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CFB Week 8 Conference Notes: Atlantic Coast Conference

2021 SCHEDULE (OCT. 23)

Saturday, Oct. 23 Time, TV Sirius XM App/Web
UMass (1-5) at Florida State (2-4) Noon, ACCN 137 193 955
Series: First Meeting
ACCN: Chris Cotter (play-by-play), Mark Herzlich (analyst), Jalyn Johnson (sideline)

No. 16 Wake Forest (6-0) at Army (4-2) Noon, CBSSN 85 85 85
Series: Wake Forest leads series, 11-5; Last meeting: Army, 21-13 (2016)
CBSSN: Jason Horowitz (play-by-play), Ross Tucker (analyst), Tina Cervasio (sideline)

Syracuse (3-4, 0-3) at Virginia Tech (3-3, 1-1) 12:30 p.m., RSN 138 194 956
Series: Syracuse leads series, 10-8; Last meeting: Syracuse, 31-17 (2016)
RSN: Tom Werme (play-by-play), James Bates (analyst), Wiley Ballard (sideline)

Clemson (4-2, 3-1) at No. 23 Pitt (5-1, 2-0) 3:30 p.m., ESPN 85 85 85
Series: Tied, 2-2; Last meeting: Clemson, 52-17 (2020)
ESPN: Sean McDonough (play-by-play), Todd Blackledge (analyst), Molly McGrath (sideline)

Boston College (4-2, 0-2) at Louisville (3-3, 1-2) 4 p.m., ACCN 138 194 956
Series: Boston College leads series, 7-6; Last meeting: Boston College, 34-27 (2020)
ACCN: Wes Durham (play-by-play), Roddy Jones (analyst), Taylor Davis (sideline)

Georgia Tech (3-3, 2-2) at Virginia (5-2, 3-2) 7:30 p.m., ACCN 85 85 85
Series: Georgia Tech leads, 21-20-1; Last meeting: Virginia, 33-28 (2019)
ACCN: Dave O’Brien (play-by-play), Tim Hasselbeck (analyst), Kelsey Riggs (sideline)

No. 18 NC State (5-1, 2-0) at Miami (2-4, 0-2) 7:30 p.m., ESPN2 138 194 956
Series: Miami leads, 10-5-1; Last meeting: Miami, 44-41 (2020)
ESPN2: Anish Shroff (play-by-play), Mike Golic Jr. (analyst), Taylor McGregor (sideline)

• No. 16 Wake Forest (6-0) is one of just 10 remaining FBS unbeaten teams. The Demon Deacons are 6-0 for the second time in program history and the first time since 1944. Wake Forest steps out of conference this week for a road game at Army (4-2) on Saturday at noon on CBSSN. The Demon Deacons lead the league and rank sixth in the country in turnover margin.

• The first of five league matchups this weekend starts Saturday when Virginia Tech (3-3, 1-1) welcomes Syracuse (3-4, 0-3) to Blacksburg for a 12:30 p.m. kickoff
on RSN. The teams are meeting for only the second time as ACC members and for the first time in more than five years. Syracuse boasts the league’s second-best defense, allowing 308.8 yards per game, while the Hokies have the ACC’s second-ranked pass defense.

• Clemson (4-2, 3-1) plays at No. 23 Pitt (5-1, 2-0) at 3:30 p.m. on ESPN in a key cross-division matchup. The Panthers lead the Coastal Division, while Clemson has
just one loss in league play. Pitt is 5-1 for the first time since head coach Pat Narduzzi’s debut season in 2015, when it started 6-1. Five of Clemson’s six games this year have been decided by seven points or less.

• Following an off week, Louisville (3-3, 1-2) returns to the gridiron to face Boston College (4-2, 0-2), which is coming off a home loss to NC State. The game is set for Saturday at 4 p.m. on ACC Network. Louisville holds a 4-3 edge in ACC games versus the Eagles since joining the conference in 2014, but Boston College has won three of the last four meetings, including last season’s 34-27 win at Chestnut Hill.

• Georgia Tech (3-3, 0-2), which owns an all-time 19-17-1 edge in ACC play over the Cavaliers, seeks to win at Virginia (5-2, 3-2) for the first time since 2013 when the two teams meet Saturday at 7:30 p.m. on ACC Network. Virginia owns the nation’s second-ranked passing attack and has scored 30-or-more points in all but one game this season. Each of the last three series meetings have been decided by less than a touchdown.

• No. 18 NC State (5-1, 2-0) travels to Miami (2-4, 0-2) looking to extend its four-game win streak at 7:30 p.m. on ESPN2. The teams are meeting for the second
consecutive season and for the seventh time in ACC play. Miami’s last two losses to Virginia and North Carolina were decided by a total of five points. Meanwhile, the Wolfpack defense has held three teams this season to seven points or less.

• Florida State (2-4) has produced wins over Syracuse and North Carolina in its last two outings to even its ACC record at 2-2. This week, the Seminoles face UMass (1-5), which is coming off its first win two weeks ago. The game will be televised at noon on ACC Network. It is the first meeting between these two teams.

• For the second consecutive year, the ACC will host a Fall Unity Week, Oct. 23-30. ACC Unity Weeks are an initiative of the ACC’s Committee for Racial and Social
Justice (CORE – Champions of Racial Equity) and have been developed in conjunction with its 15 member institutions.


