Here’s your weekly rewind and sneak preview in the ACC:
The good: Backup quarterbacks. Miami couldn’t have asked for much more from true freshman backup Stephen Morris, who guided the Canes to a 26-20 comeback win against Maryland. Morris completed 18-of-30 passes against Maryland, including the game-winning, 35-yard touchdown to Leonard Hankerson with 37 seconds to play. Morris threw for 286 yards, a single-game high for any UM quarterback this season, and also rushed for 13 yards.
And the effort from Georgia Tech’s Tevin Washington after Joshua Nesbitt broke his right forearm was almost good enough to beat Virginia Tech. Washington will have to continue to make strides, as Nesbitt is out for the rest of the regular season and possibly a bowl game.
The bad: Turnovers and penalties. ACC teams combined for 23 turnovers (congrats, FSU and UNC for not contributing to that total). Virginia had 11 penalties for 103 yards. Miami had 10 penalties for 100 yards. Clemson had a touchdown called back for holding.
The ugly: The Atlantic Division. Florida State, NC State and Maryland all blew fourth-quarter leads. FSU had two missed field goals and so did Clemson, which also fumbled five times and lost three. For NC State, it was the second time in conference play the Wolfpack has lost despite leading by 10 points in the third quarter.
The quotable: Duke running back Desmond Scott, on leaping into the corner of the end zone on his game-winning 35-yard touchdown run against Virginia: "I was pretty good at geometry. I knew with the angle I had on the guy, I could dive, so that's what I did." Only at Duke does geometry fit into the touchdown equation.
The manster: Virginia Tech linebacker Bruce Taylor made a career-high 14 tackles, including a game-high two sacks, in the win against Georgia Tech. His two sacks resulted in a loss of six yards. He earned 58 points in the coaches' grading system, one of the top totals this year.
Top three games of Week 11:
Virginia Tech at North Carolina: UNC’s upset of Florida State makes this game a lot more interesting for the Coastal Division standings. The Tar Heels will have to overcome yet another setback as leading rusher Johnny White is out for the rest of the season with a broken collar bone. Both quarterbacks, Tyrod Taylor and T.J. Yates, have been integral to their teams’ success this year.
Clemson at Florida State: The Tigers are still alive in the Atlantic Division race, and Florida State is trying to rebound from back-to-back heartbreakers. A Clemson win would make the standings even more jumbled, as NC State and Maryland still have to play each other.
Miami at Georgia Tech: This one has some history to it – the series is split over the past two seasons - and it’s a must-win for the Canes if they hope to stay in the ACC race. It’s the final road trip of the season for the Canes, but they haven’t won at Georgia Tech since 2004. Miami’s rushing defense is No. 7 in the ACC, allowing 150.7 yards per game. The Jackets are averaging 320.6.