Before we get going, I need to explain myself. I didn’t post power rankings last week. This year we’re going to do these rankings every other week. The weekly rankings can sometimes be a bit overkill, and quite frankly, no one needs to muse on ACC football that much. Now, there may be exceptions. I might do rankings in back-to-back weeks if we get a really crazy weekend that causes mass rankings chaos. But otherwise, expect these rankings every other week, and of course, free of Notre Dame.
#1 Clemson (3-0, 1-0) Previous ranking: #1, Next Game: 9/24 @ Wake Forest, 12:00 PM, ABC.
It wasn’t always pretty, but Clemson is 3-0 and once again has a game that was closer than the final score showed. The good thing is that DJ and Will Shipley looked very good. DJ coming off the bench cold and throwing a dime to Antonio Williams is very comforting because I was worried that after sitting for a while, he might get out of rhythm. This is much closer to the DJ we expected when he committed, and he looks more and more like the guy from the 2020 BC and Notre Dame games. The issues seem to be a lack of consistent targets - Joseph Ngata shows flashes of brilliance but still makes bad drops. Beaux Collins looks solid, and Antonio Williams is probably the best WR at the moment. I was excited to see Adam Randall in action. Also, Drew Swinney broke some DB’s ankles. He’s been sneakily good, albeit in limited action.
Our defense seemed to fix the screen issues. Hopefully, we can have our starting corners healthy because that may be a key for the Wake game. Excited at the potential to see Xavier Thomas this weekend. Also, continued prayers for the Bresee family; good stuff from La Tech with writing letters and Coach Cumbie wearing an E11a Strong shirt. That’s a first-rate bunch and I will definitely be pulling for them the rest of the season.
#2 NC State (3-0) Last Ranking: #3 Next Game: 9/24 vs UConn 7:30 PM ESPN3
The Pack is 3-0 and took down Texas Tech 27-14. They will now face UConn and likely be 4-0 heading into their game at Clemson.
#3 Florida State (3-0, 1-0) Last Ranking: #5 Next Game: 9/24 vs Boston College 8:00 PM ACCN
FSU is 3-0 after almost giving the game away to Louisville. With a not-good Boston College team coming to Tallahassee, FSU might be looking at 4-0. QB Jordan Travis suffered an injury and how long he is out may determine how far the ‘Noles can go this year.
#4 Wake Forest (3-0) Last Ranking: #6 Next Game: 9/24 vs Clemson 12:00 PM ABC
Wake tried their best to give the game to Liberty, but emerged unscathed. If Clemson’s DL is fully operational this weekend, it will definitely make things hard on Sam Hartman. I still expect it to be a tough game but Wake isn’t necessarily as good as I expected.
#5 Syracuse (3-0, 1-0) Last Ranking: #7 Next Game: 9/23 vs Virginia 7:00 PM ESPN
And just like that ‘Cuse is 3-0. They had one of the more fun matchups of the weekend with a late-game win over Purdue. Now, they get to host Tony Elliott’s UVA squad who barely survived giant-killer Old Dominion.
#6 Pitt (2-1) Last ranking: #2 Next Game: 9/24 vs Rhode Island 12:00 PM ACCN
Pitt fell to a shockingly competent Tennessee team in week 2, but was able to rebound with a road win over Western Michigan. Why are ACC teams constantly playing G5 schools on the road? What’s the value there? Now they host Rhode Island.
#7 North Carolina (3-0) Last Ranking: #8 Next Game 9/24 vs Notre Dame 3:30 PM ABC
Ole Mack Brown had the week off after back-to-back road games where the Heels wiggled out of tough situations against G5 schools. Here comes Notre Dame, who finally won a game this past weekend against Cal. This game may be kind of bad.
#8 Duke (3-0) Last Ranking: #10 Next Game: 9/24 @ Kansas 12:00 PM FS1
Man, I’m a little disappointed Gameday isn’t going to Duke-Kansas. Yes, I mean football. Stop laughing. Stop that, I’m serious! By some miracle, these teams are both undefeated. They haven’t exactly played murderer’s row yet, but it’s definitely noteworthy in the young season. We’ll see what happens after this game.
#9 Miami (2-1) Last Ranking: #4 Next Game: 9/24 vs MTSU
You knew this would happen. After the College Football world spent all week laughing about Texas A&M losing to App State after making lame jokes at Midnight Yell, and the fact that they pay Jimbo the GDP of a small country to continuously go 8-4, of course, the Aggies were going to rally and show us Miami may be overrated. Miami will now host Middle Tennessee State.
#10 Virginia (2-1) Last Ranking #9 Next Game: 9/23 @ Syracuse 7:00 PM ESPN
Hey, UVA held off Old Dominion, who as we’ll all remember, beat Virginia Tech. Now Tony Elliot has to face a feisty Syracuse team on a Friday in the Carrier Dome.
#11 Virginia Tech (2-1, 1-0) Last Ranking: #14 Next Game: 9/22 vs West Virginia 7:30 PM ESPN
Va Tech beat Wofford this week and knocked off BC a week before. The Hokies host old rival West Virginia on Thursday.
#12 Georgia Tech (1-2, 0-1) Last Ranking: #11 Next Game: 9/24 @ UCF 4:00 PM ESPNU
After breaking a seven-game losing streak by drubbing Western Carolina, Georgia Tech had no answer for Ole Miss on Saturday. Once again, another ACC team heads to a G5 school as the Jackets will face UCF on Saturday at the Bounce House.
#13 Boston College (1-2, 0-1) Last Ranking: #12 Next Game: 9/24 @ Florida State, 8:00 PM ACCN
BC beat neighbor Maine in a Fetty Wap game (if you don’t know what this means, it’s a meme referencing rapper Fetty Wap and his fondness of Remy Martin 1738 Cognac). Now they get a late-night trip to Tallahassee to face the Noles.
#14 Louisville (1-2, 0-2) Last Ranking: #13 Next Game: 9/24 vs South Florida 12:00 PM ESPN3
The Ville is 0-2 in the conference and now has to face a much improved USF team that went toe to toe with Florida.