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2005 SCS.com College Football Preview
2005 ACC FOOTBALL PREVIEW
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August 15, 2005

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PROJECTED STANDINGS TEAM PREVIEWS
CAN'T MISS GAMES ALL-CONFERENCE TEAM

PROJECTED STANDINGS

TEAM ACC OVERALL
ATLANTIC
Florida State 6-2 8-3
Clemson 5-3 7-4
Boston College 4-4 7-4
NC State 3-5 6-5
Maryland 3-5 5-6
Wake Forest 2-6 4-7
COASTAL
Virginia Tech 7-1 10-1
Georgia Tech 6-2 8-3
Miami 6-2 8-3
Virginia 5-3 8-3
North Carolina 1-7 2-9
Duke 0-8 2-9
TITLE GAME: Virginia Tech over Florida State

TEAM PREVIEWS

SCS.com VIRGINIA TECH
Last Season: 10-3 / 7-1
Starters Returning: 8 offense, 6 defense
Projected wins: at NCSU, at Duke, Ohio, GT, at WVU, MAR, at MD, BC, NC
Projected losses: (none)
Toss-Ups: Miami, at Virginia
PROJECTED RECORD: 10-1 / 7-1
BOTTOM LINE: The Hokies look for ACC title number two in 2005 and could very well get it if QB Marcus Vick lives up to hype and puts his past issues behind him. FSU is not on the schedule, and Miami, BC, GT are all at home.

SCS.com FLORIDA STATE
Last Season: 9-3 / 6-2
Starters Returning: 4 offense, 5 defense
Projected wins: CIT, SYR, WF, at Duke, MD, NCSU, at CLEM
Projected losses: (none)
Toss-Ups: Miami, at BC, at VA, at FLA
PROJECTED RECORD: 8-3 / 6-2
BOTTOM LINE: The Seminoles contiuned to deal with off-the-field issues over the summer and return just nine starters from a season ago. A 1-2 start is very possible, but the schedule gets a little easier after that.

SCS.com GEORGIA TECH
Last Season: 7-5 / 4-4
Starters Returning: 5 offense, 8 defense
Projected wins: NC, CONN, NCSU, at Duke, CLEM, WF
Projected losses: at VT
Toss-Ups: at AUB, at Miami, at VA, GA
PROJECTED RECORD: 8-3 / 6-2
BOTTOM LINE: My 2005 sleeper pick in the ACC, GT returns 8 starters on a defense ranked 12th nationally a year ago. The QB, RB, and WR spots are each very solid, but the schedule could make this projection hard to match.

SCS.com MIAMI
Last Season: 9-3 / 5-3
Starters Returning: 5 offense, 10 defense
Projected wins: COLO, USF, Duke, at Temple, NC, at WF
Projected losses: at VT
Toss-Ups: at FSU, at CLEM, GT, VA
PROJECTED RECORD: 8-3 / 6-2
BOTTOM LINE: The 'Canes are used to being in title contention, and 2005 should again find them fighting it out for the ACC crown. The 'D' should be one of the country's best, but the offense is looking for new leadership.

SCS.com CLEMSON
Last Season: 6-5 / 4-4
Starters Returning: 7 offense, 6 defense
Projected wins: at MD, BC, at WF, at NCSU, Temple, Duke
Projected losses: at GT
Toss-Ups: TAMU, Miami, FSU, at SC
PROJECTED RECORD: 7-4 / 5-3
BOTTOM LINE: Though QB Charlie Whitehurst is one of the league's best, the 2004 Tiger offense was horrendous and the record not that great either. Home games against Miami, FSU, and BC tell the tale for CU in '05.

SCS.com VIRGINIA
Last Season: 8-4 / 5-3
Starters Returning: 6 offense, 6 defense
Projected wins: WMU, at SYR, Duke, at MD, NC, Temple
Projected losses: Miami
Toss-Ups: at BC, FSU, GT, VT
PROJECTED RECORD: 8-3 / 5-3
BOTTOM LINE: QB Marques Hagans is back to lead the Cavs against a schedule that should send UVA bowling again in 2005. A five-game home stretch in mid-season will decide if this team has real title hopes.

SCS.com BOSTON COLLEGE
Last Season: 9-3 / 4-2
Starters Returning: 7 offense, 7 defense
Projected wins: Army, Ball St, WF, at NC, NCSU, at MD
Projected losses: FSU, at CLEM, at VT
Toss-Ups: at BYU, VA
PROJECTED RECORD: 7-4 / 4-4
BOTTOM LINE: A promising season ended in huge disappointment for the Eagles in 2004. Though not a 2005 ACC title contender, this fall's schedule sets up nicely and should send BC bowling for the seventh straight season.

