Time to pause the homecoming celebration to take a look around the ACC in week 8.
Louisville 31 (5-3, 2-3), Florida State 28 (2-4, 2-3)
Wow. How the mighty have fallen. After a 31-28 loss to Louisville, Florida State fell to 2-4 and the Seminoles 35 year bowl streak is no longer a guarantee to continue. While the yardage comparison was fairly similar, the Seminoles were done in by three turnovers, including two interceptions from James Blackman. Lamar Jackson put on another show, rushing for 178 yards and adding 156 yards through the air, accounting for a rushing and passing touchdown for the fifth straight game. The Louisville defense was far from perfect, but improved from previous weeks, holding a strong FSU run game to just 155 rushing yards. The defense will need to continue to improve each week for Louisville to continue to get better. Next up for the Cardinals is a trip to Wake Forest while Florida State heads to Boston College, who are coming off back to back big weeks.
Lol this cut by Lamar Jackson is inhuman pic.twitter.com/G9aUqxzsn8— Jack McGuire (@JackMacCFB) October 21, 2017
Pittsburgh 24 (3-5, 1-3), Duke 17 (4-4, 1-4)
After a 24-17 home loss, the disastrous slide for Duke continues. The Blue Devils have now lost four games in a row after losing to the previously winless in conference Pittsburgh Panthers. Pittsburgh junior running back Darrin Hall nearly singlehandedly beat Duke himself. He had a career high 254 rushing yards and three touchdowns, including a 92 yard touchdown run. The Panthers will be hoping this win can help turn their season around and save bowl eligibility while Duke will need to stop their slide quickly. Unfortunately for them, things don’t get any easier with a trip to Virginia Tech and a likely fifth loss in a row up next. For Pittsburgh, they welcome Virginia to Heinz field next weekend.
Boston College 41 (4-4, 2-3), Virginia 10 (5-2, 2-1)
What happened to Boston College? After starting the season 2-4, they beat Louisville two weeks ago and this weekend dropped a 41-10 beatdown on previously one-loss Virginia. With their performances the last two weeks, the Eagles have scored 40 points in back-to-back games for the first time since 2002. Quarterback Anthony Brown led the way for Boston College, completing 19-24 passes for 275 yards and three touchdowns. Complementing the strong day through the air was a 237 yard day on the ground by the Eagles. Virginia, who had been riding high after four straight wins, might have been riding a little too high and got dominated in all aspects of the game on Saturday. The question for the Cavaliers now is whether they’re closer to the team that started 5-1 or the team that showed up on Saturday and won just two games last season. We’ll find out a lot more next weekend when they travel to Pittsburgh to take on the 3-5 Panthers. Meanwhile, Boston College has a chance for another big win with the struggling Florida State Seminoles coming into their house.
#8 Miami 27 (6-0, 4-0), Syracuse 19 (4-4, 2-2)
#8 Miami survived another close game, beating Syracuse 27-19. Syracuse quarterback Eric Dungey had a disastrous day, completing just 13-41 attempts and throwing four interceptions, all in the first half. Miami was able to get just 10 points off those turnovers, letting Syracuse hang around all day. The Orange had a chance for a game-tying drive with under three minutes to go, but were unable to get past midfield, with the Miami defense holding on for the win. Miami quarterback Malik Rosier had a big day through the air, going 26-43 for 344 yards and a pair of touchdowns. For Syracuse, who was coming off one of the best wins in program history, it would have been easy to have a letdown, traveling across the country to face a top 10 team. While a close loss is still a loss (us Tech fans know this well), Syracuse will have lots of positive takeaways from a game where they did almost everything possible to lose, but kept fighting and found themselves in the game at the finish. For Miami, the question is whether the magic will run out eventually or if this is a team that will be in the playoff conversation at the end of the year. Syracuse is on bye next week before traveling to Florida State while Miami plays at the reeling North Carolina Tar Heels next Saturday.
#14 Virginia Tech 59 (6-1, 2-1), North Carolina 7 (1-7, 0-5)
The loss of Mitch Trubisky, compounded with a slew of injuries, has resulted in a calamitous start to the season for North Carolina. After losing 59-7 to #14 Virginia Tech, the Tar Heels now sit at 1-7 and 0-5 in the conference. UNC rolled out three different quarterbacks, but the result was three turnovers and 21 Virginia Tech points. The Hokies scored in a variety of ways Saturday, including a scoop and score, a pick six, and a punt return. Quarterback Josh Jackson threw for three touchdowns and running back Jalen Holston added a touchdown on the ground. The Hokies might have played their most complete game of the season, from offense to defense to special teams. Next up for them is another tune up game against Duke before the monster matchup against Miami. For UNC, things don’t get any easier as they take on Miami next weekend.