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ACC Football This Week - 11/06/04

Posted Tuesday, November 2, 2004

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ACColades: Four ACC teams - Miami, Florida State, Virginia, Virginia Tech - ranked in weekly polls ... for the second-striaght week, five league matchups comprise league schedule ... the ACC is the third-ranked conference in the Sagarin Computer ranking ... six ACC teams ranked in the top 25 in total defense nationally ... ACC teams are 17-11 in home league games ... last Saturday's four games decided by a total of 14 points ... 13 of the 28 ACC games played to date have been decided by seven points or less, including three games decided in overtime ... Sagarin Computer ranks North Carolina's schedule as the nation's second-toughest; Florida State's is ninth ... Maryland's Nick Novak (380) is the ACC's all-time leading scorer while Florida State's Xavier Beitia (359) is second ... Maryland's Steve Suter is the ACC career leader in punt return yardage (1,269) ... ACC teams are 21-8 (.724) in non-conference play and are averaging 56,448 in per game attendance.


Clemson: Charlie Whitehurst threw for 183 yards and one touchdown as the Tigers posted their third-straight win with a 26-20 win over NC State Saturday ... Whitehurst is 17th on the ACC career passing yardage list (6,656) and 18th in total offense (6,719) ... junior Justin Miller is 2nd nationally in kickoff returns (33.9) and 16th in punt returns (14.7) ... Airese Currie leads the ACC in receptions (5.9) and receiving yardage (81.1) and is bidding to become the first Clemson player to lead the ACC in receiving since Perry Tuttle did so in 1980 ... sophomore placekicker Jad Dean is a perfect 6-for-6 in field goal attempts on the season.

Duke: In Saturday's game at Wake Forest, sophomore Mike Schneider estabslished career single-game highs for pass attempts (45), pass completions (28) and passing yards (300) ... Schneider also tossed a pair of touchdown passes, pushing his season total to seven against just three interceptions ... Cedric Dargan rushed for 113 yards against the Deacons, marking his third 100-yard game in 2004 while playing in just four contests ... the Blue Devils lead the ACC and are seventh nationally in kickoff coverage (15.9) ... John Talley is tied for the lead in the ACC and is seventh nationally with four interceptions.

Florida State: Antonio Cromartie is tied for the lead in the ACC and is seventh nationally with four interceptions in eight games ... senior WR Craphonso Thorpe has caught a pass in 25 consecutive games ... the Seminoles have allowed only 132 yards rushing in the second half in the first eight games (16.5 yards per game) ... Florida State leads the ACC and is second nationally in rushing defense (66.9) ... the Seminoles have allowed only 2.03 yards per rush, the best mark in the nation ... senior Xavier Beitia has made 67 straight PATs and is the ACC's second all-time leading scorer with 359 points.

Georgia Tech: Freshman David Bell has made eight straight field goal attempts ... WR Calvin Johnson has tied a school freshman single season record with 6 touchdown receptions ... Johnson leads Tech in receptions (27) and receiving yardage (446) and is second among all freshmen nationally in receiving yards per game (65.8) ... P.J. Daniels is sixth on Tech's career rushing list with 2,284 yards ... QB Reggie Ball is eighth on Tech's career passing list (3,190) and ninth in total offense (3,837 ... Chris Woods is third on the team in rushing with 237 yards ... Gerris Wilkinson is second in the ACC in tackles (10.6).

Maryland: LB D'Qwell Jackson had a game-high 11 tackles in Saturday's win over No. 5 Florida State and is the ACC's leading tackler (11.1) ... Saturday's win marked Maryland's first victory over a Top 5 opponent since Oct. 29, 1983, when the Terps downed No. 3 North Carolina, 28-26, at Byrd Stadium ... PK Nick Novak is the ACC's all-time leading scorer with 380 points ... Steve Suter is the ACC's all-time leader in punt return yardage (1,269) ... Adam Podlesh is second in the ACC and is ninth nationally in punting (44.7) ... Joel Statham is one of only two ACC quarterbacks to have two 300-yard passing games this season.

Miami: Over his last four games, QB Brock Berlin has thrown for 1,111 yards and 13 touchdown passes and improved his passing efficiency rating from 117.2 to 147.6 ... Berlin is averaging a league-best 14.0 yards per completion and 11 of his league-high 15 TD passes have come against ACC foes ... three of Miami's final four games are at home ... Devin Hester is third nationally in punt returns (26.2) and fourth in kickoff returns (31.7) ... the Hurricanes have converted on 93 straight PATs ... Miami leads the ACC and is fourth nationally in turnover margin (+1.57).

