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Atlantic Coast Conference News and Notes

2:16 PM, Oct 15, 2012   |    comments
Jermaine Thomas (38) bursts through a hole in the line against Miami. Thomas rushed for 78 yards and three touchdowns to help propel Florida State to a surprising romp over Miami. (Photo by Joel Auerbach, Getty Images)
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Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) -


BOSTON COLLEGE: The Eagles found themselves in over their heads in Tallahassee this past weekend, falling behind early and never recovering in a 51-7 drubbing at the hands of Florida State. Boston College managed a mere 225 yards in the game, while allowing a whopping 649 yards, including 448 yards through the air. BC's only score came on an 18-yard TD pass from Chase Rettig to Bobby Swigert in the second quarter. Rettig struggled under center, completing just 15-of-31 passes, for 122 yards. Swigert led the team with five receptions, for 61 yards and the one TD. Andre Williams provided the team with a strong rushing attack, finishing with 104 yards, carrying the ball 20 times. Boston College is still in search of its first win over an FBS program, with the lone win on the year coming against Maine. The team has dropped four straight games since then and will look to end the skein this weekend when the Eagles travel to Atlanta to take on Georgia Tech.

CLEMSON: The Tigers were idle this past weekend, following a big win over Georgia Tech last week. With the win, Clemson moved to 5-1 overall and 2-1 in ACC action. Dabo Swinney's team will get back to work this weekend as they play host to Virginia Tech in Death Valley.

FLORIDA STATE: Following a stunning loss at NC State last week, the Seminoles found their winning ways again, dominating the Boston College Eagles this past weekend at home, 51-7. It was a record-setting performance for a couple of Seminoles, as FSU rolled up 649 yards of total offense. Quarterback EJ Manuel became the first FSU quarterback to throw for 400 yards, as he completed 27- of-34 passes, for a career-high 439 yards and four TDs. Two Florida State receivers eclipsed the century mark, with Rodney Smith finishing with nine catches, for 108 yards and Kenny Shaw adding two receptions, for 125 yards and one TD. Place-kicker Dustin Hopkins' 51-yard field goal gave him 394 career points, as he is now the ACC's all-time leading scorer. Defensively, the Seminoles were stellar once again, limiting BC to a meager 225 total yards. The Seminoles stay in the Sunshine State this week to take on rival Miami- Florida.

MARYLAND: The Terrapins set the tone early, as freshman Stefon Diggs took the opening kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown, as Maryland kept up its winning ways with a 27-20 win at Virginia. Diggs, who entered the game leading the ACC with 21.4 yards per catch, was once again fantastic in that area, hauling in four balls, for 89 yards in the win. The youngster finished with 239 all- purpose yards. Another freshman, quarterback Perry Hills was instrumental in the win as well, throwing for one TD and rushing for another, as Maryland moved to 4-2 overall and remained unbeaten in league play (2-0). The last time Maryland began its ACC slate 2-0 was in 2001. Winners of two straight, the Terrapins return to College Park this weekend for Homecoming against NC State.

NC STATE: The Wolfpack (4-2, 1-1 ACC) have had an extra week to enjoy their huge upset of Florida State back on Oct. 6, as they were idle this past weekend. NC State gets back to work this weekend, as the team makes the trip to College Park to take on the Maryland Terrapins.

WAKE FOREST: Losers of two straight, the Demon Deacons (3-3, 1-3 ACC) were idle this past weekend. Wake Forest will attempt to get back over .500 this weekend, as the team hits the road to take on the equally-struggling Virginia Cavaliers in Charlottesville.


DUKE: The Blue Devils jumped all over the Virginia Tech Hokies in Blacksburg, taking a 20-0 lead at one point, but allowed the game to slip away, giving up 41 unanswered points at Lane Stadium to fall to the Hokies, 41-20. The loss ended a four-game win streak for David Cutcliffe's squad, which hadn't lost since a Sept. 8 setback at Stanford. Quarterback Sean Renfree completed 20- of-33 attempts, for 235 yards and one TD, but was sacked five times. Jamison Crowder had a big game on the outside, catching eight balls, for 127 yards and one TD. Fellow wideout Conner Vernon had four receptions for 70 yards on the day and increased his ACC record to 243 career receptions. He is now 111 yards shy of the school-record for receiving yards and 398 yards shy of the ACC mark. The Blue Devils will attempt to find their winning ways again this weekend, playing host to rival North Carolina.

