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ACC power rankings: is UNC a lock for the Coastal?

After a week off, the power rankings are back with a shakeup

Pittsburgh v North Carolina Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images

Things have been hectic in the ACC to say the least. Outside of Clemson continuing to roll through the season, there has been a lot of ups and downs within the division. Let’s take a look at where each team stands now.

#1 Clemson (8-0, 6-0)

In a battle for the top spot in the ACC, the Clemson Tigers were able to knock off Syracuse before getting the week off. Clemson is now solely in the playoff picture coming in at 4th and with a big game against Norte Dame in prime time, have a chance to entrench themselves in the playoff race.

#2 North Carolina (7-1, 4-0)

Drake Maye continues to propel the North Carolina Tar Heels to put them in the driver’s seat in the Coastal. After lighting up the Pitt Panthers in the 4th quarter, North Carolina has complete control of their destiny in making the championship game.

#3 Syracuse (6-2, 3-1)

I know the Syracuse Orange have lost two straight to Clemson and Norte Dame, but they still end up at three. Still, the questions of just how good Syracuse is are only getting louder. With three games upcoming with teams that are .500 or better, Syracuse has a chance to quiet the noise a little bit again.

#4 Wake Forest (6-2, 2-2)

The Wake Forest Demon Deacons come in at four after an absolute meltdown at Louisville. In a nightmare of a third-quarter right before Halloween, Wake Forest turned the ball over SIX times with two going back for touchdowns. The eight turnovers in total doomed the Demon Deacons to a 48-21 loss. With the next three games coming against ranked opponents, life doesn’t get much easier from here.

#5 North Carolina State (6-2, 2-2)

The North Carolina State Wolfpack was able to come away with a narrow victory against Virginia Tech. The Wolfpack are still trying to figure things out without Leary, but a come-from-behind win might just build the confidence quarterback MJ Morris needed for a tough matchup against Wake Forest.

#6 Florida State(5-3, 3-3)

The Florida State Seminoles took care of business, beating down Georgia Tech 41-16. At this point it’s safe to say while Florida State may not be back, they are no longer a bottom third of the ACC team.

#7 Louisville Cardinals (5-3, 3-3)

Many thought the Cardinals’ season was over after a slow start to the season. With three wins in a row, including a stunning win over Wake Forest, Louisville might be better than we all thought.

#8 Duke (5-3, 2-2)

The Duke Blue Devils had the week off after a win over Miami. While the game was close heading into the 4th, Duke scored 21 unanswered to give the Blue Devils a 45-21 win. While Duke may not be the challenger some could have thought at the start of the season, they won’t be an easy win for any team.

#9 Miami (4-4, 2-2)

The Miami Hurricanes may have had the most uninspiring win in a while. The much talked about 4 OT game, where neither team scored an actual touchdown, saw the Hurricanes get a 14-12 win. Still, that win keeps them out of the bottom five teams.

#10 Pittsburgh (4-4, 1-3)

It is starting to become a disaster in ACC play for the Pittsburgh Panthers. The fourth quarter continues to haunt this team and at this point, every game is critical for this team if they hope to make a bowl game.

#11 Georgia Tech (3-5, 2-3)

After a lot of good feelings in the Georgia Tech Yellow Jacket program, things have gone off the rails with Jeff Sims missing time in each of the last two games.

#12 Virginia (3-5, 1-4)

Each of these next three teams has a case to be at the bottom of the ACC. The Virginia Cavaliers are coming off an uninspiring loss against Miami but still have kept things competitive for themselves with the defense performing week.

#13 Virginia Tech (2-6, 1-4)

The Virginia Tech Hokies blew a winnable game against North Carolina State last Thursday. Three of the last four games for the Hokies are all teams with losing records. Still, there isn’t much to be confident about that they could win those games.

#14 Boston College (2-6, 1-4)

After a loss to UConn and only coming away with three points, there isn’t much to say. Looking at the next four games, it’s hard to see the Boston College Golden Eagles not ending up at the bottom at the season’s end.