College Football 2011: 5 Too-Soon ACC Predictions

Sam WinsorContributor IIJune 14, 2011

College Football 2011: 5 Too-Soon ACC Predictions

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    CHARLOTTE, NC - DECEMBER 04:  David Wilson #4 of the Virginia Tech Hokies runs for a touchdown during their game against the Florida State Seminoles at Bank of America Stadium on December 4, 2010 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Get
    Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

    As all college football addicts know, the 2011 college football season is still months away.  However, that won't stop me from making five too-soon predictions for the ACC. 

    While not a traditional powerhouse, the ACC will be much-improved this season. Ranging from championships to individual players and NCAA investigations, watch for each of these predictions to come true this upcoming season.

1. It Will Be Closer Than Most Expect

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    CHAPEL HILL, NC - NOVEMBER 13:  Darren Evans #32 of the Virginia Tech Hokies is tackled by Quan Sturdivant #52 of the North Carolina Tar Heels during their game at Kenan Stadium on November 13, 2010 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Leck
    Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

    Like most everybody else, I expect Florida State to win the conference. 

    However, don't discount perennial power Virginia Tech or up-and-coming teams like NC State and Maryland. Florida State is oozing with potential, but not every player with potential pans out. If Florida State stumbles, Virginia Tech or NC State could be there to pick up the pieces. 

2. It Won't Be as Close as Most Expect

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    CHARLOTTE, NC - DECEMBER 31:  Head coach Dabo Swinney of the Clemson Tigers reacts to his teams 31-26 loss to the USF Bulls during their game at Bank of America Stadium on December 31, 2010 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Ima
    Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

    In other ways, the ACC won't be as close as predicted. 

    Don't expect Clemson, Miami, or North Carolina to even smell a title this season.  While all three are potentially decent teams, Clemson will be hampered by coaching, North Carolina will be tied down by the results of the recent NCAA investigation, and Miami is just plain overrated.  None of those teams will have much of a chance to win the ACC.

3. An ACC Team Will Win a BCS Bowl Game

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    MIAMI, FL - JANUARY 03:  The Virginia Tech Hokies marching band performs prior to the Hokies playing against the Stanford Cardinal during the 2011 Discover Orange Bowl at Sun Life Stadium on January 3, 2011 in Miami, Florida.  (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty
    Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

    Stop the presses!  Stop the presses!

    An ACC team will win a BCS bowl game this season.

    The ACC has an atrocious record in BCS bowls, falling time and time again to superior opponents.  Even Virginia Tech, the powerhouse of the ACC, hasn't been able to earn respect for the ACC.  This year, that will change.  Whether it's Florida State, Virginia Tech, NC State, or even Maryland, the ACC Champion will come out swinging.

4. Highly Touted Quarterbacks Won't Disappoint

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    ATLANTA, GA - DECEMBER 31:  EJ Manuel #3 of the Florida State Seminoles against the South Carolina Gamecocks during the 2010 Chick-fil-A Bowl at Georgia Dome on December 31, 2010 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
    Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

    The ACC is full of young quarterbacks who will take the helms of their respective teams this season. 

    This group of quarterbacks includes Bryn Renner at North Carolina, Logan Thomas at Virginia Tech, Mike Glennon at NC State and E.J. Manuel at Florida State.  While different in many ways, these quarterbacks all have one thing in common: they will all live up to expectations. 

5. No ACC Team Will Win the National Championship

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    RALEIGH, NC - OCTOBER 28:  Mustafa Greene #33 of the North Carolina State Wolfpack runs with the ball against the Florida State Seminoles during their game at Carter-Finley Stadium on October 28, 2010 in Raleigh, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/
    Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

    Sorry to disappoint, but no ACC team has a shot to win it all. 

    Anything less than an undefeated season would discount an ACC team from the title hunt, and that's simply not going to happen.  Florida State has to get through NC State and vice versa, and Virginia Tech will slip up in conference play (perhaps at home against Carolina).  While the ACC will be much-improved, the crystal ball doesn't show a National Championship for the conference.