Luke DeCock

Revisiting those preseason football predictions

Waaaay back in September, I made a few predictions about how the football season would proceed in the ACC. With the Triangle season concluding later today when N.C. State takes on Mississippi State in the Belk Bowl, let's revisit.

Duke prediction: 8-4, 4-4

Duke in real life: 8-5, 4-4

What I got right: The Blue Devils were a .500 team in the ACC and achieved bowl eligibility for the fourth straight season when many expected that streak to end.

What I got wrong: Duke beat Georgia Tech, Virginia Tech and Wake Forest but lost to Northwestern, Miami, Pittsburgh and Virginia.

North Carolina prediction: 7-5, 4-4

North Carolina in real life: 11-3, 8-0

What I got right: I thought the Tar Heels a boom-or-bust team and they indeed boomed, rolling through ACC play before getting derailed by Clemson and Baylor.

What I got wrong: I would have revised the 7-5 prediction upward with a win over South Carolina and downward with a loss.

Other Coastal predictions: Sold short on Virginia Tech (more right than wrong), Miami and Virginia bottom out (yep), Pittsburgh wins all ACC home games and seven or eight overall (only two of four but 8-5), Virginia lucky to go 3-9 (actually went 4-8), Georgia Tech wins the division in a romp (couldn't have been more wrong about that one).

N.C. State prediction: 8-4, 4-4

N.C. State in real life: 7-5, 3-5 (pending Belk Bowl vs. Mississippi State)

What I got right: Wolfpack won all four of its easy nonconference games and lost to Virginia Tech, Clemson and Florida State.

What I got wrong: Thought N.C. State would post home wins over Louisville and North Carolina. Wolfpack made up for it with its first-ever ACC win at Boston College.

Wake Forest prediction: 5-7, 2-6

Wake Forest in real life: 3-9, 1-7

What I got right: Wake Forest beat Elon and Army. That's about it.

What I got wrong: The Deacons won at Boston College and lost to Syracuse, Indiana and Duke. Really, thought Wake Forest would make more progress this season.

Other Atlantic predictions: Clemson and Florida State aren't as good as people think they are (half right, anyway), Syracuse-Virginia may be the only chance either team has for an ACC win (they combined to win four more), N.C. State's entire season may hinge on the Louisville, BC and UNC games (more or less, and the Wolfpack went 1-2).

East Carolina prediction: 7-5, 6-2

East Carolina in real life: 5-7, 3-5

What I got right: The Pirates would be around .500 or so overall.

What I got wrong: Let's see … where to begin … East Carolina won at Virginia Tech, struggled in conference play and Ruffin McNeill was unexpectedly fired.

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