ACC football rankings heading into Week 9 of the 2016 season. Clemson and Florida State had the week off ahead of Saturday night’s showdown.
Lamar Jackson continued to prove that its his Heisman Trophy to lose with four more touchdowns in Louisville’s blowout of NC State. And with a weak schedule upcoming, he’ll get more opportunities to make his stats look more video game-like.
But it’s already time to look ahead to more important things, like next week’s Clemson-Florida State showdown. Both teams had the weekend off to prepare as the Seminoles try to knock the Tigers from the ranks of the unbeaten.
Here’s a look at how the rest of the ACC teams rank heading into Week 9 of the season.
Week 9 ACC Football Rankings
14. Duke (Last Week – 14)
It’s pretty surprising that Louisville’s toughest victory of the season came at home against Duke last week. Still, the 24-14 defeat dropped the Blue Devils to 3-4, and they had this week off to prepare next week’s road matchup with Georgia Tech.
13. Boston College (13)
Four losses, all in ACC play. The Eagles missed a prime chance to pick up their first conference win this week after falling, 28-20, to Syracuse at home.
12. Virginia (12)
The Cavaliers have allowed 80 points in losses to Pittsburgh and North Carolina in their last two games. Louisville might score that many all by itself next week when it plays at Virginia.
11. Georgia Tech (11)
The Yellow Jackets’ only ACC victory came in their season opener against Boston College. They then lost three straight in conference play before last week’s win over Georgia Southern snapped their skid. That, combined with a week off, could give Georgia Tech some confidence heading into next week’s matchup with Duke.
10. Syracuse (10)
The Orange are now 4-4 and 2-2 in the ACC following last week’s surprising win over Virginia Tech and Saturday’s 28-20 win over Boston College. Becoming bowl-eligible will be tough, though, considering Clemson, NC State, Florida State and Pittsburgh are on the schedule after next week’s bye.
9. North Carolina State (8)
Three straight victories have been followed by two losses to the ACC’s top powers, and the Wolfpack simply couldn’t get over their regulation failure and overtime loss at Clemson. They were absolutely destroyed by Louisville this week to drop to 1-2 in the conference.
8. Wake Forest (9)
The loss to NC State on Oct. 1 might turn out to be damaging to any hope of winning the ACC Atlantic. The Demon Deacons are 5-2, and after last week’s 17-6 loss to Florida State have two losses in conference play. A win over the Wolfpack would have them tied with Louisville for second behind Clemson, two teams they’re yet to play. Wake steps out of conference next week to face Army.
7. Pittsburgh (7)
Pat Narduzzi’s team is riding a three-game winning streak, although the competition hasn’t been all that tough with victories over Marshall, Georgia Tech and Virginia. They had Saturday off before Thursday night’s tough home contest against Virginia Tech.
6. Miami (6)
What is going on with the Hurricanes? Mark Richt won his first four games back at his alma mater, but he’s lost the last three after falling Thursday, 37-16, at Virginia Tech. The remaining schedule isn’t very tough at all, including next week’s matchup at Notre Dame.
5. Virginia Tech (5)
The Hokies bounced back from their disappointing loss at Syracuse by crushing Miami to improve to 3-1 in ACC action. Thursday’s game at Pittsburgh likely will be the toughest of their final five, with Duke, Georgia Tech, Notre Dame and Virginia remaining after that.
4. North Carolina (4)
The Tar Heels would be getting some New Year’s Six consideration if not for that flub against Virginia Tech a couple weeks ago. The rest of the schedule is pretty weak and includes a game against The Citadel, an FCS team.
3. FSU (3)
What a perfect time for a bye week. The Seminoles were basically left for dead after they fell to North Carolina, but back-to-back wins over Miami and Wake Forest have set up next week’s huge home matchup with Clemson. Win that, and FSU will be back in consideration for a New Year’s Six at-large bid.
2. Louisville (2)
Another game for Lamar Jackson to add to his Heisman Trophy resume. Ho hum. He added four more touchdowns in a blowout of NC State, and he’ll get another chance to pad his stats next week at Virginia.
1. Clemson (1)
Clemson watched this week as Louisville – a team it beat at home – ran over NC State, which took the Tigers to overtime on their home field last week. They had this week off to get ready for an FSU team needing a big victory.