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The Confidential

The ACC Sports Blog

The Direction of The ACC Confidential

As many of you know, the previous owner of The ACC Confidential has stepped aside and has graciously allowed me to take over. I cannot thank him enough for allowing me to do this. It was an efficient and seamless transition and hopefully the direction will be the same.

Having grown up in North Carolina and attended an ACC university, that will go unnamed, I have a strong connection with the ACC. I can remember getting out of school at noon on Fridays to watch the first round of the ACC Basketball Tournament. The ACC Basketball Tournament will always be a Friday, Saturday and Sunday event for me; no matter how much they try to change it.

I can remember growing up watching Grant Hill, Hubert Davis, James Forrest and Tim Duncan. In football, I watched Florida State dominate the 1990s only to be dethroned by Maryland in the early 2000s. I can remember the day Virginia Tech and Miami were brought on board to make it a football conference. Well, we know how that went.

I lived through the scandals at UNC, Duke (lacrosse) and Louisville. I have been to three Final Fours of which UNC lost in two of them; they were not part of the third. I have watched numerous national championships won and lost by the ACC. In fact, I am a huge fan of non-revenue generating sports as well. Look for many women’s lacrosse and volleyball posts on The ACC Confidential moving forward.

Overall, I cannot tell you an exact direction. I am going to publish what comes to my mind. If I have time, I will publish several posts a week. If I don’t have time, I might only publish one blog post every few weeks. It will all be by the seat of my pants. Hopefully you enjoy the ride and I look forward to discussing the ACC with many of the readers of The ACC Confidential.

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Raleigh Orthodontist Jason Gladwell Joins as Premier Sponsor

We are pleased to announce that Raleigh Orthodontist Jason Gladwell has joined as a premier sponsor of ACC Confidential. Dr. Gladwell has ACC roots as he completed his undergraduate degree at NC State and went to dental school at the University of North Carolina (UNC). The Gladwell Orthodontics practice is located in Wake Forest but the majority of their clients are from the Triangle area and throughout much of North Carolina and Virginia.

You will notice the Gladwell Orthodontics logo on posts and articles sporadically.

raleigh-nc-orthodontist-jason-gladwell

If your son or daughter is in need of braces, Invisalign or any dental work we strong urge you to contact Gladwell Orthodontics today. The short trip up Capital Boulevard or US 1 will be well worth the trip.

Gladwell Orthodontics recently opened a Starbucks Charity Cafe in which patients can receive free Starbucks coffee. The office also has an arcade room and free wifi. You are never going to be left without something to do when you visit Gladwell Orthodontics.

 

My Final Post, New Era Begins

After 5 years and 1,000+ posts, and running this blog, it is time to move on to new and exciting ventures.  I am in the process of transferring the blog.  Thank you to everyone who contributed to the blog while I was owner/operator.  Thank you to all of our followers, especially those who followed us into the new format.

The new owner/operator will likely make a post of introduction and continue things from there.

Go ACC!

 

ACC Football Rankings: Week 13

Each week, the Confidential will rank the top 15 teams (includes Notre Dame) in the A.C.C. and provide a brief explanation for the decision.  Feel free to list your own below or otherwise comment.  Here it goes for week 13:

