ACC Power Rankings: Week Four (Plus Week 5 Game Predictions)

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ACC Power Rankings: Week Four (Plus Week 5 Game Predictions)
(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
 

ACC Power Rankings: Week Four

After four weeks of play, the ACC picture is only slightly clearer.  The Atlantic division looks wide open, the Coastal is the stronger division, and the road to the ACC championship runs through Blacksburg, but there is still a lot of ACC football left which could shake things up.  This week's power rankings also come with the week five's game predictions, I didn't have time for week four picks and remain 25-5 on the year.

 

Week: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 |

1.  Virginia Tech Hokies (1-0, 3-1):  After thumping Miami in a Blacksburg monsoon, Virginia Tech has thrust themselves back into the national title discussion.  With the toughest portion of their schedule behind them, the Hokies biggest challenge is remaining focused.  Frank Beamer has preached all week about avoiding a letdown, which has been all too common for many of the top teams this year.  That goal starts with a road trip to Duke on Saturday.

Week 5 Pick:  Virginia Tech 45, Duke 10

2.  Miami Hurricanes (2-1, 2-1):  Yes, Miami was rocked by Virginia Tech last Saturday, but at least they're battled tested and you're kidding yourself if you really thought the Hurricanes would go unbeaten through that brutal opening stretch.  Miami has a chance to erase the memory of their Blacksburg nightmare when No. 8 Oklahoma visits Land Shark Stadium this Saturday.  A win would not only make a statement that The U really is back, but possibly vault them back into the top 10.

Week 5 Pick:  Oklahoma 28, Miami 31

3.  Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (2-1, 3-1):  Georgia Tech showed just how deadly the triple-option can be when executed correctly.  Before Paul Johnson's Yellow Jackets piled up 317 yards on the ground in a 24-7 win over the Tar Heels, North Carolina had allowed a combined 157 rushing yards in their first three games.  Up next for Georgia Tech is a trip to Starkville to face what appears to be a much improved Mississippi State team.

Week 5 Pick:  Georgia Tech 34, Mississippi State 24 

4.  NC State Wolfpack (0-0, 3-1):  After being shut down by South Carolina, Wolfpack quarterback Russel Wilson has thrown four touchdown passes for the last three weeks straight.  Murray State and Gardner-Webb may have not been the best measuring sticks, but four touchdowns against Dave Wannstedt's Pittsburgh defense is impressive.  Besides road trips to Florida State and Virginia Tech, NC State's schedule isn't that difficult and maybe they are the sleeper pick everyone seemed to think during the summer.

Week 5 Pick:  NC State 38, Wake Forest 27

5.  Florida State Seminoles (0-1, 2-2):  Its obvious Florida State is loaded with potential but they haven't come to play every week, and until they do, they'll be viewed as inconsistent at best.  Florida State is probably a better team than Boston College, but from what they've shown us, would you really feel safe betting on the Seminoles to leave Chestnut Hill with a win?  You can talk all you want about Florida State's potential, but they need to prove it and Saturday could be a turning point in the season for better or worse.

Week 5 Pick:  Florida State 24, Boston College 28

6.  Clemson Tigers (1-1, 2-2):  Despite being 2-2, Clemson has been in every game so far and their two losses have been by a combined seven points to teams ranked in the top 15.  The Atlantic division seems wide open, and the Tigers look for their second intradivision win Saturday against a struggling Maryland team.

Week 5 Pick:  Clemson 35, Maryland 21

7.  Boston College Eagles (1-1, 3-1):  After one of the most tumultuous off-seasons in recent memory, Boston College sits at 3-1 overall after an overtime win against Atlantic division foe Wake Forest.  Florida State should provide a good measuring stick for this Boston College team that remains a bit of an unknown commodity.

 Week 5 Pick:  Florida State 24, Boston College 28

8.  North Carolina Tar Heels (0-1, 3-1):  After a strong start to the year, North Carolina looked like a legitimate contender in the Coastal division, but after being dominated by Georgia Tech the Tar Heels have raised some concern.  The Tar Heels now get a winless Virginia team at home, but have to come to play because the Cavaliers have had two weeks of preparation and another Coastal loss would all but erase North Carolina's ACC title hopes.

Week 5 Pick:  Virginia 14, North Carolina 31

9.  Wake Forest Demon Deacons (0-1, 2-2):  Wake Forest has to quickly forget about last week's overtime loss to Boston College because they now face a talented NC State team and an 0-2 start would be tough to overcome.  A win and the Demon Deacons put themselves back in the hunt for the Atlantic division crown.

Week 5 Pick:  NC State 38, Wake Forest 27

10.  Duke Blue Devils (0-0, 2-2):  The Duke Blue Devils still believe they have a shot at a bowl game this year and maybe they do, but the remaining schedule won't make that goal easy.  This week No. 6 Virginia Tech comes to town, fresh off a 24 point beat down of then No. 9 Miami.  While Duke's chances may be slim, this game can still be a good gage of how far the Blue Devils are as a team, keeping the game close will be a good sign.

Week 5 Pick:  Virginia Tech 45, Duke 10

11.  Maryland Terrapins (0-0, 1-3):  With a quality senior quarterback and one of the most talented running backs in the ACC, its a little surprising to see the Terrapins struggling so much.  On one hand, technically they're still in the ACC hunt as much as anyone else, but Maryland has shown little to suggest they have any real chance at competing for the division crown.

Week 5 Pick:  Clemson 35, Maryland 21

12.  Virginia Cavaliers (0-0, 0-3):  Virginia needs a W soon or a regime change is almost certain.  The Cavs have had two weeks to prepare for North Carolina and need a strong showing or Al Groh might have to start packing for a mid-season exodus.

Week 5 Pick:  Virginia 14, North Carolina 31

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