Around the ACC: Week 12 (Football)
The ACC does not have too many key matchups in Week 12. The best team in the ACC is on a bye this week in No. 2 Notre Dame.
No. 4 Clemson takes on Florida State in Week 12 for its ninth game of the season.
Quarterback Trevor Lawrence is set to make his return this week after missing two games because of COVID-19. He comes back to face a bad Florida State team who is tied for the worst record in the ACC at 1-6.
Florida State’s only conference win was an upset over No. 5 North Carolina 31-28. The Seminoles used their defensive strength to their advantage, intercepting Tar Heels quarterback Sam Howell for a touchdown. The Florida State defense will have its work cut out for them against Lawrence and Clemson.
Florida State lost its last game to NC State.
NC State takes on No. 21 Liberty for one of the best matchups in Week 12. NC State has struggled with ranked teams. The Wolfpack are 1-3 against ranked opponents. Their only ranked win is against Pittsburgh 30-29.
Liberty is one of the only undefeated teams left in college football. However, Liberty has not played any tough competition this year yet. NC State will be the toughest game yet for the Flames. The Wolfpack could be the first team to give the Flames a loss.
Pittsburgh takes on Virginia Tech in the closest ACC matchup in Week 12.
Virginia Tech put up a good fight against No. 9 Miami in Week 11. The Hokies only lost 25-24 on a fourth-quarter touchdown pass from D’Eriq King to receiver Mark Pope. The Hokies lost to Liberty previously in Week 10, 38-35.
Both of the teams were ranked in the Top 25. Virginia Tech has stayed with ranked teams, so Pittsburgh should not be a problem.
Pittsburgh also had a tough schedule the past couple of weeks. In Week 7, Pittsburgh suffered a tough loss to Miami 31-19. The Panthers were then blown out by Notre Dame 45-3 in Week 8.
Pittsburgh’s offense has not been able to keep up with ranked teams. The Panthers rank towards the bottom of the ACC in offense. Their defense keeps them in games and is one of the best in the ACC.
The other competitive game will be the battle for the bottom of the ACC. Syracuse heads to Louisville to play the Cardinals.
Syracuse is having a rough season with only one mark in the win column. The Orange have lost their last five games where they let up 177 points.
Their offense has not been the problem, as they score enough points to stay with teams. The Syracuse defense struggles to stop teams from scoring.
Louisville started the season ranked No. 18 but suffered back-to-back losses to Miami and Pittsburgh. Junior quarterback Malik Cunningham threw four interceptions in those two games.
Cunningham has sort of cleaned up his act and now has nine interceptions on the season. Louisville will have to keep the ball out of Syracuse’s hands if they want to come up with the win.
Two games in the ACC have been postponed due to COVID-19. Georgia Tech against Miami was postponed and so was Wake Forest against Duke.
Spencer Ripchik is a freshman majoring in journalism. To contact him, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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