Good evening, Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) football fans. Hope you having fun watching some ACC hoops this weekend (our buddy, @vabeachrep, has encouraged us to write more ACC football posts – so I’m dropping one tonight lol).
I’m going to give you the flip side here – here are five positives that I see in the 2017 ACC football schedule:
1.) The opening weekend is a big opportunity for the ACC to get some nice out-of-conference wins.
On college football’s opening weekend, Florida State plays Alabama in the Chick-Fil-A Kickoff game (in Atlanta), North Carolina State takes on South Carolina in the Belk College Kickoff Game (in Charlotte), North Carolina hosts California (and California has brand new coach), Virginia Tech takes on West Virginia (in Landover, MD) in a renewal of the Black Diamond Trophy game (Many Hokies fans consider West Virginia one of their most hated rivals), Louisville plays Purdue (in Indianapolis), and to close the weekend, Georgia Tech plays Tennessee in the Chick-Fil-A Kickoff Labor Day game (in Atlanta). I like the ACC teams’ chances in every one of these games.
2.) North Carolina State gets to host Louisville in a big game on a Thursday night.
It’s been a long time since North Carolina State had a big Thursday night game at Carter-Finley Stadium. Louisville and Heisman Trophy winner, Lamar Jackson, come to Raleigh on October 5, 2017. If North Carolina State defeats Louisville, it could mean some serious momentum for the rest of the season (The Wolfpack have 85-90% of their starters back – it might be Dave Doeren’s most experienced team at North Carolina State). North Carolina State has Louisville and Clemson at home – might be a now or never sort of situation here for Doeren.
3.) The Clemson – Florida State game in late November, which means both teams will be relevant very late in the season – and in the picture for the College Football Playoff.
Clemson hosts Florida State on November 11, 2017. Unless both teams get upset, I’m thinking the most losses that each team has going into that game is one each. That means the winner of this game is going to be in the picture late in the year for the College Football Playoff.
4.) ACC teams getting some Friday night exposure.
Purists won’t like ACC teams playing on Friday nights because high school football usually takes center stage. That said, playing in prime time on a Friday night (or Friday afternoon) is big exposure on television. In October, Florida State goes on the road to Boston College. On Thanksgiving weekend, Virginia Tech goes on the road to Virginia for the Commonwealth Cup, and Pittsburgh hosts Miami.
5.) Virginia Tech has Saturday home games all year – and that’s huge.
Last year, Virginia Tech did not have a Saturday home game during the month of October. I don’t know how that’s possible, but yes, it did indeed happen. Yes, the Hokies don’t have a Thursday night game at home – but weekends were made for traveling football fans and selling more tickets. Here’s thinking the Hokies football ticket sales will be higher this year – the Hokies have six Saturday home games (including one with Old Dominion, who was 9-3 in Conference USA play last year – and won their bowl game).