It’s nearly halfway through the college football season, as Week 7 kicks off tonight with Syracuse and NC State facing off. The weeknight football continues throughout Friday, too, with Virginia visiting Miami. Here’s a quick preview of every game in the ACC this week:
Syracuse (+4.5) at NC State – Thurs., 8:00 pm: Coming into this season, the Orange were ranked 22nd in the AP Poll and expected to contend with Clemson in the ACC Atlantic. Six weeks in, and it looks like Syracuse will have a challenge just getting to six wins. Both squads are sitting at 3-2 overall, 0-1 in ACC play and should be well-rested coming off bye weeks. Expect a shootout, as Syracuse ranks 106th in passing defense and NC State sits at 82nd. A win for either team could change their season.
Virginia (+2) at Miami – Fri., 8:00 pm: Virginia had a bye week after suffering their first loss of the season thanks to Notre Dame. Miami was down 28-0 last week to Virginia Tech and came all the way back to tie it before falling 42-35. N’Kosi Perry will be making his first start after coming in for Jarren Williams last week. Against the Hokies, Perry threw for 422 yards and 4 TDs. The Cavaliers are looking to win in Miami for the first time since 2011. The Hurricanes need a win to avoid falling to 2-4 overall.
Georgia Tech (+17.5) at Duke – Sat., 12:30 pm: The Yellow Jackets’ defense is horrendous, allowing 430.4 yards per game on defense. In fact, they rank 121st in the nation in rushing defense. Expect Quentin Harris and the Blue Devils to bounce back in a big way after last week’s heartbreaker to Pittsburgh.
Florida State (+27) at Clemson – Sat., 3:30 pm: For years, this had been the marquee ACC matchup that was always highly anticipated and carried a lot of ramifications. That’s not the case this year, as the Seminoles are still finding their identity. Florida State’s defense might be in for a long day against Trevor Lawrence, Travis Etienne and the Tigers’ many weapons on offense. FSU’s D ranks 99th in total defense, which will be facing a well-rested, very determined Clemson team who narrowly escaped UNC a few weeks ago. The Seminoles do have Cam Akers; though, who ranks 13th in the country in rushing yards.
Rhode Island at Virginia Tech – Sat., 4:00 pm: The Hokies, albeit a little too close for comfort, got an enormous road win over Miami last Saturday. They’ll look to build on that momentum when they host the FCS Rhode Island Rams. Virginia Tech has struggled with lesser competition thus far, but starting Hendon Hooker at QB instead of Ryan Willis might fix that problem. The Rams got their first win of the season over Brown thanks to Aaron Parker’s 14-yard TD pass to Vito Priore.
Louisville (+6.5) at Wake Forest – Sat., 7:30 pm: The Cardinals had gone exactly 686 days without an ACC win, until they beat Boston College last week 41-39. They’ll look for another conference W as they hit the road vs 19th-ranked Wake Forest on Saturday night. The Demon Deacons are off to a 5-0 start, and possess one of the most high-powered offenses in the country. Wake ranks 16th in total offense, while Louisville ranks 23rd in rushing offense, behind Javian Hawkins’ 112.4 rushing yards per game. Expect a close, high-scoring game as both teams have far better offenses than their defenses.