The ACC first held a football conference championship game in 2005, and since then, only two teams have represented the Coastal Division in that game. Those two -- the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets and the Virginia Tech Hokies -- will meet tonight in Blacksburg (ESPN, 7:30 ET).
Virginia Tech has been to the title game three of the five times and Georgia Tech has been there the other two. That contrasts with the other half of the conference, the Atlantic Division, which has had four teams represent it (Florida State, Wake Forest, Boston College and Clemson) in five years. It could have another new rep this year if Maryland or NC State -- both atop the Atlantic Division in the loss column -- win their division this year.
WINNER TAKE ALL
Georgia Tech-Virginia Tech Since 2005
But in the Coastal, life is simple. And there’s a way to tell which team will win the division without even needing to look at the standings or schedule or tiebreaker minutiae. The winner of the annual Georgia Tech-Virginia Tech showdown has won the division every year.
This year, Virginia Tech is in the driver’s seat for the Coastal without a lot of commotion from behind. They’re perfect in conference play and have won every ACC game by an average score of 39-15. Meanwhile, every other Coastal team has at least two conference losses and needs to win and get help to make the title game.
A win on Thursday night would move the Hokies close to sewing up a conference title game berth. But a loss, and things get tricky -- and maybe even opens the door for Georgia Tech to continue the winner-take-all trend.