4 ACC teams finish in top 20 of final AP Poll of 2021 season
Four ACC teams were included in the top 20 of the final AP Top 25 of the season on Tuesday afternoon.
No. 13 Pitt, No. 14 Clemson and No. 15 Wake Forest each made the top 15 after reaching double-digit wins this season. No. 20 NC State won 9 games.
Of course, Georgia was unanimously selected as the No. 1 team after defeating Alabama in the National Championship on Monday night. Alabama, Michigan, Cincinnati and Baylor rounded out the top 5.
Pitt secured a top 15 finish despite losing to Michigan State in the Peach Bowl. However, the Panthers were without Kenny Pickett in that game and their backup quarterback, Nick Patti, missed most of the game with an injury.
Clemson won the Cheez-It Bowl over Iowa State in convincing fashion to clinch another 10-win season. The Tigers won six straight games to end the season and are expected to return most of their production on both sides of the ball in 2022.
Wake Forest trounced Rutgers in the Gator Bowl. The Scarlet Knights were replacing Texas A&M, who had to withdraw due to COVID-19. The win gave the Demon Deacons 11 victories for the season, which ties a program record.
NC State was unable to participate in bowl season after UCLA was forced to withdraw due to COVID-19. The Wolfpack finished the year with nine wins.
All four of these teams are expected to be competitive at the top of the ACC again in 2022.