NC FBS Report Week 9

Week 9 Scoreboard

Week 9 was rough for picks.

#8 Miami (7-0, 5-0)

24

North Carolina (1-8, 0-6)

19

Larry Fedora’s beat up squad played their best game of the season Saturday. However, it wasn’t enough to beat eighth-ranked and undefeated Miami. The Tar Heels were competitive throughout the entire game and even had a chance to win the game after forcing a fumble late in the fourth quarter. Unfortunately, the Hurricane defense made a couple of key stops to secure the victory. Coach Fedora after the game: “They go out there, and they care about each other, they love each other, and they play hard together.” He added, “But we still made too many mistakes to overcome to win a football game, especially against a really good football team.”

From Fedora’s comments, it’s clear to see that the Heels are looking for silver linings during an extremely frustrating season. To add to Carolina’s injuries, QB Chazz Surratt left the game in the first quarter after taking a shot on a late hit. Sophomore Nathan Elliott came in and played like every other QB to take snaps for Carolina this season, terrible. Elliott threw three interceptions and one touchdown on 16/36 passing with 173 yards. The QB also ran the ball 21 times for 79 yards. Jordan Brown added 88 yards of his own on 19 carries. QB play was so bad, WR Anthony Ratliff-Williams attempted three pass attempts himself. He connected on two, including this 19-yard pitch and throw for a touchdown.


Louisville (5-4, 2-4)

32

Wake Forest (5-3, 2-3)

42

Louisville just isn’t the same team many thought would challenge to make the ACC Championship Game. At times they’ve struggled mightily. Their struggle was real in Winston-Salem this past weekend. Greg Dortch simply torched the Cardinal’s defense. The young wideout caught ten John Wolford passes for 167 yards and four touchdowns. On the day, Wolford tossed for 461 yards and five touchdowns on 28 completions and 34 attempts. Matt Colburn had a career-day as well. The junior RB from Irmo, SC carried the rock 24 times for 134 yards.

Though the final deficit was ten points, Wake Forest controlled the game throughout. “You’ve just got to find a way,” Demon Deacons Head Coach Dave Clawson said after the game. “Today we found a way, and probably got one of the biggest wins we’ve gotten in our four years here.” Though they still must face NC State and Notre Dame, Wake Forest is a great position to earn a bowl berth this season. A win versus Duke or Syracuse should secure the invite. It’ll be tough, especially after finding out Dortch will miss the rest of the season with an abdominal injury.


Appalachian State (5-3)

27

UMass (2-6)

30

Final/2OT

We thought Appalachian State was better than this. Too many times this season ASU has allowed a team to get a lead and needed late heroics to pull out a victory. In their past three games, App State has needed a come back to win. Unfortunately, on Saturday the Mountaineers let UMass hang around too long and the Minutemen sent the game into overtime. 

With 2:08 remaining in regulation, ASU had a 96.9%-win probability. All the Mountaineer defense had to do was make a stop and get the ball back. Instead, the Minutemen marched down the field in twelve plays and tied the game on a field goal with five seconds to go. In overtime, anything can happen. That was the case for the Mountaineers who fumbled the ball away on their second possession of overtime. Then they watched their chances of victory extinguished with a Logan Laurent field goal in double overtime. ASU Head Coach Scott Saterfield put it best, “It was a wild battle that went back and forth. We turned it over in overtime and they didn’t, and that was the difference in the game.”

The only other time these two teams met was in the 2006 FCS National Championship Game.


#14 NC State (6-2)

14

#9 Notre Dame (7-1)

35

NC State at Notre Dame was one of the biggest national matchups of the weekend. Leading up, everyone wondered if the Pack could hang with the talented Irish in South Bend. Had Nyheim Hines not gotten hurt early, the Pack may have had a chance. Instead, Hines sprained his ankle on the kickoff following Notre Dame’s first touchdown. After the game, Dave Doeren told reporters, “Losing Nyheim was a big blow. Fortunately, it’s not a big injury, just a sprain.”

While Hines wouldn’t have made a difference on defense, it’s possible that with Hines, the NC State offense had a chance to keep the Pack in the game. Without Hines, the unit struggled. Wolfpack runners mustered only 50 yards on 24 touches. Furthermore, Ryan Finley only completed 17 passes on 37 attempts. The QB totaled 213 yards with a touchdown and an interception. The loss serves as a piece of humble pie to NC State. They need to get their act together soon. They’ll face #4 Clemson in Raleigh on Saturday. The winner earns an inside track at the ACC Atlantic crown.


Duke (4-5, 1-5)

3

#13 Virginia Tech (7-1, 3-1)

24

It was a gross day in Blacksburg. Duke players must have been miserable as Virginia Tech rolled over the Blue Devils in monsoon conditions. The rain didn’t seem to bother the Hokies. Virginia Tech outgained Duke 387-183 and converted 13 more first downs. Also, Duke struggled to take care of the ball. Daniel Jones threw an interception midway through the first. Then TJ Rahming fumbled on the very next possession. Overall, Jones had a rough day. He only completed 10 of his 24 pass attempts for 82 yards and the one interception. Jones led the team in rushing as well with 65 yards.

The Blue Devils have now lost five straight. Dave Cutcliffe on the losing streak, “At this stage, I’m sure everybody feels somewhat like I do. You’re physically tired, but right now, you’re pretty emotionally tired after what we’ve been through. But you pick yourself up, and we will.” When asked about his offense Coach Cut said,  “Offensively, we have had horrific times trying to complete passes. If you want to get down to the core, our completion percentage has fallen to the point where consistency, down-and-distance suffers. The rain and the combination of their pass rush made it almost impossible at times. Even when Daniel was getting the ball off, he was getting hit pretty often, so I think that combination was the biggest reason. It wasn’t just rain.” Duke has a bye week this weekend. Then they’ll head to West Point to face Army on November 11th.


