ACCting Up Power Rankings: Atlantic Takes Top Spots

Justin K. Aller

How does the conference stack up after the first round of action?

1. Clemson (def. Georgia, 38-35) - Delivered the biggest non-conference win of the weekend on a pressure-packed stage. The defense needs to tighten things up, but if the offense can outscore a pretty loaded Georgia team, that's a good sign for Death Valley.

2. Florida State (def. Pitt, 41-13) - Pitt isn't anything special, but Jameis Winston looked like the real deal out there against the Panthers' best unit. He has the talent around him for this team to be pretty good if he leads them there.

3. Miami (def. Florida Atlantic, 34-6) - Duke Johnson made the score look pretty good against Florida Atlantic, but Stephen Morris is going to have to do better than 15 of 27 for 160 yards.

4. Virginia Tech (lost to Alabama, 35-10) - The defense and running game looked really good against the Tide. Unfortunately, the passing game and special teams were really bad.

5. Virginia (def. BYU, 19-16) - The Hoos will go as far as the defense takes them, and if Saturday was any indication, it could take them a lot further than most are expecting.

6. Georgia Tech (def. Elon, 70-0) - Hanging 70 is hanging 70, even if it is against Elon. The Wreck (w)racked up 368 yards on the ground.

7. NC State (def. La. Tech, 40-14) - Down here only because who knows if Virginia will make it back. The 542 yards of offense might make Clemson a little nervous.

8. North Carolina (lost to South Carolina, 27-10) - Heels are going to have to get better starts and run better than than they did against the Gamecocks.

9. Maryland - (def. Florida International, 43-10) - Cranberry's C.J. Brown completed 20 of 23 passes, so the Terps join the NC State in the "encouraging offensively against bad FBS team" party.

10. Duke (def. NC Central, 45-0) - Actually met expectations against an FCS team.

11. Wake Forest (def. Presbyterian, 31-7) - Fared a lot better than some others against an FCS team, but offense's 5-18 performance on third down isn't particularly encouraging.

12. Pitt (lost to Florida State, 41-13) - "Get 'at balla Tahler Boyd, n'at."

13. Syracuse (lost to Penn State, 23-17) - The Orange were supposed to be able to run. Hasn't played out that way so far.

14. Boston College (def. Villanova, 24-14) - Almost lost to an FCS team, so...

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