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CFB Week 11 Previews: Atlantic Coast Conference

WEEK 11 ACC PREVIEWS

Thursday, Nov. 11
North Carolina (5-4, 3-3 ACC) at #21 Pitt (7-2, 4-1 ACC)
7:30 p.m.; ESPN
UNC leads series, 10-4
Last meeting: Pitt, 34-27, ot (2019)
Head Coaches:
North Carolina – Mack Brown (89-60-1 in 13th season at North Carolina; 264-136-1 in 33rd season overall)
Pitt – Pat Narduzzi (49-36 in seventh season at Pitt and overall)

Notes: North Carolina had won all six ACC meetings between the teams prior to the most recent head-to-head matchup two seasons ago, when Pitt broke through with a 34-27 overtime win in another Thursday night ESPN game at Heinz Field • QB Kenny Pickett’s 3-yard sprint over left tackle gave the Panthers the lead in the extra period, and Pitt’s defense made it stand up for the win • It typified a series in which the last nine games between the Coastal Division rivals has been decided by a touchdown or less • UNC holds a 4-3 edge versus the Panthers in road games, including a 3-1 record at Heinz Field • Prior to the OT win over the Tar Heels two years ago, Pitt’s most recent series win came in the 2009 Meineke Car Care Bowl, where RB Dion Lewis rushed for 159 yards and a touchdown to key a 19-17 victory in Charlotte • The series began with six non-conference meetings between 1974 and 2000.

Saturday, Nov. 13
Duke (3-6, 0-5 ACC) at Virginia Tech (4-5, 2-3 ACC)
3:30; ACCN
VT leads series, 18-10
Last meeting: VT, 38-31 (2020)
Head Coaches:
Duke – David Cutcliffe (77-94 in 14th season at Duke; 121-123 in 20th season overall)
Virginia Tech – Justin Fuente (42-31 in sixth season at Virginia Tech; 68-54 in 10th season overall)

Notes: Virginia Tech has won four of the last five meetings versus the Blue Devils, including last season’s 38-31 win in Durham • RB Khalil Herbert ran for 208 yards and two touchdowns, including a 60-yard score with 2:20 left to lead the Hokies • Duke won 45-10 on its last trip to Blacksburg in 2019 as QB Quentin Harris threw for two touchdowns and ran for another • That snapped a three-game losing skid in the series, but marked the Blue Devils’ third win at Virginia Tech since 2013 • The Blue Devils’ three wins during that span are their only ones in ACC play versus the Hokies, who hold a 14-3 lead in league games and have won eight of 11 versus Duke in Blacksburg overall • The series, fi rst played in 1937, includes neutral-site games in the North Carolina cities of Greensboro and Winston-Salem, as well as the Virginia cities of Roanoke and Norfolk.

Saturday, Nov. 13
Syracuse (5-4, 2-3 ACC) at Louisville (4-5, 2-4 ACC)
Noon; RSN
UL leads series, 12-7
Last meeting: UL, 30-0 (2020)
Head Coaches:
Syracuse – Dino Babers (28-40 in sixth season at Syracuse; 65-56 in 10th season overall)
Louisville – Scott Satterfield (16-17 in third season at Louisville; 67-41 in ninth season overall)

Notes: The Cardinals have won six of seven meetings versus the Orange since joining the ACC, including last season’s 30-0 win in Louisville • QB Malik Cunningham accounted for two touchdowns to offset three first-half turnovers, and Louisville held Syracuse to a season-low 137 yards with three takeaways • Syracuse won the first three meetings between the schools from 1985 through 1992, but Louisville has won nine of the last 11 head-to-head matchups • One of Syracuse’s two wins during that span is particularly memorable, however, as the Orange derailed a Louisville squad ranked No. 10 nationally by a 45-26 score late in the 2012 season • QB Ryan Nassib threw for 246 yards and three TDs in his final home game as Syracuse handed Louisville its first loss that year • Behind QB Lamar Jackson, Louisville roared to a 62- 28 victory five seasons ago at the Carrier Dome while piling up a school single-game record 845 yards.

Saturday, Nov. 13
Boston College (5-4, 1-4 ACC) at Georgia Tech (3-6, 2-5 ACC)
3:30 p.m.; RSN
GT leads series, 7-3
Last meeting: BC, 48-27 (2020)
Head Coaches:
Boston College – Jeff Hafley (11-9 in second season at Boston College and overall)
Georgia Tech – Geoff Collins (9-22 in third season at Georgia Tech; 24-32 in fifth season overall)

Notes: The Eagles and Yellow Jackets will be meeting for the 11th time overall and the sixth time in ACC competition • Boston College won 48-27 in last season’s meeting at Chestnut Hill • The Eagles rushed for 264 yards in the win, including a team-leading 94 yard by QB Phil Jurkovec • The outcome snapped a three game-winning series streak by Georgia Tech, which now holds a 3-2 edge versus Boston College in conference play • The schools first met in 1972, with the Yellow Jackets posting a 42-10 in win in Atlanta • Georgia Tech won the fi rst four meetings before Boston College’s 41-31 victory in Atlanta in 1998 • The first ACC game between the programs came in 2007, when QB Matt Ryan led Boston College to a 24-10 road win at Bobby Dodd Stadium • This year’s game marks the final road trip of the regular season for the Eagles, who seek to become bowl eligible.