North Carolina: Darian Durant threw for 266 yards and two touchdowns and Connor Barth made a 42-yard field goal on the game's final play in Saturday 31-28 win over third-ranked Miami ... Durant is ninth in ACC career total offense (8,759) and 11th in passing yardage (7,932) ... WR Jarwarski Pollock has at least one reception in 31 straight games ... Pollock has had three or more receptions in 23 of his last 31 games and is sixth among UNC career reception leaders (137) ... the Tar Heels are second in the ACC in total offense and are one of only two league teams averaging over six yards per play (6.2).

NC State: Tailback T.A. McLendon is third in the ACC in rushing (89.7) and is eighth on the NC State career rushing list with 2,337 yards ... NC State is second nationally in pass defense yielding 129.4 yards per game, the Wolfpack's lowest per game average since 1981 ... over his last five games, junior QB Jay Davis has thrown for 1,240 yards and six touchdowns ... Davis is sixth in the ACC in passing efficiency (121.6) and seventh in total offense (192.0) ... sophomore John Deraney is 21st nationally in field goals per game (1.38) and 28th in punting (42.6) ... NC State is third nationally in total defense (238.1).

Virginia: The Cavaliers lead the ACC and rank seventh nationally in rushing (249.0) ... Wali Lundy (85.4) is fifth in the ACC in rushing, Alvin Pearman is seventh (68.4) and Michael Johnson 15th (49.1) ... Lundy leads the ACC and is fifth nationally in scoring (10.3) ... Virginia leads the ACC in total offense, averaging 465.4 yards per game, the Cavaliers' best per game average since a 501.5 mark in 1990 ... Marques Hagans has completed a league-high 67.3 of his passes and leads the ACC in passing efficiency (156.5) ... senior Marquis Weeks is seventh nationally in kickoff returns (30.0).

Virginia Tech: The Hokies scored the game's final 25 points in the fourth quarter and extended their winning streak to four in a row following Thurday's 34-20 win at Georgia Tech ... over the last two games, QB Bryan Randall has completed 27 of 45 passes for 419 yards and seven touchdowns and raised his passing efficiency rating from 111.6 to 128.5 ... since the start of the 1993 season, Virginia Tech is 49-8 in games it scores at least one TD on defense or special teams ... Brandon Pace has made 15 of 19 field goal attempts (.789) and leads the team in scoring with 73 points ... Mike Imoh leads the team in rushing with 408 yards in 5 games.

Wake Forest: Chris Barclay ran for 134 yards and one touchdown in Saturday's 24-22 win over Duke ... Barclay has seven career 100-yard games and is fourth in the ACC in rushing (89.7) and third among Wake Forest career rushing leaders with 2,607 yards ... freshman LB Jonathan Abbate is sixth in the ACC in tackles per game (9.5) ... P Ryan Plackemeier leads the ACC and is sixth in the nation in punting (45.2) ... WR Jason Anderson is sixth on the school's career receiving yardage list (2,054) ... more than half of the games in Grobe's four years at Wake Forest (24 of 44) have been decided by a touchdown or less.

GAME PREVIEWS - Saturday, November 6

Georgia Tech (4-3, 3-3 ACC) at NC State (4-4, 3-3 ACC)
JP/Raycom; 12:00 p.m.
Carter-Finley Stadium (53,800)

THE GAME: In a series dating back to 1918, Georgia Tech and NC State face-off in the Jefferson-Pilot/Raycom ACC Game of the Week. Georgia Tech has won the last three meetings, and eight of the last nine, and lead the series 15-8-0. NC State owns a 6-5-0 mark in games played at Carter-Finley. Georgia Tech won the last meeting in Raleigh back in 2002, 24-17. The last Wolfpack victory occurred at home in 2000, a 30-23 overtime win.

LAST TIME OUT: Last year, freshman QB Reggie Ball passed for 283 yards and two TDs and rushed for another as Georgia Tech posted a 29-21 victory over NC State in Atlanta. Both teams combined to rush for 81 yards as the Yellow Jacket defense held the Wolfpack to -8 yards on the ground. Georgia Tech's Jonathan Smith led all receivers with 155 yards, while NC State's Tramain Hall tallied 120 yards on nine catches. The Yellow Jackets' Dan Burnett kicked three field goals (48, 26, 25) in the victory.

THE COACHES: Chan Gailey is 18-15 in his third year at Georgia Tech and 42-26 in five seasons overall. NC State head coach Chuck Amato is 38-21 in his fifth year at the helm of the Wolfpack.

Georgia Tech's Chris Reis is second in the ACC in sacks with seven on the season, all of which have occurred against conference opponents. Manny Lawson leads the Wolfpack in that category with six, four in ACC play, while Freddie Aughtry-Lindsay has tallied 3.5 sacks in league contests.

When it comes to holding onto the ball, the team who has won the turnover margin has been victorious in 7 of the last 12 games. Over the last 12 games, Georgia Tech is +10 in turnover margin against NC State.

