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ACC power rankings: Week 12

November, 14, 2011
11/14/11
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Power Rankings: ACC | Big 12 | Big East | Big Ten | Pac-12 | SEC

Florida State fans should be a little more pleased this week, as the Noles have finally been bumped ahead of Wake Forest. The top and the bottom of this list hasn't changed, though, and Clemson has solidified its spot in the ACC title game. Who's next? Here's the latest pecking order in the ACC:

1. Clemson (9-1, 6-1 ACC; LW: No. 1) – The Tigers clinched the Atlantic Division title with their win against Wake Forest and they finished the season unbeaten at home with a 7-0 record. It was the third time this season Clemson overcame a deficit of at least 14 points. Clemson will close the regular season at NC State on Saturday.

2. Virginia Tech (9-1, 5-1 ACC; LW: No. 2) – Georgia Tech’s defense had no answer for quarterback Logan Thomas, who threw three touchdown passes and ran for two more. With the win, the Hokies tightened their grasp on the Coastal Division lead and eliminated Georgia Tech and Miami from the ACC race. Another must-win Thursday night game is on tap, this one against UNC.

3. Florida State (7-3, 5-2 ACC; LW: No. 5) – It wasn’t pretty, but the Seminoles got what they needed from their defense and special teams and took care of rival Miami, 23-19. It was the first time in six years the home team won. Florida State has now won five straight ACC games heading into Saturday’s game against Virginia.

4. Virginia (7-3, 4-2 ACC; LW: No. 7) – The Cavaliers snapped a three-game losing streak to Duke with Saturday’s 31-21 win over the Blue Devils, and they kept their hopes alive for a berth in the ACC championship game. Virginia needs to win its final two games against FSU and Virginia Tech in order to win the Coastal Division.

5. Georgia Tech (7-3, 4-3 ACC; LW: No. 3) – A costly personal foul on Jeremiah Attaochu and a fourth-down gamble by coach Paul Johnson were only part of the problem in the loss to Virginia Tech. The mistakes added up, and the Yellow Jackets played their way out of the Coastal Division race. They’ll be looking to rebound at Duke this weekend.

6. Wake Forest (5-5, 4-3 ACC; LW: No. 4) - The Demon Deacons could have beaten Clemson, but two missed field goals will come back to haunt them – especially in a game that was decided by a last-second field goal. Wake would have controlled the Atlantic Division race with a win, and stunned Clemson with a 28-14 lead in the third quarter.

7. Miami (5-5, 3-4 ACC; LW: No. 8) – The Hurricanes beat themselves in the loss to Florida State with three turnovers and nine penalties. Miami is still searching for that elusive sixth win for bowl eligibility, and the Canes will get another chance at South Florida on Saturday.

8. NC State (5-5, 2-4 ACC; LW: No. 6) – Coach Tom O’Brien has yet to win a game in Chestnut Hill as a visiting coach. A week after surprising rival North Carolina with the fifth straight win in the series, the Wolfpack laid an egg at BC. Now NC State must win its final two games in order to become bowl eligible, starting this week against Clemson.

9. North Carolina (6-4, 2-4 ACC; LW: No. 9) – The Tar Heels had a bye week to recover from their loss to NC State, and now they have a chance to play the role of spoiler against Virginia Tech in the Coastal Division race. The Tar Heels have lost three of their last four games.

10. Duke (3-7, 1-5 ACC; LW: No. 10) – The Blue Devils can no longer become bowl eligible, and they’ve got two tough Coastal Division games remaining against Georgia Tech and North Carolina. Duke has now lost five straight games, and starting offensive tackle Kyle Hill suffered a season-ending shoulder injury against Virginia.

11. Boston College (3-7, 2-5 ACC; LW: No. 11) – The Eagles haven’t quit, and Saturday’s win over NC State said a lot about the character and leadership on the team. BC has now won two of its last three games, but faces a tough road trip to rival Notre Dame on Saturday.

12. Maryland (2-8, 1-5 ACC; LW: No. 12) – Sink. Sank. Sunk. The Terps have now lost six straight games and have to finish the season with back-to-back road trips against Wake Forest and NC State. To make matters worse, starting quarterback Danny O’Brien broke a bone in his left arm and is out for the season.

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