Atlantic Coast Conference News and Notes
Philadelphia, PA (SportsNetwork.com) -
BOSTON COLLEGE: The Eagles posted their first win over Virginia Tech since 2008 and snapped a five-game losing streak to the Hokies with a 34-27 victory at home this past weekend. Linebacker Kevin Pierre-Louis returned an interception 33 yards for a touchdown midway through the fourth quarter to provide the necessary difference in the scoring column for BC. All-American candidate Andre Williams continued his strong campaign, rushing for 166 yards and two touchdowns on 33 carries in the win. The Eagles have performed extremely well in the red zone this season (16-for-17), with 10 touchdowns and six field goals. They have also gotten after opposing quarterbacks this season. With four sacks against Tech, Boston College has amassed 24 QB takedowns this season, the most for the team since 2008. The win improved BC to 4-4 overall and 2-3 in conference play. BC takes a break from conference play this weekend, with a road trip to Las Cruces to take on New Mexico State.
CLEMSON: The All-American duo of Tahj Boyd and Sammy Watkins was too much for the struggling Virginia Cavaliers as Clemson rolled to a 59-10 victory in Charlottesville. It marked the largest margin of victory for Clemson in an ACC road game since 1984 and tied for the fourth largest margin of victory anywhere in an ACC games for the Tigers. Boyd was an efficient 24-of-29 passing, for 377 yards and three touchdowns, adding a fourth score on the ground. Watkins hauled in eight balls, for 169 yards and two scores in the lopsided win. In all, Clemson churned out 610 yards of offense while the defense stymied the Cavs to the tune of just 277 total yards. The win over Virginia moved Clemson to 8-1 on the season. It is actually the third straight campaign that the Tigers have started 8-1. The Tigers are idle this weekend and will get back to work on Nov. 14 at home against Georgia Tech.
FLORIDA STATE: It was another top 10 showdown for Florida State and another opponent left in the dust, as the Seminoles dispatched previously undefeated Miami-Florida, using a big second half to post a lopsided 41-14 victory. Heisman hopeful Jameis Winston struggled in the first half with two interceptions, but resolved his issues after intermission and finished 21- of-29 passing, for 325 yards and one TD. Tailback Devonta Freeman accounted for three scores, two on the ground and one through the air and actually led the 'Noles in receiving with six catches, for 98 yards. Fellow RB James Wilder Jr. added two rushing TDs as well. FSU finished the game with 517 yards of total offense, while holding Miami to just 275 yards. The victory marked the 12th straight ACC win for Florida State, its longest streak since the team won 21 straight from 1998 to 2001. At 6-0 in-conference, the Seminoles put their flawless record on the line this weekend at Wake Forest.
MARYLAND: The Terrapins limped into this past weekend's bye having lost two straight and three of their last four games overall. Maryland, which is 5-3 overall and 1-3 in conference play, will attempt to become bowl eligible this weekend at home in a showdown with the Syracuse Orange.
NC STATE: The Wolfpack looked good early, scoring on four of their first five drives, but could not sustain it, falling at home to rival North Carolina, 27-19. Quarterback Brandon Mitchell threw for 130 yards and two interceptions, but added 105 yards and a touchdown on 21 carries in the loss. It marked the first time a Wolfpack signal caller rushed for 100 yards in a game since 1976. NC State put up 388 yards of total offense in the loss, while allowing the Tar Heels 427 yards. Shadrach Thornton added to a ground game that managed 212 yards, with 99 yards on 22 carries. Place kicker Niklas Sade matched a career- high with four field goals in the setback. At just 3-5 overall, the Wolfpack are still in search of their first ACC win of the season. They will try to end a four-game losing streak this weekend with a road tilt at Duke.
SYRACUSE: The Orange stepped up defensively, blanking Wake Forest this past weekend, 13-0. The win, moved Syracuse to 4-4 overall and an even 2-2 in ACC play. The shutout was actually the second on the season for the Orange, marking the first time that has happened in a season since 1997. The game featured a scoreless first half, before Syracuse scored two touchdowns in the third frame. The Orange managed to gain 352 yards of offense, including a healthy 183 yards on the ground. Meanwhile, the defense limited the Demon Deacons to just 213 yards, while forcing 12 punts. The defense really buckled down in the second half, holding Wake to just 66 total yards on 30 offensive plays. The shutout was the first against a conference opponent for Syracuse since 1996 (42-0 against Rutgers). The Orange will attempt to win back-to-back games this weekend when they travel to College Park to take on Maryland.
WAKE FOREST: Not much went right for Wake Forest this past weekend on the road at Syracuse, as the Demon Deacons were shut out by the Orange, 13-0. The loss dropped Wake Forest to 4-5 overall and just 2-4 in ACC play. Wake lost All-ACC wideout Michael Campanaro in the first quarter to injury and the offense was never able to generate anything, finishing with a mere 213 total yards , while punting 12 times. Without his top weapon, quarterback Tanner Price struggled, completing just 22-of-54 passes, for 173 yards, with an interception. Sherman Ragland III stepped up in Campanaro's absence though, hauling in a career-high 10 balls, for 91 yards, also a career-high. The Demon Deacons may not have Campanaro available this week against third-ranked Florida State due to a shoulder injury.
