ACC Week Eleven Preview
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The ACC’s only remaining unbeaten team, No. 2 Florida State (8-0, 6-0 ACC), visits Wake Forest (4-5, 2-4 ACC). The Seminoles continued their dominant season, defeating previously unbeaten Miami, 41-14, behind 325 passing yards from QB Jameis Winston. Florida State is the only team in the FBS to rank in the top five in both scoring offense (51.1 ppg) and scoring defense (13.1). Wake Forest returns home following a two-game road trip to Miami and Syracuse, both losses. The Demon Deacons have won two of their last three home games against FSU.
Virginia Tech (6-3, 3-2 ACC) hosts No. 11 Miami (7-1, 3-1 ACC) in a pivotal Coastal division matchup. The Hokies and Hurricanes are each coming off losses, but still can win the division with a strong finish to the season. Virginia Tech has lost back-to-back games against Duke and Boston College, while Miami suffered its first setback of the season, falling on the road at Florida State. Miami will be playing its first game without star RB Duke Johnson, who broke his ankle against the Seminoles.
North Carolina (3-5, 2-3 ACC) welcomes Virginia (2-7, 0-5 ACC) to Chapel Hill. The Tar Heels have rebounded from a 0-3 start in conference play with two-straight wins over Boston College and NC State. Wide receiver Quinshad Davis had two catches against the Wolfpack, but both went for touchdowns, leading the Heels to a 27-19 win over their in-state rivals. Virginia has dropped six-straight games since defeating VMI on September 21.
Syracuse (4-4, 2-2 ACC) begins a two-game road trip, traveling to Maryland (5-3, 1-3 ACC). The Orange have been involved in back-to-back shutouts, falling 56-0 in week nine against Georgia Tech, and defeating Wake Forest at home, 13-0, last weekend. The Orange held Wake to 40 rushing yards and 12 first downs in the victory, their first home ACC conference triumph. Maryland sat idle in week 10 following a 40-27 defeat against Clemson. The teams last met in 1994 with Maryland claiming a 21-16 victory. Terrapins’ head coach Randy Edsall played and coached at Syracuse.
Duke (6-2, 2-2 ACC) opens up a two-game home stand with a matchup against in-state foe, NC State (3-5, 0-5 ACC). The Blue Devils have won four-straight and have not won seven games in a season since going 8-4 in 1994. Duke had a bye in week 10 following a victory over then-ranked Virginia Tech, its first win over a ranked opponent since the 1994 season. NC State dropped its fourth-straight game, falling 27-10 at home versus North Carolina.
Pittsburgh (4-4, 2-3 ACC) steps out of conference play to host No. 23 Notre Dame (7-2). The Panthers are coming off road losses at Navy and Georgia Tech, returning home for the first time since defeating Old Dominion on October 19. Pittsburgh QB Tom Savage has thrown at least one touchdown pass in seven of eight games this season, including three-straight heading into this weekend. Notre Dame’s only losses have come against ranked opponents, Michigan and Oklahoma. Pittsburgh last beat the Irish in 2009, 27-22.
Boston College (4-4, 2-3 ACC) completes non-conference play with a road trip to New Mexico State (1-8). The Eagles defeated Virginia Tech at home in week 10, 34-27, behind 166 rushing yards and two touchdowns from RB Andre Williams.