NC FBS Power Rankings

1 NC State (6-2) (4-0)
2 Wake Forest (5-3) (2-3)
3 Appalachian State (5-3) (4-0)
4 Duke (4-5) (1-5)
5 East Carolina (2-6) (2-3)
6 UNC-Charlotte (1-7) (1-4)
7 North Carolina (1-8) (0-6)

 

Week 10 Games and Predictions

 

  • East Carolina at Houston (5-3, 3-2) – Saturday, 12:00 PM
    • Houston Easy
  • Appalachian State at Louisiana Monroe (3-5, 3-3) – Saturday, 3:00 PM
    • App in a nailbiter
  • UNC-Charlotte at Old Dominion (2-6, 0-4) – Saturday, 3:30 PM
    • Charlotte wins again
  • #4 Clemson (7-1, 5-1) at North Carolina St. – Saturday, 3:30 PM
    • State keeps in close but Clemson holds on
  • Wake Forest at #3 Notre Dame (7-1) – Saturday, 3:30 PM
    • Notre Dame

*RONGY: 35-21 (W9: 2-3) through Week 9 Picks*

NC FBS Report Week 8

Week 8 Scoreboard

Pittsburgh (3-5, 1-3)

24

Duke (4-4, 1-4)

17

In college football, all it takes is one big play to deflate the home crowd and swing momentum completely positive. Duke found that out the hard way Saturday. Late in the third quarter, T.J Rahming hauled in Daniel Jones’ second TD of the day. After the point-after, the Blue Devils looked to be in control of the game as the fourth quarter neared up 17-7. On the ensuing kickoff, the Panthers made an error bringing the kickoff out of the end zone. As a result, Pitt had to begin their drive on their own 8-yard line. Then it happened. On the first play of the drive, Darrin Hall found a gap up the middle and never looked back. The junior broke the plane 92-yards later to cut the Duke lead to three.

As the fourth quarter started, Duke began their next possession. Unfortunately, it was only three plays and a punt. Blue Devil punter Austin Parker did his best to pin the Panthers deep in their own territory by putting the ball out of bounds at the Pitt 5. However, as had been the theme all day, Duke could not contain Darrin Hall.

Three straight runs by Hall gave the Panthers a first down and breathing room. Then the Pitt offense connected on two big pass plays of 25 and 49 yards and were suddenly on the Duke 11. At that point, it was back to feeding Hall. With seven yards on first down and the remaining four on second down, Hall was back in the end zone for his third TD of the day. Daniel Jones had two more chances to bring home a victory, but a missed field goal after a 10-play drive and an interception on the Pitt 8 sealed Duke’s fate.

Duke’s season is officially in turmoil. They have now lost four straight after beginning the season 4-0. The Blue Devils desperately needed to win a home against a Pitt team that hasn’t been anything special this season. Duke is in serious danger of missing a bowl game now. Three out of their last four games are on the road and in tough environments. Duke must steal two of these games if they want any chance of going bowling.


Coastal Carolina (1-6, 0-4)

29

Appalachian State (5-2, 4-0)

37

As expected, App State was a little too talented for Coastal Carolina. Give the Chanticleers credit, they had ASU on the ropes for the three quarters and were only down one heading into the fourth quarter. However, the fourth opened right in the middle of an App State drive that had already marched for 6-plays and 48 yards. Five plays later, Marcus Williams Jr. was in the end zone and the ASU advantage was 30-22.

On cue, as they’ve done all year, the App State defense came to life when called upon. Tasked with preserving the lead, the Mountaineer defense put the vise grips on CCU. The next three Chanticleer drives all were halted by the ASU defense early including a crucial fumble recovery on the Coastal Carolina 19-yard line. Like a record on repeat, five-plays later Williams Jr. was back in the end zone for his second score of the day. CCU added a late touchdown to cut the lead back to eight, but couldn’t corral the on-side attempt effectively ending their chances.

Taylor Lamb had a career day for the Mountaineers. Not only did the senior QB break Armanti Edwards record for career TD passes, he also threw for a career-high 427 yards in the victory. It’s been an outstanding four years in Boone for Lamb. The Calhoun, GA native took over the starting QB gig his freshman season and never looked back. Since then he’s thrown for over 8,600 yards, rushed for 1,700 and scored 96 TDs. Lamb has never thrown more than nine interceptions in a season. The Mountaineers are 34-12 over that period.


North Carolina (1-7, 0-5)

7

#14 Virginia Tech (6-1, 2-1)

59

You guessed it, UNC got trounced in Blacksburg. There’s not much to say. Virginia Tech is one of the best teams in the nation. Aside from the sanction-ravaged Baylor, UNC is probably the worst Power 5 team in the country. Saturday’s result was a mere formality even before the coin toss. Once the ball was kicked off, it all came to fruition.

On the day, VT rushing attack itself outgained the entire Heels offense 181-172. In total, Virginia Tech tallied 383 yards altogether. Furthermore, UNC committed three turnovers to the Hokies zero, and Virginia Tech gained ten more first downs than Carolina. Per usual, Chazz Surratt and Brandon Harris played like trash again. Surratt fumbled twice, losing one and Harris threw two INTs.

The 2017 season can’t end soon enough for the Tar Heels. This season has been extremely hard to watch. Things should get worse this Saturday when #8 Miami comes to Chapel Hill. On the bright side, UNC does have a game remaining against FCS Western Carolina. Knowing this Tar Heel team, they’ll find a way to make that game difficult as well. In all honesty, I wouldn’t be shocked if they lost.


UAB (4-3, 2-2)

24

UNC-Charlotte (1-7, 1-4)

25

Final/OT

They did it. UNCC finally did it. Down 17-0 early in the third quarter, it looked as if Charlotte was heading towards another defeat. On their first possession of the second half, Charlotte went three-and-out. However, on the punt, UAB muffed the punt and the 49ers recovered. Hasaan Klugh and Aaron McCallister then went to work on a 9-play, 35-yard drive capped off by a Klugh TD run to cut the lead to ten.

