Thanks again to the ACC's sports information directors for these notes. Here's your dose of Friday factoids ...
Through the first three games of the season, Florida State’s defense has rediscovered its pass rush. The Seminoles lead the ACC with 13 sacks for an average of 4.33 per game, which ranks third nationally. That’s well ahead of last season’s pace, when the ‘Noles finished the season with 26 in 13 games (2.0 pg). First-year FSU defensive coordinator Mark Stoops’ unit has received a significant boost in production from the defensive ends. FSU’s top four ends - Brandon Jenkins, Markus White, Bjoern Werner and Dan Hicks - have combined for 6.5 sacks and already eclipsed that position’s total from the 2009 season (four).
Georgia Tech has won seven consecutive ACC games, not including a win against Clemson in the 2009 ACC championship game, and is 9-1 in its past 10 league games. Georgia Tech has won six consecutive ACC home games and has not lost a home league game since Oct. 25, 2008 (24-17 to Al Groh’s Virginia team).
Maryland’s defense, which ranked 24th nationally in points allowed (16.0 per game) has been more aggressive through three games this season than at the same point last year. So far the Terps have forced seven fumbles and recovered five. They have also picked off three passes, one of which was returned for a touchdown. After three games a year ago, the first under coordinator Don Brown, the Terrapins did not force a fumble, recovered just one, and had two interceptions.
Duke’s crowd of 39,042 against Alabama was the largest since Nov. 19, 1994 when 40,103 fans showed up for a 41-40 North Carolina victory against the Blue Devils. Duke added 3,904 seats with temporary bleachers for the game with the Crimson Tide, increasing capacity to 37,845. Since the beginning of 2001, Duke has recorded 10 crowds of 30,000 or more with seven of those coming under coach David Cutcliffe.
Boston College has outscored opponents in Chestnut Hill by an average of 16 points per game in its past 11 home games. BC gained nearly 400 yards per game against its opponents at home in 2009 while allowing slightly over 320 yards. The Eagles had a +6 turnover margin in the seven games at home last season and scored 30 touchdowns while allowing just 13.
Quarterback T.J. Yates has not thrown an interception in his past 89 attempts, dating back to last season’s bowl game against Pittsburgh. He has thrown 70 passes without an interception this year. That is the longest streak in his career. His previous best was 67 attempts in 2008. The school record for attempts without an interception is 154 by Oscar Davenport in 1996-97. Yates’ 46 attempts without an interception against LSU was a school record for a single game. The previous record was 42 by Darian Durant vs. NC State in 2003.
NC State enters the Georgia Tech game tied for sixth nationally in turnover margin, with seven takeaways to just two turnovers for a +5 mark. The Wolfpack didn’t turn the ball over in its first two games, but fumbled twice in the win against Cincinnati. Quarterback Russell Wilson has thrown 101 passes this season without an interception, and even though the Pack is playing two freshmen at halfback, there have only been two lost fumbles. The Pack’s success in holding onto the ball is even more impressive considering that in 2009, NC State finished the season ranked 114th nationally in turnover margin, with 25 turnovers to just 14 takeaways.
Virginia has run a well-balanced offense through two games – perfectly balanced, to be exact. Against Richmond, Virginia rushed 35 times and passed 35 times. At USC, the Cavaliers rushed 36 times and passed 36 times. On the season, UVA has rushed 71 times and passed 71 times for 142 total plays.
As expected, Clemson has needed three players to help compensate for the loss of C.J. Spiller’s all-purpose total yardage. Andre Ellington is second in the ACC in rushing with 91 yards per game and a 7.4 average, above Spiller’s averages of 86.6 rushing yards and a 5.6 average. Jamie Harper, Clemson’s other starting running back, has already caught three touchdown passes, including two at Auburn. He was the first Clemson running back to catch two scoring passes in the same game in 24 years. And Marcus Gilchrist is sixth in the nation in punt return average with an 18.3 average.
The Demon Deacons have visited the red zone eight times this season and have come away with seven scores. That is an average of 88 percent. In those eight trips, Wake has reached the end zone six times and has kicked a 36-yard field goal. Under Jim Grobe, the Deacons have had 409 red zone chances and have come away with points on 321 of those chances for an average of 78.5 percent. Of those 321 scores, 223 of them have been touchdowns.
Virginia Tech has been outscored 50-26 in its past two losses at BC and hasn’t scored an offensive touchdown there since the fourth quarter of the 2002 game. Virginia Tech is an impressive 38-10 in conference games since joining the ACC in 2004, including a 19-5 mark in road games, but two of the Hokies’ five road losses are to Boston College.