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October 2, 2013

The Wolfpacker's ACC Power Rankings

The staff of The Wolfpacker will meet once a week for the rest of the college football season to list the ACC squads from best to worst, in our collective opinion.

The results are below:

1. No. 3 Clemson (4-0, 2-0 ACC)

Last week: Beat Wake Forest, 56-7
This week: Travel to Syracuse - Saturday, 3:30 p.m., ESPN2/ABC
Change in power ranking: None
Skinny: Clemson did exactly what they needed to against Wake Forest, and that was dominate the Demon Deacons from the opening whistle to the final one. They've got another overmatched opponent this weekend, but this contest comes on the road.

2. No. 8 Florida State (4-0, 2-0)

Last week: Beat Boston College, 48-34
This week: Host No. 25 Maryland - Saturday, Noon, ESPN
Change in power ranking: None
Skinny: FSU got its first test of the season from Boston College to the surprise of many, but pulled it out thanks to a magical performance from redshirt freshman quarterback Jameis Winston. They host a Maryland team that is off to a great start this weekend.

3. No. 14 Miami (4-0)

Last week: Beat South Florida, 49-21
This week: Host Georgia Tech - Saturday, 3:30, RSN
Change in power ranking: None
Skinny: Miami stayed at No. 3 after a sound victory over in-state rival USF. Georgia Tech travels to South Beach this weekend for the Canes' first ACC contest of the season. They have not trailed yet this year, and Tech might not be able to change that.

4. No. 25 Maryland (4-0)

Last week: Off
This week: Travel to No. 8 Florida State - Saturday, Noon, ESPN
Change in power ranking: None
Skinny: Maryland moved into the AP Poll for the first time since the final rankings of the 2010 campaign, although they did not play last weekend. A big test awaits Saturday.

5. Virginia Tech (4-1, 1-0)

Last week: Beat Georgia Tech, 17-10
This week: Host North Carolina - Saturday, 12:30, ACC Network
Change in power ranking: Up 3 spots
Skinny: The Hokies have dominated the ACC's Coastal Division, winning their last eight contests against inter-division opponents, including the most recent victory over Georgia Tech. They have another this weekend when North Carolina comes to town.

6. NC State (3-1, 0-1)

Last week: Beat Central Michigan, 48-14
This week: Travel to Wake Forest - Saturday, 3:30, RSN
Change in power ranking: None
Skinny: Winston-Salem has been a tough place for NC State in recent memory, so we'll see if that changes under new head coach Dave Doeren. Last week was a complete victory in all three phases of the game.

T7. Georgia Tech (3-1, 2-1)

Last week: Lost to Virginia Tech, 17-10
This week: Travel to No. 14 Miami - Saturday, 3:30, ESPNU
Change in power ranking: Moved down 2 spots
Skinny: Coach Paul Johnson has been very critical of his offense after the normally powerful ground game was limited to 129 rushing yards on Saturday. They'll need to at least double that output to have a chance this weekend.

T7. Pittsburgh (3-1, 2-1)

Last week: Beat Virginia, 14-3
This week: Off
Change in power ranking: Up 2 spots
Skinny: Pittsburgh has won a shootout over an ACC opponent (58-55 vs. Duke) and then slugged out a defensive battle against another conference foe (14-3 vs. Virginia). They've won different ways, now we'll see if they can keep winning (next week).

9. North Carolina (1-3, 0-1)

Last week: Lost to East Carolina, 55-31
This week: Travel to Virginia Tech - Saturday, 12:30, ACC Network
Change in power ranking: Down 2 spots
Skinny: The Tar Heels were thoroughly dominated by East Carolina over the weekend and confidence must be low after a 1-3 start.

10. Boston College (2-2, 1-1)

Last week: Lost to Florida State, 48-34
This week: Host Army - Saturday, 1, ESPN3
Change in power ranking: Up 2 spots
Skinny: Boston College moved up two spots in our rankings after their surprising some by being so competitive with Florida State. The key will be bringing that kind of performance to the field every week.

11. Syracuse (2-2)

Last week: Off
This week: Host No. 3 Clemson - Saturday, 3:30, ESPN2/ABC
Change in power ranking: None
Skinny: Cuse has not played a conference game yet, but they will receive their welcome to the ACC this weekend when No. 3 Clemson comes to town. They've scored 50 or more points in back-to-back games, but their defense might be the one getting worked on Saturday.

12. Duke (3-2, 0-2)

Last week: Beat Troy, 38-31
This week: Off
Change in power ranking: None
Skinny: The Blue Devils can't lose this weekend, so they've got that going for them.

13. Virginia (2-2, 0-1)

Last week: Lost to Pitt, 14-3
This week: Host Ball State - Saturday, Noon, RSN
Change in power ranking: Down 3 spots
Skinny: The Cavs were our biggest mover in the poll, but they went the wrong direction after a 14-3 loss to Pitt. They should be able to change their fortunes against Ball State.

14. Wake Forest (2-2, 0-1)

Last week: Lost to Clemson, 56-7
This week: Host NC State - Saturday, 3:30, RSN
Change in power ranking: None
Skinny: Wake was whooped by Clemson their last time out, but they should be angry and have a penchant for beating NCSU at home. We'll see if they can do it once again.

Results by division

Atlantic Division
1. Clemson
2. Florida State
3. Maryland
4. NC State
5. Boston College
6. Syracuse
7. Wake Forest

Coastal Division
1. Miami
2. Virginia Tech
T3. Georgia Tech
T3. Pittsburgh
5. North Carolina
6. Duke
7. Virginia

N.C. State NEWS


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