After a sequence of UAB-Punt, UNCC-Punt, UAB-Punt, the 49ers found themselves with the ball on their own 32 with 10 minutes to play. On the very first play of the drive, Klugh found Trent Bostick who took the ball all the way to the house for the score. Now UAB’s lead was down to three. UAB started to gain traction on their next drive but was suddenly halted by Ben DeLuca who forced and recovered a Blazer fumble. Already in field goal range, the 49ers Nigel Macauley drilled a 24-yarder to tie the game after the 8-play drive stalled out. The two teams traded a series of punts to end regulation.

UAB received possession first in overtime. The Blazers used six plays and eventually scored on a QB run by A.J. Elderly. A made extra point gave UAB a seven-point advantage. Hasaan Klugh then went back to work. This time the 49er QB was back in the end zone after eight plays that concluded on a one-yard scamper. Though they only needed one point to tie, the 49ers decided it was time to take the game into their own hands and go for it. On the two-point conversion, Klugh handed the ball off to his running back who then pitched the ball out to senior wideout Chris Montgomery. Instead of lunging toward the end zone, Montgomery pulled up, launched a pass and found his QB Klugh wide open for the win.


BYU (1-7)

17

East Carolina (2-6, 2-3)

33

In a matchup between two awful teams, ECU prevailed. Thanks, in part, to Pirate kicker Jake Verity who drilled field goals through on all three of East Carolina’s third-quarter possessions. In between those ECU drives, the Pirate defense was finally able to hold an opponent when needed. BYU was able to bend the Pirate defense for yards but couldn’t break through in the second half until it was too late.

Surprisingly enough, Gardner Minshew actually looked like a decent QB in the fourth quarter. In the last quarter, Minshew navigated the Pirates to two touchdowns to extend their lead and bleed the clock. On the day, Minshew finished 6/9 with 121 yards and the two scores.

While ECU’s season is still in shambles, some of the pressure bearing down Scottie Montgomery’s back should be relieved. The Pirates are on bye this weekend, so they better savor the victory now because the last four games of the season won’t be pretty for the Pirates.


Wake Forest (4-3, 1-3)

24

Georgia Tech (4-2, 3-1)

38

Georgia Tech is good; they’ve lost two games all season by a combined two points. Both against ranked opponents. The Yellow Jackets have out-scored all other opponents 105-35. They were back at it again Saturday. This time at the expense of the Wake Forest Demon Deacons in Atlanta.

The Demon Deacons didn’t play badly. In fact, they held a 24-19 lead midway through the third quarter. Then the Rambling Wreck’s patented triple-option went to town on the Wake Forest defense. On consecutive drives, Georgia Tech strung together a series of runs that were both capped off by TDs. First, a 42-yard home run by Qua Searchy. The second, an 11-yard strike from KirVonte Benson.

Suddenly down a touchdown, the Wake Forest offense was unable to muster any success. Three straight drives ended with a turnover on downs and the fourth and final drive was intercepted. John Wolford ended with 252 yards on 17 for 30 passing. He also threw for two touchdowns and ran for another. Freshman Greg Dortch continued his terrific season catching eight receptions for 125 yards. Cade Carney led with Wake Forest running game. The sophomore totaled 92 yards on 19 attempts.


NC FBS Power Rankings

  1. NC State (6-1, 4-0) [-]
  2. Appalachian State (5-2, 4-0) [-]
  3. Wake Forest (4-3, 1-3) [-]
  4. Duke (4-4, 1-4) [-]
  5. East Carolina (2-6, 2-3) [+1]
  6. UNC-Charlotte (1-7, 1-4) [+1]
  7. North Carolina (1-7, 0-5) [-2]

Week 9 Games and Predictions

  • #8 Miami (6-0, 4-0) at North Carolina – Saturday, 12:00 PM

    • Miami embarrasses UNC
  • Louisville (5-3, 2-3) at Wake Forest – Saturday, 12:20 PM

    • Lamar Jackson & Co. are too much for the Deacons
  • Appalachian State at UMass (1-6) – Saturday, 3:30 PM

    • ASU rather easily
  • #14 North Carolina State at #9 Notre Dame (6-1) – Saturday, 3:30 PM

    • State shows the world they’re for real. Go into South Bend and leave with a win
  • Duke at #13 Virginia Tech (6-1, 2-1) – Saturday, 7:20 PM

    • VT is going to smother Duke in Blacksburg

 

*RONGY: 33-18 (W8: 3-3) through Week 8 Picks*

 

NC FBS Report Week 7

Week 7 Scoreboard

#20 NC State (6-1, 4-0) 35
Pittsburg (2-5, 0-3) 17

Nyheim Hines, what can we say? This guy is having a tremendous season. That continued Saturday as NC State took down the Panthers in Pittsburgh. On State’s third drive of the game, just after allowing Pittsburgh to score, Hines busted a colossal 83-yard touchdown scamper to even the game at seven. Six plays later, Hines was back in the end zone. This time, the Junior RB took a punt return 92 yards to the house. In total, Hines ended with 249 all-purpose yards on the afternoon.

Ryan Finley and Jalen Samuels, per usual, played well and were solid contributors to the Wolfpack offense. Finley passed for 198 yards on 14 completions and a TD. Samuels, who has become a viable threat in the run-game, stole a pair of touchdowns from Hines. On six carries, Samuels gained 62-yard to go with four receptions for 28 yards. Kelvin Harmon enjoyed the biggest day of the NCSU receiving corp. The sophomore hauled in only three passes but amassed 113 yards.

Though Pitt had the ball for almost ten more minutes than the Wolfpack, NC State outgained the Panthers 446-326 and defense forced two turnovers while Finley & Co. committed none. Bradley Chubb and the defensive front pressured the Pitt O-Line all day long, recording eight QB hurries, seven tackles for loss, and one sack.


