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Thursday, January 8, 2009
Mailblog in the morning

By ESPN.com staff
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN.com's Heather Dinich

T.C. in Richmond, Va., writes: Hey Heather, I know you're busy with players and coaches trying to go pro and all, but did you hear about FSU adding USF to the schedule next year? Also I heard some rumors about dropping Maine in favor of another Miami game on Labor Day night...care to confirm or deny?

Heather Dinich: Yes, sorry for glossing over that one Wednesday. FSU is indeed adding USF to the schedule, as they agreed to a home-and-home series. And yes, the Miami game is a possibility, but first Maine would have to find somebody else to play.


Laith in Sacramento writes: Non ACC question: Depending on tomorrow's outcome, who do you consider the "true" Nat'l Champs? Did Utah getted snubbed, or are the right teams in there?

Heather Dinich: Non-ACC answer here (gasp!). Utah will only get snubbed if it's not voted No. 1 in the final poll.


Jim S. writes: Ms. Dinich, you come down pretty hard on Jagodzinski for what amounts to him pursuing a step up in his career. Terms like "sneaky way" and what he's done to his staff, players, recruits, etc. How about the likes of Saban, and Petrino and their "cowardice" actions? At least this guy stuck it out and tried to meet a larger challenge (NFL) not retreat to a lesser one (College). Your disgust is misplaced, think about it.

Heather Dinich: First of all, things like moldy food and dirty bathrooms disgust me, not the business of college football. Second, I've got zero problems with coaches job-hopping to get to the right place. Most of us do that. But he could have had the courtesy to tell his athletic director he was doing it, and, at the very least, could have called his boss back.


Nathan in Duffield, Va., writes: Heather, first of all, great job this year covering the ACC. I must say as a Hokie fan it was an up and down season, but it ended the way we all hoped it would. Florida State looks to be the favorite in the Atlantic Division, especially with what's going on in Boston. Do you think there is anyone in the division that can give them a challenge next year?

Heather Dinich: Nathan, thanks for reading. I enjoyed covering the ACC this season. You're right, I think FSU is the way-too-early favorite in the Atlantic Division, but don't count out NC State and Wake Forest.


Matt in Chapel Hill, N.C., writes: Will UNC football make another big leap forward next season? both QB's are returning and even with the loss of Nicks and Tate the running game is still there and a really good recuirting class

Heather Dinich: Well, I'm not sure how much bigger a leap you can get than doubling your win total in one season. And it's not just Hakeem Nicks and Brandon Tate who will be gone ... don't forget about Brooks Foster and Cooter Arnold. And yes, the running game is still there, but it was the eighth-best running game in the ACC and No. 89 in the country. I think expectations were higher heading into '08 than they might be in '09.


Michael in Sumter, S.C., writes: Given the lackluster rushing performance against Nebraska and Clemson's returning o-lineman, does Spiller return next season to be the man and add to his record?

Heather Dinich: Checked this morning, still no word.


Nicholas in Christiansburg, VA, writes: Hey HD, Just wondering how you think that Duke will give the Hokies a tough time this year. I think that Beamer will be more prepared for Duke this year and I expect a blowout. Also what is your reason that UVA will give VT "all they can handle"??

Heather Dinich: Well, for starters, Duke will have the Hokies at home, and they have one of the best quarterbacks and one of the best coaches in the league. Do I think Virginia Tech will win? Yes, but I also think Duke is no longer a pushover and proved that this season. As for Virginia, the Cavs will have a new offensive coordinator and their old quarterback, Jameel Sewell. It's going to be a rocky season, but rivals always bring out the best in each other.