- Heather Dinich, ESPN Staff Writer
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Our “most important game” series continues today with Duke. If you’re just joining us, it is exactly what the headline says it is: the most important game of the year for each school in the ACC. It's not brain surgery, guys, it's football. C'mon ...
Most important game: Nov. 23 at Wake Forest
Why it’s important: Duke’s road win at Wake Forest last year was the program’s first win in the series since 1999, and it was a critical step toward becoming bowl eligible for the first time since 1995. This game has always been a down-to-the-wire thriller, but recent history has been on the Deacs’ side. Duke has the misfortune of having to travel to Winston-Salem for the second straight season, and this late November game could again go a long way in determining whether Duke reaches the postseason again. A 3-1 record against nonconference opponents should be expected, and 4-0 isn’t unreasonable, considering Duke’s Sept. 14 game against Georgia Tech will help prepare the Blue Devils for the Oct. 12 home game against Navy. A win at Virginia and a home win against NC State isn’t far-fetched, but in order to get to a bowl game, Duke is going to have to steal some wins on the road. Four of the last six games are on the road, but none will be more important than Nov. 23 at Wake. Can Duke prove last year wasn’t a fluke?
For more in this series, click here.