Originally posted on Fox Sports Carolinas  |  Last updated 10/30/11
Boston College At least Frank Spaziani's players haven't quit on the season. The Eagles took a 28-17 win at Maryland amidst rain, snow and cold temperatures because they were the mentally and physically tougher team. Sophomore Rolandan Finch's 243 rushing yards were huge in demoralizing the Terps. Grade: A. Clemson Dabo Swinney's squad didn't handle early adversity after its first committed turnover well and allowed the game to get out of hand enough it couldn't mount a comeback. Great run by the Tigers, but with Georgia Tech returning to its September form, Clemson's task was too great in the 31-17 loss in Atlanta. Grade: D. Duke Three missed field goals crushed the Blue Devils' chances at making this perhaps the most bizarre football weekend in ACC history. Duke lost at home to Virginia Tech, 14-10, but probably should have won the game. Matt Daniels was sensational on defense, too bad he couldn't kick field goals, too. Grade: C. Florida State E.J. Manuel (25-for-34 for 321 yards and two touchdowns) was sensational in picking apart N.C. State's defense in a 34-0 rout of the visiting Wolfpack. The Seminoles' defense limited NCSU to just 166 total yards in a complete performance for Jimbo Fisher. FSU has won three consecutive games and appears it's finding itself. Good thing, because there's still much to play for. Grade: A. Georgia Tech Big-time kudos to Paul Johnson and his team for an impressive 31-17 win over previously unbeaten Clemson. The Yellow Jackets had been awful in recent weeks, and there were zero indicators suggesting this kind of performance was on the horizon. But 383 rushing yards and just enough of a passing game (60 yards) were too much for the Tigers. Grade: A. Maryland In a season that defies logic for the Terrapins, they suffered perhaps their strangest defeat thanks to a mind-boggling performance in a 28-17 home loss to Boston College. The Terps' quarterbacks continued their struggles and the team as a whole played with little passion. Grade: F. Miami It was almost as if the ghost of Randy Shannon hovered over Sun Life Stadium on Thursday night, as the emotionless Hurricanes were beaten (28-21) at home by a Virginia club coming off an awful home loss to N.C. State. It appeared that the new coaching staff and players were on the same page the last few weeks, but it sure didn't look that way during this effort. Grade: D. North Carolina The biggest turnaround from last week belongs to UNC, which rocked Wake Forest, 49-24, in the program's best post-Bunting performance. This space had been pretty down on the Tar Heels, but a players-only team meeting inspired a new mentality, and Carolina played more to its potential. Best story of the week in the league, even better than GT's. Grade: A. N.C. State For the third time in the Tom O'Brien era, the Wolfpack was shut out, this time 34-0 at Florida State. The Pack amassed a paltry 166 total yards while surrendering 444. This isn't the kind of result O'Brien needed, given that State now must win three of its last four games to become bowl eligible, and his job security may depend on reaching the postseason. Grade: F-. Virginia Michael Rocco passed for 226 yards and two touchdowns in one of his better performances on the season in the Cavaliers' 28-21 victory at Miami on Thursday night. UVa also ran the ball for an average of 4.9 yards on 42 attempts in controlling most of the game. Excellent win for Mike London and his staff. Grade: A. Virginia Tech The Hokies might be the worst good team in the nation this season. They have only looked above mediocre on a few occasions, and the rest of the time managed to beat the likes of Duke and East Carolina without scoring more than a pair of touchdowns. On Saturday, VPI edged Duke 14-10 in Durham and probably should have lost, as Duke missed three field goals. Tech moved the ball some, but 14 points against Duke just isn't what's expected from Frank Beamer's program. Grade: C-. Wake Forest Maybe the most disappointing team in the conference over the weekend was Wake Forest, which went into Chapel Hill playing well and with a ton to play for. But the Demon Deacons were steamrolled by the Tar Heels, 49-24, courtesy of five turnovers and its worst defensive performance of the season. UNC amassed 562 total yards in the contest. Grade: F. ACC Clemson staying in the national championship hunt was vitally important to the ACC, but the Tigers' loss at Georgia Tech ended that suspense, and the league will now fall back into a familiar spot for the remainder of the season. Miami's showing on Thursday before a sparse crowd did little to help the league's reputation. Grade: D.
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