  1. Clemson 11-1.  Clemson destroyed rival South Carolina to end up 11-1 and just one game away from a playoffs appearance.  Virginia Tech is on a bit of a roll–should be quite a matchup. Next up: Virginia Tech in the ACC Championship Game.
  2. Louisville 9-3. The Cardinals have not had a second half with nearly as much impressiveness as the first half of the season.  The losses to Clemson and Houston can be excused, but the close games against Duke and Virginia (a combined 6-18) raised some questions.  The loss to rival Kentucky is inexcusable.  At the same time, it is hard to drop Louisville below a Florida State team it crushed and a Virginia Tech team that lost to 4-8 Syracuse.  In other words, #2 by default.  Next up: A nice bowl game.
  3. Florida State 9-3.  The Seminoles took care of Florida handily to claim state-wide domination for yet another season.  It would be interesting to see if Louisville could beat Florida State this Saturday, but, alas, they played at Louisville destroyed the Seminoles in a way that just cannot justify FSU leapfrogging a Louisville team with the same record.  Next up: a nice bowl game.
  4. Virginia Tech 9-3. The Hokies arguably deserve the #2 nod by beating Virginia to win the Coastal.  But Virginia Tech lost to Syracuse–easily the worst loss among the three 9-3 teams.  Also, Virginia Tech avoided the top 3 teams in these standings–something that the top 3 teams were unable to do (Clemson went 2-0, Louisville 1-1, FSU 0-2).   The Hokies get their chance to prove themselves with the Championship Game against Clemson.  Next up: Clemson in the ACC Championship Game.
  5. Pitt 8-4.  There are four Coastal teams at 8-4.  Of these, Pitt played the toughest OOC schedule, with 10-2 Penn State and 9-2 Oklahoma State.  They split those games.  They lost to UNC by 1, to Va Tech by 3, and the only real blowout loss was to Miami.  They also are the only team to beat Clemson.  There are many arguments to be made here, but we’ll go with Pitt at #5.  Next up: a decent bowl game.
  6. North Carolina 8-4. The Tar Heels beat Miami, Pitt, and Georgia Tech–which ordinarily should mean an easy slotting in at #5.  But it is hard to get by losses to Duke and NC State, a combined 10-14.  Again, a decent argument for #5.   Next up: a decent bowl game.
  7. Miami 8-4.  Miami beat Pitt badly.  Miami also beat Georgia Tech.  But the overall weak OOC schedule is likely what made Miami 8-4, and that includes a loss to one of the worst Notre Dame teams in recent history.  Still, a good year for the Hurricanes to build off of… with the other three losses coming to teams with a combined record of 26-10.  Next up: a decent bowl game.
  8. Georgia Tech 8-4.  Georgia Tech beat rival Georgia to get to 8-4, a very nice rebound year for the Yellow Jackets.  No dreadful losses.  A nice win over Virginia Tech.  Having lost to all three 8-4 teams, they get stuck with the #8 slot.  Next up: a decent bowl game.
  9. NC State 6-6.  NC State’s chances of a bowl game required a win at North Carolina.  And they got it.  Coupled with a win over Wake Forest, NC State easily gets the #9 slot.  Next up: a bowl game.
  10. Wake Forest 6-6.  Losses to Army and Boston College take some of the glee out of this otherwise good season for the Demon Deacons.  Next up: a bowl game.
  11. Boston College 6-6.  The Eagles won two conference road games…NC State and Wake Forest to get to 6 wins and bowl eligibility.  With a super soft OOC schedule, they did what they needed to do.  Despite losing to Syracuse, B.C. gets the extra practices and bowl swag.  It is what it is.  Next up: a bowl game.
  12. Duke 4-8.  Duke’s loss to Miami ended the season on a sour note at 4-8.  Duke did beat Notre Dame though.  Next up: 2017.
  13. Notre Dame 4-8.  Notre Dame’s loss to USC ended the season on a sour note at 4-8.  Notre Dame did beat Syracuse though.  Next up: 2017.
  14. Syracuse 4-8.  Syracuse’s loss to Pitt was exciting, but ended the season on a sour note at 4-8.  Syracuse did do amazing things on offense, even in the finale with its backup QB and an injured squad.  Next up: 2017.
  15. Virginia 2-10.  After beginning the season with a loss to in-state Richmond, the Wahoos finished the season with a loss to in-state rival Virginia Tech.  The latter was no surprise.  Next up: 2017.

So, what do you think?  How would you change these rankings?

Confidential Survivor Pool Update: FINAL

We have our winner!  MIKEMAB2000 finally lost a game, but the remaining four entrants all had one prior strike and lost again!  MIKEMAB2000 wins the $50.00 via PayPal!  Thanks to all entrants!

1 MIKEMAB2000 DUKE BC WF UNC MIA CLEM GT SYR LOU
VTC
FSU
ND
NCST
CLEM
UNC
WF
PITT
2 BCEAGLE74 WF GT NCST BC PITT CLEM LOU UNC ND
VTC
MIA
SYR
FSU
FSU
CLEM
PITT
UNC
3 DRANDYT WF DUKE NCST SYR BC PITT LOU UNC CLEM
FSU
VTC
ND
MIA
FSU
GT
CLEM
LOU
4 RIGHT PROFILE SYR GT WF BC PITT DUKE FSU UNC NCST
CLEM
LOU
MIA
ND
CLEM
GT
VTC
LOU
5 UOFL223 WF GT NCST BC ND CLEM LOU UNC VTC
FSU
MIA
SYR
DUKE
CLEM
FSU
LOU
MIA

The Confidential’s ACC Football Over-Unders: Recap.

