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Remaining ACC Schedule for Coastal Teams: Week 8

It was a bye week and there was only one game involving a coastal team, but things still changed quite a bit.

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

There was only one conference game this past weekend involving an ACC Coastal team - Duke's thumping of Georgia Tech in Atlanta (which was not as close as the final 31-25 score may indicate). But that win, coupled with a few games in the Atlantic and some non-conference games shuffled the STL Power Rankings quite a bit.

What we've got now is a situation where Virginia is sitting alone at the top of the Coastal, the lone undefeated-in-conference-play team on this side of the conference. But how hard is the road for Virginia, compared to the four one-loss teams nipping at their heels? It starts this weekend in Durham, but what about the rest of the schedule?

First, let's take a look at the remaining ACC slate for the Coastal Teams:

Virginia Cavaliers (2-0)
Duke
North Carolina
Georgia Tech
Florida State
Miami
Virginia Tech

Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (2-1)
North Carolina
Pittsburgh
Virginia
N.C.S.U.
Clemson

Duke Blue Devils (1-1)
Virginia
Pittsburgh
Syracuse
Virginia Tech
North Carolina
Wake Forest

Pittsburgh Panthers (1-1)
Virginia Tech
Georgia Tech
Duke
North Carolina
Syracuse
Miami

Virginia Tech Hokies (1-1)
Pittsburgh
Miami
Boston College
Duke
Wake Forest
Virginia

Miami Hurricanes (1-2)
Virginia Tech
North Carolina
Florida State
Virginia
Pittsburgh

North Carolina Tar Heels (0-2)
Georgia Tech
Virginia
Miami
Pittsburgh
Duke
N.C.S.U.

Basically everything that I said last week holds true since so little changed.

But what about the "strength of schedule" as determined by the STL Power Rankings? Let's just say it doesn't look any more rosy than it did last week.

As a refresher, Virginia had the hardest remaining schedule of all Coastal teams last week. Miami was a close second. Virginia Tech and Duke rounded out the bottom with the easiest remaining schedules.

And this week? The story is mostly the same.

At the top, Virginia has the hardest schedule with an average opponent ranking of 6.17, interestingly the same as it was last week. Miami is second at 6.40.

At the bottom, Duke still has the easiest schedule at a whopping 9.67 - almost a whole slot easier than last week (8.71). That's due almost completely to GT no longer being on their remaining schedule. Pitt slides down into the second-easiest slot, but kept the same average opponent ranking at 8.17.

Here's the full list:

Virginia: 6.17
Miami: 6.40
North Carolina: 7.17
Georgia Tech: 7.60
Virginia Tech: 8.00
Pittsburgh: 8.17
Duke: 9.67

So what's the moral of the story?

If Duke didn't already have a loss, they'd have the inside track to winning the Coastal with their crossovers being Wake Forest (14) and Syracuse (13). Virginia, with no conference losses, could afford to drop one game - perhaps to Florida State? - and still be in the mix. Most other teams (especially two-loss Miami and North Carolina) don't have that luxury.

Things will change A LOT this weekend with three games each involving two Coastal teams on the slate. Virginia Tech is at Pittsburgh on Thursday at 7:30pm. Virginia, of course, is at Duke at 12:30pm on Saturday. Georgia Tech and North Carolina wrap things up in Chapel Hill at 7:00pm that night. If the "favored" (as per STL Power Rankings) teams win this weekend, it should separate the wheat from the chaff.