Saturday, Nov. 13
UConn (1-8) at Clemson (6-3, 5-2 ACC)
Noon; ACCN
First meeting
Head Coaches:
Clemson – Dabo Swinney (146-36 in 14th season at Clemson and overall)
UConn – Lou Spanos – interim (1-6 in first season at UConn and overall)

Notes: Clemson is set to close out the regular season with two non-conference opponents among its final three games with Saturday’s home contest against the Huskies and the traditional rivalry game at South Carolina set for November 27 • The visiting Huskies are in their first year as an independent since leaving the AAC at the end of 2019 and sitting out last season due to the pandemic • UConn will be playing its first game since a 43-14 loss to Middle Tennessee on Oct. 22 • The Huskies’ lone win so far this season was 21-15 decision at Yale on Oct. 16 • UConn has played its last seven games under defensive coordinator Lou Spanos, who took over as interim head coach after the Huskies parted ways with Randy Edsall following the first two games of this season • Saturday’s game will be the first of back-to-back home contests for the Tigers, who have played three of their last four away from Death Valley.

Saturday, Nov. 13
Miami (5-4, 3-2 ACC) at Florida State (3-6, 2-4 ACC)
3:30 p.m.; ESPN
Miami leads, 35-30
Last meeting: UM, 52-10 (2020)
Head Coaches:
Miami – Manny Diaz (19-14 in third season at Miami and overall)
Florida State – Mike Norvell (6-12 in second season at FSU; 44-27 overall)

Notes: Miami holds a 35-30 edge in the all-time series, which was first played in 1951 • Florida State closed the gap by winning seven consecutive games in the rivalry before the Hurricanes stopped the run with four consecutive victories, including last season’s 52-10 win in Miami Gardens • QB D’Eriq King threw for 267 yards and two touchdowns as the Hurricanes scored more than 50 points for the first time ever in the rivalry and won by their largest margin versus FSU since a 47-0 victory in 1976 • FSU is 10-7 in ACC meetings between the schools since Miami joined the conference for the 2004 season • Miami leads 16-10 in games played at Tallahassee, including a 27-10 win in the most recent meeting at Doak Campbell Stadium two years ago • Prior to the Hurricanes’ decisive wins in 2019 and 2020, the previous five games in the rivalry had all been decided by five points or less.

Saturday, Nov. 13
#7 Notre Dame (8-1) at Virginia (6-3, 4-2 ACC)
7:30 p.m.; ABC
ND leads, 3-0
Last meeting: ND, 35-20 (2019)
Head Coaches:
Notre Dame – Brian Kelly (89-40 in 12th season at Notre Dame; 260-97-2 in 32nd season overall)
Virginia – Bronco Mendenhall (36-35 in sixth season at Virginia; 135-78 in 17th season overall)

Notes: Virginia welcomes Notre Dame to Scott Stadium for the first time since September of 2015, when the Fighting Irish stunned the Cavaliers 34-27 on QB DeShone Kizer’s 39-yard strike to WR Will Fuller for the game-winning touchdown with 12 seconds remaining on the clock • Notre Dame also won 35-20 in the most recent meeting between the teams at South Bend in 2019 • Julian Okwara had three sacks of No. 10 Notre Dame’s eight sacks and caused a fumble that was returned for a touchdown to key the victory over the No. 18 Cavaliers • The 2015 game was the first meeting between the programs since Notre Dame’s 36-13 win before a Giants Stadium college game record crowd of 77,323 in the 1989 Kickoff Classic • This Saturday’s game is the fourth of five this season versus ACC opponents for the Irish, who have beaten FSU, Virginia Tech and North Carolina and travel to Georgia Tech on Nov. 20.

Saturday, Nov. 13
#21 NC State (7-2, 4-1 ACC) at #13 Wake Forest (8-1, 5-0 ACC)
7:30 p.m.; ACCN
NCSU leads series, 67-41-6
Last meeting: NCSU, 45-42 (2020)
Head Coaches:
NC State – Dave Doeren (62-48 in ninth season at NC State; 85-52 in 11th season overall)
Wake Forest – Dave Clawson (48-46 in eighth season at Wake Forest; 138-126 in 22nd season overall)

Notes: The 115th meeting in a rivalry that dates back to 1895 and has been played consecutively every year since 1910 could have huge ramifications on the final Atlantic Division standings and a possible Subway ACC Football Championship Game berth • NC State’s 45-42 win last season snapped a three-game Wake Forest winning streak in the series • RB Ricky Person Jr. scored the short go-ahead touchdown with 5:51 left to lift the Wolfpack • NC State leads 42-25-1 in ACC games versus Wake and leads 21-17-1 in games played in Winston-Salem • However, the Demon Deacons have won 10 of their last 12 home games versus the Wolfpack • Saturday’s game will mark the 111th consecutive years the schools have met on the football field, tying with Oklahoma-Oklahoma State for the second-longest active streak in the nation • Final road trip of the regular season for NC State, which will close at home against Syracuse and North Carolina.

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