DUKE: Winners of four straight games, the Blue Devils enjoyed a well earned bye this past weekend. David Cutcliffe's squad will take aim at a fifth straight victory this weekend when the Blue Devils play host to a struggling NC State team.
GEORGIA TECH: Paul Johnson's Yellow Jackets moved to 6-3 overall and 5-2 in the ACC with a 21-10 home win over Pittsburgh this past weekend. Georgia Tech racked up 276 yards rushing, led by David Sims' 94 yards and one TD. Robert Godhigh added 89 yards on just six carries, with two TDs. Meanwhile, the Tech defense did the rest, limiting the Panthers to just 228 total yards, including -5 yards rushing. The unit also collected five sacks and held Pitt to a mere 5-of-13 on third down. Georgia Tech has played 207 consecutive games without being shut out now, going back to 1997. At 6-3 overall, Tech is now bowl eligible for the 17th straight season. The Yellow Jackets are off this weekend but will continue their quest for the Coastal Division title on Nov. 14 at Clemson.
MIAMI-FLORIDA: After a spirited first half against the third-ranked team in the country, the Hurricanes let the game get away from them, as they were routed by instate rival Florida State this past weekend in Tallahassee, 41-14. The loss was the first on the season for Al Golden's squad, which now sits at 7-1 overall and 3-1 in conference play. Miami was held to just 275 yards of total offense, while allowing FSU to amass 517. Tailback Duke Johnson led the team on the ground with 97 yards on 23 carries, but was lost to a broken ankle in the setback. Quarterback Stephen Morris passed for just 192 yards and two touchdowns, with two interceptions. Both TD passes went to wideout Allen Hurns, who finished with five catches, for 84 yards. Miami, which is still in the driver's seat in the Coastal Division at 3-1, will return home this weekend for a showdown with the suddenly struggling Virginia Tech Hokies.
NORTH CAROLINA: Larry Fedora's Tar Heels posted their second straight win, their only win streak of the season, with a 27-19 victory at NC State this past weekend. With the victory, North Carolina moved to 3-5 overall and 2-3 in league play. UNC amassed 427 total yards in the victory, as backup quarterback passed for 92 yards and a touchdown, while leading the team with 51 yards rushing. Starting QB Bryn Renner was 15-of-22 passing, for 124 yards in the win. All-American candidate Eric Ebron led all pass catchers with nine receptions, for 70 yards. However, wideout Quinshad Davis made the most of his two catches, going for 61 yards and ending in the end zone on both. The Tar Heels will go for a third straight win this weekend at home, when they play host to the struggling Virginia Cavaliers.
PITTSBURGH: Tom Savage completed 25-of-37 passes, for 233 yards and one touchdown, but it wasn't enough in Atlanta, as Pittsburgh dropped a 21-10 decision to Georgia Tech. Freshman Tyler Boyd had a strong game on the outside, finishing with 11 catches, for 118 yards and a score. Defensive tackle Aaron Donald continued his All-American campaign, posting 11 tackles, an eye-popping six TFL, one sack and two forced fumbles. Still, Pittsburgh managed just 55 yards in the first half, and finished the game with a mere 228 total yards, with -5 yards rushing. With the loss, Pitt falls to 4-4 overall and just 2-3 in the ACC. The Panthers will attempt to end a two-game skid this weekend at home against Notre Dame.
VIRGINIA: The Cavaliers were fighting an uphill battle this past weekend on their home field, but were no match for Clemson, falling to the Tigers 59-10. Virginia managed just 277 yards of total offense, while the Tigers hung up 610 yards. It was the first time Virginia allowed 600 or more yards since giving up 627 yards to Georgia Tech in 2000. Quarterback David Watford was just 16- of-35 passing, for 130 yards and an interception in the lopsided loss. Tailback Kevin Parks led a stagnant ground game with 82 yards. Virginia has now lost six games in a row to fall to 2-7, 0-5 ACC. The team will attempt to end its losing streak and earn its first conference win of the season when the Cavs travel to Chapel Hill to take on North Carolina.
VIRGINIA TECH: A once promising season is starting to unravel for Frank Beamer's Hokies, who fell to 6-3 overall and 3-2 in ACC play with a 34-27 road loss to Boston College this past weekend. Virginia Tech posted 446 yards of total offense, but was done in by turnovers, which BC converted into 17 points. Quarterback Logan Thomas was 24-of-41 passing for 391 and two TDs, but was guilty of two interceptions and was sacked four times. Joshua Stanford had a huge game as well, finishing with six catches, for 171 yards. The Hokies will have their hands full trying to end a two-game skid this weekend, as they travel south to take on the 14th-ranked Miami Hurricanes.
11/04 10:37:30 ET