2. Georgia Tech
3. Florida State
4. Wake Forrest
4a. Virginia Tech
7. Boston College
10. N.C. State
Current ACC Standings:
Clemson-17.5 @ Wake Forrest O/U=46: (10.07, Saturday 12 noon, ESPN)
- CU strengths: 3rd Down Conversion%, Discipline, 9th in Total Defense,
11th in Total Offense, no Unit Ranking worse than 54th!
- CU weaknesses: LB health, that’s about it folks.
- WF strengths: Rushing Offense, Rushing Defense, Punt-Game.
- WF weaknesses: Passing Offense, Skill-Position Health,
5-0 for any football program is a perfectly fine start. 5-0 for a Wake
Forrest football program is probable cause for a contract-extension, and all the
perks and bennies Demon-Deacon Head Coach Jim Grobe can sign his name to ASAP.
As for the Tigers, they are the most complete football team I see in the ACC
right now. Not dominate across the board mind yah, but not one single element of
this Clemson football team is below average. That will go a long way in the ACC
as things currently stand in 2006. I’d like to pick Wake here, I really would.
But no starting QB and no 1st best RB is asking a lot of the Demon-Deacs, even
at Home. This one will be fairly close throughout, as both teams love to Run,
which winds the game-clock. But Clemson just has a few more thoroughbred horses
than Wake Forrest does right now, as the Tigers have won 83% of the time in this
Probability of upset=13%
Florida State-10.5 @ N.C. State O/U=40: (10.05, Thursday 7:30pm,
- FSU strengths: Defense on the whole, nasty Run Defense, slightly improving
- FSU weaknesses: Punting game, Protecting the QB, Kickoff Returns, Health.
- NCS strengths: Sacks, Tackles For Loss, Health.
- NCS weaknesses: Turnover Margin, Offense overall, Passing Offense in
particular, Passing Ratio, 3rd Down Conversion%.
Game Outlook: FSU’s rushing attack got well two weeks ago, with two
different 100 Yard Rushers on the day vs. Rice. And of all things, the Wolfpac
got well too, via their upset of then 18th ranked Boston College. This Sunshine
State team vs. the Wright Brothers State team match-up looks pretty much the
same as the one listed below. As the Sunshine State football team (the
Seminoles), just have too much of a raw Talent margin edge for the Wolfpac to
get the upset. Another disturbing trend I’m seeing is that the N.C.State
Defense is actually getting worse as this Season progresses. Though that prolly
does not bother Coach Chesty’s real-estate agent at all. N.C.State has scored
exactly 17 points three times in four games. That works for me, but I see
Florida State checking in with 24, as the ‘Noles are tough to beat on Thursday
Probability of upset=25%
Maryland+15 @ Georgia Tech O/U=39: (10.07, Saturday 3:30pm, ESPNU)
- MU strengths: 4th least Penalties, Punting, Protecting the QB.
- MU weaknesses: 4th worst Turnover Ration, Passing Offense, 1:1 Passing Ratio,
- GT strengths: Health, 10th best Rushing Defense, 27th best Rushing Offense.
- GT weaknesses: Secondary & Pass Defense, Reggie Ball’s football SATs.
The sun is hot, UKSJ is a player, water is wet, and that was a h-u-g-e
Coastal win for the Yellow-Jackets last week in our very own Lane Stadium. Try
as he might, Reggie Ball could not gift-wrap a Hokie win for three straight
years. Maryland has had 2 weeks to prep for their Roadie down to the ATL (Delta
luggage-tag for Atlanta). The Terps bring in an inflated 3-1 record into The
Omni or wherever the Atlanta Hawks now play. Maryland has beaten three rather
suspect teams by an average of 10 points per game. That tells you who the real
boss of Hazard County is here folks. That typed, I can easily see a Georgia Tech
hang-over after such a major win, and the tendency to look ahead to the brutal
upcoming stretch of Clemson and Miami looms large. But the Yellow-Jackets enjoy
over a 150 Yard Total Yardage Margin edge in these teams’ respective last
three games, though this game has seen only 30 combined points on average in the
last four meetings. All of this conspires to mean that GT is slowly improving,
whereas the Terps are operating under the 4th Law of Newtonian Mechanics: Stuck.
Probability of upset=37%
Duke+27 @ Alabama O/U=38: (10.07, Saturday 7pm, no TV)
- Duke strengths: Health, Athletic Director, hmmmm, ahhhhh, only 8 football
- Duke weaknesses: 3rd Down Conversion%, Next to dead last in Rushing Offense,
last in QB protection, and 8 different triple-digit unit rankings (out of 119
D-1 football teams)!
- Bama strengths: Passing Offense, Turnover Margin, very solid all-round
- Bama weaknesses: Health, Punt Returns, Sacks, Tackles for Loss.