Florida State (2-3, 2-2) 17
Duke (4-3, 1-3) 10

Duke had their shot to knock off a vulnerable Florida State team but came up just a bit short in Wallace Wade Stadium. With two minutes and some change left in the third quarter, Brittain Brown tied the game on a 9-yard touchdown run. Four plays later, FSU freshman QB James Blackmon was picked off by Jeremy McDuffie and was returned near midfield; however, Duke was unable to capitalize and went three-and-out on the following drive.

After the three-and-out, the freshman duo of Blackman and RB Cam Akers went to work. It took ten plays, but on the last run Akers saw the end zone and refused to stop until he crossed the plane. On the afternoon, the Duke defense allowed 228 total rushing yards; 115 on 15 carries for Akers and 98 yards on 18 carries for Junior Jacques Patrick. Though Blackman threw two interceptions, he had his most efficient game as FSU’s de facto starter going 18 for 21 and 197 yards and a passer rating of 161.2.

The Blue Devils have now lost three straight games. Though the past two losses have been one-possession games to quality opposition, it may be time to start getting nervous in Durham. Three of Duke’s last five games are on the road including trips to Blacksburg to face the nationally-ranked Hokies, West Point to meet a good Army team, and finally, BB&T Stadium to clash with the Deacons. The Devils need to take care of business at home against Pitt and Georgia Tech if they want to keep their bowl dreams alive.


Virginia (5-1, 2-0) 20
North Carolina (1-6, 0-4) 14

The Tar Heel Implosion Tour rolls on. This time at the hands of the upstart Virginia Cavaliers. It’s hard to dis a team that’s been so decimated by injuries. It’s the same story every week: Carolina simply doesn’t have the volume of able bodies nor requisite talent left to compete in the ACC this season. This weekend Brandon Harris was afforded another opportunity to throw more interceptions and play as inefficient as possible. If the Tar Heels were healthy, QB play would be a major controversy in Chapel Hill, but with all the injuries it looks as if everyone in the program is getting a free pass this year, as of now.

Michael Carter and freshman DE Tomon Fox were the lone two bright spots for the Tar Heel against Virginia. Fox recorded his second and third sacks on the season. Carter had two touchdowns on 13 carries for 157 yards and was the only sign of life the Tar Heel offense showed all afternoon. On the day, UVA’s offense outgained Carolina 405-257 and controlled the ball for almost 20 more minutes than the Heels (39:58- 20:02).

Though I’ve dogged Carolina so far, Carter did give the Heels a 14-10 lead midway through the third quarter and a chance to pull out their first ACC victory of the season. Then the defense allowed an 81-yard touchdown on a one-play drive. Two plays later, Harris threw his third pick of the day to ruin the Tar Heel threat.


UNC-Charlotte (0-7, 0-3) 14
Western Kentucky (4-2, 2-1) 45

Western Kentucky is a good Conference USA team, UNCC not so much. That was the tale of the tape Saturday when the two conference adversaries met up. Charlotte was only able to muster nine first downs the entire game compared to 34 for WKU. The Hilltoppers doubled up the 49ers in total yardage (627-309) as UNCC’s defense didn’t stand much of a chance.

The biggest story of the game for the 49ers was freshman running back Aaron McAllister. McAllister totaled 157 rushing yards, including an 87-yarder, on 22 carries and scored UNCC’s only two touchdowns. Clearly, UNCC is already looking towards next year. This season is completely awash and now they need to focus on generating some momentum going into 2018. Going winless this season cannot be an option if the core coaching staff wants to remain.


Appalachian State (4-2, 3-0) 23
Idaho (2-4, 1-2) 20

Over 2,000 miles from home, Appalachian State was down 20-0 halfway through the third quarter. Taylor Lamb had just thrown an interception that the Vandals converted into a field goal, and ASU’s dream of an undefeated conference record was fading fast. For most teams, this would be the point to throw in the towel and get ready for a long flight back across country and week ahead. Not Scott Satterfield’s Mountaineers. Lamb shook off the INT and went to work. On the next App State possession, Lamb led a 7-play, 75-yard drive capped off with a 38-yard touchdown pass from Lamb to Ike Lewis.

It was at this moment, after giving up the field goal then watching their QB march downfield for points, that the Appalachian State defense put the clamps down. Every Idaho drive after either ended in a 3-and-out or a turnover including two fumble recoveries. Antonious Sims led the way for the Mountaineer defense recording 2.5 sacks on the day.

Taylor Lamb continued the comeback on ASU’s next possession, commanding the offense on a 7-minute, 14-play drive that resulted in a Collin Reed 6-yard TD grab; his only catch of the game. Down seven now, the Mountaineer defense forced another 3-and-out to give Lamb another crack at the Idaho defense. During the ensuing possession, Ike Lewis struck gold again, this time on a 45-yard TD reception; highlighting the 5-play, 62-yard drive to tie the game a 20.

On the very next play from scrimmage, Idaho fumbled on its own 28-yard line giving App State optimal field position with 10:04 on the game. Five plays and two and half minutes later Michael Rubino put a 31-yard go-ahead field goal attempt through the uprights to complete the Mountaineer comeback. The defense stood tall for three more Vandal drives to secure the victory.


East Carolina (1-6, 1-3) 21
#22 Central Florida (5-0, 3-0) 63

Much like we saw from their counterparts to the south, Central Florida remains undefeated after crushing ECU in Orlando. The Golden Knights air attack thrashed the Pirate secondary for 365 yards and cut through the ECU front-seven for 238 yards. Thomas Sirk and Gardner Minshew each got their opportunities and both sputtered out as we’ve come to expect.

