miami (6-2, 3-2)
Jacory Harris’ carelessness with the ball finally caught up with him in the Clemson game. His three picks set up the Tigers’ victory. In a one-point win Saturday over Wake, Ford threw only one INT, versus three touchdowns. Harris has the 10th-highest interception rate and third-highest INT total in the country.
Last week: W at Wake Forest (28-27)
This week: vs. Virginia
|3 (3)||Virginia Tech (6-3, 3-2)
Well, that was fast. Two weeks ago, VT was solidly in first place and huddling around their flickering national title game hopes like Boy Scouts protecting a weak fire on a windy night. Now? We think they’re better than Clemson.
Last week: L vs. North Carolina (20-17)
This week: W vs. East Carolina (16-3)
|4 (5)||Clemson (5-3, 3-2)
We’re in the “Up” phase of Clemson’s perennial up-and-down season. Had they made a couple of chip-shot field goals against Maryland, we may be talking about the Tigers as a dark-horse BCS contender.
Last week: W vs. Coastal Carolina (49-3)
This week: vs. Florida State
|5 (4)||Boston College (6-3, 3-2)
Here are Montel Harris’ yardage totals in BC’s last five games: 179, 43, 264, 38, 136. Looks like he’s due for another stinker next week against Virginia.
Last week: W vs. Central Michigan (31-10)
This week: Idle
|6 (9)||Duke (5-3, 3-1)
I’m not trying to piss in Duke’s Corn Flakes. Seriously, my family had Duke football season tickets for much of the 1990s. But Duke has benefited from seven fourth-quarter turnovers and two defensive/special teams TDs in its three conference wins, three of them on muffed punts where the Devils did little to force the turnover. Against N.C. State, the turnovers blew open a tight game; against UMD, they helped Duke hold on in what should have been a cake walk. Against UVa, they stretched a late, one-point lead. That sort of performance seems unrepeatable.
Last week: W at Virginia (28-17)
This week: at North Carolina
|7 (10)||Florida State (4-4, 2-3)
Exit Mickey Andrews after this season. Perhaps Bowden would like to join his longtime assistant on the golf course each day next year?
Last week: W vs. N.C. State (45-42)
This week: at Clemson
|8 (7)||North Carolina (5-3, 1-3)
A big win gives UNC a big jump. The winner of the Duke-Carolina game has the inside track for a bowl bid. The last time a Duke-UNC game mattered, Steve Spurrier took the Blue Devil team picture under the Kenan Stadium scoreboard. The scoreboard read, “41-0 Duke.” Asshole.
Last week: W at Virginia Tech (20-17)
This week: vs. Duke
|9 (8)||Wake Forest (4-5, 2-3)
Truthfully, it’s hard to imagine Wake beating anyone else this year if QB Riley Skinner can’t come back from his concussion (and he shouldn’t, at least not this week). But the Deacs get the ninth-place nod because they didn’t lose to William and Mary this season.
Last week: L vs. Miami (28-27)
This week: at Georgia Tech
|10 (7)||Virginia (3-5, 2-2)
Two weeks ago, the two Virginia teams were the final ACC teams with unblemished conference records. How the mighty (and meek) have fallen. Funny how few column inches (or pixels) were shed over the death of the Cavs’ BCS chances.
Last week: L vs. Duke (28-17)
This week: at Miami
|11 (11)||N.C. State (3-5, 0-4)
Instead of Texting is pumped for the NCSU-Maryland game this weekend. Reason one: it’s shaping up to be the Pack’s best shot at winning an ACC game this season (we’re State alums). Reason two: The Terps and the Pack are tearing us apart. The last few weeks’ power rankings have brought lengthy arguments between us over which is the worst team in the conference (cont’d in Maryland entry).
Last week: L at Florida State (45-42)
This week: vs. Maryland
|12 (12)||Maryland (2-6, 1-3)
This weekend, we’ll find out. I think State will probably win, but I’ve been arguing for rating NCSU last, primarily because of the winless conference record. Jeremy’s stronger arguments: Maryland lost to a I-AA team, and the Clemson win was a fluke.
Last week: Idle
This week: at N.C. State