- Heather Dinich, College Football Reporter
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Here’s a look back at Week 8 in the ACC ...
The good: Clemson's defense. This highly criticized group played arguably its best game of the season, forcing Virginia Tech into four turnovers, including one interception safety Jonathan Meeks ran back 74 yards for a touchdown. The Hokies’ 17 points were a season low by an FBS team against Clemson this year.
The bad: Maryland’s quarterback situation. It started when Danny O’Brien transferred, and the hits just keep on coming for the Terps’ quarterbacks. As if it weren’t bad enough to lose starter C.J. Brown to a season-ending knee injury this summer, his backup, Perry Hills, was injured and taken out of Saturday’s game against NC State. And then there were two -- Caleb Rowe and Devin Burns, a former receiver who switched positions this summer just to help out.
The ugly: BC and Virginia are a combined 0-8 in ACC play.
The ugly II: Two calls in the Clemson-Virginia Tech game. The first was a sack that was called on Virginia Tech quarterback Logan Thomas. It appeared the official blew the whistle too quickly, and it didn’t look anything like a sack. Maybe it was intended to prevent an injury? It nullified what would have been a momentum-changing first down. The other was a questionable call on what looked like a fumble by Sammy Watkins in the third quarter.
The historic: Duke’s sixth win. The Blue Devils are bowl eligible for the first time since 1994 and they are leading the Coastal Division standings after a 33-30 win over rival North Carolina.
The improved: Georgia Tech’s defense. After a tumultuous bye week in which defensive coordinator Al Groh was fired and assistant Charles Kelly was named the interim, the Jackets regrouped and showed progress in a win over BC. Georgia Tech shut down Boston College in a 37-17 win, holding the Eagles to 296 total yards and 32 on the ground.
The stat: The Hokies have four losses before the end of October for the first time since 1992.
The stat II: Duke had 234 yards rushing -- the most ever on the ground by a David Cutcliffe-coached Duke team.
The quote: "I'm still pretty darn young, and I've got a long time to go," he said, "but I want to leave this place much better than when we walked into it. That's when you know you've done something right." – Duke coach David Cutcliffe, according to USA Today.
The play II: With two seconds remaining against NC State, Maryland kicker Brad Craddock’s 33-yard field goal attempt hit the left upright to seal NC State’s 20-18 win.
The painful: Both Florida State and Miami lost their leading rushers to injuries on Saturday. FSU running back Chris Thompson suffered a knee injury and Miami’s Duke Johnson left the game in the second half with a foot injury and didn't return. Coach Al Golden said Johnson would have X-rays after the game, but had no update on the situation during his weekly Sunday afternoon teleconference, according to the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.
Here’s a look back at Week 8 in the ACC ...The good: Clemson's defense. This highly criticized group played arguably its best game of the season, forcing Virginia Tech into four turnovers, including one interception safety Jonathan Meeks ran back 74 yards for a touchdown.