Much like North Carolina, ECU’s QB play and defensive play have been absolutely horrendous. However, ECU’s defense isn’t a MASH unit like Carolina’s and are genuinely that bad. It doesn’t matter if they are playing top 25 teams or bottom-dwellers, any offense can move the ball effectively against the Pirate defense and plays the team out of games way before Minshew and Sirk have a chance to mess things up.


NC FBS Power Rankings

  1. NC State (6-1, 4-0) [-]
  2. Appalachian State (4-2, 3-0) [+2]
  3. Wake Forest (4-2, 1-2) [-1]
  4. Duke (4-3, 1-3) [-1]
  5. North Carolina (1-6, 0-4) [-]
  6. East Carolina (1-6, 1-3) [-]
  7. UNC-Charlotte (0-7, 0-3) [-]

Week 8 Games and Predictions

  • Pittsburgh (2-5, 0-3) at Duke – Saturday, 12:20 PM

    • Prediction: Duke takes care of business at home
  • Coastal Carolina (1-5, 0-3) at Appalachian St. – Saturday, 3:30 PM

    • Prediction: App in a blowout
  • North Carolina at #14 Virginia Tech (5-1, 1-1) – Saturday, 3:30 PM

    • Prediction: UNC plays surprisingly well or predictably bad, either way still lose
  • UAB (4-2, 2-1) at UNC-Charlotte – Saturday, 6:30 PM

    • Prediction: UAB handles Charlotte with ease
  • BYU (1-6) at East Carolina – Saturday 7:00 PM

    • Prediction: BYU is bad, ECU is probably worse. ECU squeaks one out with the help of home cooking
  • Wake Forest at Georgia Tech (3-2, 2-1) – Saturday, 7:30 PM

    • Prediction: The Rambling Wreck gives Wake fits, but the Deacons prevail

 

*RONGY: 30-15 (W7: 6-0) through Week 7 Predictions*

NC FBS Report Week 6

Week 6 Scoreboard

#17 Louisville (4-2) (1-2)

25

#24 NC State (5-1) (3-0)

39

NC State put the rest of the nation and ACC on notice Thursday Night on national television. Despite Lamar Jackson’s best efforts, the Pack was too much for Louisville in Raleigh. Ryan Finley and Nyheim Hines lead the way for State, per usual. Finley tossed for 367 yards and a touchdown on 20 for 31 passing. Hines carried the rock 18 times for 102 yards and two scores. Wolfpack receivers Kelvin Harmon (6/133/TD), Jaylen Samuels (7/104), and Stephen Louis (3/99) fed all night on the Cardinal defense.

The Wolfpack have knocked off both Florida State and Louisville this season feasibly leaving them as the de facto challenger to Clemson for the ACC Atlantic Division crown. So far, this season’s success has earned the Pack a national ranking (20), national media attention, and potentially a contract extension for Dave Doeren. Reports say negotiations have begun.


Temple (3-3) (1-2)

34

East Carolina (1-5) (1-2)

10

ECU’s season continues to slide in the wrong direction; this time a complete dismantling by Temple. The Pirates actually took the lead in the 1st Quarter when Jack Verity made a 25-yard FG for the first points of the game. Then Temple took over. In the 2nd Quarter, Temple scored on 4 successive drives to end the half with a 24-3. To start the 3rd Quarter, Thomas Sirk would lead the Pirates on an 11-play, 75-yard drive that ended with a Quay Johnson TD reception, but that was the closest thing to offense ECU would display all day. Overall, Temple outgained ECU 523-287 and held possession for 15 more minutes.

It must feel like the ship is sinking for Captain Scottie Montgomery. With every horrendous loss where they look utterly uncompetitive, the hotter Coach Mo’s seat gets. It’s a legitimate thought to wonder if there will even be a third season in Greenville for Montgomery. Thomas Sirk is clearly not as bad as Gardner Minshew but is pedestrian at best. ECU fans are better served going to D.H. Conley High School Football games to watch local-legend and future Pirate QB Holton Ahlers tear up high school defenses.


Wake Forest (4-2) (1-2)

14

#2 Clemson (6-0) (4-0)

28

The loss of QB John Wolford to a shoulder injury was a sizeable blow to the Wake Forest offense, but it most likely wouldn’t have mattered much against #2 Clemson. Kendall Hinton was serviceable for the Deacons (14/30, 203 yards, 2 TD, 24 carries, 92 yards), but Clemson has one of the toughest defenses in the country. Wake Forest is certainly better than the seasons past, but they’re not quite ready to knock off the defending national champions.

Though they just got done playing a perennial powerhouse, the schedule doesn’t get much easier for Wake Forest down the stretch. Trips to Atlanta, South Bend, and Syracuse to go with home games against Louisville, NC State, and Duke will round off the Demon Deacon’s regular season. It’s going to be a real test if they want to go bowling this season. A win at Georgia Tech next weekend could go a long way for Dave Clawson’s team.


Duke (4-2) (1-2)

21

Virginia (4-1) (1-0)

28

Even though Duke had chances to tie the game in the 4th Quarter, Virginia’s defense was a little too much for the Blue Devil offense on Saturday. Daniel Jones struggled all day long. On Duke’s opening drive he threw a 58-yard pick-6 to Quin Blanding giving the Cavaliers a 7-0 lead. In fact, the Blue Devil offense only sustained one legitimate drive all afternoon, a 15-play, 88-yarder that ended in a Davis Koppenhaver 7-yard TD reception. Jones only completed 14 passes on a whopping 42 attempts for only 124 yards and 2 interceptions.

Back-to-back losses should start to worry Blue Devil fans, especially with Florida State coming to Durham this weekend. A win over the Seminoles isn’t out of the question, but Daniel Jones and the rushing attack will have to show up this weekend if they’re going to have a shot. Aside from the FSU matchup and a date in Blacksburg with Virginia Tech, Duke has a chance to win 8 games this season.


