1. Clemson (12-0, 8-0, won at South Carolina 37-32)
It was a little tighter than expected, but Clemson has run the table and will go into next week’s ACC Championship at 12-0. Watson got it done on the ground and through the air while accounting for four of the Tiger’s five touchdowns. A win next week guarantees them the number one seed in the playoff, where they will most likely see Iowa or Michigan State.
2. North Carolina (11-1, 8-0, won at NC State 45-34)
The first quarter was all UNC needed to take care of their arch-rival NC State (hey! That’s us!). UNC’s running game has been a major difference maker from last season to this one, and the Wolfpack defense had no answer for Elijah Hood.
3. Florida State (10-2, 6-2, won at Florida 27-2)
Dalvin Cook is super good at football. The back rushed for 183 yards and two touchdowns to lead FSU to the victory. As it turns out, all Florida State needed to win this game was a single field goal.
4. Miami (8-4, 5-3, won at Pitt 29-24)
A season which saw the Canes fire their head coach right in the middle of it ended on a way better note than it probably should have, with the Hurricanes winning four of their last five games. The strong finish culminated with their best win of the year against Pittsburgh
5. Pittsburgh (8-4, 6-2, lost to Miami 24-29)
Despite losing their final game to a team they definitely could have beaten, this season was a major success for the Panthers. This is especially true when you consider the injury of their best offensive player and uncertainty at quarterback, all of which happened under a first year coach.
6. Louisville (7-5, 5-3, won at Kentucky 38-24)
Louisville outscored their arch-rivals 31-0 in the second half to complete their comeback. It was a good way to end a season where the Cardinals looked like a major disappointment after the first three weeks. They ended the season 7-2. Perhaps the biggest thing that forced this team to take a small step back this year was the fact that quarterback situation is as settled now as it was before week one.
7. Virginia Tech (6-6, 4-4, won at Virginia 23-20)
Frank Beamer will lead his Hokies into a bowl game one final time after they got that coveted sixth win over rival Virginia on Saturday. A late field goal and subsequent interception sealed the deal for the twelfth straight season. Then Beamer dabbed in the locker room, ending his #goacc dynasty in the best way possible.
8.NC State (7-5, 3-5, lost to UNC 34-45)
9. Duke (7-5, 4-4, won at Wake Forest 27-21)
Duke beat Wake Forest to end their four game skid. They finish the year at 4-4 in the ACC. It’s a nice rebound for the Blue Devils, whose season went off the rails entirely following a home loss to Miami.
10. Virginia (4-8, 3-5, lost to Virginia Tech 20-24)
The Cavaliers played better over the second half of the season, but it turns out that it was too little too late for Mike London. Virginia was competitive, with five or their eight losses coming by one score, but almost doesn’t count. For the second straight season, Virginia had Virginia Tech down late in the fourth quarter and couldn’t finish the job.
11. Syracuse (4-8, 2-6, won over BC 20-17)
Syracuse snapped an eight game losing streak against the lowly Boston College Eagles, but it wasn’t until the clock read 0:00 that the Orange finally won another game. Cole Murphy’s 35 yard game winner put them over top as time expired.
12. Georgia Tech (3-9, 1-7, lost to Georgia 7-13)
It’s nearly impossible to believe how far this team has fallen since their destruction of Mississippi State on New Year’s Eve last year. The Yellow Jackets turned the ball over three times, gained just 276 offensive yards, and failed to score a point until the fourth quarter on Saturday. A home loss to one of the least impressive Georgia teams in recent memory is a fitting end to the nightmare.
13. Wake Forest (3-9, 1-7, lost to Duke 21-27)
The once 3-3 Demon Deacons dropped six straight to finish the year. John Wolford gave a great effort, passing for 338 yards and two scores. A late rally cut a 17 point lead to three, but Wake could not get over the hump.
14. Boston College (3-9, 0-8, lost at Syracuse 17-20)
The Eagles are the ACC's lone team to finish the season without winning a conference game. In what was their best shot since the Wake Forest debacle to get one, it was ironically the defense that could not come in clutch. Syracuse drove down the field for the game winning field goal as time expired after Boston College had managed to tie the game with just under three minutes to play. A dreadful season ends on a heartbreaking play.