Countdown to Kickoff: 32 Days...
Clemson brings back a ton of talent, especially on offense, and has a shot to enter Columbia, SC in late November with double digits in the win column. Their most difficult games in-conference are against Florida State and Georgia Tech, and both are at home. They'll have a couple of road tests at NC State and Syracuse (the Orange in particular being notoriously good at home), but unless they really "pull a Clemson" those games shouldn't slow the Tigers down.
Prediction: 11-1 (8-0) -- Loss @ South Carolina
Florida State Seminoles
Florida State will be dealing this year with the loss of a quarterback and 10 other players they lost to the NFL Draft. Georgia Tech struggled in 2010 after losing 4 to the Draft -- I think it's fair to say the Seminoles will have a couple of growing pains in trying to replace 11 guys who are NFL-worthy.
Prediction: 9-3 (6-2) -- Losses @ Clemson, vs Miami, @ Florida
NC State Wolfpack
A solid team, but considerably behind the two major contenders here. They'll have 7 or 8 wins, but won't be in the race for the division come mid-November.
Prediction: 8-4 (5-3) -- Losses vs Louisiana Tech, vs Clemson, @ Florida State, @ North Carolina
They're going to have some growing pains in Year 1 in the ACC, and will be borderline when it comes to making a bowl game. I think they'll either lose at Northwestern or at home against Pittsburgh, but I'd think they won't lose both. Just you wait until basketball season though...
Prediction: 6-6 (4-4) -- Losses vs Penn State, @ Northwestern, vs Clemson, @ NC State, @ Georgia Tech, @ Florida State
Better Luck Next Year
This offense is pretty God-awful -- they ranked in the triple digits in passing, rushing, and points scored. It's going to be a rough year for the turtles.
Prediction: 4-8 (2-6) -- Losses @ Connecticut, vs West Virginia, @ Florida State, vs Virginia, vs Clemson, vs Syracuse, @ Virginia Tech, @ NC State
As bad as Maryland's offense was last year, at least they had the defense to make up for it. Wake was straight up missing any sense of redeeming qualities last year, and it'll be a miracle if they find a way to win 6.
Prediction: 3-9 (1-7) -- Losses vs Louisiana-Monroe, @ Clemson, vs NC State, vs Maryland, @ Miami, @ Syracuse, vs Florida State, vs Duke, @ Vanderbilt
To put it in perspective, I think that Wake Forest is only going to win one conference game, and it's against these guys. You could probably stay sober by playing a drinking game correlating with how many points this team scored, or with how many 3-and-outs they cause.
Prediction: 2-10 (0-8) -- Losses vs Wake Forest, @ Southern Cal, vs Florida State, @ Clemson, @ North Carolina, vs Virginia Tech, @ New Mexico State, vs NC State, @ Maryland, @ Syracuse
Accurate? Misguided? Was I too hard or lenient on anyone? You be the judge.