newsseth megginson five bold acc football predictions

Seth Megginson: Five bold ACC football predictions

The college football season is set to kickoff in a few weeks, and the ACC has plenty of storylines heading into the season.

acc footballCan Clemson repeat as champions? Will FSU retake the ACC crown? Will Miami finally breakthrough in the coastal or is Tech still the favorite?

Here are a few bold predictions for the ACC season.


Florida State will be the first team to lose two games and make the college football playoff

Florida State is the favorite to win the ACC and one of the favorites to win the national title. That being said the Seminoles have plenty of obstacles in their way. The Noles kickoff the season with Alabama and the conference schedule does them no favors. FSU will play Louisville, NC State and Miami at home but must make a trip to Death Valley against Clemson. The prediction is that Florida State falls on opening weekend to Alabama, and suffers one more loss in conference but still manages to make the ACC title game and win the conference. That will lead FSU to be the first team that has lost two games and still make the college football playoff, perhaps even a rematch with Alabama will be in the Noles future.


Miami and Florida State will finally meet in the ACC title game

In the 12 years that the ACC has had a championship not once has the match up that the conference wanted for the title has happened. That game is FSU against rival Miami. This year both teams seem to be the favorites in their divisions and both teams return strong defenses and playmakers on offense. Its hard to believe that this matchup has not been for the ACC title since the Hurricanes joined the ACC in 2004, but hard times have fallen on the Canes in the past decade. Under Mark Richt things are looking up for Miami now. In Richts second year he will lead the Canes into an all Florida ACC championship game giving Miami their first coastal division title.


FSU, Miami, Virginia Tech, and Louisville will all win ten games

Last season the ACC made a case that it is now the best football conference. This season the conference will have its chance to make an even bigger statement with six teams that could make it to ten wins. The prediction here is that four teams will win ten regular season games and that will be more than any other conference in the country. FSU, Miami, VT, and Louisville all have the talent to win a lot of their games this season and the schedule sets up nicely for teams like Miami who should be favored in all of their games but one.


Clemson will lose three games in the regular season

The defending national champions should have one of the best defenses in the country but replacing quarterback Deshawn Watson will be a big task for the Tigers. Last season the Tigers lost to Pitt and could have easily lost more games with FSU, Louisville, NC State, Tech and even Troy gave the Tigers all they could handle. The Tigers are now the team with the target on their back and in a conference that has become full of talented teams its going to be hard for a team like Clemson to break in a new QB and hope to find the success that they had last season. The Tigers also have a tough September with games against Auburn and two road tests at Louisville and Virginia Tech. A 9-3 season looks to be on the horizon for the Tigers in 2017.


Pitt will not make a bowl game

Last season the Pitt Panthers pulled off the best win of the year going into Clemson and knocking off the eventual national champion. Pitt also took down in state rival and eventual Big Ten champions Penn state making it a year to remember for the Panthers. Despite all the success that Pitt saw last season there are still some cause for concerns especially on the defensive side of the ball.  The Panthers ranked 101 in the country on defense last season and they were 127 in pass defense. Teams like UVA and Marshall were able to move the ball down the field of this defense. Pitt last year got some big wins that lead them to an 8-4 record in 2017 but can that continue to happen when a defense is that bad, and you once again have Penn State and Oklahoma State in your non-conference schedule. The prediction for this year is Pitts defense doesn’t improve that much and the offense cannot make up for it like last season and the Panthers miss out on going bowling in 2017.

Column by Seth Megginson

Seth Megginson

Seth Megginson

Seth Megginson covers sports for AFP. A graduate of Radford University, Seth has done freelance work for the Daily News-Record in Harrisonburg covering high school and college football.