I’ll quickly touch on the bowl situation for Maryland. They are currently 4-4, with 4 games to go. A team need 6 wins to become bowl eligible. There certainly are 2 wins left on the schedule for Maryland (at UNC, and at N.C. State) and a possible 3rd win at Florida State. It is unlikely they will beat BC at home. The problem for Maryland is the ACC might have 9 bowl eligible teams. The ACC has contracts with 8 bowls to take teams from their league, so if the ACC does end up with 9 teams that are bowl eligible, one could get left out, and a 6-6 Maryland team filled with injuries is likely to be the team left out. There are some scenarios in which Maryland could still make a bowl game if they are 6-6. If BC goes undefeated, but loses to VT in the ACC championship game, BC is still likely to make a BCS bowl as an at-large. This would open up a spot for Maryland to grab one of the ACC bowl games. The second scenario is a bowl game, that has an affiliation with a league, is unable to select a team from that league because there are not enough bowl eligible team within that league. This is possible this season with some of the Pac-10, and Big 12 affiliated bowls. The problem is leagues such as the Big10 and SEC are experiencing enough parity this season, that like the ACC they may have more bowl eligible teams, than available bowls. At that point it would be up to Debbie Yow and Coach Friedgen to convince the bowls they should take Maryland, which might be a hard sell. Take my advice Maryland, you want to go to a bowl game, win 3 out of your last 4 games.
For less depressing news, lets discuss the ACC games this week. All 12 teams play this week in conference, with 1 game happening Thursday night. I’m gonna give a more qualitative prospective on the games this week as oppose to feeding you a ton of numbers like I usually do. On to the games……….
#11 Virginia Tech (6-2 (3-1 ACC)) @ Georgia Tech (5-3 (2-3 ACC)) – 7:30 PM ET: Virginia Tech had one of the most demoralizing losses I have ever seen last week, giving up 14 points to BC in the last 3 minutes, after shutting them out for the first 57 minutes. Coach Beamer will not let this team dwell on the loss however, and will have them prepared to play Georgia Tech on Thursday. I don’t see this being much of a game, and wouldn’t be surprised if we see a blowout in the likes of what VT did to Clemson earlier this season. It doesn’t matter if Glennon or Taylor starts at QB for VT, they will put up points on a GT defense that has actually been very impressive this season. That, coupled with the fact that GT has lost their star running back Mr. Choice for the season, I see a VT win Prediction: Virginia Tech 36 Georgia Tech 17
#25 Clemson (6-2 (3-2 ACC)) @ Duke (1-7 (0-5 ACC)) – 12:00 PM ET: Yet another game that I don’t think will be much of a contest. Thanks to a lackluster effort by the Terps last weekend, Clemson got rolling. Their offense is rolling, and their defense is rolling. Going to Duke should be no problem for Clemson and its not worth any more of my time to write about. Prediction: Clemson 30 Duke 16
N.C. State (3-5(1-3 ACC)) @ Miami (5-3 (2-2 ACC)) – 12:00 PM ET: N.C. State finally got off the schneid last weekend with a big “upset” over Virginia. Yea, I said upset of Virginia, sounds weird, doesn’t it?How did State pull the upset, well, 347 yards passing sure helps. Miami has a bit tougher of a defense though. N.C. State will still try to pass and will score, but should have little more trouble with Miami. On the flip side of the ball, N.C. State still doesn’t not have a good defense and I expect Miami to be able to score on them. This game will be closer than people will expect, but Miami gets the win at home. Prediction: N.C. State 21 Miami 29
#24 Wake Forest (6-2(4-1 ACC)) @ #23 Virginia (7-2 (4-1 ACC)) – 12:00 PM ET: I am not sure what the betting line on this game is, but I would be shocked if Wake Forest isn’t the favorite. I feel that many people are like me and do not believe Virginia is that good. They still haven’t beaten anyone impressive. They won at home against GT, and on the road at Maryland. If these are your two best wins, a #23 ranking may be a bit high. Nevertheless, I think Virginia will play a good game after losing at N.C. State last week. This is definitely a game where Wake Forest could be caught looking ahead to next week when they take on Clemson. I’m going to take Virginia in what I am calling an upset even though they are ranked higher. Prediction: Wake Forest 20 Virginia 22
Florida State (5-3 (2-3 ACC)) @ #2 Boston College (8-0 (4-0 ACC)) – 8:00 PM ET: Florida State is having another disappointing season. A 5-3 mark through 8 games is not acceptable in Tallahassee under any set of circumstances. 5-4 through 9 games won’t sit well either. Boston College proved last week at Virginia Tech that they have that intangible that Championship teams all seem to have, a refusal to lose when the going gets tough. BC QB Matt Ryan was a man possessed on the final 2 drives of that game. Matt Ryan is no fast guy, but his scrambling abilities were amazing. Boston College does not lose at home to a mediocre Florida State team. Prediction: Florida State 16 Boston College 34
Lastly, I want to thank everyone for the kind words everyone seems to have for the Marching Band’s performance at the Clemson Game. For those of you who don’t know I’m in the Marching Band, and its nice when we perform a show the crowd seems to enjoy like we did last week. Obviously, we can’t perform a dance every week, but I’m glad you guys liked it. Here’s a link for those of you who missed it. Thriller begins at 2:50 and the good stuff begins around 3:55…..
Check back later in the week for the Maryland/UNC Preview……