ACC/SEC Top Ten
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A look at the top teams in the ACC and SEC.
1. LSU - Tough to choose between the Tigers and the Tide, but I'm going with LSU for now. They impress me as much as any team out there. Their ability to go on the road to tough environments and take care of business makes me quite jealous.
2. Alabama - A coin flip between these guys and LSU. Their game later in the year will be epic (as always). This game will feature one of the teams in the BCS Title game. In my opinion.
3. Florida - Will Muschamp has the Gators rolling right now. I was very impressed with their dismantling of Tennessee. I know they've beaten the Vols like seven straight years, but Tennessee will win a big game or two this year. Charlie Weiss, as we know, is a heck of a play caller. I think most of the doubts about this team and their ability to win the East this year have been wiped away.... or should have been.
4. Virginia Tech - Always a top team, always tough (especially at home), extremely well coached....the list goes on and on. Seven straight 10-win seasons says it all. They haven't played a really tough schedule to this point, but we've seen enough results over the last decade with these guys to know this team will be ready to play in every ball game.
5. South Carolina - There have been a lot of firsts for the Gamecocks over the last few years, but to me their most recent first is their most impressive. This is definitely the first time they've looked as sloppy, and clearly not on top of their game through their first four contests of the year, and still managed to stay undefeated (4-0). An impressive stat for the Gamecocks. If Stephen Garcia can begin to manage the game well, and take care of the football, this team can ride a LONG way....on a horse they call Lattimore.
6. Clemson - We've all heard the talk, and probably too much of it, so far. There's a lot of excitement in Tiger Town right now, and everyone is waiting for the rug to get pulled out from under my Clemson Tigers. This week's test is as tough as we'll see this year, except for perhaps our trip to Columbia in late November. Win or lose however, I think to be 4-1 coming out of this tough opening stretch of the schedule is extremely positive and will lead to a solid season...And a solid season was the only thing Dabo can have this year and still be around for another spring in the upstate. Here's hoping for a big win Saturday.
7. Georgia Tech - Paul Johnson sure had a lot of doubters at the end of last year about his coaching philosophies. "Can this offense hold up in division 1? I think teams have figured this guy out." Well, Ithink it's pretty obvious that those thoughts were a bit premature. I don't care what conference you're in and who you're playing, if you put up over 600 yards rushing and 750+ yards of offense on a division 1 school..you're doing something right. This team is scary and will be a heck of a tough out for anyone that faces them because of their ability to create big plays and control the clock. If they can play relatively solid defense....i don't see them losing more than 1 or 2 games.
8. FSU - This is a good football team and will be ranked in the top 20 (at least) when it's all said and done. Yeah they've had some injuries, etc etc. But I'm sorry....who hasn't? With that said, their remaining conference schedule is almost laughable. Because of this, they still have, a 50/50 shot to take the Atlantic Division in the ACC in my opinion. Clemson's remaining schedule is SO much tougher. The Tigers win over the Noles last week was a must, but they still have to hang on.
9. Arkansas - A tough loss to the Tide last week, and how they respond will go a long way to determining where they move/remain on this list. This team is going to win some ball games once they get their feet under them, and a win against soon to be conference foe Texas A&M will be a great way to get back up off the mat.
10. Auburn/Georgia/UNC - It's a bit wimpy of me to put all three of these teams in a tie for tenth, but there's a reason. I think it's too early to decifer between them. Auburn has the opportunity to make a statement to their doubters on saturday against South Carolina in a huge road test. If they pull off the upset in Columbia, they'll be firmly inside my top 10 list. If they go down, they'd have to drop out....for now.
Georgia has been dealt two really tough losses thus far to two top 10 teams, but they've begun to bounce back with wins over Coastal Carolina and Ole Miss. I see this team continuing this winning stretch which will set up a big game for Mark Richt in Jacksonville later this month against the Gators.
I have UNC in here because they played Georgia Tech so tough last week in Atlanta. They have a pretty manageable schedule until they come to Clemson on October 22nd, and I'm hoping for a 7-0 Clemson to face a 6-1 UNC team in a night game in the Valley (our last opportunity to have one this year in Clemson).
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