Originally posted on Fox Sports Carolinas  |  Last updated 8/30/12
Aug. 31 N.C. State vs. Tennessee Where: Atlanta, Georgia Dome (71,989) When: 7:30 p.m. The blitz: One of the nations top secondaries will go up against one of the SECs top QBs in Tennessees Tyler Bray. State has the advantage, especially with UTs DaRick Rogers, who is maybe the best WR in the SEC, suspended. The Wolfpack may be better with the ball, too, as QB Mike Glennon has weapons on the edge and talented backs running behind a huge, veteran offensive line. Pick: N.C. State, 27-19. Sept. 1 Elon at North Carolina Where: Chapel Hill, Kenan Stadium (63,000) When: 12:30 p.m. The blitz: UNC begins the Larry Fedora era and will be intent on making a statement. With all the Tar Heels have been through with the NCAA investigation and coaching changes, this game is very important to the Heels. UNC returns 15 starters, has loads of talent and will take on an Elon team whose QB threw 21 interceptions a year ago. Pick: UNC, 55-14. Richmond at Virginia Where: Charlottesville, VA, Scott Stadium (61, 500) When: 3 p.m. The blitz: Excitement is beginning to grow in Hoo-ville, as it should given the continued escalation in talent under Mike London. Michael Rocco will start at QB, but UVa fans cant wait to see what Alabama transfer Phillip Sims does when he gets into the game. The Spiders first-year coach is Danny Rocco, the uncle of the UVa quarterback. The Wahoos are better up front and should run for at least 200 yards if they want to. Pick: UVa, 37-10. William & Mary at Maryland Where: College Park, MD, Byrd Stadium (54,100) When: 3 p.m. The blitz: The Terps have just 35 scholarship players who have played in a college game, will start a true freshman at QB and have 16 redshirt or true freshmen on the 1-2 depth chart. The Tribe are a bit down, so an upset isnt likely, but this might be a close game heading into the fourth quarter. Pick: Maryland, 26-17. Miami at Boston College Where: Chestnut Hill, MA, Alumni Stadium (44,500) When: 3:30 p.m. The blitz: Both teams enter with many questions, but Miami at least has some serious talent on the first line of its depth chart. BC has steadily declined under Frank Spaziani, but Miami is facing questions regarding an NCAA situation that could stagnate the program. As for Saturday, the Hurricanes have too many playmakers to win a rare season-opener that is also a conference game. Pick: Miami, 28-20. Murray State at Florida State Where: Tallahassee, FL, Doak Campbell Stadium (82,300) When: 6 p.m. The blitz: The Racers may catch the Seminoles off guard a little if the home team is flat because Murray can chuck it around some. But FSU is so much more gifted everywhere that a couple of good shoves and the Noles will cruise to an easy victory. Pick: FSU, 54-6. Liberty at Wake Forest Where: Winston-Salem, NC, BB&T Field (31,500) When: 6:30 p.m. The blitz: Libertys new coach is former Kansas head man Turner Gill, and his first task in taking on a Demon Deacons team that can score from anywhere on the field will be considerable. Wake also has a defense that should make some plays, especially in the secondary. Tanner Price-to-Michael Campanaro will happen a lot this season, beginning Saturday night. Pick: Wake, 40-17. Clemson vs. Auburn Where: Atlanta, Georgia Dome (71,989) When: 7 p.m. The blitz: Clemson looks to help the ACC get off to a good start by beating Auburn for the second straight season. Dabo Swinneys club will be without wide receiver Sammy Watkins but should still be explosive offensively with Tajh Boyd at QB, Andre Ellington running the ball and DeAngelo Hopkins running routes. Auburn will try to out-physical Clemson and keep it in 3rd-and-long situations all night, making this a field position game. Pick: Clemson, 26-17. Florida International at Duke Where: Durham, NC, Wallace Wade Stadium (33,941) When: 7 p.m. The blitz: FIU is plenty capable of leaving with a victory. It has athletes and played Duke close a year ago, falling 31-27. But Duke returns 16 starters, including QB Sean Renfree, who had 335 yards in that game in Miami, and this is supposed to be David Cutcliffes best Duke team in his five seasons in Durham. Pick: Duke, 37-27. Sept. 3 Georgia Tech at Virginia Tech Where: Blacksburg, VA, Lane Stadium (66,233) When: 8 p.m. The blitz: Great way for the ACC to showcase itself when no other game will be going on. The Yellow Jackets will challenge the Hokies with their triple option offense, but Tevin Washington must throw the ball some in order for the visitors to notch what would be an enormous victory. The Hokies will try to use balance led by QB Logan Thomas to keep the Jackets offense off the field. Thomas says they will play faster this season, so well see if thats so. Frank Beamers Hokies team is absolutely loaded on defense. Pick: Virginia Tech, 28-13.
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