North Carolina was arguably the best ACC team before a number of its star players were suspended, including enormous defensive tackle Marvin Austin. The Tar Heels were an early favorite to win the ACC Championship, and were loaded from top to bottom with talent.
However, UNC's season has been up and down. The Tar Heels lost their first two games to one-loss LSU and Georgia Tech by six points, and lost to Miami, 33-10.
With that being said, UNC barely beat William and Mary last week, but blew out East Carolina, which beat N.C. State in overtime. UNC also blew out Virgina, which beat Miami last weekend.
So will the Tar Heels be up to the task of beating Florida State? Absolutely.
Florida State is coming off its first ACC loss and a real heartbreaker. Losing to N.C. State was not only a shocker, but it wasn't according to the plan. Florida State looked poised to be the ACC team that would run the tables, make it to a BCS bowl and hopefully win.
Everything has changed now. There are a lot of things that need to fall into place for this team to even make the ACC Championship, and that all starts with beating North Carolina on Saturday.
North Carolina is giving up 20 points per game, so its defense is a little shaky. However, UNC still has Robert Quinn, who is a monster off the edge. Linebackers Bruce Carter and Quan Sturdivant are experienced with great playmaking abilities.
Deunta Williams and Kendrick Burney would start for any other team in the country, and are massive coverage threats. This team is littered with talent.
Florida State's defense showed vulnerability for the first time since the Oklahoma game. The Seminoles were unable to stop N.C. State quarterback Russell Wilson and gave up huge plays in the running and passing games.
The defense will have to play great against North Carolina QB TJ Yates, who has a cannon and can get in a groove very quickly if things are going his way. Young corners Xavier Rhodes and Greg Reid have performed very well in the new defensive system, but they will be challenged this weekend.
Florida State can still make some magic this season, and with four games left on the schedule, it has the potential to win out and possibly make the ACC Championship. Everything starts with North Carolina, and the Seminoles are in a must-win situation.