Our series taking a look at the most important game on the schedule this year for each ACC school continues today with Virginia. For those of you just tuning in, this is a look at which games will reveal the most or have the biggest impact on the 2012 race.
Most important game: Nov. 24 at Virginia Tech
Why it’s important: Last year’s embarrassing shutout. Bragging rights. The Commonwealth Cup. Recruiting. Last year this game meant all of that AND the Coastal Division title. If Virginia is going to reclaim any of the power within the state or the conference, it has to first get through Blacksburg. UVa has now lost to Virginia Tech eight times in a row and 12 of the past 13 games. Few, if any, were expecting the Hoos to contend for the division title last year, but Mike London, the ACC’s Coach of the Year, put them in position to win it. Virginia flopped when it mattered most, though, and lost 38-0 to its rival in the regular-season finale. More is expected of Virginia in London’s third season, but the Hoos have to replace seven starters on defense and have a tough September schedule that includes a road trip to Georgia Tech. They’ll also be heading to Blacksburg following back-to-back games against Coastal Division opponents Miami and UNC. Even if the division title isn’t on the line come November, though, no game matters more to the program and no win would be bigger than one against the rival Hokies.