GEORGIA TECH: The Yellow Jackets were idle this past weekend, but change has come to the program nonetheless, as the team has parted ways with defensive coordinator Al Groh. With losses in each of the last three games, a set that includes Tech giving up a combined 138 points, the Yellow Jackets will attempt to stop the bleeding this weekend, when they play host to Boston College.

MIAMI-FLORIDA: After showing glimpses of scoring potential a couple of games ago, the Hurricanes have struggled to mount much of an attack in the last two games, getting blown out by Notre Dame in Chicago, followed by this past weekend's 18-14 loss to North Carolina. Miami did amass 415 yards of offense in the setback, but were torched for 486 yards, including 214 by North Carolina on the ground. Tailback Mike James led the team with 96 yards rushing and one TD. Quarterback Stephen Morris struggled mightily though, completing just 12-of-26 passes, for just 155 yards, with no touchdowns and two interceptions. It is Homecoming in Miami Gardens this weekend and the Hurricanes will attempt to end their two-game slide when the play host to rival Florida State on Saturday.

NORTH CAROLINA: All-American tailback Giovani Bernard had his second straight outstanding performance, leading the Tar Heels to a hard-fought 18-14 win at Miami this past weekend. Bernard scored two first half touchdowns and rushed for 177 yards, 105 of which came in the second half, as North Carolina moved to 5-2 overall and 2-1 in the ACC. Bernard's total rushing yards were the second-most in his career, following last week's 262 yard-outburst against Virginia Tech. It marked the first road win for Larry Fedora, who is in his debut season in Chapel Hill. Quarterback Bryn Renner failed to throw a touchdown pass in a game for the first time this season, but did finish 25- of-40 passing, for 214 yards in the win. The Tar Heels were busy offensively in the win, amassing 486 yards, with 272 coming on the ground and 214 through the air. The team also had a season-high 84 offensive plays in the game. The Tar Heels take a four-game win streak to Durham this week for a conference showdown against rival Duke.

VIRGINIA: A season that started with so much promise following back-to-back wins over Richmond and Penn State, has taken a downward trend, as the 2012 campaign for Virginia continued to spiral out of control, with last weekend's 27-20 loss to Maryland. The Cavaliers have now lost five straight games and are sitting at 2-5 overall, with a dismal 0-3 mark in-conference. There were bright spots in the setback to the Terrapins, including a defensive effort that allowed a mere 235 yards of total offense. Offensively, tailback Kevin Parks had the top performance for Virginia, rushing for 129 yards on 7.6 yards per carry in his first career start. Quarterback Phillip Sims completed just 13-of-28 passes, for 139 yards and one TD, but was sacked four times. Michael Rocco completed 5-of-11 passes, for 79 yards and one TD. The Cavs will attempt to end their long skein this weekend, when they welcome the Wake Forest Demon Deacons to Charlottesville.

VIRGINIA TECH: The Hokies went down 20-0 in the first quarter, but rallied the rest of the way, earning a 41-20 victory over Duke this past weekend. It marked the first time under Frank Beamer that the team trailed 20-0 and came back and won a game. Virginia Tech got a balanced effort on the offensive side of the ball, racking up 525 total yards, with 269 yards coming on the ground and 256 through the air. Tailback J.C. Coleman had a huge outing, rumbling for 183 yards and two touchdowns on just 13 carries. Quarterback Logan Thomas added 50 yards on the ground, while completing 14-of-23 passes, for 256 yards and two TDs. Wideout Marcus Davis was the primary target in the passing game, hauling in five balls, for 144 yards and two scores. With the win, Tech moved to 4-3 overall and 2-1 in league play. The win came at a cost though, as starting center Andrew Miller went down with an ankle injury. Miller had successful surgery on Sunday and is done for the season. The Hokies will attempt to remain in the Coastal Division hunt when they travel to Death Valley this weekend for a showdown against nationally-ranked Clemson.

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