Week 1 of the 2015 college football season is in the books, and the ACC posted a 10-4 record in the opening weekend. This week, Clemson leads the way.
For the first time since 2011, Clemson opened up the season against a non-SEC opponent. In a 49-10 blowout win over Wofford, the Tigers played 13 true freshmen — the most in a single game since 1943, when all of the program’s juniors and seniors were drafted by the U.S. Government.
2. Florida State
The Jameis Winston era in Tallahassee is over, but the offense appeared to be in good hands with Everett Golson behind center. Look for the Seminoles to settle in at or near the top of the power rankings for the rest of the season.
3. Georgia Tech
The Yellow Jackets took advantage of an easy start to what will become a brutal schedule. In a 69-6 victory over Alcorn State, they scored nine of their 10 touchdowns before the fourth quarter.
Miami was one of two league teams to shut out its opponent in Week 1. The Hurricanes should cruise to another win in Week 2, as they travel to Florida Atlantic.
For the fourth year in a row, Duke opened up its season with a win. The Blue Devils didn’t leave any doubt in a 37-7 thrashing of Tulane.
6. NC State
Running back Shadrach Thornton was out, serving the first half of a two-game suspension. Despite his absence, the Wolfpack had no trouble moving the ball against Troy.
Louisville was competitive in a 31-24 loss to No. 6 Auburn, which is a positive sign for the program moving forward. That said, it remains to be seen if Lamar Jackson is the long-term answer at quarterback.
8. Virginia Tech
The 42-24 loss will be tough to swallow for Virginia Tech, but it’s important to remember that the Hokies held a 17-14 lead at halftime. The sooner quarterback Michael Brewer returns, the better.
9. North Carolina
North Carolina outplayed a mediocre South Carolina team, but untimely mistakes by quarterback Marquise Williams cost the Tar Heels a shot at their first win over an SEC opponent since 2010. Larry Fedora’s team still has an excellent shot of winning its next three matchups.
Even without James Conner, Pitt’s offense looked solid running the ball on Saturday. The Panthers even looked improved on defense outside the big plays it gave up in the second half. Still, it all resulted in an unimpressive 45-37 win over Youngstown State.
11. Boston College
It’s not that the Eagles are bad; they’re just unproven. A 24-3 victory over Maine didn’t answer many questions.
12. Wake Forest
Yes, Elon is horrible, even by FCS standards. But Wake Forest did what it needed to do, and there’s no doubt that the Demon Deacons looked better than they did last season.
UVa’s loss in the Rose Bowl certainly wasn’t embarrassing, but it didn’t leave reason to believe the Cavaliers are much better this year. The bright spot for Mike London’s squad was Smoke Mizzell, who is emerging as a true playmaker.
Syracuse took care of business against an awful Rhode Island team, but the loss of starting quarterback Terrel Hunt hurts. Freshman signal-caller Eric Dungey showed promise, but that still doesn’t create much reason for hope.