Friday, October 1, 2010

ACC Football Saturday

WEEK 5: October 2, 2010

#16 MIAMI (-3) @ CLEMSON, Miami @ Clemson, Clemson, S.C.,12:00 PM, TV: ESPN2 and ESPN3D (XM 190/SIRIUS 212) – There are two good ACC games on Saturday’s menu, this one and the Hokies v. Wolfpack. Are The Canes and the boys from Raleigh the class of the field or will the cards continue to shuffle.

FLORIDA STATE (-7) @ VIRGINIA, Charlottesville, Va., 12:00 PM, TV: ACC Network (XM 191/SIRIUS 213) – Wahoo Nation is quick to reminisce about beating the Noles back in 1990-something. That’s a lovely story Randolph, now fix mommy another martini…

VIRGINIA TECH (-3.5) @ #23 N.C. STATE, Raleigh, N.C., 3:30 PM, TV: ABC (XM 190/SIRIUS 212) – This is the first big test for the Wolfpack. They have the best QB in the conference in Russell Wilson, and a solid defense facing an inconsistent Hokie offense without Ryan Williams. That said, considering the game is in Raleigh, the line looks a bit top-heavy…

East Carolina (Pirates, 27,816 students, Greenville, NC) @ NORTH CAROLINA (-14), Chapel Hill, N.C., 3:30 PM, TV: ESPN3.com (XM 191/SIRIUS 213) – The Pirates (or at least one prominent alum of which we know) wants ECU to be viewed the same as the Tar Heels. This series was supposed to level at least the bragging rights version of the playing field. According to the boys in Vegas, that’s unlikely.

DUKE @ MARYLAND (-8.5), College Park, Md., 6:00 PM, TV: ESPN3.com (XM 192/SIRIUS 214) – The world would be a better place if this game mattered, but it doesn’t…

GEORGIA TECH (-9.5) @ WAKE FOREST, Winston-Salem, N.C., 7:00 PM, TV: ESPNU (XM 141/191)(SIRIUS121/213) – A few years back, this might have been interesting, but after Stanford lit up the Deacons for 60+, the Jackets will run and run and run…and, presumably, score and score and score.

Notre Dame (Fighting Irish, 11,733 students, South Bend, IN) (-2.5) @ BOSTON COLLEGE, Chestnut Hill, Mass., 8:00 PM, TV: ABC (XM 193/SIRIUS 217) – Ahhh, the Catholic Bowl. It rolls around each year and some years it’s interesting and some year’s it’s not. This, unfortunately, is a down year. No Hail Mary thrills of consequence here, but it’s likely to be a hard fought game. BC still mum on who will start at QB.

Attorneys Confirm Payments From Agent to Former UNC Coach

The attorneys for John Blake confirmed Thursday that the former associate head coach for North Carolina's football team received payments from sports agent Gary Wichard.

Yesterday, according to ACC Now, in a conference call with the News & Observer, Charlotte Observer and the Associated Press, William Beaver and Wade Smith, Blake's attorneys, declined to provide details about how many payments Blake received or for how much money. They did say that the payments ended around the time Blake began coaching at UNC (2007).

The attorneys characterized the transactions as loans between friends. They described Blake and Wichard, whose relationship dates back 25 years, as "dear friends," almost "like brothers."

The NCAA is investigating the UNC program for agent-related violations, including if Blake steered players to sign with Wichard. Former UNC defensive tackle Kentwan Balmer, a first-round pick in 2008, is one of Wichard's clients.

Smith said Blake, who coached Balmer for one season, has not recruited clients for Wichard.

"No one ever said to us that he sent any athlete to Gary Wichard and certainly no one would say that he got anything from Gary Wichard in return," Smith said.

UNC Football – Tarmageddon: And So The Race Begins

Wanting to be sure he takes the early lead in the Butch Davis Resignation Stakes, Raleigh News & Observer senior columnist Caulton Tudor is calling for the resignation of UNC head coach Butch Davis.

