Miami coming in hot to face Georgia Tech
David Pollack expects a great showdown in the ACC as Miami is coming off a thrilling victory over Florida State and is heading into Saturday's matchup against Georgia Tech with confidence.
This is a big week for Miami, which has to prove it can handle a big win without a letdown. Georgia Tech comes to town off a bye and eager to pull the upset. So who wins? David Hale and Andrea Adelson weigh in with their Week 7 picks. Visit our college football PickCenter page for additional information on these games and many more.
Georgia Tech (3-1, 2-0) at No. 11 Miami (4-0, 2-0), 3:30 p.m., ABC
David Hale: Consider this a big test for the Miami coaching staff. The Hurricanes are coming off a physical, emotional win against Florida State. They’ve prepped for the option offense on an abridged timeline (they were originally set to have a bye leading into this game). They lost their best offensive weapon in running back Mark Walton. Meanwhile, the Yellow Jackets are playing exceptionally well, and they are coming off a bye. That’s a lot of advantages tilting in Georgia Tech’s favor. Georgia Tech 34, Miami 31
Andrea Adelson: David is right; this one has upset written all over it. But Georgia Tech has traditionally had a difficult time against Miami, losing seven of the past matchups. Quarterback TaQuon Marshall and running back KirVonte Benson will get their yards against a Miami defense that has struggled to stop the run consistently, but the opportunistic Hurricanes will force a few turnovers. Travis Homer will fill in nicely for Walton and Miami will sneak past with a win. Miami 28, Georgia Tech 24
David Hale: Virginia’s defense has been markedly better than a year ago, and certainly the Tar Heels aren’t playing great football. But UNC quarterback Chazz Surratt continues to learn on the job, and the Hoos haven’t won in Chapel Hill since 2009. These are programs headed in opposite directions, but the Heels can still steal this one. North Carolina 28, Virginia 27
Andrea Adelson: I was kicking myself for not calling the upset last week even though all signs pointed to Virginia. So consider me now on the Hoos' train. Virginia is simply playing better football now, and is playing with a confidence that North Carolina is not. It is always tougher on the road, but the last time the Cavaliers hit the road, they beat down Boise State. Virginia 35, North Carolina 28
David Hale: Florida State has never lost to Duke in 19 previous meetings. Most have been blowouts. Of course, this might also be the most evenly matched the two teams have ever been, with the Seminoles struggling to a 1-3 start and the Blue Devils far more athletic than in years past. More than anything, though, these are two desperate teams, with Duke losers of two straight and FSU fending off criticism following a loss to Miami. Expect this one to be close, but the Seminoles are just too talented to see their streak against Duke come to an end just one week after losing to the Hurricanes for the first time under Jimbo Fisher. FSU 21, Duke 20
Andrea Adelson: There is no arguing that Florida State has more elite talent, and that should give the Seminoles the edge. The bigger question is motivation now that just about all their goals are unattainable. Will it be enough for players to simply fight for bowl eligibility, suddenly in peril given the remaining schedule? It should be, but the Seminoles also cannot underestimate Duke, one of the best coached teams in the ACC. David Cutcliffe will have a solid plan and it won't be easy for Florida State to win. Florida State 24, Duke 21
NC State over Pitt
Andrea Adelson: 51-8
David Hale: 46-13