Georgia Tech WR Calvin Johnson leads all freshmen in the ACC in receptions (27), receiving yards (446) and TDs (6). Johnson ranks second in the league among all wideouts averaging 63.7 yards per game.

Wolfpack TB Darrell Blackman rushed for a career-high 90 yards last weekend against Clemson. The freshman back tallied 8.2 yards a carry, while leading NC State in rushing for the second time this year.

#18 Virginia Tech (6-2, 3-1 ACC) at North Carolina (4-4, 3-2 ACC)
ESPN2; 12:00 p.m.
Kenan Stadium (60,000)

THE GAME: In their first regular-season meeting since 1946, Virginia Tech and North Carolina renew acquaintainces for the 27th time in a series that started in 1895. The Hokies lead series 11-9-6, but North Carolina holds the advantage at home with a record of 3-1-2. The Tar Heels are carrying a seven-game unbeaten streak into Saturday's game (6-0-1), a streak dating back to 1929. The Hokies last defeated North Carolina back in 1928, a 16-14 win in Chapel Hill. Both teams have played to five scoreless ties, six ties overall, with four of those games played at netural sites in Virginia.

LAST TIME OUT: North Carolina downed Virginia Tech 42-3, in the 1998 Gator Bowl. UNC's Chris Keldorf threw for 290 yards and three TDs as the Tar Heels posted 427 yards of total offense while limiting the Hokies to 185, its lowest total of the season. In the first quarter, Keldorf found Octavus Barnes for a 62-yard strike as the Tar Heels ran out to a 22-0 halftime lead. North Carolina also scored on Quinton Savage's blocked punt, a 6-yard TD return by Dre Bly.

THE COACHES: Frank Beamer is 131-76-4 in his 18th season at Virginia Tech and is 173-99-4 in 24 seasons overall. John Bunting is 17-28 in his fourth year at North Carolina and 55-42-2 in nine seasons overall.


Last weekend versus Georgia Tech, Roland Minor registered his first two interceptions of his collegiate career including a 64 yard TD return in the fourth quarter to solidify the victory for the Hokies. Virginia Tech has picked off six passes in 2004.

UNC's Chad Scott rushed for a career-high 175 yards including a two TD performance against Miami last weekend. Scott, who carried the ball 25 times, averaged 7.0 yards a rush. As a team, the Tar Heels ran for 279 yards. UNC is 3-0 when rushing for more than 200 yards a game in 2004.

Virginia Tech QB Bryan Randall eclipised the 300-yard passing mark for just the third time in his career last week against Georgia Tech. Randall threw for 304 yards and three TD's. Randall's career-high of 509 yards came in 2002 at Syracuse.

Tar Heels placekicker Conor Barth connected on his first career game winner last weekend vs. Miami, a 42-yard field goal as time expired. Barth is 9 for 11 and 21 for 22 on PATs in 2004.

Duke (1-7, 0-5 ACC) at #13 Florida State (6-2, 4-2 ACC)
Sunshine Network (PPV); 12:00 p.m.
Doak Campbell Stadium (82,300)

THE GAME: Florida State is unbeaten in 12 games against Duke (12-0-0), while maintaining a 6-0-0 record in games played on their home turf. The Seminoles' 12 straight wins is tied for the second-longest current series' win streak in ACC history. Florida State's offense has tallied 324 points in the six home games, while the defense has allowed 92.

LAST TIME OUT: Last year, Florida State QB Chris Rix completed 16-of-25 passes for 274 yards and two TDs to lead the Seminoles to a 56-7 victory over Duke in Durham. Behind a combined rushing effort, the Blue Devils posted 106 yards on the ground led by senior TB Chris Douglas' 48 yards on 19 carries. Chris Schneider threw for 132 yards to pace Duke. The Seminoles also added a pair of defensive TDs including a 3-yard fumble return by A.J. Nicholson and an interception return of 71 yards by Antonio Cromartie late in the fourth quarter.

THE COACHES: Ted Roof is in his first full season as head coach of the Duke Blue Devils with an overall mark of 3-10. Bobby Bowden is 275-69-4 in 28 years at Florida State and 348-101-4 in 38 seasons overall.


Duke's Mike Schneider had a career passing day against Wake Forest Saturday posting career-highs in passing yards (300), completions (28) and attempts (45) against Wake Forest. Schneider tied a career-high with two TD passes.

Florida State's Antonio Cromartie posted his team leading fourth interception of the season. Cromartie picked off a Maryland pass last weekend and returned it 40 yards for a TD. Cromartie, who has interceptions in back-to-back games, has recorded two defensive TDs this season.

Blue Devil TB Cedric Dargan registered his second straight 100-yard rushing performance as he ran for 113 yards against the Demon Deacons. It is the third 100-yard rushing game for Dargan in four contests this season.