Every year, the Confidential does over-unders for each ACC school, based solely on the regular season.  In 2014, we had 6 schools correctly pegged within 1/2 a win of their ultimate totals.  In 2015, we improved to 7 schools correctly pegged within a 1/2 a win of their ultimate total.  And now it is on to 2016.  Remember, these are regular season wins only.  No bowl games or playoffs.  Here is the final tally of the Confidential’s over-unders for 2016, as well as the final results/analysis:

Clemson: 11.5 wins.  CORRECT!  At 11-1, Clemson ended up within 1/2 a win of the Confidential’s projection.  And Clemson certainly could have beaten Pitt.  Of course, Clemson should have lost to NC State, Troy, or both.  It is what it is.

Notre Dame: 10.5 wins.  WOEFULLY INCORRECT.  At 4-8, Notre Dame blew a season with a weak schedule.  They lost to Texas (who fired its coach), Michigan State (down season), and Duke (down season), among others.  Just a horrible, terrible season.

Florida State: 9.5 wins.  CORRECT!  At 9-3, Florida State fell a bit short of the under, but this was always setting up to be a tough season for the Seminoles.  They did fine overall.

Miami: 8.5 wins.  CORRECT!  A streaky season for the Hurricanes, with blocks of 4 wins surrounding a block of four losses.

North Carolina: 8.5 wins.  CORRECT!  UNC fell one game short of its win total, like several of the above teams.  In fact, the ACC ended up fairly down by the end of the year.  However, it it was a decent OOC season and the ACC teams fared well in their SEC rivalry games (3-1) again.

Louisville: 7.5 wins.  INCORRECT!  Many folks criticized this one and perhaps deservedly so.  But Louisville losing to Kentucky should silence Cards fans for a while.

Virginia Tech: 7.5 wins.  INCORRECT!  Like Louisville, the Hokies did much better than expected at 9-3.

Pitt: 7.5 wins.   CORRECT!  Despite the difficult schedule, Pitt fared well at 8-4, including the sole win over Clemson so far.

Duke: 6.5 wins.  INCORRECT!   Duke finished at 4-8, well short of the estimated over-under.

North Carolina State: 5.5 wins.   CORRECT!  This one was correct heading into the surprise  victory over UNC, which pushed NC State into the “over” category.

Georgia Tech: 5.5 wins.  INCORRECT.  The Yellow Jackets did much better than expected with an 8-4 regular season.

Virginia: 5.5 wins.  INCORRECT!  Virginia only managed 2 wins.  On to 2017.

Boston College: 5.5 wins.  CORRECT!  BC had an easy OOC schedule and fared well.  Wins over NC State and Wake Forest gave the Eagles the “over.”

Syracuse: 4.5 wins.  CORRECT!  Losing to USF, Wake Forest, and NC State meant that Syracuse could not get the over, despite the Virginia Tech upset.

Wake Forest: 3.5 wins.  INCORRECT!  At 6-wins, the Demon Deacons went way over and are going bowling!

PRESEASON ANALYSIS: By far, the most controversial selection was Louisville at only 7.5 wins.  However, with road trips to Syracuse, Marshall, Virginia, Boston College, and Houston–it is asking a lot of the Cardinals to avoid tripping up against three of its four easiest conference games and two challenging OOC games.  Meanwhile, Florida State and Clemson remain on the schedule.  Notre Dame at 10.5 wins surprised some folks too, but look at who the Fighting Irish play and where.  In any event, it is what it is.  The Coastal, of course, is a mess.  Would any team winning it be a true surprise?  Meanwhile, the Atlantic has NC State, Boston College, Syracuse, and Wake Forest in a perpetual battle to avoid the cellar, it seems.

POSTSEASON ANALYSIS: Well, the Confidential edged up to 8 teams picked correctly (within 1/2 game of their final win total).  ND and Duke were the biggest disappointments (along with Virginia), while Wake Forest, Va Tech, Louisville, and Georgia Tech all did better than expected.  Louisville ended up handling its difficult road games, except Houston.  And they almost nipped Clemson.  Anyway, it is an improvement for the Confidential!