According to Tudor, “Butch Davis should resign as North Carolina’s football coach. If that doesn’t happen – and soon – the school needs to dismiss Davis. In view of the revelations of the past several months, his removal from the job is the single most necessary step in the rehabilitation process for the school and the football program.

Tudor, for whom we generally have great admiration, proceeds to site a clause in Davis’ contract where Tudor believes “ample violations have occurred.” We say, good luck with that as 100 lawyers could argue the interpretation of each word 100 different ways. A tough out at best.

Tudor also wonders if it’s “reasonable to ask why Davis did not know more about Blake’s relationship with (NFL agent) Wichard?” On the surface, we suppose that makes sense. After all, Blake was Davis head recruiter so it seems logical that Davis would want to know everything about him. That said, if Blake was doing something he wasn’t supposed to be with Wichard, isn’t it natural to assume that Blake would go to great lengths to keep Davis from knowing about it?

Does the email go like this: Hey, boss, I’m bustin’ up some rules here with an NFL agent in California. Thought you should know. BTW, that kid from Tucumcari can flat fly, he’s a beast. Hey to the family. – JB

Really?

Here in our real world – horse racing – we have what is known as the “ultimate insurer” rule. Simply put, this means that the owner of a racehorse is ultimately responsible for everything about the horse. In addition, the owner is “ultimately responsible” for everything the trainer or groom does as well. People he has no direct control over, we might add.

However, the owner is not responsible for what the jockey does on his horse during a race. That is a separate area of jurisdiction with its own set of rules.

This makes perfect sense (a rarity for horse racing rules, we know), since the owner has no control over what the jockey does during the race which is conducted before lots of spectators. Point being – if the jockey (Blake) is going to cheat, or try to cheat, or, at the bare minimum, do something questionable, the last person he’s going to tell is the presiding stewards (the NCAA).

The next to last person likely to be in the loop is the ultimate insurer (Davis).

It’s too soon to roll out the guillotine. Better to try and clean up your mess, then end up like USC where the offending coach and players have moved on to handsomely compensated new jobs while the universities they tainted gets penalized.

The Suits In Kansas will bugger this up soon enough.

For now, let ‘em ride.

To read Tudor’s column, click here.

Things That Make You Go…

Hmmm…

Evidently, three-time Excursion des Tricheurs winner Alberto Contador is an equine carnivore…?

Contador has tested positive for the drug clenbuterol and is blaming contaminated steak for his positive doping test.

The Spanish rider was provisionally suspended after a World Anti-Doping Agency lab in Germany found a “very small concentration” of the banned substance clenbuterol in his urine sample on July 21 at the Excursion des Tricheurs according the International Cycling Union, the sport’s governing body.

“It is a clear case of food contamination,” Contador told a news conference in his hometown near Madrid, during which he appeared close to tears several times. “I am sad and disappointed but hold my head high.”

Both Contador’s A and B samples tested positive, and the cyclist has been “formally and provisionally suspended,” the UCI said.

Now, here’s the rub -- Clenbuterol is commonly given to horses to treat breathing problems under the trade name “Lasix.” In human medicine, it is used to treat asthma. In ways similar to stimulant drugs such as amphetamine or ephedrine, it can increase the heart rate and body temperature. Horse racing chemists also believe it has various properties that mask other drugs both legal and illegal.

Long story short, was the “contaminated steak” horse meat?

