The staff members at TomahawkNation decided to take a crack at trying to figure out where all the ACC programs stand at the halfway point of the season. We each used a dizzying amount of criteria for these power rankings, including how much power they have, what order our dogs ate the treats that represented each team, which team popped into our heads immediately after waking up from a nap, and whether or not we felt like it. One of us even consulted Nietzsche in a séance while eating Arby’s. Don’t worry Frank, we won’t name names.
We’re never wrong, so this is a 100% accurate representation of how these teams would fare on a neutral field. What we learned is that we’re really good at this and also it’s totally pointless. But since there was existential outrage over our top-100 players list earlier this year, we’ve decided to peel back the curtain and include our aggregate rankings, just so you can see how much we make things up to annoy you.
[Horizontal lines indicate tiers, in addition to being horizontal lines]
1. Clemson (6-0, 4-0 ACC) Aggregate Rank: 1
Ugh. Enough already. This is a no-brainer on the level of Ryan Lochte.
2. Virginia (4-2, 2-1 ACC) AR: 2.58
This was the toughest spot to assign, because no team really seems to have earned it. But UVA always projects entitlement, so that’s enough.
3. Florida State (3-3, 2-2 ACC) AR: 3.58
The highest rank for the Seminoles was 2, and the lowest rank was 5. So now you can finally, accurately, call us both homers and haters. Cheers.
4. Miami (FL) (3-3, 1-2 ACC) AR: 3.91
The Hurricanes, though talented, are more erratic than their fanbase.
5. Wake Forest (5-1, 1-1 ACC) AR: 4.58
Insert any pop-culture thing about Wake Forest here. (Not a placeholder, an honest request.)
6. North Carolina (3-3, 2-1 ACC) AR: 6.5
The Tar Heels are tricky, because they beat South Carolina, which evidently means something now, and Miami, before remembering that they were North Carolina.
7. Louisville (4-2, 2-1 ACC) AR: 7.08
We received one vote for Clemson’s second string here. From Louisville.
8. Pitt (4-2, 1-1 ACC) AR: 7.41
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Pitt has great colors and uniforms, and they’re entirely unpredictable. They should really start dating UNC, because they’d be cute together.
9. Duke (4-2, 2-1 ACC) AR: 9
Seriously forgot they were even playing football this season. Them, not us.
10. NC State (4-2, 1-1 ACC) AR: 10
The North Carolina team that never wins anything should have to secede to South Carolina. U-Haul does nice work.
11. Syracuse (3-3, 0-2 ACC) AR: 10.75
Remember when Syracuse was all the rage to be a big thing in football? They’re like the ACC’s Cleveland Browns, except they actually wear the color of their team’s name.
12. Boston College (3-3, 1-2 ACC) AR: 12.25
Are we done yet?
13. Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (4-2, 1-2 ACC) AR: 12.33
VPISU. Its fans are as nice as their initialism is needlessly long.
14. Georgia Tech (1-5, 0-3 ACC) AR: 14
Ew. Where’s Paul Johnson when you need him?
So, what are the takeaways? Everyone had Clemson at 1 and Georgia Tech at 14. Virginia Tech and Boston College are fighting not to get relegated, but with downy-soft pillows. Pitt had the biggest variance in ranks — anywhere from 3 to 10 — but that’s what happens when you beat UCF, hang tough with Penn State, and also try to lay an egg at home against Delaware. Virginia and Miami are pretty close in quality, as evidenced by their game last week, and FSU’s game with Wake Forest this weekend will tell us a lot about each team and may or may not separate the two. Similarly, The Halftime Hydration Slices and NC State are also pretty tight.
Here’s the thing— teams 2 through 8 are pretty much interchangeable. Any one of them, probably including Duke at No. 9, could beat the others. Still, it looks like we’ve got six distinct tiers of teams, with the middle 12 teams sandwiched by extremes and separated into just four tiers.
Oh wait, one more tier:
15. Maryland (Don’t know their record, not looking it up, just still doesn’t seem right that they’re not in the ACC) AR: Purple