Luke DeCock

Predictions for the season, featuring a lot of 4-4

In the wake of today's column discussing the heretofore unrealized Glory Days of college football in the Triangle, which postulated that Duke, North Carolina and N.C. State could possibly combine to tie or break their record of total wins (25) this season, not to mention sending all three teams to bowl games for only the third time ever, here are my fearless predictions for the season.

(Spoilers: They have 23 total wins going into their bowl games, leaving the door open. I think Duke wins more games than most and while I think UNC has boom-or-bust potential, until I see how the Tar Heels fare tonight I'm playing them straight down the middle.)

DUKE

8-4, 4-4 ACC

at Tulane W

NC Central W

Northwestern W

Georgia Tech L

Boston College W

at Army W

at Virginia Tech L

Miami W

at North Carolina L

Pittsburgh W

at Virginia W

at Wake Forest

NORTH CAROLINA

7-5, 4-4

vs. South Carolina L

North Carolina A&T W

Illinois W

Delaware W

at Georgia Tech L

Wake Forest W

Virginia W

at Pittsburgh L

Duke W

Miami W

at Virginia Tech L

at N.C. State L

Other Coastal predictions: Would revise the Tar Heels upward with a win over South Carolina tonight, potentially winning at Pittsburgh, Virginia Tech and/or N.C. State. ... Virginia Tech's defense is good enough to beat good teams at home and bad teams on the road, but the offense isn't good enough to beat good teams on the road. Selling short on the Hokies. … Miami and Virginia bottom out this season. … Pittsburgh will win all of its home ACC games and seven or eight games overall. … Give the Cavaliers the same schedule as N.C. State and they'd be in a bowl game. Instead, they're going to be lucky to go 3-9. … Georgia Tech wins the division in a romp despite a difficult schedule.

N.C. STATE

8-4, 4-4

Troy W

Eastern Kentucky W

at Old Dominion W

at South Alabama W

Louisville W

at Virginia Tech L

at Wake Forest W

Clemson L

at Boston College L

at Florida State L

Syracuse W

North Carolina W

WAKE FOREST

5-7, 2-6 ACC

Elon W

at Syracuse W

at Army W

Indiana W

Florida State L

at Boston College L

at North Carolina L

N.C. State L

Louisville L

at Notre Dame L

at Clemson L

Duke W

Other Atlantic predictions: Wake Forest shows steady improvement over the course of the season despite brutal late schedule, falls just short of bowl eligibility. … Clemson and Florida State aren't nearly as good as people think they are, but they're both still good enough to finish 1-2 ahead of a three-way tie between N.C. State, Boston College and Louisville. … The Syracuse at Virginia game on Oct. 17 may be the only chance either teams has for an ACC win. … N.C. State's entire season may hinge on the Louisville (home), Boston College (road) and North Carolina (home) games, all of which are probably coin flips at this point.

ACC BOWL PREDICTIONS

ACC Championship: Clemson def. Georgia Tech

CFP semifinals: Michigan State vs. TCU; Alabama vs. Oregon

Peach Bowl: Clemson

Fiesta Bowl: Notre Dame

Russell Athletic Bowl: Florida State

Belk Bowl: N.C. State

Sun Bowl: Louisville

Pinstripe Bowl: Pittsburgh

Taxslayer Bowl: Virginia Tech

Military Bowl: North Carolina

Independence Bowl: Boston College

Quick Lane Bowl: Duke

BONUS: EAST CAROLINA

7-5, 6-2 AAC

Towson W

at Florida L

at Navy L

Virginia Tech L

at Southern Methodist W

at Brigham Young L

Tulsa W

Temple W

at Connecticut W

South Florida W

at Central Florida L

Cincinnati W

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