Gross.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Pictures of the Day

OPENING CEREMONIES FOR THE 2010 VICE PRESIDENTS KUP. Well…no.  It’s actually the opening ceremony for the Ryder Cup (shouldn’t that be “Kup”) at Celtic Manor golf course in Newport, Wales on September 30, 2010.  Play gets underway October 1.  (Photo by Timothy A. Clary/AFP/Getty Images)
LOOKS LIKE A BIG PARTY IS ABOUT TO BUST OUT, WOO HOO! Oh…maybe not. The European and United States Ryder Cup teams and their wives and partners pose for an official photograph with Prince Charles, The Prince of Wales before the 2010 Ryder Cup Dinner at Cardiff Castle on September 29, 2010 in Cardiff, Wales. (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images Europe) (Editor’s note: The editor, publisher and chairman of T.A.H. Worldwide Media LLC is happy to report having visited Cardiff Castle a few years back.  It’s old…and it’s a castle…and it’s old.)
THEN IT RAINED. Europe Ryder Cup captain Colin Montgomerie leaves the 3rd hole on a buggy after play was suspended due to heavy rain during the first round of fourballs on the first day of the 2010 Ryder Cup golf competition at Celtic Manor golf course in Newport, Wales, on October 1, 2010. (Photo by Adrian Dennis/AFP/Getty Images)

TAR HEELS: NOT THE BEST TIMING

Two days before North Carolina is to appeal the NCAA’s suspension of Kendric Burney and Deunta Williams, a report has surfaced via Yahoo! Sports linking former assistant coach John Blake with NFL agent Gary Wichard.

This will further complicate things as the 1-2 Tar Heels look to get the two defensive standouts reinstated from four and six game suspensions.

Now, setting aside the Blake/Wichard/Marvin Austin mess (to read more on that, click here), one can make a case that the punishment doesn’t fit the crime. According to the Suits In Kansas, Burney received $1,333 in benefits and must repay $575.19 to a charity of his choice in order to regain eligibility. Williams received $1,426 in benefits and must repay $450.67 to charity.

Last week, the NCAA ruled that Burney must sit out six games and Williams four games after it was determined that the senior defensive backs had violated the NCAA rules regarding agent benefits and preferential treatment. The violations occurred when Burney took trips to Atlanta, Las Vegas and California and Williams made two trips to California.

Although both players paid for part of their travel expenses, the NCAA ruled that there are still benefits they must repay. When the decisions were announced, UNC athletic director Dick Baddour said the length of the suspensions were “unduly harsh." We agree.

Both players already have sat out three games, which will be applied toward their suspensions. Unless their suspensions are reduced, Williams can return on Oct. 9 against Clemson and Burney can play on Oct. 23 against Miami.

So, simply put the NCAA, figures each kid owes back less than $600 and each $100 and change is equal to missing a game. A six game suspension during an eleven game season over $575 seems a bit harsh…but, what do we know?

The appeal is scheduled as a Friday conference call. According to NCAA documents, the suits have ten minutes to describe the rationale their decision. Then the school then has ten minutes to describe its appeal, and the athlete has ten minutes to make his case. The suits have a chance to ask questions, and then the school and athletes each can provide a 5-minute closing statement.

Good luck getting this twisted tale crammed into a string of five and ten minute intervals…

DAVIS SPEAKS OUT ON JOHN BLAKE, ETC.

According to ACC Now, UNC head Butch Davis said he did not know the financial details of former associate head coach John Blake's relationship with NFL agent Gary Wichard.

Blake received multiple payments, a personal loan of $45,000 and a credit card issued by Wichard's company, according to a Yahoo! Sports report. Davis was interviewed by Raleigh radio host Taylor Zarzour on Thursday morning and denied having any knowledge of the situation.

"My first observation is, that, you know, in reference to some of the points in the article, is that people have private lives," Davis said. "No one knows what credit cards that anybody — I don't know what credit cards you carry, you don't know what credit cards that I carry — I mean people have private lives. That was a total, absolutely revelation to me. I had no idea, and don't even know that that's actually true."

Blake resigned from his position as UNC's associate head coach and recruiting coordinator on Sept. 5.

The Yahoo! report cites five trips to California and Miami by defensive tackle Marvin Austin, who has been suspended by the team, and connects Austin's California trip to Wichard's agency.

Davis was asked if he keeps tabs on players and their travels.