SCS.com NC STATE
Last Season: 5-6 / 3-5
Starters Returning: 7 offense, 6 defense
Projected wins: EKY, NC, at WF, MTSU, MD
Projected losses: VT, at GT, CLEM, at FSU, at BC
Toss-Ups: USM
PROJECTED RECORD: 6-5 / 3-5
BOTTOM LINE: The first post-Philip Rivers year was very disappointing. Though the Pack avoids Miami, another .500-type season can be expected again in 2005 as the league schedule is otherwise pretty tough.

SCS.com MARYLAND
Last Season: 5-6 / 3-5
Starters Returning: 6 offense, 4 defense
Projected wins: Navy, at Temple
Projected losses: VA, VT, at FSU
Toss-Ups: CLEM, WVU, at WF, at NC, BC, at NCSU
PROJECTED RECORD: 5-6 / 3-5
BOTTOM LINE: The Terps got a rude wake-up call last fall. After winning ten games in each of the Fridge's first two seasons, UM went just 5-6 in '04. Only ten starters are back this year, so expect a similar outcome in 2005.

SCS.com WAKE FOREST
Last Season: 4-7 / 1-7
Starters Returning: 9 offense, 6 defense
Projected wins: ECU, at Duke
Projected losses: at NEB, CLEM, at FSU, at BC, at GT, Miami
Toss-Ups: VAN, MD, NCSU
PROJECTED RECORD: 4-7 / 2-6
BOTTOM LINE: After averaging six wins over the previous three seasons, the Deacons slipped to just 4-7 in 2004. It will take at least four ACC wins to get Wake to a bowl game in 2005, but don't look for that to take place.

SCS.com NORTH CAROLINA
Last Season: 6-6 / 5-3
Starters Returning: 5 offense, 9 defense
Projected wins: Duke
Projected losses: at GT, at NCSU, at LOU, VA, at Miami, BC, at VT
Toss-Ups: WISC, Utah, MD
PROJECTED RECORD: 2-9 / 1-7
BOTTOM LINE: Darian Durant and the Heels finally broke through in '04, winning six games and earning a bowl berth. Though 9 starters return, the defense was ranked 109th in the country last year. Look for a drop-off.

SCS.com DUKE
Last Season: 2-9 / 1-7
Starters Returning: 6 offense, 6 defense
Projected wins: VMI
Projected losses: VT, at VA, at Miami, GT, FSU, at CLEM, at NC
Toss-Ups: at ECU, Navy, WF
PROJECTED RECORD: 2-9 / 0-8
BOTTOM LINE: The Blue Devils won a pair of games in 2004, and a similar result can be expected come this fall. Though a half-dozen starters return on each side of the ball, more than one league win would be surprising.

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FIVE CAN'T MISS GAMES

November 5 Miami at Virginia Tech
September 5 Miami at Florida State
November 19 Virginia Tech at Virginia
September 24 Georgia Tech at Virginia Tech
October 15 Florida State at Virginia

ALL-CONFERENCE TEAM

OFFENSE
OL D'Brickashaw Ferguson SR Virginia
OL Eric Winston SR Miami
OL Will Montgomery SR Virginia Tech
OL Kyle Ralph SR North Carolina
OL Steve Vallos JR Wake Forest
RB Chris Barclay SR Wake Forest
RB Leon Washington SR Florida State
WR Calvin Johnson SO Georgia Tech
WR Eddie Royal SO Virginia Tech
TE Jeff King SR Virginia Tech
QB Marques Hagans SR Virginia
DEFENSE
DL Mathias Kiwanuka SR Boston College
DL Darryl Tapp SR Virginia Tech
DL Mario Williams JR NC State
DL Eric Henderson SR Georgia Tech
LB D'Qwell Jackson SR Maryland
LB Ahmad Brooks JR Virginia
LB Ernie Sims JR Florida State
DB Jimmy Williams SR Virginia Tech
DB Pat Watkins SR Florida State
DB Greg Threat SR Miami
DB John Talley JR Duke
SPECIAL TEAMS
K Brandon Pace JR Virginia Tech
P Adam Podlesh JR Maryland
AP Devin Hester JR Miami

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