Some of you are college football junkies, consuming the sport with every chance you get. The Hurricanes will always serve as your main event, as they should, but you have other fights on the bill. Suppose you want to watch North Carolina against Florida State, or Louisville take on Clemson, along with your beloved 'Canes. Well, this post is the right place for you. Each week, the State of the U will bring you weekly watch info and game summaries for the biggest clashes around the ACC.
For those of you who can’t get enough college football, State of the U is here to help.
Conference members enter new territory as top teams face greater challenges.
While our Hurricanes open conference play against Georgia Tech, North Carolina-Florida State and Louisville-Clemson highlight a critical week in the Atlantic Coast Conference.
No. 14 Miami Hurricanes vs. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, Sat., October 1, 12:00 PM ET, ESPN2
Last Thursday night, Georgia Tech's triple-option was completely dismantled by Clemson. At halftime, Clemson had outgained the Yellow Jackets 347-22 in total yards. By the end of the contest, the Yellow Jackets were held to just 124 total yards. Georgia Tech was thoroughly whooped in every statistical category but penalties, turnovers, and time of possession. On the field, the talent disparity was even more glaring as the Tigers defense constantly swarmed around the ball carrier and penetrated into the backfield.
While the aforementioned scene was going down in Atlanta, the Hurricanes were enjoying a bye week following a route of Appalachian State, 45-10. Miami has shown progress in its run defense, allowing 61.3 rushing yards a game and 1.57 yards per carry, and ranking 4th in the nation in total run defense. Pressure from both sides, Georgia Tech's frustration to run the ball and Miami's determination to make run defense its strength, meet in Atlanta this Saturday at noon.
Georgia Tech (3-1, 1-1 ACC) will play its first Coastal Division matchup when they take on the Hurricanes. The Yellow Jacket's previous two conference games were against Atlantic Division opponents Boston College, a 17-14 win in Ireland, and Clemson, a 26-7 loss in Atlanta.
North Carolina Tar Heels vs. No. 12 Florida State Seminoles, Sat., Oct. 1, 3:30 PM ET, ESPN
The Tar Heels needed late-game heroics to knock off Pittsburgh, winning 37-36 in Chapel Hill. While North Carolina's offense had a record setting day, receiver Ryan Switzer tied a school record with 16 catches for 208 yards, its defense struggled mightily. An inability to stop the run and numerous missed tackles nearly lost the game for the Tar Heels. Pittsburgh averaged 5.1 yards per carry and appeared unstoppable until North Carolina’s defense forced three three-and-outs in the fourth quarter.
With Florida State's Dalvin Cook waiting in the on deck circle, North Carolina faces its greatest rushing challenge yet. Quarterback Mitch Trubisky, 35 of 46 passing for 453 yards and 5 touchdowns against the Panthers, showed he can keep pace in a shootout. And with a defense as woefully bad as it was last Saturday, and a running back of Dalvin Cook’s caliber, he’ll need another strong performance for any chance to top the Seminoles.
No. 3 Louisville Cardinals vs. No. 5 Clemson Tigers, Sat., Oct. 1, 8:00 PM ET, ABC
Louisville has already taken down one Atlantic Division juggernaut, Florida State, and now sets its sights on Clemson. Clemson enters the game on a high note after defeating Georgia Tech, 26-7, in Atlanta. Louisville returns from a 59-28 throttling of Marshall. This prime time matchup will captivate most of the college football world with its bearing on the polls and playoff picture. For the ACC, this game could serve as an early indicator of who will represent the Atlantic Division in Orlando at the ACC Championship Game.
We can’t give you any more reason to watch. There’s enough hype already. Lamar Jackson vs. Deshaun Watson. Brent Venables’ defense against Bobby Petrino’s offense. Death Valley. On Saturday night, a top-five, conference clash awaits us, and surely it won’t disappoint.
If you have any thoughts or comments on these games, opponents, or want to list your own viewing schedule, please do so below in the comments section. The comments section will also serve as a game thread for viewers of these contests to discuss them further.