"A lot of people have asked that question: How could a coach not know about a player?" Davis said. "… We don't monitor, in the past we haven't, monitored where they've gone…It's very difficult to know where every kid goes all the time."

To read more, click here.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

2010 VP Kup: It's All About Sportsmanship

No, evidently, it's about one team (Team Chimpman) and its desperate need to win back the VP KUP while being willing to take advantage of the lack of available golfers from last year's Championship Squad (Team Reeves) in order to gain an unfair advantage and a tainted victory. 

And it's about sportsmanship...

Bulls***! Oops, did we write that "out loud."  Sorry. 

This is the official press release from Team Chimpman, edited by the crack staff of T.A.H.:

In a non-publicized event, the 11th Annual V.P. Kup took place fort the first time at the prestigious Stonewall Golf Club in Gainesville, VA. The players featured Kaptain Chimpman and three select players against Kaptain Reeves and three others he could barely round up. The scramble event was part of a larger charity event and pitted Chimpman, Mouganis, McCarthy and Bierman against the pathetic Reeves and his indigent crew of Morrison, Lozano and Brand. 

(You see, Kaptain Chimpman is practically admitting the deck was stacked!)

This "V.P. Elite" group started out with a warm-up round of 18 holes at 7:30 am which was preceded by a few "Fuzzy Zoeller" roadies and Sputnik toasts!

On the first tee of the warm-up round, tennis lingo was adopted with "first one in" but was changed to "first one in bounds" whereby the V.P Elite stopped counting at 22 balls.

After many on course Sputniks, beers and 120 degree Captain Morgan shots, the main event took place at 12:37 p.m. Team Reeves teed-off first and proceeded to have a string of pars which, according to players on that team, was accomplished by three of the players with the fourth being "AWOL".

Team Chimpman started off slow but then caught fire and took a commanding lead of -11 to -6 heading into the final two holes. With any hope of defending the Kup dwindling away, Team Reeves put down a challenge to "double or nothing" the final two holes (I [Chimpman] failed to mention there was heavy betting!).

Riding the backs of Dr. McCarthy and his newly found "draw" as well as the always consistent J.B. Bierman, Team Chimpman crushed Teams Reeves on the final holes thereby capturing the Kup and retaining it for the next 12 months!


In a post game interview, Team Reeves' player Frank Lozano summed it up best, "I really love Mike as a person but as a Kaptain, he really doesn't have a clue! Plus he can't control himself when he starts drinking - he starts to ramble about nothing and it just becomes irritating back-ground noise; he kinda reminds me of Mrs. Donovan, you know Charlie Brown's teacher on the TV show where all you heard was blah, blah, blah."

(Editor's note: Frankee never said that. He has no idea who Charlie Brown is and all he's heard most of his life is "blah, blah, blah."  This is just another example of the mean-spiritedness of Team Chimpman. By the way, the Editor is a member of Team Reeves and we just noticed that we spelled Chipman as Chimpman throughout this story. Sorry, our bad.  And finally, who is this Captain Morgan, and, all things considered, shouldn't it be Kaptain Morgan?)

2010 Ryder Cup: It's All About Sportsmanship

Dear Mr. Snyder:

It’s OK, you can stop SCREAMING now.

Yes, it’s ridiculous that our beloved burgundy and gold lost to the LOWLY oh-for St. Louis Rams who hadn’t scored 30 points since Bill Clinton was in office or won a HOME game since the end of the Crimean War (something like 603 out of 608 of their last home games), but listen closely…What do you HEAR? No screaming, no wailing, no panic, no protest tee-shirts.

Not YET.

Apparently, the difference is Mike Shanahan. Had Jim Zorn lost to the Rams to go 1-2, as he lost to the ever-so-lowly Detroit Lions last year when those very same sorry cats hadn’t scored 30 points since Bill Clinton was in office or won a HOME game since the end of the Crimean War (something like 603 out of 608 of their last home games), people would be SCREAMING from the balcony of the Hotel W.