• In the NCAA statistical rankings, Pitt ranks third in scoring offense (48.3 ppg) and fifth in total offense (530.5 ypg). The Panthers have totaled more than 400 yards of offense in five of their six games this season. QB Kenny Pickett is third nationally in pass efficiency (181.8 rating), fifth in total offense (352.3 ypg) and has been responsible for 144 points, which is the fourth-best total in the country.

• Led by QB Brennan Armstrong, Virginia has the nation’s second-ranked passing offense, averaging 405.9 yards per game. Armstrong leads the nation in total passing
yards (2,824), is second in passing yards per game (403.4) and second in total offense per game (414.6).

• Syracuse running back Sean Tucker ranks second nationally in rushing yards per game (135.4) and second in all-purpose yards per game (167.4). In Syracuse’s narrow 17-14 loss to Clemson last week, he became just the 10th player to rush for 150 yards against the Tigers since 2012.

• NC State is holding opponents to just 14.3 points per game, which ranks fifth nationally. The Wolfpack leads the country in third down conversion defense (.250),
rank 11th in rushing defense (92.8 ypg) and 12th in total defense (294.7 ypg).

• North Carolina wide receiver Josh Downs is fourth in the country in receptions per game (8.6) and fourth in receiving touchdowns with eight.

• Four ACC teams are ranked in this week’s USA Today AFCA Coaches Top 25 Poll – No. 15 Wake Forest, No. 18 NC State, No. 23 Pitt and No. 24 Clemson. Virginia is also receiving votes.

• In the AP Top 25, Wake Forest is No. 16, NC State is No. 18 and Pitt is No. 23. Clemson and Virginia are receiving votes. Wake’s No. 16 ranking is the highest for
the Deacons since 2008. NC State’s No. 18 ranking is its highest since 2018.

• The 2021 Subway ACC Football Championship Game will kick off at 8 p.m. on ABC on Saturday, Dec. 4, at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, North Carolina. The game will feature the winner of the Atlantic Division vs. the winner of the Coastal Division.

• This is the 12th time in the last 13 years that the game has been held in primetime. Twelve different teams have competed in the game, including a different Coastal Division team every year from 2013-19. Last season, No. 3 Clemson defeated No. 2 Notre Dame – which played in the ACC in 2020 as a full football member due to the COVID-19 pandemic – by a score of 34-10 in the most-viewed ACC Championship Game of all time.

Boston College: Boston College has scored a touchdown on its opening possession in four of its six games this season (Colgate, UMass, Temple, NC State). Against the Wolfpack, the Eagles covered 75 yards on 10 plays, capped off by an eight-yard touchdown pass from Dennis Grosel to Trae Barry.

Clemson: The Tigers have played four consecutive one-possession games for the first time since 2008, a four-game span that included Clemson’s final two games under Tommy Bowden and first two games under Dabo Swinney.

Duke: RB Mataeo Durant finished with 152 rushing yards on 43 carries and scored his ninth rushing touchdown of the season against Georgia Tech. The 43 total carries broke the single-game program record, previously held by Art Bosetti with 42 against South Carolina in 1970.

Florida State: FSU did not take a sack or commit a turnover for the first time since 2019 in the win over UNC. OG Dillan Gibbons spearheaded FSU’s offensive line that paved the way for Jordan Travis and the FSU running backs to account for 238 rushing yards.

Georgia Tech: Georgia Tech scored the game-winning TD with less than a minute remaining vs. Duke. It was the first time since a 17-14 win over Boston College in the 2016 season opener in Dublin, Ireland, that Tech scored a go-ahead, game-winning touchdown with less than a minute in regulation.

Louisville: RB Hassan Hall rushed 14 times for a career-best 162 yards and a touchdown against Virginia. It was his first career 100-yard rushing game and it included rushes of 52 and 53 yards, the two longest runs of the season for the Cardinals.

Miami: RB Jaylan Knighton was spectacular for the Hurricanes in the loss to UNC, finishing with 92 rushing yards on 17 carries. He had the second multi-touchdown performance of his career with a personal-best three scores – two rushing and one receiving. He finished with 165 all-purpose yards.

North Carolina: In the win over Miami, WR Josh Downs had a career-high 11 receptions for 96 yards and scored a receiving touchdown for the eighth-straight game going back to last year’s Orange Bowl. He extended his streak to seven-straight games with eight or more catches, the longest such streak in college football since Fresno State’s Davante Adams in 2013.

NC State: WR Emeka Emezie became NC State’s all-time receptions leader in the win over BC. He now has 203 career catches, which ranks 22nd in ACC history.

Pitt: QB Kenny Pickett has thrown for 9,918 passing yards in his career, which ranks eighth in ACC history. He is bidding to become just the seventh player in league history with 10,000-or-more passing yards.

Syracuse: RB Sean Tucker carried the ball 22 times for a league-leading 157 yards (7.1 avg.) against Clemson. He also caught two passes for 20 yards. Tucker has now run for more than 100 yards in five-straight games, tying the Syracuse program record. He is currently ranked second nationally in rushing yards and all-purpose yards.

Virginia: Virginia’s 48-0 win over Duke was its first shutout since 2008, when the Wahoos defeated Maryland 31-0.

Virginia Tech: DB Jermaine Waller is tied for the FBS lead with four INTs in 2021. He joins Iowa’s Riley Moss (two INT return TDs) as the only other Power 5 player in the nation with four INTs and an INT return score.

Wake Forest: Dating back to last season, QB Sam Hartman has thrown at least one touchdown pass in 10-straight games. In the win over Syracuse, Hartman threw for 330 yards and three scores in the overtime win.

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