Notre Dame (5-1)

33

North Carolina (1-5) (0-3)

10

Notre Dame didn’t need their starting QB to make easy work of injury-decimated North Carolina squad. The Irish ran all over the thin Tar Heel defense, totaling 341 yards and 3 TD. Carolina’s offense was anemic again. On their first seven drives of the game, the Heels either punted or turned the ball over. A safety late in the first half had the Tar Heels down 16-7 to start the 3rd Quarter but had possession to start the half. 3 plays later, Chazz Surratt threw an interception for his second giveaway of the day, essentially killing any chance of the Tar Heels gaining any traction offensively.

Barring a miraculous healing by their assortment of injured players, the Tar Heel season is awash at this point. If anything, the Carolina coaching staff needs to swing some momentum in their favor heading into next season. Larry Fedora should still have his job next season unless he decides to leave on his own, but expect a serious shakedown for the rest of the coaching staff. Pressure from above won’t care about how many injuries the team suffered, they’ll just see an ugly record and want some sort of change.


New Mexico State (2-4) (0-2)

31

Appalachian State (3-2) (2-0)

45

Don’t tell the NCAA, but Clifton Duck and Tae Hayes are probably eating free in Boone this week. Both Mountaineer defensive backs picked off three passes each Saturday to help lift App State over New Mexico State at Kidd-Brewer Stadium. Taylor Lamb struggled tremendously, but Jalin Moore was there to pick up the slack for his QB. Moore totaled 241 rushing yards on 19 attempts and scored two touchdowns. Backfield mate Terrance Upshaw punched in two touchdowns of his own. The Mountaineers scored the last 21 points of the game.

After losing to Wake Forest in their last game, Appalachian State looked a bit shaky against New Mexico State. Coming off a bye, one would have expected the Mountaineers to play fresh and more crisply. Instead, Scott Satterfield’s team found themselves in a sloppy affair with the defense bailing themselves out in the end. The Mountaineers can’t afford to lose a game in conference play if they hope to win the Sun Belt title, Louisiana Monroe and Troy are going to be stiff competition.


Marshall (4-1) (1-0)

14

UNC-Charlotte (0-6) (0-2)

3

It wasn’t the gap expected, but Marshall did all it needed to slide past UNCC. In fact, all the Herd needed were for Chase Litton and Tyre Brady to hook up for two touchdown passes; one in the first quarter and one in the 3rd. The 49ers put a field goal on the board to prevent the shutout but didn’t put up much of a fight throughout the game. Hasaan Klugh continues to struggle, Saturday he completed 10 passes on 26 attempts to bring his season completion percentage down to 47.2%.

There appears to be no end in sight for the 49ers misery. Charlotte’s just not a good football team this season at all. It could be tough for these guys to even win one game this season. It’s unlikely Brad Lambert’s job is in much jeopardy at this point being that he has built this program from scratch and has fathered this program since its inception in 2011. This is only the 49ers 3rd season at the FBS level, so the athletic department shouldn’t be too impatient with him.


NC FBS Power Rankings

  1. NC State (5-1) (3-0) [-]
  2. Wake Forest (4-2) (1-2) [-]
  3. Duke (4-2) (1-2) [-]
  4. Appalachian State (3-2) (2-0) [-]
  5. North Carolina (1-5) (0-3) [-]
  6. East Carolina (1-5) (1-2) [-]
  7. UNC-Charlotte (0-6) (0-2) [-]

Week 7 Games and Predictions

  • #20 NC State at Pittsburgh (2-4) (0-2) – Saturday, 12:00 PM

    • Prediction: State avoids a trap and wins
  • Florida State (1-3) (1-2) at Duke Saturday, 12:00 PM

    • Prediction: Duke tests the Noles, but ultimately lose
  • Virginia (4-1) (1-0) at North Carolina – Saturday, 3:30 PM

    • Prediction: Virginia, Heels are too hurt
  • UNC-Charlotte at Western Kentucky (3-2) (1-1) – Saturday, 4:30 PM

    • Prediction: WKU pretty easily
  • Appalachian State at Idaho (2-3) (1-1) – Saturday, 5:00 PM

    • Prediction: Tough travel but App State prevails
  • East Carolina at #22 Central Florida (4-0) (2-0)- Saturday, 7:00 PM

    • Prediction: LOL Central Florida BIG

 

*RONGY: 24-15 (W6: 4-3) through Week 6 Predictions*

NC State: Doeren Extension Coming Soon

This time last season NC State Football was 4-1 fresh off a victory against Notre Dame at home. In Dave Doeren’s 4th season as Wolfpack head coach, the future was beginning to look bright in Raleigh. Seemingly, Doeren had shaken the hot seat rumors and was ready to lead State into contention for an ACC title. The following weekend NC State marched into Death Valley and pushed the eventual national champion Clemson Tigers to the brink. Had Kyle Bambard made the 33-yard field goal attempt as time expired, who knows the heights of where the Wolfpack season could’ve gone. Instead, their season fell completely apart. Doeren’s Pack went on to lose 5 of their next 6 games, but in the regular season finale upset rival North Carolina in Chapel Hill to finish 7-6 on the season. A convincing win over Vanderbilt in the Camping World Independence Bowl ultimately secured Doeren’s 5th season in Raleigh.

Coming into 2017, ACC and national experts knew the Wolfpack had a talented roster and expected them to test ACC Atlantic powers Florida State, Louisville, and Clemson. Then State lost 28-35 on kickoff weekend to a South Carolina team they were expected to beat. Fire up the hot seat again. Fortunately for Doeren, weak opponents the next two weeks allowed the Pack to regain their bearings. In week 4, NC State rolled into Tallahassee and rolled out with a 27-21 win over the then 12th ranked Florida State Seminoles. Two weeks later, they beat up on reigning Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson and upset #17 Louisville 39-25 in a nationally televised game.