Yet for some reason, the faithful are looking past QUESTIONABLE decisions and strategies employed by Shanahan’s son Kyle and defensive Coordinator Jim Haslett as the Redskins go 1-2 and are looking down the barrel of the Eagles and Packers. These same people actually think the Skins have a CHANCE when they face the hottest QB in the league in hostile Philly this weekend, and that our boys should be 3-0 and part of the “UNDFEATED” conversation along with Da Bears, the Chiefs and the Rothlesburgerless Steelers.

These people are DELUSIONAL. What the Redskins really are is one Dallas Cowboy coaching staff and some holding penalties away from being 0-3. The Boys committed footballicide opening weekend with an IDIOTIC last second pass turned Skins TD and a bunch of mistakes and penalties. They sealed their fate when they abandoned a running game that was piling up huge CHUNKS of yards against a Redskins defense that is now last in the league in yards allowed (something like 4,250 per game).

So what is the problem? As the Talking Heads (the band, not all those people relentlessly yapping on ESPN) like to say, “same as it ever was.” The fundamental issue haunting the Redskins is still the simple fact that they are WEAK on both lines.

You, almighty team owner, decided to go for full-time cry-baby and MALCONTENT Albert “Bucket of Chicken” Haynesworth instead of waiting a year and grabbing sometimes malcontent Julius Peppers. Hayensworth has whined and cried while Peppers has BLOWN UP for the Bears. The Redskins can’t stop the run, can’t get a sack and can’t create turnovers. They made Bradford, a rookie QB in his third pro game, LOOK LIKE Peyton Manning in the second half on Sunday.

The offensive line remains a weakness as well. Donovan McNabb is a VERY GOOD quarterback. Give him a running game (whether it’s Portis or that guy from the practice squad, you decide) and some time to throw, and he will DISSECT the opponent’s defense. Abandon the run as you did on Sunday and McNabb’s production and QB rating will PLUMMET. In the offseason, you did draft a tackle, but the line is still patchwork at best…

Simply put, Shanahan has the same problem Zorn had -- trying to create offensive and defensive schemes that shore up and make efficient basic fundamental weaknesses in the TWO most important areas of any football team. If things go BADLY the next few weeks, it will be interesting to see how the faithful react. (OK, you can START screaming again.)

All that said, we will be watching Sunday. We are HOPING the Skins rediscover the joy of rushing the football as that seems to be the only way to contain Vick. That or KIDNAP him prior to kick off.

McNabb said yesterday that he believes the Philly fans will CHEER him on Sunday until the game STARTS. Those same folks who so notoriously boo Santa Clause, will be CHEERING, but their show of affection won’t be for McNabb, but for the Redskins LEAKY defense.

Have fun,

Your Loyal Fan

P.S. Please NOTE, I didn’t bust on my favorite second-most-overpaid Redskin – Mike Sellers. I watched him throw some MONSTER blocks against the Rams, so please let him do what he’s good at (blocking and running) and don’t ask him to do what he is HORRIBLE at (catching). Please. It’s such a small request.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

WOLFPACK: LOOK WHO’S RANKED

North Carolina State has spend the opening month of the ACC football season quietly establishing themselves as one of the team to beat with four straight wins including a victory over Georgia Tech in Atlanta last weekend.

Now, Tom O’Brien’s Wolfback have found their way into the AP Top 25 at #23 joining Miami (#16) in the poll.

A lot of NCSU’s success is based on the splendid play of two-time offensive player of the week Quarterback Russell Wilson and a solid, improving defense.

That said, heads in Raleigh aren’t swelling just yet.

To read more, click here.

Meanwhile, the Hurricanes are performing as expected...losing to #2 Ohio State, and winning handily against Florida A&M and old Big East rival Pitt. They will face a test this weekend at Clemson.

