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The ACC in SP+, Week 7: NC State holding steady in league’s chewy center

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NCAA Football: North Carolina State at Pittsburgh Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

NC State moved up a couple spots in the SP+ ratings despite playing like big poopie for the majority of the first half against an inferior Duke team. We can’t complain about how that game played out, though, as State had a much much better week than a lot of the ACC. (Sorry about that, Georgia Tech. We’re all trying to pretend we didn’t see it happen to you.)

ACC SP+ Standings

Team Wk 7 SP+ Rtg (Rank) Rank Change Offense Rank Defense Rank
Team Wk 7 SP+ Rtg (Rank) Rank Change Offense Rank Defense Rank
Clemson 28.5 (2) -- 3 4
Notre Dame 20.6 (7) -- 13 8
UNC 17.2 (10) -1 5 37
Miami 13.9 (19) -2 37 16
Virginia Tech 13.5 (21) 4 16 36
Pitt 7.3 (38) -6 90 17
Louisville 4.7 (45) -4 15 92
Virginia 4.2 (49) -10 66 39
BC 3.2 (58) -6 45 72
Georgia Tech 1.4 (60) -12 77 49
NC State 1.2 (61) 2 60 64
FSU 0.9 (64) -17 56 71
Wake Forest -1.3 (71) 5 87 61
Duke -5.2 (88) -14 118 43
Syracuse -8.3 (105) -14 110 88

It’s helping me feel better about NC State’s loss to Virginia Tech to know that the Hokies’ rushing success in that game was no fluke. VPI ran for 350 on 8.5 per carry against BC last weekend, and that offense has been over 300 yards three times in four games. The Hokies are just that good.

On the other end of the spectrum, we have teams like Virginia and Syracuse that have lost starting quarterbacks to injury and are cratering. Duke’s offense slipped to 118th, which still feels a little high, if you ask me.

There’s a pretty clear upper tier within the ACC that ends with Virginia Tech, and then you get on into the confusing middle, where like eight teams could look twice as good as anyone else in that range on any given Saturday. ACC football always manages to deliver on confusion.