ACCBlogger.com picks week 11 in the ACC…
Last week (Overall)
Brandon Rink – 4-1 (57-18)
Griffin Wong – 3-2 (55-20)
J.J. Greenstein – 4-1 (54-21)
- 11/10/11 Virginia Tech (8-1, 4-1 ACC) @ Georgia Tech (7-2, 4-2 ACC) / ESPN / 8:00 p.m. ET
Must-See Matchup: Paul Johnson vs. Bud Foster
Johnson’s spread option has rushed for more yards in each season he’s faced the Hokies, though 1-2, losing by three with 278 rushing yards in 2008, winning by five with 309 rushing yards in 2009 and losing by a TD and rushing for 346 yards last season. Gotta think if the Jackets hit 300+ again – Virginia Tech is in trouble.
Bringing the Noise: The spotlight is on the Tech’s Thursday. The Key Play does a short Q&A with GT blog From the Rumble Seat – FTRS breaks it down even more here, and The Key Play has their pick here. ACCSports.com says the Hokies take it. Keys to a Hokies win. Gobbler Country isn’t too confident in Virginia Tech pulling it off. Hokies have to keep control of the ball. VT Effect scouts the Yellow Jackets. FTRS charts the VT defense over the last couple years – Hokies are changing the build of their defense to combat the GT scheme. Injury report. Tech Sideline previews and picks it. Gobbler Country looks at the tendencies of the GT offense and has the game guide.
Watch 4: Down-to-the-wire game if VT defense can get off blocks, ugly otherwise
Clemson, with one of the better d-lines in the conference, was worked by Georgia Tech’s offense, if the Yellow Jackets are on like two Saturdays ago – the Hokies have to get off blocks and attack the option, or Georgia Tech will run away with it.
You pick'em game of the week: Virginia Tech at Georgia Tech
- Hokies (75%, 3 Votes)
- Yellow Jackets (25%, 1 Votes)
Total Voters: 4
The Pick: Brandon Rink – GT 28-24; Griffin Wong – Virginia Tech 27-21; J.J. Greenstein – Virginia Tech 21-17
- 11/12/11 NC State (5-4, 2-3 ACC) @ Boston College (2-7, 1-5 ACC) / ACC Network / 12:30 p.m. ET
Must-See Matchup: NC State off emotional win vs. BC coming off blowout home loss
Motivation – NC State still needs two wins for a bowl, but will they stay focused after shutting out rival UNC? After an embarrassing home loss, is BC in it to win it? It’s an interesting game.
Bringing the Noise: Backing the Pack takes a look at the BC defense. Soaring to Glory looks at the other side of the ball (BC vs. NC State defense here). BC RB health should be improved this week. A look at BC’s depth chart.
Watch 4: Tom O’Brien, NC State to finally win in Chestnut Hill
NC State has yet to grab a ‘W’ at BC since 1937, and lost 52-20 in 2009 and 37-17 in 2007 for the last two meetings. O’Brien’s Wolfpack are 4-10 on the road over the last three seasons, and coming off an emotional home win – everything seems to point BC’s way, but maybe TOB has turned a corner with this particular team? They’re definitely playing better and should win, but it wouldn’t surprise me if BC pulled it off.
The Pick: Brandon Rink – NC State 24-20; Griffin Wong – BC 21-20; J.J. Greenstein – NC State 27-14
- Wake Forest (5-4, 4-2 ACC) @ Clemson (8-1, 5-1 ACC) / ESPNU / 12:00 p.m. ET
Must-See Matchup: Wake’s Chris Givens vs. Clemson’s Sammy Watkins
They won’t be opposite each other, but they run 1-2 in the ACC’s top receiver categories with Givens holding an edge in receiving yards and receiving yards per game – Watkins with more touchdowns and receptions.
Bringing the Noise: Clemson starting running back Andre Ellington expected to be back after sitting out GT loss with ankle injury. OrangeandWhite.com breaks it down with keys for Clemson and Wake Forest wins. Shakin the Southland previews the matchup with Wake blog Blogger So Dear – STS looks at the talent on each’s depth charts.
Watch 4: Clemson defense to rebound, offense to pull away for Atlantic title
Dabo Swinney’s Tigers opened as near three-TD favorites, only for the line to move down 16.5 now…I can see where Vegas has confidence in a Clemson team that’s coming off its worst game, but against a style of offense they’ve struggled to defend in the past. Since the Deacs brought a close to the Tommy Bowden era in 2008, Swinney drilled them 38-3 and 30-10 in ’09 and ‘10 – this is a better Wake Forest team, but not enough to pull off the road win in Death Valley for only the third time since 1962.
