Beamer: Too soon to judge the ACC

Posted by ESPN.com’s Heather Dinich

Before the season started, Virginia Tech coach Frank Beamer said he thought at least 10 teams in the ACC would be better than they were a year ago.

Despite the poor start in Week 1 -- which included two losses to FCS programs and a 0-4 start against the Pac-10, the Big 12 and two SEC opponents -- Beamer said on Monday’s teleconference he still thinks the ACC will be improved in 2009.

“I think a lot of strange things can happen the first ballgame of the year in college football,” Beamer said. “I still stand by my statement that most of our teams are going to be better in the ACC this year, and as we play the games throughout the year, it’s going to prove out that way. After the first week of the season, I don’t think you can judge how a conference is. You take it over a period of time.”

He’s right -- the ACC will still provide an entertaining conference race, but parity and competitiveness within a conference doesn’t translate to national respect. NC State coach Tom O’Brien said it in July at the ACC Football Kickoff -- the league has to win its nonconference games to earn that kind of respect. The Pack was among six teams in the ACC that failed to do that.

The ACC could still be better than it was a year ago, but the only true measure as to how much better comes when it faces competition from the other BCS conferences. And so far, the ACC looks status quo.