No. 3 – North Carolina State
Raise your hand if you like Dave Doeren. Yeah, me neither. Look, I admire the job he’s done in Raliegh taking a perennial underachiever and turning them into a more physical, slightly less underachiever.
The Wolfpack plays with an edge that borders on dirtiness, mixed with petty, delusional ramblings and conspiracy theories from their coaching staff, which has been known to take literal swipes at Clemson players.
One thing Doeren and the staff haven’t done much of is beat Clemson.
That said, the Tigers have been known to struggle against more physical teams on occasion and this game is the second straight road game for Clemson and lands the Saturday before Notre Dame, which could signal an opportunity for a letdown.
No. 2 – Florida State
Sorry, it’s too late. There’s no more room on the Florida State bandwagon, it’s all full.
At least that’s how it seems after an offseason of Seminole love and portal-taking.
The Seminoles are coming off a 10-3 season which saw them vault to a 4-0 record against less than stellar competition, play – and lose to – three good teams, and then win out.
Congrats, but this game happens to be in Death Valley in late September with both teams having a shot at being undefeated on game day.
The divisions aren’t a thing anymore so we won’t have to worry about that nonsense, and this could be the first of two meetings between these teams who could end up in the ACC title game in December.
The Seminoles and a significant portion of the country believe they’re primed to reclaim ACC dominance, but the Tigers and their faithful believe otherwise.
The ACC still runs through Clemson, but this is an important game in the Seminoles’ theoretical return to glory.