FSU bright spot
As rough as Florida State’s 3-3 start has been, its run defense has been one of the best in the nation. The Seminoles are seventh nationally in yards per rush allowed (2.76) and held Northern Illinois to only six yards — the best showing by an ACC defense this year. Don’t expect Wake Forest’s mediocre run game to crack FSU on Saturday.
UConn is very bad at football
No. 21 USF picked the right opponent for homecoming; UConn ranks last (130th) in the S&P+ advanced metrics and several other key stats (national ranking in parenthesis):
Scoring defense: 53.7 ppg (130)
Scoring offense: 20.3 ppg (122)
Scoring differential: minus-200 (130)
Yards per play allowed: 9.21 (130)
Tackles for loss: 20 (127)
Turnover margin: minus-11 (129)
Opponent third-down conversion: 52.5 percent (129)
Pillaging the Knights?
East Carolina probably can’t hang with No. 10 UCF, but its defensive front might pose a challenge. The Pirates’ 61 tackles for loss trail only Miami nationally, and they have double-digit TFLs in each of the last three games. How will UCF’s strong offensive line handle this challenge?
A sure-to-be-wrong projection of the consistently mediocre ACC’s Coastal Division’s final standings:
1. Virginia Tech (4-2, 3-0 ACC): Off this week before a five-game finale with four home contests (including Miami)
2. Miami (5-2, 2-1): The defense is the best single unit in the division, which might be enough to make it back to Charlotte
3. Duke (5-1, 1-1): QB Daniel Jones is getting a lot of NFL buzz, and the Blue Devils’ only loss came in his first game back from a broken collarbone
4. Virginia (4-2, 2-1): The Cavaliers can prove they’re legit by beating Duke a week after upsetting Miami
5. Pitt (3-4, 2-1): After beating Syracuse and hanging with Notre Dame, maybe the Panthers are figuring themselves out?
6. Georgia Tech (3-4, 1-3): It feels as if coach Paul Johnson’s days could be numbered
7. North Carolina (1-4, 1-2): Best thing that has happened to the Tar Heels was the Week 3 cancelation that saved them from a blowout loss to UCF
By the numbers
3 – Power Five teams to start nine different offensive linemen: FSU, Georgia Tech and Baylor
176.2 – All-purpose yards per game by Wake Forest WR Greg Dortch
4 – Consecutive 100-yard games for USF RB Jordan Cronkrite. Only Marlon Mack and Quinton Flowers have had longer streaks
6.5 – Solo tackles per game by Maryland LB Tre Watson (Tampa Catholic). That leads the Big Ten
6 – Fourth-quarter points Florida International has allowed all season
49 – Career wins for Florida Atlantic’s Lane Kiffin as a college coach