The Pick: Brandon Rink – Clemson 31-17; Griffin Wong – Clemson 31-21; J.J. Greenstein – Clemson 35-24
- Duke (3-6, 1-4 ACC) @ Virginia (6-3, 3-2 ACC) / RSN / 3:00 p.m. ET
Must-See Matchup: Virginia vs. its demons (or rather, Blue Devils)
It isn’t quite NC State/UNC, but the one team Duke’s beat consistently over the last three seasons has been the ‘Hoos…three-straight.
Watch 4: Improved defense, less turnover-prone QB to key Virginia breaking streak
Virginia scored 48 points and racked up 643 total yards…in a 55-48 loss at Duke last season, where senior QB Mar Verica threw four touchdowns…and three interceptions. Verica didn’t quite top the four picks and no TDs thrown in the 31-3 2008 loss though. The Cavaliers boast a top-25 ranked total defense nationally, up 51 spots from where they were coming into the Duke matchup last season. Sophomore quarterback Michael Rocco has thrown more INTs than TDs (9 to 8) on the season, but I don’t anticipate another UVa QB meltdown against Duke.
The Pick: Brandon Rink – Virginia 35-21; Griffin Wong – Virginia 21-13; J.J. Greenstein – Virginia 24-21
- Miami (5-4, 3-3 ACC) @ Florida State (6-3, 4-2 ACC) / ABC-ESPN / 3:30 p.m. ET
Must-See Matchup: Miami QB Jacory Harris v. FSU secondary
Harris completed 19-of-47 passes with an interception in a 45-17 loss to the ‘Noles last season. 19-of-47. 40.4 completion percentage, 76.4 passing efficiency. Harris is coming off hitting 14-of-20 with 202 yards and three touchdowns.
Bringing the Noise: Chant Rant breaks it down and picks it – Eye of the Hurricane has their breakdown here. Miami safety Ray-Ray Armstrong was suspended this week for a questionable choice of dining. Tomahawk Nation looks at just how far Miami QB Jacory Harris has come this season. Unconquered Noles talks balance of Miami’s offense. There’s a lot on the line in this game, with rosters filled with Florida-born players. Orlando Sentinel helps you get to know the Hurricanes.
Watch 4: Balanced FSU attack + stout defense to yield first home win in series since 2005
Miami is capable of keeping up the five-game visitor-winning streak, but they’ll have to play mistake-free football – and I’m not expecting that to happen. The Hurricanes have to run the ball effectively with Lamar Miller and cut down on the turnovers, because as we’ve seen, FSU can put up points on pretty much any team not ranked No. 1 in the nation.
The Pick: Brandon Rink – FSU 27-17; Griffin Wong – FSU 28-17; J.J. Greenstein – FSU 28-14
- Maryland (2-7, 1-5 ACC) vs. Notre Dame (6-3) / FedEx Field / NBC / 7:30 p.m. ET
Must-See Matchup: Irish rushing game vs. Terps rush defense
Maryland has surrendered over 250 yards per game on the ground in their five-game losing streak, and Notre Dame rushed for 175 yards last week at Notre Dame.
Watch 4: What exactly Randy Edsall can get out of his team right now
Your guess is as good as mine on if Edsall can pull the Terps out of the quagmire of a five-game losing streak, where they’ve been simply terrible at stopping any team from running on them. Notre Dame got past the easiest of their three-game trip through the ACC’s Atlantic last week, and I wouldn’t expect a great deal of trouble this week.
The Pick: Brandon Rink – Notre Dame 34-17; Griffin Wong – Notre Dame 31-10; J.J. Greenstein – Notre Dame 32-21
Last week (Overall): 4-1 (29-31)
Up-and-down the roller coaster we go.
- Georgia Tech +1 vs. VT
Take to Bank %: 15%
I’ve seen them both play in person, and I was a lot more impressed with Georgia Tech two weeks ago – if they play like that, I can’t see them dropping this one.
- Wake Forest +16.5 at Clemson
Take to Bank %: 10%
Clemson might blow ‘em out, but Wake Forest is a solid team and they’re due for running with the Tigers.
- Virginia -10 vs. Duke
Take to Bank %: 25%
Virginia has to have some motivation here, despite wrapping up bowl eligibility last week, with their divisional hopes still alive.
- NC State -2 at BC
Take to Bank %: 20%
Tom O’Brien has struggled in his two trips back to BC so far, but his Wolfpack have seemed to turn a corner.
- FSU -9 vs. Miami
Take to Bank %: 20%
Miami might be able to keep it close for the majority of the game, but FSU should pull away to double-digits in the fourth quarter.
- Maryland +20.5 vs. Notre Dame
Take to Bank %: 15%
This is a really big line – don’t like it.