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FSU goes wire-to-wire as conference’s best: ACC Week 14 Power Rankings 

Scott German
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Florida State was clearly the best team in the ACC from start to finish. The Seminoles began the season as the No. 1 in the power rankings and never flinched.

The Seminoles closed out a perfect 12-0 regular season with a 24-15 win in the swamp over rival Florida Saturday evening.

The uncertainty looming in Tallahassee is can the unbeaten Seminoles climb back into the CFP Top 4 without star quarterback Jordan Travis?

While FSU held the unanimous No. 1 spot in our power rankings the entire season, No. 2 was a different story.

Miami, UNC, Duke, Louisville, and NC State each occupied the No. 2 position during the regular season. The Cardinals and Tar Heels each had four weeks as second-best, but NC State, closing with five straight wins, finishes as No. 2, its only time this season that high.

Regardless of the ratings, it’s FSU vs. Louisville in the ACC Championship Game Saturday evening in Charlotte. That game lost some of its luster when Kentucky, on the road, upset Louisville, 38-31.

While the top of the ACC, behind FSU, was a carousel of teams, the bottom feeders did likewise.

Pitt and Syracuse shared the No. 14 spot for several weeks, Boston College, Virginia and Virginia Tech also spent time in the basement as well.

In the end, the ACC has 11 bowl-eligible teams, with Syracuse and Virginia Tech meeting the six-win threshold Saturday.

The reality of the bowl season became known with Syracuse going bowling after the conclusion of a season so disappointing it got head coach Dino Babers fired.

Such is college football 2023.

Here’s the final 2023 ACC Power Rankings:

  1. FSU (12-0, 8-0 ACC) The best the ACC had in 2023. The question, however: is it good enough for a CFP bid?
  2. NC State (9-3, 6-2 ACC) The Wolfpack closes with five straight wins as QB Brennan Armstrong resurrects his career. State coach Dave Dorean may be the best under-the-radar coach in the country.
  3. Louisville (10-2, 7-1 ACC) Kentucky ended any hopes Louisville had of reaching the CFP with a stunning upset in Louisville.  The Wildcat win also took the glimmer of the ACC title game as well.
  4. Clemson (8-4, 4-4 ACC) The Tigers finished the season strong, winning their last four, including a 16-7 win over state-rival South Carolina on Saturday.
  5. North Carolina (8-4, 4-4 ACC) The Tar Heels, ranked in the Top 10 nationally earlier this year, lost four of their last five conference games, finishing .500 in the ACC.
  6. Duke (7-5, 4-4 ACC) Blue Devil head coach Mike Elko is set to be hired as the new coach at Texas A&M. Enough said.
  7. Miami (7-5, 3-5 ACC) The Hurricanes snapped a three-game losing streak to close out the regular season with a road win at BC. The much-anticipated FSU-Miami championship game fizzled away weeks ago. Same old Miami: great recruiting doesn’t mean much.
  8. Georgia Tech (6-6, 5-3 ACC) GT gave rival Georgia a far more competitive game than most of the Bulldogs’ Southeastern Conference peers did. Disclaimer: Georgia was playing without four key offensive players.
  9. Virginia Tech (6-6, 5-3 ACC) Tech closed out an up-and-down season with a dominant win over Virginia. The Hokies had six wins, but upon a deeper dive all six victories were against teams with non-winning records.
  10. Boston College (6-6, 3-5 ACC) BC ended the season being trounced at home by a reeling Miami. The Eagles, nonetheless, are going bowling.
  11. Syracuse (6-6, 2-6 ACC) The Orange, having fired head coach Dino Babers earlier in the week, became bowl-eligible with a win over woeful Wake Forest. No coach, no problem.
  12. Virginia (3-9, 2-6 ACC) Having witnessed firsthand UVA’s dreadful 55-17 bludgeoning to Virginia Tech, I cannot imagine not dropping the Cavaliers lower than No. 12. The problem is there are two more teams that are worse.
  13. Wake Forest (4-8, 1-7 ACC) Just the fourth losing season for Wake coach Dave Clawson in his 10 years in Winston-Salem.
  14. Pitt (3-9, 2-6 ACC)Pitt fired its offensive coordinator Sunday after another pitiful offensive performance Saturday, losing to Duke. Pitt had just 43 yards rushing.

Scott German

Scott German

Scott German covers UVA Athletics for AFP, and is the co-host of “Street Knowledge” podcasts focusing on UVA Athletics with AFP editor Chris Graham. Scott has been around the ‘Hoos his whole life. As a reporter, he was on site for UVA basketball’s Final Fours, in 1981 and 1984, and has covered UVA football in bowl games dating back to its first, the 1984 Peach Bowl.