Week 10 proved to be full of chalk in the Atlantic Coast Conference as the favored team won in each of the conference’s seven matchups over the weekend. How did the lack of upsets affect this week’s power rankings? Let’s take a look to find out:
1.Clemson (9-0, 6-0, no change from last week)
To say it was a cakewalk may be an understatement as the Tigers steamrolled the visiting Syracuse team 54-0. Quarterback Deshaun Watson did not play in the second half after suffering a shoulder injury in the first half but he was confident after the game that he will be ready to go come Saturday.
Next up: Clemson stays at home this week, this time welcoming in a Pitt team looking to pull the upset in Death Valley.
2. Louisville (8-1, 6-1, no change from last week)
Louisville has been guilty of playing down to inferior opponents at times this season. Last Saturday’s game was not one of those occasions as the Cardinals ripped off a 52-7 win at Boston College with Heisman runaway Lamar Jackson accounted for over 400 yards of offense and seven touchdowns.
Next up: UL wraps up its ACC slate this weekend inside the friendly confines of Papa John’s Stadium when the Cards play host to Wake Forest for a 7 PM kick.
3. Virginia Tech (7-2, 5-1, no change from last week)
It was close but it counts all the same as the Hokies escaped Durham with a 24-21 win over a Duke team that is still looking for its first conference win. With the narrow victory, Virginia Tech remains in control of its Coastal destiny.
Next up: VT looks to keep the ball rolling on its surprisingly impressive season with a home game against Georgia Tech on Saturday.
4. North Carolina (7-2, 5-1, no change from last week)
After holding a 27-17 halftime lead, the Tar Heels outscored Georgia Tech 21-3 in the second half, racing out to a 48-20 home win over the Yellow Jackets in a career day for UNC running back Elijah Hood, who finished the game with 168 rushing yards and a trio of touchdowns.
Next up: North Carolina looks to remain even with Virginia Tech and hope for a late-season VT loss as the Tar Heels travel to nearby Duke for the in-state rivalry matchup in Durham on Thursday night.
5. Florida State (6-3, 3-3, no change from last week)
Florida State took its first lead of the game against NC State with 3:09 left in the fourth quarter on a stellar touchdown pass from Deondre Francois and preserved the win with a defensive stop. With the win, FSU makes it 35 consecutive seasons of bowl-eligibility, matching the NCAA record set by Nebraska.
Next up: The Seminoles get the honor of hosting Boston College for a Veterans Day matchup on Friday night in Tallahassee.
6. Miami (5-4, 2-3, up two spots from last week)
UM put an end to its four-game skid thanks to an offensive explosion of 51 points in the Hurricanes’ win over Pittsburgh. Quarterback Brad Kaaya set a career high with four passing touchdowns in his 35th career start at Miami.
Next up: UM looks to join the ranks of the bowl-eligible on Saturday and will be favored in its road matchup at Virginia.
7. Wake Forest (6-3, 3-2, no change from last week)
It happened. Wake Forest used a pair of fourth-quarter interceptions, one of which was returned for the game-winning touchdown, to beat Virginia 27-20, becoming bowl-eligible for the first time since 2011 in the process.
Next up: The Demon Deacons should count themselves grateful that they got their elusive sixth win last week as the road test this weekend against Louisville will be an exceedingly challenging one.
8. Pittsburgh (5-4, 2-3, down two spots from last week)
Pitt’s offense, which had scored 36+ points in seven straight games entering Saturday, was unable to keep up with Miami in the 51-28 loss at Hard Rock Stadium.
Next up: Pittsburgh’s third attempt at earning bowl eligibility will be no easy task as the Panthers travel to Clemson to take on the No. 2 Tigers this weekend.
9. NC State (4-5, 1-4, up two spots from last week)
NC State is a missed chip-shot field goal and a dropped interception away from being 6-3 with wins over Clemson and Florida State. Instead, the Wolfpack is on a four-game losing streak and is behind the eight ball in its pursuit of the ever-important six wins.
Next up: NCSU faces an intriguing test this weekend as the Pack travels to New York for a matchup with Syracuse, another team on the verge of six wins.
10. Syracuse (4-5, 2-3, down one spot from last week)
Bad news: Syracuse put up absolutely zero resistance in a 54-0 trouncing at the hands of Clemson.
Worse news: Cuse starting QB Eric Dungey left the loss with an injury and his status for this week remains unknown at this point.
Next up: The Orange will look to get back to .500 at home this weekend when NC State, a fellow 4-5 team, comes to town.
11. Georgia Tech (5-4, 2-4, down one spot from last week)
GT’s triple-option attack was deemed useless in the second half of its loss to North Carolina as the Tar Heels distanced themselves to a 48-20 win in the Yellow Jackets’ first chance at becoming bowl-eligible.
Next up: Georgia Tech takes on another ranked ACC team on the road this week as the Ramblin’ Wreck treks to Blacksburg for a matchup with the Coastal-leading Virginia Tech squad.
12. Virginia (2-7, 1-4, up one spot from last week)
After three quarters, UVA held a 20-17 lead at Wake Forest and seemed poised for a solid road win. However, the Cavaliers were outscored 10-0 over the final 15 minutes and let the game slip out of the hands, cementing another sub-.500 season in the process.
Next up: UVA returns home this weekend, playing host to Miami.
13. Duke (3-6, 0-5, up one spot from last week)
Duke was in a three-point game late against a 6-2 Virginia Tech team but proved unable to put together a game-winning drive and came up just short, keeping the Blue Devils as the sole ACC team still looking for its first conference win.
Next up: The Blue Devils welcome in the nearby North Carolina Tar Heels for the inter-triangle matchup in Durham on Thursday.
14. Boston College (4-5, 1-5, down two spots from last week)
BC drops two spots because, unlike the two teams directly ahead of them, the Eagles weren’t able to keep it close against a superior opponent, getting run out of their own stadium to the tune of a 52-7 loss to Louisville.
Next up: Boston College has a short week to prepare for its Friday night game against FSU, which it is currently favored to lose by three touchdowns.