 

 

ACC Thankfulness

No matter how high or low you are, you have much to be thankful for.  The life that God gave you (even if you are falling short in using it Him).  Liberty (to the extent that government still allows much of it).  Health.  Happiness.  The Lord’s forgiveness and plan of salvation.  But each ACC school also has much to be thankful for this year in football, such as:

  • Clemson–thankful that Dabo Swinney has restored success to Clemson and then some.  Even if Clemson loses before bowl season, Clemson was in the running all year long again.
  • Louisville–thankful that Lamar Jackson and Bobby Petrino have made Louisville as much as a football school as a basketball school lately.  What Charlie Strong started, Jackson and Petrino have taken even farther
  • Florida State–thankful that Jimbo Fisher has put FSU back in a position where 8-3 seasons are disappointing.  There were some mediocre years.
  • Virginia Tech–thankful that the transition from Frank Beamer has been so smooth.  The team has not only not lost a step, it is doing even better.
  • North Carolina–thankful to avoid sanctions and to have hoops/football teams that are at the top.
  • Miami–thankful that Mark Richt came home to restore some of the Hurricanes swagger, even if streaky and not quite all the way back.
  • Georgia Tech–thankful that last year’s dismal season remains the anomaly, as a nice rebound season continues.
  • Wake Forest–both football and hoops are trending up under Clawson and Manning.
  • NC State–thankful that the A.D. does not schedule tougher, so as to keep them within scratching distance of a bowl every year (unlike some schools that over-schedule)
  • Duke–thankful for Coach K, always, as well as Cutcliffe’s turnaround.
  • Notre Dame–thankful to be a partial member of the ACC, given the football team’s struggles this year.
  • Syracuse–thankful for Coach Boeheim, always, but also thankful for Dino Babers injecting life into the football program
  • Boston College–see NC State.
  • Virginia–thankful for Coach Bennett and hoops dominance of late, as well as a new era in football.
  • The ACC–thankful that ESPN has been able to keep the Big 10 and its cash at bay.

What do you think?  What else should each school be thankful for?

ACC Football Rankings: Week 12

Each week, the Confidential will rank the top 15 teams (includes Notre Dame) in the A.C.C. and provide a brief explanation for the decision.  Feel free to list your own below or otherwise comment.  Here it goes for week 12:

  1. Clemson 10-1.  Clemson rebounded from its first loss of the season to defeat Wake Forest by a comfortable margin.  The ACC’s only hope for a playoff team is the Tigers and that depends on two more wins.  The ACC Championship Game looms, but Clemson must first beat rival South Carolina. Next up: South Carolina.
  2. Louisville 9-2. The Cardinals leapfrogged Clemson in many ACC standings, but not here.  And Louisville confirmed same by losing to Houston convincingly.  This was not the Louisville of the early part of the season.  But a major bowl game is still in play after the rivalry game with Kentucky.   Next up: Kentucky.
  3. Florida State 8-3.  The Seminoles took care of Syracuse appropriately.  This was a nice tune-up before heading into a rivalry game with 8-2 Florida.  The Gators just beat LSU and will be ready.  Next up: Florida.
  4. Virginia Tech 8-3. The Hokies traveled to South Bend and nipped Notre Dame 34-31 to get to 8-3.  Now the Hokies just need to escape a rivalry game with Virginia to get to the ACC Championship Game.  Next up: Virginia.  
  5. North Carolina 8-3. The Tar Heels beat Citadel 41-7.  Hoorah.  North Carolina State comes to town next, really needing a win to get to bowl eligibility.  UNC needs to be ready.  Next up: North Carolina State.
  6. Miami 7-4.  After four straight wins, Miami loss four straight (including to Notre Dame).  Now, Miami has won three straight by handling North Carolina State on the road.   An 8-4 regular season would be an outstanding rebound for Mark Richt and Miami.  Duke comes to town next.  Next up: Duke.
  7. Pitt 7-4.  Pitt destroyed Duke 56-14.  Wow.  A wounded, fading Syracuse team comes to town next.  Syracuse may be “up” for this quasi-rivalry game.  or they may be very very down.  Either way, note that the top 7 teams in these standings are all at home this week.  Next up: Syracuse.
  8. Georgia Tech 7-4.  After sweeping both Virginia schools, the Yellow Jackets have confirmed that this is quite a rebound year.  But the major test remains–rival Georgia.  The Bulldogs have won three straight and are at home.  Next up: @ Georgia.
  9. Wake Forest 6-5.  Wake Forest lost to Clemson, which is no surprise.  Wake Forest is going bowling.  Boston College needs a win to go bowling.  This game will be a tough test for both teams.  Next up: Boston College.
  10. NC State 5-6.  After losing to Miami, NC State’s chances of a bowl now really need a win at North Carolina.  This will be a tough, but hardly impossible test.  Next up: @ North Carolina.
  11. Duke 4-7.  Duke is still bowl-eligible in a sense.  If they can beat Miami, they will be 5-7 and have a great APR to help get them in at 5-7.  The hard part will be beating streaky Miami.  Next up: @ Miami.
  12. Notre Dame 4-7.  We have covered the dismal Fighting Irish season at length.  A win over rival USC would be a nice way to finish a disappointing season.  Difficult to see Notre Dame accepting a bowl at 5-7 though.  Next up: @ USC.
  13. Syracuse 4-7.  Syracuse’s loss to FSU was, as expected.  With the injuries, it is difficult to envision Syracuse beating Pitt at Pitt.  Unlike Notre Dame, Syracuse would jump all over a chance to go bowling at 5-7 though.  Next up: @ Pitt.
  14. Boston College 5-6.  The Eagles beat UConn handily, but deserve minimal credit for having a cupcake OOC schedule. UConn was BC’s toughest OOC matchup, but Syracuse’s third toughest matchup.  Still, BC has a chance to go bowling.  Next up: @ Wake Forest.
  15. Virginia 2-9.  After a loss to Georgia Tech, all that remains is a trip to Virginia Tech with a game against the rival Hokies.  Next up: @ Virginia Tech.

