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ACC Football Power Rankings, Week 13: Notre Dame & Clemson hit the homestretch

As the calendar gets set to flip over to December, we’ve entered the homestretch for college football. Conference title games are right around the corner. With that in mind, let’s get moving on this week’s ACC Football Power Rankings.

 

No. 1 Notre Dame

Behind a strong second half in Chapel Hill, Notre Dame — No. 2 in the CFP rankings — handled its business on the road.

Kyren Williams ran the show, once again: 23 carries for 124 yards and two rushing touchdowns. Williams hauled in his first touchdown catch of the season, too. This marks the fifth multi-touchdown game of the year for the star back.

Next up: Syracuse, Saturday (Dec. 5), 2:30 p.m.

Record: 9-0

 

No. 2 Clemson

It’s been a weird few weeks for the Clemson Tigers; however, with Trevor Lawrence back for the first time since mid-October, things looked right as rain against Pittsburgh. Lawrence threw for 403 yards (10.9 yards per attempt) and two touchdowns.

Next up: at Virginia Tech, Saturday (Dec. 5), 7:30 p.m.

Record: 8-1

 

No. 3 Miami

Hi, Hurricanes. See you in Durham next weekend, I guess.

Next up: at Duke, Saturday (Dec. 5), 8:00 p.m.

Record: 7-1

 

No. 4 North Carolina

Going down in defeat, North Carolina’s ground game was swallowed up by Notre Dame’s defense. The Tar Heels ran for a season-low 87 yards — with an average of only 2.9 yards per carry.

Next up: Western Carolina, Saturday (Dec. 5), 12:00 p.m.

Record: 6-3

 

No. 5 NC State

It wasn’t pretty at times; turnovers nearly proved costly. However, NC State managed to get a tough win on the road against Syracuse — behind four touchdown passes from Bailey Hockman, three of which went to Thayer Thomas.

Next up: Georgia Tech, Saturday (Dec. 5),

Record: 7-3

 

No. 6 Wake Forest

Wake Forest hasn’t won a game since the end of October. The Demon Deacons will also have had a full month in between games when they take the field next. Weird season.

Next up: Notre Dame, Saturday (Dec. 12), 12:00 p.m.

Record: 4-3

 

No. 7 Boston College

Boston College fought through injuries to grab a home win over Malik Cunningham and Louisville. It’s victory No. 6 on the season for the Eagles.

Next up: at Virginia, Saturday (Dec. 5), 3:30 p.m.

Record: 6-4

 

No. 8 Virginia

Never forget: this was the most wonderful play of the 2020 ACC football season.

Next up: at Boston College (Dec. 5), 3:30 p.m.

Record: 4-4

 

No. 9 Virginia Tech

When you’re staring down a three-game losing slide, the last thing you want to see is a Trevor Lawrence-led Clemson team coming to town. Buckle up.

Next up: Clemson, Saturday (Dec. 5), 7:30 p.m.

Record: 4-5

 

No. 10 Pittsburgh

Clemson halted a two-game winning streak for Pittsburgh, but the Panthers will have a chance to pull out a winning regular season two Thursdays from now.

Next up: Georgia Tech, Thursday (Dec. 10), 7:00 p.m.

Record: 5-5

 

No. 11 Louisville

It’s been a tough season for Louisville, one that’s fallen below preseason expectations. But Malik Cunningham has been pretty awesome. Ranked No. 3 in QBR among ACC quarterbacks, Cunningham put up big numbers against BC: 294 passing yards and two touchdown passes. Cunningham ran for 133 yards, too.

Next up: Wake Forest, Saturday (Dec. 19)

Record: 3-7

 

No. 12 Georgia Tech

Folks, we’ve been saying it all year: Jahmyr Gibbs is very good at football. During the win over Duke, Gibbs and the rest of Georgia Tech’s backfield took over. Gibbs accounted for 139 yards from scrimmage and two touchdowns — on 10 touches. Jordan Mason ran for 105 yards, while Dontae Smith sprinted in for two fourth quarter touchdowns as well.

Next up: at NC State, Saturday (Dec. 5), 4:00 p.m.

Record: 3-5

 

No. 13 Duke

Along with giving up 56 points in back-to-back games, Duke’s defense also allowed 370+ rushing yards to both UNC and Georgia Tech.

Next up: Miami, Saturday (Dec. 5), 8:00 p.m.

Record: 2-7

 

No. 14 Florida State

Completion of this section has been postponed, too.

Next up: Virginia, TBA

Record: 2-6

 

No. 15 Syracuse

Let’s make an amendment: *this* was the most wonderful play that happened in the ACC this season.

Next up: at Notre Dame, Saturday (Dec. 5), 2:30 p.m.

Record: 1-9

 

Contributor Rankings

 Brian GeisingerJosh GrahamConsensus
1Notre DameNotre DameNotre Dame
2ClemsonClemsonClemson
3MiamiMiamiMiami
4North CarolinaNorth CarolinaNorth Carolina
5NC StateNC StateNC State
6Wake ForestBoston CollegeWake Forest
7Boston CollegeWake ForestBoston College
8VirginiaVirginia TechVirginia
9PittPittVirginia Tech
10Virginia TechVirginiaPitt
11LouisvilleGeorgia TechLouisville
12Georgia TechLouisvilleGeorgia Tech
13DukeFlorida StateDuke
14SyracuseDukeFlorida State
15Florida StateSyracuseSyracuse