So here we are again. Mid-October and the Wolfpack are 5-1, but this time the hot seat has officially been turned off. Those massive wins against two of the three teams considered above them in the ACC Atlantic have reportedly earned Dave Doeren a contract extension. Per USA Today, NC State and their head coach have begun negotiations to keep the coach in Raleigh for the foreseeable future. Though Doeren’s current deal is good through the 2019 season, NC State must feel they need to lock him up now before bigger programs come coach poaching. It’s expected that a deal will be reached and announced in the coming days.

NC State is now ranked #20 in the country and travels to Pittsburg to play the 2-4 Panthers this weekend. The Pack has a bye week next week before the stretch run of their schedule. After the bye week, State will head to South Bend for a matchup with the nationally ranked Irish. Then the Pack will have a chance to take the driver’s seat the next weekend when #2 Clemson comes to Raleigh. The last 3 games of the season will see the Pack head to Boston College, Wake Forest, and finish up at home against the rival Tar Heels.

NC FBS Report Week 5

Week 5 Scoreboard

#14 Miami (3-0) (1-0)

31

Duke (4-1) (1-1)

6

Duke has played well all season, but Friday Night the Blue Devils were simply outmatched by a better Miami team. Daniel Jones and the Blue Devil offense couldn’t gain any traction at all throughout the night against Mark Richt’s defense. Every time Duke would begin moving the ball downfield, Miami found a way to squander the Blue Devil’s momentum and force a punt or field goal.

Losing to a nationally-ranking conference foe on a short week isn’t the end of the world for Coach Cutcliffe’s Blue Devils. However, how they respond on the road this weekend will show if this Duke team is a serious ACC Coastal threat or just middle of the road.


North Carolina (1-4) (0-3)

7

Georgia Tech (3-1) (2-0)

33

Carolina got rolled by the Rambling Wreck Saturday in Atlanta. UNC has played some bad football games this season, but this one takes the cake as worst Tar Heel performance of the year. Georgia Tech had a 27-0 lead before Carolina could muster its only points of the game midway through the 4th Quarter. All day long, the Yellow Jacket backfield pounded an injury-depleted Carolina defense for 403 total rushing yards.

Injuries are mounting for Larry Fedora, approximately 19 Tar Heels are injured. 13 of those injured players are out for the rest of the season including stud linebacker Andre Smith. With so many injuries, the Heel’s bowl hopes are fading fast. The schedule doesn’t get easier either, they still have 4 meetings with ranked opponents on tap.


#18 South Florida (5-0) (2-0)

61

East Carolina (1-4) (1-1)

31

Charlie Strong and the USF College Football Playoff or Bust train rolled through Greenville Saturday afternoon. The Bulls were running as if it were the streets of Pamplona right through the Pirate defense. In total, South Florida carried the ball 50 times for 390 yards. ECU showed signs of a fight for the first time all season but was clearly overpowered by superior competition.

On the bright side, the ECU offense continues to play better every week. Thomas Sirk looks like he’s finally settling into the role as the Pirate starter. Yes, they were getting blown out, but Sirk did throw for 302 yards, ran for 87 yards, and accounted for all four of the Pirates’ touchdowns. If he can play like that against teams not nationally ranked, the Pirates might have a chance to stay in games and ultimately save Scottie Montgomery’s job.


Syracuse (2-3) (0-1)

25

NC State (4-1) (2-0)

33

The Wolfpack used a strong first half Saturday to cruise to victory against Syracuse. Nyheim Hines ran for 115 yards and punched in a touchdown midway through the 4th Quarter to put the nail in the coffin of Syracuse’s comeback hopes. Jaylen Samuels totaled 111 yards (74 rushing, 37 receiving) and a rushing TD. NC State dominated time of possession (36:29-23:31) and won the turnover battle. Syracuse also shot themselves in the foot with 12 penalties for 93 yards.

Dave Doeren’s Pack has cracked the Top 25! That means Thursday Night’s bout in Carter-Finley with #17 Louisville is going to be even more amplified. If they Wolfpack play like they have since losing to South Carolina on Kickoff Weekend, they will have a good shot to knock off Bobby Petrino, Lamar Jackson, and the Cardinals. Check your local listings, this should be an awesome game.


Florida State (1-2) (1-1)

26

Wake Forest (4-1) (1-1)

19

As predicted, Wake had a chance to beat Florida State. The Deacons took a 19-16 lead early in the 4th Quarter but couldn’t hold on allowing a field goal and then a touchdown with 53 seconds remaining in the game. Wake Forest won the battle for total yards handily 367-270 but lost the turnover battle and time of possession (25:19-34:41). In the end, the Demon Deacon offense sputtered out after taking the lead. On the next three drives, after they took the lead, Wake Forest went 3-and-out on all for a combined net ten-yard loss. After the last of the 3 drives, Wake punted from their 8-yard line that was returned to the Wake Forest 40-yard line. Almost within Field Goal range, Florida State decided to take a shot on the first play to the end zone and it paid off. With 53 seconds remaining in the game the Seminoles took a 26-19 lead. Wake Forest then desperately pushed the ball 46 yards in 53 seconds, but couldn’t connect on a 38-yard hail mary as time expired.


UNC-Charlotte (0-5) (0-1)

29

Florida Intl. (3-1) (2-0)

30

UNCC saw its first victory of the season slip right through their hands Saturday Night at Florida International. After a field goal midway through the 3rd Quarter, the 49ers were up 29-14. Then the furious Florida Atlantic comeback began. While Charlotte punted on its next 3 possessions, the Golden Panthers scored on their next 3 possessions including the go-ahead FG with 7:22 left in the game. Charlotte had one final chance to win the game. They marched 67 yards on 12 plays in 4 minutes to set up a potential game-winning field goal. However, Nigel Macauley missed the 48-yard attempt and Florida Atlantic takes the victory.


