ACC Recap: Another loss to the Big East, Miami QB has record day, Paul Johnson on hot seat

ACC went 2-2 in out of conference games over the weekend. There was a split against the Big East and an embarrassing home loss to Middle Tennessee State out of the Sun Belt Conference. Looking at the conference standings, Florida State and Miami are on top of the Atlantic and Coastal divisions.

Miami 44, NC State 37 What a wild game this turned out to be. It had everything, except for defense, and a crowd in the stands. On the field, NC State had six turnovers, there was a safety, Miami scored on a pass that bounced off a Wolfpack player’s head, and Miami quarterback Stephen Morris set an ACC record with 566 passing yards (and also 5 touchdowns passes).  The last touchdown came with 19 seconds left, a 62 yard pass to Phillip Dorsett, who got behind 3 Wolfpack defenders for the game winner. NC State had 664 total yards of offense and rallied from a 23-7 halftime deficit. But  Mike Glennon’s second interception with under a minute left, set Miami up for the game winner. NC State hosts Florida State next while Miami heads to Chicago to play Notre Dame.

Middle Tennessee State 49, Georgia Tech 28 Middle Tennessee came into Atlanta as a 28 point underdog to Georgia Tech. They left with a 21 point win and probably gave Paul Johnson his worst loss as Georgia Tech’s head coach. Benny Cunningham rushed for 217 yards and scored 5 touchdowns. The loss was Tech’s first loss to a non-Bowl Championship Series school since 1996. The Yellow Jackets have also lost consecutive home games for the first time since 1988. A trip to Death Valley is next.

Cincinnati 27, Virginia Tech 24 Cincinnati pretty much dominated this game offensively. They had more total yards and more first downs, but it still took a last second touchdown for the Bearcats to get the win. The game was played at FedEx Field in Washington D.C.  Cincy quarterback Munchie Legaux hit Damon Julian for a 39-yard touchdown pass with 13 seconds to play as the Hokies fell to 3-2. Both losses are to Big East teams. Next up is North Carolina.

Rest of the ACC..

North Carolina 66, Idaho 0 Heels have allowed 6 total points in 3 home games.

Duke 34, Wake Forest 27 Blue Devils snap 12 game losing streak to Wake Forest. Duke is 4-1.

Florida State 30, South Florida 17 FSU avenges 2009 loss to USF.

Clemson 45, Boston College 31 DeAndre Hopkins sets Clemson record with 197 receiving yards.

Louisiana Tech 44, Virginia 38  La Tech scores 31 straight points, holds on for win at UVa.

Also, East Carolina 28, UTEP 18.

Cant go without mentioning West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith’s performance. He threw 8 touchdown passes and had 656 yards passing in a 70-63 Big 12 win over Baylor.  Smith was 45 for 51. He had more touchdown passes than incompletions.



ACC Goes 0-3 vs Big East, UNC almost pulls off comeback, Chris Thompson one year later, Top Ten meeting next weekend, (4) FSU vs (10) Clemson

The ACC went 4-4 in out of conference games this past weekend. Three of the four losses were to Big East teams. Louisville, UConn and Pittsburgh all won over their ACC opponents.  In conference, Florida State crushed Wake Forest, and Georgia Tech broke out the whoopin stick on Virginia.

Pittsburgh 35, Virginia Tech 17.  In the upset of the day Pittsburgh capitalized on four turnovers and  ended the nation’s longest road winning streak. The Hokies were down 21-3 at the half, and couldn’t mount a comeback in the second half against their future Coastal Division rival. VT was held to 59 yards rushing and Logan Thomas threw 3 INTs. Virginia Tech has two more ooc games before travelling to Chapel Hill.

Louisville 39, North Carolina 34. UNC almost pulled off a very impressive comeback on the road. The Tar Heels were down 36-7 at half and 25 in the fourth quarter but came storming back and had a chance for the winning score.  A controversial call/no call on 4th and goal pretty much sealed the deal. Bryn Renner threw 5 touchdown passes, but the Heels could not get anything going in the first half of the game when Louisville stormed out to their big lead. Next up for UNC, ECU comes to town.

NC State 31,  South Alabama 7. NC State had an easy time in their home opener. Mike Glennon threw three touchdown passes and the defense held South Alabama scoreless until late in the fourth quarter. Halfback Mustafa Greene was suspended for the game, no reason yet as to why from TOB, but it didnt really matter in this game. Next up, NC State plays the Citadel.