Seminole QB Chris Rix threw his first TD of the 2004 season as he found Chauncey Stovall for a 16-yard strike in the fourth quarter vs. Maryland. Rix, who has 61 career TDs passes, needs five to move into third all-time in ACC history.

Maryland (4-4, 2-3 ACC) at #12 Virginia (6-1, 3-1 ACC)
ABC; 3:30 p.m.
Scott Stadium (61,500)

THE GAME: Maryland's Terrapins travel to Scott Stadium Saturday to take on the 12th-ranked Cavaliers in the 69th meeting of series that was first contested in 1919 ... the Terps have won two of the last three meetings and lead the series 39-27-2, including a 19-16 margin in Charlottesville ... the Cavaliers have won six in a row at home and seven of the last eight. Maryland owns the series longest win streak of 16 from 1972 to 1987, the fourth longest all-time series win streak in ACC history.

LAST TIME OUT: Last year, Maryland's Josh Allen rushed for 257 yards on 38 carries to lead the Terps past Virginia 27-17 in College Park. The Cavaliers tallied 108 rushing yards as Wali Lundy and Alvin Pearman rushed for 56 and 53 yards, respectively. QB Matt Schaub was responible for both Cavalier TDs, one on a four-yard dash, the other a 14-yard pass to Pearman. Nick Novak connected on two field goals (33, 45) for the Terrapins in the win.

THE COACHES: Virginia head coach Al Groh is 28-18 in his fourth year at Virginia, and 54-58 in 10 seasons overall. Ralph Friedgen is 35-12 in his fourth season at Maryland.


Virginia leads the ACC and is ranked in the top 11 nationally in four offensive categories including rushing offense (7th), scoring offense (8th), scoring offense (10th) and pass efficiency (11th).

For the third straight week and the fourth time in five games, the Maryland defense has held the opposition under 100-yards rushing. The Terrapins held Florida State to just 50 yards last week and Clemson to just 36 yards on the ground two weeks ago, a season-low for Maryland's defense.

The Cavaliers are tops in the conference in red zone offense converting on 32 of 36 opportunities good for an 88.9 percent success rate. UVa has garnered 25 TDs and connected on 7 of 8 field goal attempts. Virginia is first in third-down (51.6) and fourth-down (100.0) conversions this season.

Terrapin TE Vernon Davis tallied 99 yards on six catches to lead all Maryland receivers against FSU. Davis has been the leading receiver in four of eight games this season and has accumulated 314 yards for a 39.2 per game average in 2004.

Clemson (4-4, 3-3 ACC) at #10 Miami (6-1, 3-1 ACC)
ESPN; 7:45 p.m.
Orange Bowl (72,319)

THE GAME: Miami and Clemson will square-off for just the sixth time overall and for the first time in 48 years when the 10th-ranked Hurricanes host the Tigers under the lights in the Orange Bowl. The Hurricanes lead the all-time series 4-1-0 and is 3-1-0 in games played in the Orange Bowl. All five meetings between the Hurricanes and the Tigers have occurred in the state of Florida, with two of those meetings in bowl games - Orange Bowl and Gator Bowl - during the 1950 & 1951 seasons, respectively. Clemson last defeated Miami during the 1950 season, a 15-14 victory.

LAST TIME OUT: Clemson and Miami last squared off on the gridiron back in 1956 when the Hurricanes defeated the Tigers 21-0 in the Orange Bowl. The Hurricanes tallied 354 yards of total offense led by QB Sam Scarnecchia who was 4-of-7 for 61 yards and two rushing TDs. Don Bosseler led the Miami rushing attack as he registered 85 yards on the ground. The Tigers will return to the Orange Bowl for the first time since winning the National Championship in 1981.

THE COACHES: Tommy Bowden is 42-28 in six seasons at Clemson and 60-32 in eight years overall. Larry Coker is 41-4 in his fourth season as head coach of the Miami Hurricanes.


Saturday evenings game will feature a pair of kick return specialists in Clemson's Justin Miller and Miami's Devin Hester. Miller leads the ACC in kick return average tallying 33.9 yards a return, while Hester is second (31.7). Hester is the conference leader in punt return average at 26.2 yards a return, while Miller is second (14.7).

Clemson's Jad Dean kicked a career-high four field goals last weekend against NC State (21, 47, 36, 42). Dean is a perfect 6-for-6 in field goal attempts and 11-for-11 in PATs this season.

Over the last four games, Miami's Brock Berlin has thrown 13 TDs as opposed to just two interceptions. Berlin leads the ACC in passing yards per game (226.7) and is the only QB averaging over 200 yards passing this season.

Miami's Roger McIntosh and Clemson's Leroy Hill lead their teams in tackling averaging 9.9 and 9.4 tackles per game, respectively.

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ACC Football This Week - 11/06/04
Jay Davis will lead the Wolfpack against the Yellow Jackets.
photo by Gene Galin

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