By: Brad Senkiw
The biggest ACC story in the month of September is Clemson’s struggling offense in a 2-1 start, but that’s not the only surprise in this league through the first third of the 2021 season.
Here’s a Week 4 ACC power ranking to try and make sense of what’s occurred during the first four weeks:
1. Wake Forest
2. NC State
4. Boston College
The top tier of the ACC is a tad confusing. Yes, the Demon Deacons have been the best team in the league so far, starting 4-0 against some not-so-good opponents, but they at least dominated them and have looked the part. The Wolfpack have the best win in the league with what they did to Clemson last Saturday, and despite the Tigers’ struggles, they still have the best defense in the ACC and there is no close second. BC gets a chance to move up with a game against Clemson on Saturday.
6. Virginia Tech
7. Georgia Tech
This group has some head-scratching losses, but they’ve also impressed. Pitt lost to Western Michigan, but Kenny Pickett has 15 touchdowns to one interception. Virginia Tech probably should’ve won at West Virginia, but trouncing UNC in the opener still holds up. The Yellow Jackets fell to Northern Illinois in Week 1, but the close loss at Clemson wasn’t a fluke as they routed UNC last Saturday. There are opportunities to move up among these schools.
8. North Carolina
These four schools are all lacking consistency. The Tar Heels have way too much talent, especially on offense, to have two conference losses. Louisville, meanwhile, struggles to play well for 60 minutes and because of that, could probably lose to or beat anybody in the league right now. Virginia was the hot team early but cooled off last week. Let’s see what they do against Miami on Thursday night. The Orange are much improved on defense, but the offense still lacks explosive offensive plays.
This is the bottom of the barrel in the league. The Hurricanes have talent that hasn’t come together in two losses to top-25 teams. Duke has shown flashes of not being the worst team in the ACC while FSU has totally owned that title with an 0-4 start.