Here are this week's updated ACC Bowl projections.
|Bowl Game||This Week||Last Week|
|Orange Bowl||FSU (9-3, 7-1)||FSU (9-3, 7-1)|
|Chick-fil-A Bowl ACC #2 v. SEC 3/4/5||Clemson (7-5, 5-3)||Miami (9-3, 6-2)|
|Champs Sports Bowl ACC #3 v. BE #2/ ND||Miami (9-3, 6-2)||VT (8-4, 6-2)|
|Sun Bowl ACC #4 v. Pac 10 #4||NCST (8-4, 5-3)||NCST (8-4, 5-3)|
|Meineke Car Care Bowl ACC #5 v. Big East #3||VT (8-4, 6-2)||Clemson (7-5, 4-4)|
|Music City Bowl ACC #6 v. SEC 6/7/8||GT (7-5, 5-3)||GT (7-5, 5-3)|
|Independence Bowl ACC #7 v. MWC #3||UNC (7-5, 4-4)||UNC (7-5, 4-4)|
|EagleBank Bowl ACC #8 v. Army or C-USA #6||MD (7-5, 4-4)||BC (6-6, 3-5)|
|Fight Hunger Bowl #9||MD (6-6, 3-5)|
I have FSU finishing 3-2 down the stretch, so the 9-3 could easily be 9-3 with a 6-2 conference record or 9-3 with a 7-1 conference record. If FSU beats NC State I will feel more comfortable predicting 10-2, if FSU remains healthy. 5 of FSU's 7 toughest games are yet to be played.
This is not a power poll. I don't attempt to rank teams based on how good I think they are. I only rank teams based on their resume. What have they done? Not how talented are their players or what other polls project them to do, but what have they done? The poll is designed to be dynamic. I try to start from scratch every week.
I do attempt to reward teams for "quality losses," while punishing them for poor performances. I do not give excessive credit for stomping horrible teams. I reward quality play, win or lose, particularly against other good teams. I am not bumping team A 10 spots and docking team B 10 spots when team A beats team B by a field goal in what was essentially an equally played game. I like to reward playing well against good teams, win or lose, and punish losing to poor teams more harshly than I reward defeating poor teams. To that end, TCU and Boise will probably not climb much higher in my poll for the rest of the year because they don't really play anyone. And if those two don't blow out the weak competition every week they will start to slip in addition to not climbing.
I Reward Grinders. I reward those who play difficult schedules. Teams that play a tough team every week don't get to spend extra time preparing for their tough games, and they also don't face the attrition other teams face because they are able to pull their starters in blowouts. Fewer plays for important players reduces the chance those players will get injured.
Change my mind using my criteria if you can.