After a week six filled with chalk, football fans are hoping for an exciting week to shake up the rankings. NC State has been rolling since redshirt sophomore Devin Leary took over the starting duties at quarterback. It should continue its strong start as Duke travels to Raleigh to face the Wolfpack. Miami will get back on track after a disappointing trip to Clemson. Boston College should slow down Virginia Tech and put up a good fight.
Duke at NC State (-5) (Total: 60)
After some hesitancy about the Pack following its slow start, I am fully on the Wolfpack bandwagon this week. While it may be a different story when NC State travels to Chapel Hill to take on the Tar Heels next week, I’m expecting a great game from the Pack this weekend.
Duke has one of the worst offenses in the ACC. It is averaging only 24.3 points per game which is only ahead of Syracuse and Florida State in the ACC. While NC State’s defense has left a lot to be desired this season, I expect it to slow down Duke given its momentum and having a home crowd for the first time this season.
Duke is coming off its first win of the season but it was against one of the weakest teams in the conference, Syracuse, whereas the Pack is coming off two straight wins including a last second win over a then-ranked PIttsburgh team.
Last week, Leary threw for a modest 184 yards with a pair of touchdowns. However, it was the running game that led the way for the Pack. Sophomore Zonovan Knight led the way with 101 yards and a pair of touchdowns. I expect these numbers to stay the same, if not improve, as the Wolfpack rolls to an easy win over Duke.
Pick: NC State (-5)
Pittsburgh at Miami (-13) (Total: 48.5)
I will be the first to admit it, I had no faith in Miami despite the arrival of transfer quarterback D’eric King after a terrible first season under Manny Diaz. Last season Miami went 6-7 and lost the Independence Bowl to Louisiana Tech. I assumed this season would be much of the same and that the offseason hype was a result of the team’s history. However, they have proved me wrong and have shown an ability to be one of the better teams in the ACC.
That being said, Miami is coming off a rough weekend and a 25-point loss to Clemson. While Miami clearly isn’t ready to compete for a national championship, they are being undervalued against a team that is coming off two straight losses. In fact, Miami has been consistently undervalued this season as they are 3-1-0 against the spread.
Pick: Miami (-13)
Boston College at Virginia Tech (-12)
Virginia Tech has disappointed in its last two games. It beat a 1-4 Duke team by only a touchdown and lost to UNC by 11 in a game that was much more lopsided than the 11 points would suggest. Boston College is coming off an overtime victory against Pittsburgh and only lost to UNC by four when they matched the week prior. I wouldn’t necessarily pick Boston College to win but 12 points is a lot to cover for a team trending downward.
Virginia Tech obviously has a high powered offense. The Hokies offense is the best scoring offense in the ACC and is averaging nearly 43 points per game. However, Boston College has done a great job controlling the tempo of its games. The most points the Eagles have allowed in a game was 30 to Pittsburgh and that included an overtime touchdown. I don’t know if Boston College has the fire power to pull out a win but its defensive style should keep the game close.
Pick: Boston College (+12)