So, what do you think?  How would you change these rankings?

Confidential Survivor Pool Update: Week 13

Down to four teams overall, as Notre Dame led to one casualty.  So, here is the chart of who is left:

No Entry Name Wk1 Wk2 Wk3 Wk4 Wk5 Wk6 Wk7 Wk8 Wk9 Wk10 Wk11 Wk12
1 MIKEMAB2000 DUKE BC WF UNC MIA CLEM GT SYR LOU
VTC
FSU
ND
NCST
CLEM
UNC
2 BCEAGLE74 WF GT NCST BC PITT CLEM LOU UNC ND
VTC
MIA
SYR
FSU
FSU
CLEM
3 DRANDYT WF DUKE NCST SYR BC PITT LOU UNC CLEM
FSU
VTC
ND
MIA
FSU
GT
4 RIGHT PROFILE SYR GT WF BC PITT DUKE FSU UNC NCST
CLEM
LOU
MIA
ND
CLEM
GT
5 UOFL223 WF GT NCST BC ND CLEM LOU UNC VTC
FSU
MIA
SYR
DUKE
CLEM
FSU

Going to be interesting to see how this coming week plays out.  MIKEMAB2000 remains the only entrant without a loss yet.

Anyway, good luck in Week 12 everyone!

 

ACC Football: From Riches to Rags in Weeks

For a good part of this season, ACC football was something to brag about.  Entering Week 5, only Notre Dame and Virginia were below .500.  As of Week 10, only Duke was added to those schools and it was very impressive how deep the football depth actually was.  Plus, Clemson and Louisville were a combined 15-1.  Good times!  Even entering this week, there was a way–however unlikely–for both Clemson and Louisville to be in the playoffs.  And then Houston goes ahead and throttles Louisville, 36-10.  So much for that.

Now, the ACC looks to be having a down season.  Clemson is 9-1, but could have (should have) lost to both Troy and NC State.  Although Clemson beat Louisville, Louisville just lost by 26 to a team that lost to SMU.  Florida State has losses to both Clemson and Louisville.  Virginia Tech has lost to Georgia Tech and Syracuse.  North Carolina was blown out by that same Virginia Tech team and lost to Duke.  Miami lost four straight at one point.  North Carolina State lost to Boston College and East Carolina.  Even Notre Dame has been more dreadful than mediocre.  And so on.

This is a long way of saying that maybe, just maybe, this is a year that the ACC does not have a representative in the playoffs.  If Clemson wins out, it (and the ACC) will be there.  But that is it.  Much like Washington is the Pac-12’s only hope, the ACC is down to one school with a chance.  At present, it seems as if the playoff will be: Alabama, (winner of Ohio State/Michigan), Clemson, Washington.  And if everything holds, that is how it should be.

As for Louisville, with Ohio State and Michigan yet to play each other, the Big 10 was guaranteed to have only one school with one loss.  Louisville had a chance to beat out any of those two loss teams by winning out.  It failed.  Now it is part of a group of two loss teams, and not a real opportunity to make the sour taste of a blowout loss fade away.  As always in football, if you are going to lose bad, lose early.  See Penn State, Oklahoma.

 

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