While all our attention was focused on Virginia falling just short against Indiana this weekend, other things apparently happened elsewhere around the ACC. Here’s three things you missed if you were stuck in the rain in Bloomington on Saturday.
1. Florida State, despite winning their first game, secured their position as the biggest early-season ACC disappointment.
The Florida State Seminoles trailed FCS Samford (who received $500,000 from FSU to buy their visit to Tallahassee) for almost the entire game, quickly falling behind 13-0 in the first quarter and not gaining the lead until a touchdown drive late in the fourth quarter. While FSU did force four interceptions, its secondary allowed Samford QB Devlin Hodges to pass for 475 yards and 2 TDs in front of a nervous home crowd.
After the Virginia Tech Hokies crushed Florida State on the road last week, we asked: Is Virginia Tech better than we thought, or is FSU worse? The Hokies certainly deserve credit for what they did in Tallahassee, but it does look like FSU was undeserving of their preseason ranking.
2. Jimbo Fisher’s new team looked far better than his old one,.
The Clemson Tigers led Jimbo Fisher’s Texas A&M Aggies team 14-3 at halftime and 28-13 at the end of the third quarter, but the Aggies scored two fourth-quarter touchdowns (the second after regaining possession with just over a minute to play in the game). The Tigers escaped College Station with a win by stopping A&M’s two-point conversion attempt to tie, capping a dramatic final minute.
(Fisher’s near-upset of Clemson won’t make Noles fans feel any better!)
3. UVA has some beatable ACC Coastal competition on its schedule.
The North Carolina Tar Heels and Pittsburgh Panthers were both embarrassed this weekend. UNC looked completely hapless against ECU, falling to 0-2 on the year with a 41-19 road loss. Pitt fell 51-6 at home to its own in-state rival, Penn State, as the Nittany Lions outscored Pitt 37-0 in the second half to turn a close 14-6 game into a rout.
Georgia Tech also lost a wild back-and-forth game at South Florida by a final score of 49-38. Combined with UVA’s loss at Indiana, that brought the ACC Coastal to a 3-4 record on the week (and 1-4 against FBS competition).