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ACC Round Up and Power Rankings - Week 9

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We have a new king at the top!

Clemson v Notre Dame Photo by Matt Cashore-Pool/Getty Images

We’ve been waiting for a while to see if anyone in the ACC could ever unseat Clemson as the champions of the conference. It seems that team has finally come along, but in pure ACC fashion, it would be a team that wanted a stable relationship in a year of uncertainty who will undoubtedly run off to being single again when things get serious. Notre Dame hasn’t claimed final victory but they have all but ensured they will get the chance in a probable rematch with Clemson in the title game. Can they do it again against Trevor Lawrence though?

Miami is the only other team who may have a shot at creeping in but even if they won out they would need some help in either Notre Dame losing two or Clemson dropping one more. The Hurricanes won’t face the Irish so it cancels out any tiebreaker. It’s up to a group of ragtag teams on the remaining schedules to give the Canes some hope.

Miami 44 @North Carolina State 41

The Big 12 ACC got things started on Friday night with a game that featured little in the way of defense. Both teams traded leads but it looked like NC State would hold out with a 10-point lead to start the fourth. Two field goals and a touchdown would give Miami the edge in the end.

Liberty 38 @Virginia Tech 35

The Liberty Flames left Blacksburg with a win to keep their undefeated season alive but left plenty of heat as the seat on Justin Fuente has to be heating up among the Hokie faithful. Virginia Tech thought it had won the game after returning a blocked kick but a timeout was called to ice the kicker. Instead, Alex Barbir took the gift and booted a 51-yarder to claim their second ACC victim on the season.

North Carolina 56 @Duke 24

North Carolina has lost composure against some lesser competition this year but to rival Duke, they ensured their claim over the victory bell. Duke has been nothing but bad this year and this game was no different. It was already over by the start of the second as UNC was up by 28. Chase Brice just can’t get Duke’s offense going and while he only threw one interception few others found the hands of his receivers.

Boston College 16 @Syracuse 13

In case you were getting tired of touchdowns for days this game offered a nice change of three-and-outs, missed field goals, and a few turnovers by Syracuse. The turnovers were truly the difference as Boston College managed to hold on to the ball but did little else. Syracuse would cross the goal line until 21 seconds left on the clock. An onside kick was their last hope to steal a win but got an illegal touching call to quickly end that thought.

Pittsburgh 41 @Florida State 17

The Seminoles built a small lead to begin the game but Pitt’s defense controlled the game as they forced three turnovers. All of which turned into Pitt touchdowns. FSU did well to force quite a few short drives against Pitt but was worn down by too many short drives by their own offense.

@Notre Dame 47 Clemson 40

The question for the past two weeks was if Notre Dame could take advantage of a Clemson team without Trevor Lawrence. Through the first half, the Irish did stay one step ahead of Clemson but Uiagalelei was a force in replacement of Lawrence with 439 yards passing and two touchdowns. Notre Dame trailed with the seconds left but sent it to overtime with an Ian Book touchdown pass. Each team scored on their first possessions but Notre Dame claimed victory with back-to-back sacks to force a long 4th down for Clemson.

BONUS!!

Florida 44 We Iz ELiTe (Dwagz) 28

Just wait till next year everybody. The jawja bullmutts are going to have the best team ever to grace a football field. Even though half their defense should go to the NFL and they will trot another unproven QB out as their savior only to crucify every missed throw.

Power Rankings

Of Tigers and Leprechauns (Notre Dame & Clemson)

Notre Dame has claimed the top for now but will be waiting for a likely rematch against a Clemson team that won’t be shorthanded. Neither team faces much of a challenge in the remaining weeks so it would be a major upset to not see these two face off again. The winner should claim a spot in the playoffs.

Category 2 (Miami)

Miami stands by itself somewhere between really good and above average. King can score against anyone in the country but can be slowed by teams who can focus on containing him. Miami should finish third in the standings and is favored among its final opponents.

Tarred and Feathered (UNC, VT, Wake, BC)

UNC is probably the best of the group but has had some bad losses to lesser teams. The Hokies were burned by the Flames this week and Wake got to take a week’s rest before facing the better part of the conference. Boston College is just can’t decide which day they want to look good.

They Might Be Decent? (Pitt, NC State)

Pitt got Kenny Pickett back and made the offense passable while the defense does the heavy lifting. In the refuse filled conference that is enough to get you to .500. NC State did give Miami a game but I doubt they can stop anyone else from scoring either. They have the slayer of ACC teams in Liberty coming up in a couple of weeks.

The Butt of the Joke (GT, UVA, Louisville, FSU, Duke, Syracuse)

If you don’t care about great football and just want to watch tightly match contests then these teams playing each other becomes very compelling. It’s a fight for pride as there are no draft picks for finishing last in college. Duke and Syracuse are neck and neck for the distinction of worst of the worst.