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ACC Football Team Power Rankings Week 8: Conference Still Up For Grabs

Isaiah ClarkCorrespondent IOctober 25, 2010

ACC Football Team Power Rankings Week 8: Conference Still Up For Grabs

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    Joel Auerbach/Getty Images

    There weren't many surprises in week 8, but Clemson and Miami have reestablished themselves in the conference title hunt. Both had solid wins over Georgia Tech and North Carolina respectively.

    Florida State and N.C. State were preparing for their Thursday night showdown during their week off. The winner of this game will be in the driver’s seat for making it to the ACC title game.

    A week off is just what the doctor ordered for Georgia Tech who needs to find their offensive mojo and fast because they square off against Virginia Tech on Nov. 4.

    Even after eight weeks there are still roughly eight teams that have a legitimate chance of making it to the ACC title game. Some have an easier road than others but what we know about the ACC is that anything can happen.

    This week will be started off with a bang by Florida State and N.C. State Thursday night. There is no telling who will win this game but I can assure you it will be a barn-burner.

    So let’s sit back and enjoy another solid week of ACC football. 

    Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5 | Week 6 | Week 7 

12. Duke 1-6 (0-4) LW- 12

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    Joe Robbins/Getty Images

    This season has been quite a disappointment for the Blue Devils, who had quite the aspirations for this year.

    They took a 44-7 beating against Virginia Tech last week. The game wasn't pretty from start to finish. You could sense a lack of effort on both ends of the ball, something you didn't see last week against Miami.

    Now they get to travel on the road for a game against Navy where the Midshipmen are coming off a blowout win against Notre Dame.

    Next Game: at Navy 10/30

11. Wake Forest 2-5 (1-3) LW- 11

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    Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

    Having a week off in some cases is almost as good as a win. For Wake Forest that’s exactly what it is, a win.

    Not having to put their 117th ranked defense out thereto be manhandled or blow another lead, is always a good thing.

    Next up is a trip to Maryland where they hope to come up with a much needed victory. 

    Next Game: at Maryland 10/30

10. Boston College 2-5 (0-4) LW- 9

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    Elsa/Getty Images

    There have been some noticeable improvements for Boston College even though they lost 24-21 to Maryland.

    The offense has been the biggest problem all season and it finally made some signs of a successful unit. Chase Rettig looks like he will have a good future at BC, but they will need to continue working hard on that offense if they want to compete anymore this season.

    Next Game: vs. Clemson 10/30

9. Virginia 3-4 (0-3) LW- 10

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    Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

    When you are struggling to find some rhythm it’s always nice to have a non-conference midseason game to get that form back.

    Marc Verica received a gift when he got to take on a 1-6 Eastern Michigan team. He didn't disappoint as he threw for 203 yards and two touchdowns in their 48-21 blowout win.

    Mike London has done a pretty decent job with the hand he was dealt when he took the Virginia job. This team has a bright future but still has some rebuilding to do before they are competing for conference titles.

    Next Game: vs. Miami 10/30

8. Georgia Tech 5-3 (3-2) LW- 5

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    Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

    Georgia Tech has been one of the most up and down teams in the ACC all season. It just goes to show that if you can contain the triple option then you will have a great chance of beating the Yellow Jackets.

    That’s exactly what happened when they lost to Clemson 27-13. They were unable to get their option going and Joshua Nesbitt was held to just 2 yards on 15 carries. It was his worst effort of the year. 

    Next Game: at Virginia Tech 11/4

7. Maryland 5-2 (2-1) LW- 8

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    Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

    Maryland was led by QB Danny O’Brien in their close 24-21 win over Boston College. He completed 27 of 40 passes for 182 yards and three touchdowns.

    Each week this team goes out with motivation because they want to show that they aren't a pushover this season.

    Next week they get a struggling Wake Forest game and a win there would put them at 3-1 in the conference.

    Next Game: vs. Wake Forest 10/30

6. Clemson 4-3 (2-2) LW- 7

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    Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

    Andre Ellington put on a show in their 27-13 win over Georgia Tech. He had a career high 166 yards and two spectacular touchdowns to end their four-game losing streak to the Yellow Jackets.

    The defense did their part as well by shutting down one of the best rushing attacks in the nation. They held the Yellow Jackets to 242 yards rushing and their worst point total all season.

    It looks like the Tigers are starting to claw their way back to the top.

    Next Game: at Boston College 10/30

5. North Carolina 4-3 (2-2) LW- 4

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    Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

    After Johnny White ripped off a 76-yard touchdown run it looked like the Tar Heels had all the momentum. But it wasn't meant to be as they were drilled in the 33-10 loss to the Hurricanes.

    They had high hopes for this season but with all the suspensions they have still managed to play well this season. Two more wins is all they need to be bowl eligible and if that happens then they can look at this season as a success considering all of their issues.

    Next Game: vs. William & Mary 10/30

4. N.C. State 5-2 (2-1) LW- 6

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    Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

    It doesn't get any bigger than Thursday night for the Wolfpack. A win over the Seminoles would catapult them to the top of the Atlantic in the ACC.

    The extra week off has surely helped both teams, but the Wolfpack have their mind set on a victory.

    "We definitely are aiming for an ACC Championship," Jarvis Williams said. "We know this game is just the beginning on our way to the ACC Championship."

    Next Game: vs. FSU 10/28

3. Miami 5-2 (3-1) LW- 3

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    Joel Auerbach/Getty Images

    Miami took a 13-10 lead into halftime against North Carolina and ended up thumping them 33-10.

    It wasn't the Miami of old but they finally played with that fire that had been missing in their last two contests.

    Jacory Harris had another solid performance, throwing for three touchdowns and 217 yards. If he can stay consistent and do away with the mistakes he can be a very solid QB, which he showed against the Tar Heels.

    They are on the road for a battle against Virginia, where they hope to keep their conference title chances alive. 

    Next Game: at Virginia 10/30

2. Virginia Tech 6-2 (3-0) LW- 2

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    Geoff Burke/Getty Images

    It doesn't get any easier than having two cellar dwellers for back-to-back games. Virginia Tech took care of business again by mauling Duke 44-7.

    The offense continued to put up great numbers and they are doing so at the right time. They are playing with a lot of confidence and Tyrod Taylor’s game is clicking on all cylinders. This week will be a nice week off and it will give them a chance to prepare for that triple option Georgia Tech runs.

    Next Game: vs. Georgia Tech 11/4

1. Florida State 6-1 (4-0) LW- 1

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    Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

    The one thing most FSU fans fear every season is a Thursday night game. That’s exactly what they have this week when they square off with N.C. State on the road in a critical ACC matchup.

    A win here would almost solidify them a spot in the ACC title game as they would be leading the Atlantic by two full games.

    Christian Ponder is still recovering from an elbow injury and if there is any sign of a struggle then Jimbo Fisher will need to pull the plug immediately and go with EJ Manuel.

    Next Game: at N.C. State 10/28

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