NC FBS Power Rankings

  1. NC State (4-1) (2-0) [-]
  2. Wake Forest (4-1) (1-1) [+1]
  3. Duke (4-1) (1-1) [-1]
  4. Appalachian State (2-2) (1-0) [-]
  5. North Carolina (1-4) (0-2) [-]
  6. East Carolina (1-4) (1-1) [-]
  7. UNC-Charlotte (0-5) (0-1) [-]

Week 6 Games and Predictions

  • #17 Louisville (4-1) at #24 NC State – Thursday, 8:00 PM

    • Prediction: Great game, Louisville wins though
  • Temple (2-3) at East Carolina – Saturday, 12:00 PM

    • Prediction: ECU’s defense finally stops someone and win
  • Wake at #2 Clemson (5-0) – Saturday, 12:00 PM

    • Prediction: Sorry Wake fans, no shot here
  • Duke at Virginia (3-1) – Saturday, 12:20 PM

    • Prediction: Duke rebounds from their first loss and beats UVA
  • #21 Notre Dame (4-1) at North Carolina – Saturday, 3:30 PM

    • Prediction: Notre Dame rolls easy
  • New Mexico State (2-3) at Appalachian State – Saturday, 3:30 PM

    • Prediction: App State wins big
  • Marshall (3-1) at UNC-Charlotte – Saturday, 6:00 PM

    • Prediction: Marshall destroys UNCC

*RONGY: 20-12 (W5: 5-1) through Week 5 Predictions*

NC FBS Report Week 4

Week 4 Results

North Carolina St. (3-1)

27

#12 Florida St. (0-2)

21

 

NC State pulled off the upset of the weekend, no doubt. Yes, Florida State started their first true freshman QB since the 80’s, but there is also no denying Florida State is loaded with All-American talent from top to bottom. The Wolfpack also have an All-American candidate in DE Bradley Chubb. The senior recorded 2 sacks and had a massive impact on the game. Ryan Finley and Nyheim Hines led the way for the offense for the Wolfpack. Finley threw for 230 yards, 2 TDs on 22-32 passing. Hines carried the ball 24 times for 94 yards.


Wake Forest (4-0)

20

Appalachian St. (2-2)

19

 

As expected, Wake Forest at Appalachian State was an instant classic. It all came down to heroics from Wake Forest Sophomore Scotty Washington who blocked an App State 39-yard field goal attempt with 5 seconds remaining in the game to give the Demon Deacons the 20-19 edge. On paper, App State looked to have a handle on the game. The Mountaineers outgained the Deacons 494-344 and achieved 9 more first downs. App State also owned the possession battle 35:44-24:16. However, in the end, Wake Forest took home the W. John Wolford led Wake Forest through the air and the ground going 14-27 for 176 yards and 2 TD passing and 13 carries for 77 yards.


Duke (4-0)

28

North Carolina (1-3)

17

 

Though it was football, Duke at Carolina had the atmosphere of an early March matchup. The rivals went back and forth for 3 quarters, with the Tar Heels holding the 17-13 advantage. They led the game through the middle of the 4th Quarter, then Duke went on an 8-play, 74-yard drive, capped off by a Shaun Wilson TD run to give the Blue Devils a 20-17 lead. On the ensuing drive, Chazz Surratt and the Tar Heels were moving downfield until the Redshirt Freshman was picked off by Bryon Fields. Fields then took the interception all the way to the end zone for the score and extended the Blue Devil lead to 10. For Duke, Daniel Jones went 18-34 for 202 yards and a TD. Brittain Brown took 10 carries for 90 yards.


Georgia St. (1-2

28

UNC-Charlotte (0-4)

0

 

UNC-Charlotte’s miserable season continued Saturday. This time they got shutout 28-0 by Georgia State. In every sense of the word, the 49ers got dominated. The 49er offense was outgained 369-273 and Georgia State held the ball more than twice as long as UNCC. Hassan Klugh struggled again only roughly completing half of his pass attempts and throwing 2 INT. He also carried the ball 11 times only gaining one yard. WR Mark Quattlebaum was the lone bright spot for the 49ers. The junior hauled in 6 receptions for 91 yards.


East Carolina (1-3)

41

Connecticut (1-2)

38

 

ECU finally broke into the win column this weekend as they took down UConn 41-38. Healthy Thomas Sirk looked like the ACC-experienced QB we expected when the season started. The former Duke-transfer went 30-39 on pass attempts for 426 yards and 3 TD. All 3 TDs were hauled in by Davon Grayson who accounted for 11 catches for 223 yards against the UConn defense. Each team accumulated nearly 600 yards of offense as neither defense seemingly showed up. UConn’s final hopes were dashed as a 33-yard field goal attempt missed as time expired.


NC FBS Power Rankings

  1. NC State (3-1) (1-0) [-]
  2. Duke (4-0) (1-0) [-]
  3. Wake Forest (4-0) (1-0) [-]
  4. Appalachian State (2-2) (1-0) [-]
  5. North Carolina (1-3) (0-2) [-]
  6. East Carolina (1-3) (1-0) [-]
  7. UNC-Charlotte (0-4) (0-0) [-]

Week 5 Games and Predictions

  • #14 Miami (2-0) at Duke – Friday, 7:00 PM

    • Prediction: Miami hands Duke their first loss of the season
  • North Carolina at Georgia Tech (2-1) – Saturday, 12:00 PM

    • Prediction: North Carolina finds a way to stop GT’s rushing attack
  • #18 South Florida (4-0) at East Carolina – Saturday, 12:00 PM

    • Prediction: South Florida trolls all over ECU
  • Syracuse (2-2) at North Carolina State – Saturday, 12:20 PM

    • Prediction: Closer than expected, State prevails
  • Florida State (0-2) at Wake Forest – Saturday, 3:30 PM

    • Prediction: Wake has a chance to win, but ultimately loses
  • UNC-Charlotte at Florida International (2-1) – Saturday, 7:00 PM

    • Prediction: UNCC falls to 0-5

*RONGY: 15-11 (W4: 0-5) through Week 4 Predictions*

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