Game Outlook: “Alllllll-la-bammma!”, as Keith Jackson would say, is
gonna continue Duke’s march towards reverse perfection, as the Blue-Devils are
well on their way to an unblemished 0-12 football season. The Dukies actually
beat Alabama in the 1945 Sugar Bowl, but these Blue-Devils are only 28% playing
out of conference of late. The Florida game showed me that Alabama is what it
is, a solid but not quite great football team. ‘Bama QB John Parker Wilson is
a bit more advanced than I had expected, prolly good enough to notch at least 8
wins on the season. Maybe an outside shot at 9. This game is basically already
over, and a hearing should be convened in Durham as to why the Duke Athletic
Director scheduled Alabama, then Florida State, then Miami. That’s not too far
removed from the bombing of Dresden level when it comes to being brutal.
Probability of an upset=Keith Jackson’s cholesterol divided by -183, or -1%
North Carolina+13.5 @ Miami O/U=45.5: (10.07, Saturday 12noon, LF
- UNC strengths: Punt game, protecting the QB, that’s about it.
- UNC weaknesses: 6th worst Rushing Defense, 10th worst Turnover Margin.
- Miami strengths: Time of Possession, 7th best Run-stop-Unit, improving
- Miami weaknesses: Special Teams play, Pass Defense, Scoring Offense.
Carolina enjoyed a week off last week and has had 13 days to prep for Miami.
Be that as it may, I’m not sure UNC could beat Miami with 13 weeks to prep for
the ‘Canes? On the other hand, that round thing you see rolling along So.Beach
is called a wheel, as the rest are just about off the Miami band-wagon. Only a
narrow one point win over improving Houston kept Uncle Fester (Coach Coker) in
the Adams Family one more week (“snap-snap”). The one major key here is the
improved Hurricane Rushing Attack with James, Jones, Thomas and former starter
Moss all greatly maturing as ball carriers go. This is jus’ not a fair
match-up, as UNC could not stop the Run if their opponent actually ran uphill on
ice all game. Miami by at least 15 in the Orange Bowl, as the Tar-Heels are not
very good coming off of BYE weeks.
Probability of an upset=10%
Virginia+3.5 @ East Carolina O/U=43: (10.07, Saturday 6pm, CSTV)
- UVA strengths: Decent enough Defense, TFL, QB protection, Secondary play.
- UVA weaknesses: 3:7 QB ratio, possible cheese embargo, 4th from last in
- ECU strengths: Dynamic Passing Offense, Turnover Margin, Punting.
- ECU weaknesses: RB health, 8th worst Rushing Defense, few Defensive
france won as I predicted in what I called an upset last week vs. lowly Duke.
That will be the swing-game for the parisian crew this year, and if you think
about it, that says a lot in and of itself. However, Snelling did get on track,
rumbling for nearly 100 last week, while the hoo Defense held Coach K’s lessor-half
to 100 Total Yards! france needed this ACC get well soon card like a dead-man
needs a coffin. East Carolina has been off since they gave wvu a bit of a MNC
fright two weeks ago. Tricky game here for our Commonwealth Cup rivals, as ECU
is better than they look prima facie. But al deGroh did get his team to improve
last week, though they must improve even more to beat ECU Away. This one will be
close, but I’m gonna have to call on Steve Logan’s old Pirate crew to
eventually force france to utter the world “Parlay” in the end.
Probability of an upset=39%
Virginia Tech: (OPEN, next Thursday @ B.C.)
- VT strengths: Glennon’s improvement and game-management, Secondary.
- VT weaknesses: TOP 5th from last, most Penalized ACC team, middle FrontLines.
Game Outlook: B.C. does have some shot at winning next week folks. We can’t
beat them forever. Though B.C. was jus’ not impressive vs. the Homecoming
cannon-fodder otherwise know as the lowly Maine Bears, whom they really only
scored 15 points on. Then throw in the fact that we/VT are either the 1st or 2nd
worst match-up for B.C. each and every year (our Team Speed edge I mean). I only
hope that Frank jus’ burns the GT film. No need in my book for a puerile
football team to dwell on that footage. Let them put this L behind them, help
them improve, and then move on with 2006. As a preview of coming attractions:
the Flying-Eagles are only 92nd in Total Defense, and a lowly 109th in Pass
Defense. So Morgan and company have a shot at putting up some real numbers here
folks. Travel play-calling permitting of course.
Probability of an upset (this week)=0.0%; but I do like the VT Under this
Official VT fb Prediction Poll results:
Week#1 winner: VT73!
Week#2 winners: Melbourne Hokie, Nat-Lite Hokie!
Week#3 winners: DeBord, collentownhokie!
Week#4 winner: Guy LeDouche!
Week#5 winner: gnosys!