5 bold predictions for Week 12 in the ACC: Will the ACC title game be set after this week?
The ACC regular season is winding to a close.
This is the penultimate week, but a large number of teams in the conference still have a lot to play for — whether that’s bowl eligibility or a spot in the ACC title game.
A lot will be decided this week, including — potentially — both teams who will face off in Charlotte on Dec. 4.
Here’s 5 bold predictions for this week’s ACC slate:
Clemson edges out Wake Forest
Clemson just has too much talent. Wake Forest’s slow mesh concept that it leans on so often could be susceptible to Clemson’s powerful defensive line. On the other side, Clemson’s offense has been more productive in recent weeks while Wake Forest’s defense has struggled to keep teams out of the end zone.
This would mean the Atlantic division race goes into next week, with Wake Forest still just needing one win to clinch the title. The Demon Deacons face Boston College in Week 13.
Pittsburgh seizes the moment
The Coastal division is on the line in Pitt-Virginia on Saturday. Even if Cavaliers quarterback Brennan Armstrong is healthy enough to play, Virginia might not be able to keep up. The Panthers have an equally-explosive offense but a defense that’s much more prepared to make key stops. Pitt wins in a route — with or without Armstrong on the field.
This would clinch the Coastal title for Pitt.
Miami handles Va Tech
Both Miami and Virginia Tech have had drama-filled weeks. The Hokies fired coach Justin Fuente while Hurricanes coach Manny Diaz has had to endure rumors about his future with the program. This prediction comes down to trusting Miami’s talent — specifically on offense — more than Virginia Tech’s. Tyler Van Dyke, Jaylan Knighton and Charleston Rambo have been extremely productive over the last month, and that should continue on Saturday.
Florida State keeps the momentum going
Florida State earned a massive win over Miami last week, and now has a chance to clinch bowl eligibility over the final two weeks. The Seminoles need to win on Saturday on the road, but Mike Norvell’s team has shown the grit and talent level to be able to do that. Boston College will be a formidable foe with Phil Jurkovec under center, but FSU seems determined to finish the year on a strong note.
David Cutcliffe’s last stand
This is more of a reflection than a prediction, given Duke has already played — and lost — this week. The Blue Devils will miss out on a bowl game for the third straight year and haven’t played in a close game since losing 31-27 to Georgia Tech on Oct. 9. Cutcliffe is a Duke legend, but he’s 67 years old — it might be time to call it a career.