Inside the ACC
3 to watch
1. No. 11 UNC at N.C. State, 3:30 p.m. (WTVD, WCTI): The Tar Heels (10-1) have wrapped up the Coastal Division but still have a matter of payback for the Wolfpack (7-4) after last year’s 35-7 shellacking in Chapel Hill.
2. Virginia Tech at Virginia, noon (ESPNU): This will be coach Frank Beamer’s last game if the Hokies (5-6) can’t beat the Cavaliers (4-7) for the 16th time in 17 years
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to The News & Observer
3. No. 14 Florida State at No. 10 Florida, 7:30 p.m. (ESPN): The Seminoles (9-2) can still play their way up to a “New Year’s 6” bowl game while the Gators (10-1) still have control of their own fate in the national title race.
▪ Elijah Hood’s value to North Carolina, other than being a tremendous runner, is saving hits on quarterback Marquise Williams.
Williams has run more recently – he had a season-high 18 carries against Virginia Tech last week – but he has 48 fewer carries than he did a year ago going into the N.C. State game.
The Wolfpack was able to knock Williams out of last year’s game and Hood, meanwhile, only had one carry for minus-2 yards. It’s reasonable to expect a good dose of Hood in this game.
▪ Dabo Swinney has made it perfectly clear, repeatedly this season, that “Clemsoning” is dead. It would be the cruelest twists of fate for South Carolina, 3-8 on the season and coming off of a home loss to The Citadel, to resurrect the concept of the Tigers losing in games it shouldn’t.
The best news for No. 1 Clemson (11-0): quarterback Deshaun Watson was spectacular a year ago against the Gamecocks, on an injured knee. A healthy Watson is all the Tigers, a 17-point favorite, should need Saturday.
▪ The only ACC game Wake Forest (3-8) won last year was the home finale, 6-3 in double overtime over Virginia Tech.
Second-year coach Dave Clawson would like to make that a pattern with a struggling Duke in Winston-Salem. The Blue Devils (6-5) have lost four straight and could use this game to improve their bowl lot.
Wake Forest won 12 straight in this series from 2000 to ’11 but the Devils have won the past three.
Number to know
5 Number of times Florida has held its opponent to less than 100 rushing yards this season. FSU sophomore running back Dalvin Cook averages 147.5 rushing yards per game.
Top 25 schedule
No. 1 Clemson at South Carolina, noon
No. 2 Alabama at Auburn, 3:30 p.m.
No. 3 Iowa beat Nebraska, 28-20, Friday.
No. 4 Notre Dame at No. 13 Stanford, 7:30 p.m.
No. 5 Oklahoma at Oklahoma State, 8 p.m.
No. 6 Michigan Sate. vs. Penn State, 3:30 p.m.
No. 7 Baylor at No. 15 TCU, Friday at 7:30 p.m.
No. 8 Ohio State at No. 12 Michigan, noon
No. 10 Florida vs. No. 14 Florida State, 7:30 p.m.
No. 11 UNC at N.C. State, 3:30 p.m.
No. 16 Navy lost to No. 21 Houston, 52-31, Friday.
No. 17 Northwestern vs. Illinois, 3:30 p.m.
No. 18 Oregon beat Oregon State, 52-42, Friday.
No. 19 Ole Miss at Mississippi State, 7:15 p.m.
No. 20 Washington State lost to Washington, 45-10, Friday.
No. 22 UCLA at Southern California, 3:30 p.m.
No. 24 Toledo lost to Western Michigan, 35-24, Friday.
No. 25 Temple vs. Connecticut, 7 p.m.