Wednesday, November 7, 2012
What is each ACC team playing for?
By Andrea Adelson
Only three regular-season games remain. So what is every team in the ACC playing for down the stretch?
Let's take a look:
Boston College. The Eagles are going to end up with consecutive losing seasons for the first time since 1997 and '98. At 2-7, the goal has to be avoiding their worst season since going 2-9 in 1989. That, and trying to save coach Frank Spaziani's job -- if they can.
Clemson. ACC title/BCS chances are at stake. If the Tigers win out, they will have broken their three-game losing streak to South Carolina AND will get a chance at securing an at-large berth in the BCS. If they win out AND Florida State loses to either Virginia Tech or Maryland, the Tigers are back in the ACC championship game.
Florida State. If the Seminoles win their last two ACC games, they are in the ACC title game. If they win out, they have their first 11-win season since 2000.
Maryland. Even though the Terps have been the unluckiest team in America, they still have a shot at bowl eligibility if they win two of their final three games. That is a big "if" with Clemson, Florida State and North Carolina left. But at least they doubled their win total from a year ago.
NC State. The Wolfpack have to end a two-game losing streak and finish strong -- they need only one more win to clinch their third straight bowl season.
Wake Forest. For a program that has seen its best players miss games because of injuries, being on the precipice of bowl eligibility is a huge accomplishment. The Deacs need one win over NC State, Notre Dame or Vanderbilt to go to consecutive bowl games for the first time since 2007 and '08.
Duke. If the Blue Devils win out, they are in the ACC championship game for the first time.
Georgia Tech. The Yellow Jackets need two wins in their final three games to keep their 15-year bowl streak alive. They also have an outside shot at the Coastal Division.
Miami. If the Hurricanes win out, they are in the ACC championship game for the first time.
North Carolina. The Tar Heels do not have postseason hopes because they are ineligible, but finishing first in the Coastal Division has been a huge goal for this team. It is called playing for pride.
Virginia. The Hoos have not been mathematically eliminated from Coastal Division contention, but the more immediate goal is to win out to become bowl-eligible again.
Virginia Tech. The Hokies are having one of the most disappointing seasons in recent memory. They still have an outside shot at the Coastal Division. But At 4-5, they must avoid finishing with their worst record since going 8-5 in 2003. The last time they had a losing record? Try 2-8-1 in 1992.