Florida State 52, Wake Forest 0. Talk about a comeback. Last year running back Chris Thompson broke his back in the game against Wake Forest. One year later he runs for 197 yards and two TDs in the first half. He sat out the second half as FSU rolled and set up a big meeting in Death Valley on Saturday.

Rest of the ACC…

Clemson 41, Furman 7. Georgia Tech 56, Virginia 20. UConn 24, Maryland 21. Duke 54, NCCU 17. Northwestern 22, Boston College 13. Miami 38, Bethune-Cookman 10.




ACC Recap, and Penn State kicker’s foot gets twitter account

Every team in the ACC has at least one win already. No winless teams.

Wake Forest 28, UNC 27. Start was delayed due to bad weather. Tanner Price threw for a career high 327 yards. Wake is on top of the Atlantic Division.

NC State 10 UConn 7 Wolfpack forces 4 turnovers, but Glennon was sacked six times.

Florida State had a running clock in the Savannah State game. It was called in the 3rd quarter because of lightning and the Seminoles were up 55-0.

Virginia Tech beat Austin Peay 42-7, face future conference foe Pittsburgh next.

Georgia Tech and Clemson also won very easily

Virginia won on a last-second missed field goal by Penn State, 17-16. Penn State fans were so irate  at kicker Sam Finken’s misses (he missed an extra point and was 1-5 on field goal attempts) that a twitter account was created, @SamFickensFoot: “Just a misguided foot on a full ride.”

Miami got taken out behind the woodshed by Kansas State 52-13. Boston College Beat Maine, and Maryland almost blew a 23 point lead, beat Temple  36-27.

Duke vs Stanford, oh yeah, just wait until basketball season you west coast hipsters. 50-13 Stanford.

and…South Carolina beat ECU 48-10

Preseason Coaches Poll. Almost time for Football!

USA Today released its preseason coaches poll. Teams are heading back to camps, pretty soon it will be time to matriculate the ball down the field.

Team (first-place votes)
Final 2011 rank
LSU (18)
Alabama (20)
Oklahoma (1)
Florida State (1)
Oklahoma State 
Virginia Tech
Kansas State
Boise State
Notre Dame

No surprise that the SEC dominates the top 10 with 5 teams, including 1 and 2.

The ACC has three top 25 teams, Florida State at #7,  Clemson at #14 and Virginia Tech at #20

In the “others receiving votes” category, we get Georgia Tech with 35 points, NC State with 11, and Virginia with 9.


#ACC Releases 2012 Football Schedule

Dateline: Waaaaaay later than it should be, thanks WVU!

The ACC has released the 2012 Football Schedule.  Feast your eyes upon it in all it’s glory and commence mocking of your rivals 2012 slate!

Update: Helmet Schedule in image format so you don’t have to download that lame .pdf

London Calling

The worst-kept secret in college football is now out – the University of Richmond’s Mike London has been named to replace Al Groh as football coach at Virginia today.

Clearly UVa wanted London, a former Cavalier defensive coordinator, who led Richmond to the Division I-AA championship in 2008.  Most of his career has been spent in the Old Dominion, with coaching stops at William & Mary, Richmond, and Virginia.  He also coached in the NFL for one season.

Congrats also to UVa for stepping up and naming only the 3rd African-American head football coach in the history of the ACC (following Jim Caldwell at Wake Forest and Randy Shannon at Miami).

No word if Al Groh left his extensive sweatshirt collection for his successor…

ACC Football Week 11 Preview: Star Wars Edition

The season draws night and hopes for a trip to Tampa to play in front of throngs of seats are fleeting at best.  Here are you Week 11 matchups in the ACC complete with Star Wars quotes:

#7 Georgia Tech at Duke, Noon, ESPN2

Star Wars Quote: “Help me Obi Wan Kenobi, you’re our only hope!”

