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Monday, January 9, 2012
Vote: ACC's next national title contender

By Heather Dinich

If you watch tonight's AllState BCS National Championship Game, you might feel a sense of envy, a sense of longing for an ACC team to finally represent on college football's national stage.

Or, you might just continue to love to hate the SEC.

Someday, though, at some time, the ACC will have its turn. I know, I know, it seems eons away right now, especially after Clemson's historically bad performance against West Virginia in the Discover Orange Bowl. But Clemson was 8-0 at one point this season. Georgia Tech was 6-0. Who knows what Florida State might have done had the entire offense stayed healthy the whole season? Virginia Tech is almost always creeping around the top 10. And North Carolina? Puh-lease. That program has had some of the most talented rosters in the country in recent years. Had the NCAA investigation not derailed the plans and career of Butch Davis, there's no telling what that team might have achieved in 2010.

There is talent in the ACC, enough talent to win it all. The schedule has to play out right, the team has to stay healthy, and a little bit of luck is involved, but it's not impossible. Which team, though, will rise to the top first?