Five weeks down, eleven to go. The college football landscape is off to a wild start. Here’s a smattering of what we learned about the ACC in Week 5.
1. Defense is optional. Much like the rest of NCAA Football in 2012, the ACC isn’t playing anything close to dominant defense right now. Last weekend, Georgia Tech lost by three scores in route to giving up 49 points to Middle Tennessee State. Not to be outdone, Virginia allowed 44 points in a home loss to Louisiana Tech. In total, seven ACC teams let their opponents score over 30 points last week.
2. Virginia Tech is haunted by Big East. According to some — Len Robbins of the NY Post among them — this was supposed to be the year for Frank Beamer and the Hokies to win their BCS Title. While a road loss to Pittsburgh probably killed that dream, an ACC Title and BCS game were still in reach with a predictably strong finish. Too bad another Big East team — in a NFL stadium — were on the docket. VT dropped their fifth straight in NFL stadiums during a heartbreaking 27-24 loss to Cincinnati. The former Big East member now has two losses on the season — both to current Big East squads.
3. Survive and advance. Florida State doesn’t need to win with style from here on out. After defeating Clemson in a shootout last week, the Seminoles are entrenched in the projected BCS standings. As long as they keep winning, they’ll have a shot to be special in the end. Their 27-17 victory on the road at South Florida wasn’t dynamic, but it kept Jimbo Fisher’s squad undefeated.
4. Stephen Morris is opening eyes in Coral Gables. The 556 yard performance in a win over North Carolina State will get people talking. Duplicating that effort will be nearly impossible against Notre Dame’s defense in South Bend this Saturday. If he comes anywhere close, expect the Morris hype to go overboard.