Such is the plea emanating from Coral Gables and Blacksburg to David Cutcliffe that the Quarterback Whisperer might find some method of undoing the Yellow Jacket’s triple option attack.  For Georgia Tech it is a simple proposition, win and you’re in. Should Duke find a way to hit that thermal exhaust port two meters wide, then it would create a four way tie in the loss column which would be reduced to three since Miami and Duke play each other down the road. If that happens then all sorts of tiebreaker hijinks kick in and who knows at that point.  Duke showed an inability to stop UNC from running Ryan Houston last week. The chances the Devils do any better with the triple option are probably not much better except Cutcliffe is just genius enough to possibly devise some way of stopping it.  Plus, if Duke’s defense is disciplined, there might be hope yet.  On the flip side, the Jackets did allow FSU and Christian Ponder to pass the football at will so it is possible this turns into a shootout.

Clemson at NC State, Noon, Raycom Sports

Star Wars Quote: “I’ve got a bad feeling about this.”
Alternate Quote: “It’s a trap!”

This has all the makings of a trap game for Clemson.  This is a classic setup.  It is November.  Clemson just took care of business on national television and seems to have the division race in hand.  It is a road game.  NCSU has their backs completely against the wall.  Oh yeah, one of these teams lost to Maryland and it was not the Wolfpack. Like I said, it would not be shocking to see Clemson lose here and cede control of the division back to Boston College. The only saving grace for Clemson is this: Does anyone in their right mind believe this Wolfpack defense will be able to stop CJ Spiller? Didn’t think so.  Still this is a dangerous game for the Tigers all the same.  All the pressure is on them and for NCSU there is nothing to lose.

FSU at Wake Forest, Noon, ESPNU

Star Wars Quote: “When 900 years old you reach, look as good you will not.”

FSU lost starting QB Christian Ponder to a shoulder separation leaving the once reliable Seminole offense less so.  Couple that with the porous FSU defense(Amato!) and Jim Grobe’s recent ownage of all things Florida St., I think this ends up being a good day for the Demons Deacons. The Seminoles are a program on the edge.  One more loss before the Florida game almost certainly dooms them to missing a bowl which would break one of those super long streaks that almost never survives a coaching transition(see UNC’s NCAAT streak in basketball.) Wake Forest, on the other hand,  can still sneak into a bowl should they win this week and then beat Duke to finish 6-6. Given the number of close games Wake has lost that would be a miracle in itself.  For FSU, missing a bowl game might be the proverbial straw that sets the wheels out regime change in full motion.

#21 Virginia Tech at Maryland, 1:00 PM, ESPN360

Star Wars Quote: “Artoo says the chances of survival are seven hundred seventy-five…to one”

Any Jabba the Hut quotes would have been too easy. This is going to be quick. Maryland is the worst team in the ACC, the win over Clemson notwithstanding. If you can only put up 17 offensive points versus the Wolfpack’s flag football defense, I am not sure you deserve to have your season continue in any meaningful way. Expect heavy doses of Ryan Williams and a heaping serving of Tyrod Taylor doing all sorts of risky things with the football but still scoring.

#14 Miami at UNC, 3:30 PM, ABC

Star Wars Quote: “When I left you, I was but the learner; now I am the master.”

The media will get plenty of mileage out of the Butch Davis-Randy Shannon connection plus the fact Davis is 2-0 against his former team and assistant. Miami comes to Chapel Hill needing to keep their meager Coastal Division hopes alive, something that will be known by the time this game kicks off.  Beyond that, the Hurricanes still harbor dreams of sneaking into a BCS bowl game as an at large should Georgia Tech win the ACC. UNC will be adjusting to the loss of Shaun Draughn and there is no way Ryan Houston runs 37 times against the Hurricane defensive line meaning John Shoop is going to have to get even more created with the running attack.  After all, passing the football simply is not an option. Miami’s Jacory Harris will be tested by the UNC defense which is coming off its best two game stretch of the season and seems to have gelled into the unit we all thought they would be.

Boston College at Virginia, 3:30 PM, ESPN360

Star Wars Quote: “Apology accepted, Captain Needa.”

Yes, Al Groh is Captain Needa.  It is only a matter of time before Craig Littlepage extends his hand and chokes the life out of Groh’s tenure in Charlottesville. UVa is still in the hunt for a bowl but not really because the chances that the Cavaliers knock off BC, Clemson and Virginia Tech in succession are between slim and none. Boston College is hoping for a Clemson stumble in Raleigh while trying to win out themselves to earn a third straight strip to the ACCCG which would probably result in John Swofford being place under psychiatric care. Honestly this one could go either way.  Usually when you count Al Groh out, his teams look like George Welsh is still coaching. BC has been fairly consistent so a loss here would be a tad surprising.