Week 4: ACC Players of the Week

OFFENSIVE BACK - Russell Wilson, NC State, QB, r-Jr., 5-11, 201, Richmond, Va. (Collegiate) Wilson had a record-setting day in the Wolfpack's victory over the Yellow Jackets. Wilson completed 28 of 41 passes for a career-high 368 yards and three touchdowns. Wilson also ran for a six-yard touchdown. Wilson's 368-yard passing game ranks 18th in school history. His previous career high for passing yards was 349 versus Florida State a year ago. The Georgia Tech game marks the seventh time in his career that he has passed for 300 yards or more and the 10th time he has thrown at least three touchdown passes in a game. Wilson did throw an interception in the game, snapping a streak of 168 pass attempts without an interception. He holds the NCAA record of 379 consecutive throws without being picked off.

OFFENSIVE LINEMAN - Orlando Franklin, Miami, OL, Sr., 6-7, 312, Delray Beach, Fla. (Atlantic) Franklin graded out at 96 percent in helping Miami win at Pittsburgh by a 31-3 score Thursday night. He finished the game with eight pancake blocks and two lumberjacks in helping Miami's offense rack up 348 yards (248 passing, 100 rushing) yards of total offense. On the season, Franklin has also graded out at 95 percent against FAMU and 96 percent against Ohio State. He has a total of 12 pancake blocks in three games.

DEFENSIVE LINEMAN - Nate Irving, NC State, MLB, r-Sr., 6-1, 231, Wallace, N.C. (Wallace-Rose Hill) Irving had a career-high 16 tackles vs. the Yellow Jackets. He had nine solo hits, two sacks for 11 yards in losses, and 4.5 tackles for losses totaling 15 yards. On Sunday, the Walter Camp Foundation named Irving its National Defensive Player of the Week. He led a defense which limited Georgia Tech, previously the nation's third-best rushing offense, to 96 yards below its previous average.

DEFENSIVE BACK - Bruce Carter, North Carolina, LB, Sr., 6-3, 235, Havelock, N.C. (Havelock) Carter blocked a punt, returned an interception 55 yards and had seven tackles in Carolina's 17-13 win at Rutgers. With Rutgers driving in Carolina territory, Carter made a leaping grab of Tom Savage's second-quarter pass and returned it to the Rutgers 28-yard line. Carolina went on to score a touchdown and cut the lead to 10-7. In the fourth quarter, with Carolina holding a 14-13 lead, Carter blocked a punt, his sixth career blocked kick, and the Tar Heels took over at the Rutgers 35. Carolina kicked a field goal on the ensuing drive. Carter also added a 4-yard tackle for loss.

SPECIALIST - Chris Hazley, Virginia Tech, PK, r-Sr., 6-1, 196, West Chester, Pa. (Henderson) Hazley was a big factor in Tech's 19-0 win at Boston College as the senior hit a career-high four field goals. He had a career-best long of 45 yards and also made two kicks of 29 and 32 yards.

ROOKIE - Danny O'Brien, Maryland, QB, Fr., 6-3, 215, Kernersville, N.C. (East Forsyth) Starting the first game of his collegiate career, O'Brien completed 18 of 27 passes for 250 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions. O'Brien, who was the first freshman quarterback to start for Maryland since Latrez Harrison (11/20/99), and just the fifth in school history, threw touchdown passes of 9 and 68 yards. O'Brien led the Terps on five scoring drives and had an efficiency rating of 168.89, seventh-highest mark by a freshman in the FBS this season.

Wake Forest, Notre Dame Agree to Home-and-Home Series

It not exactly a clash of the titans, but Wake Forest and Notre Dame have agreed to a home-and-home series beginning with Notre Dame’s visit to BB&T Field on Nov. 5, 2011. Wake Forest will return the game in South Bend on Nov. 7, 2015.

Wake Forest and Notre Dame had previously agreed to play in South Bend on Nov. 17, 2012. This two-game home-and-home series is separate from the 2012 game.

“This is an excellent opportunity for our football program to compete against one of the most-storied football programs in the nation,” Wake Forest athletic director Ron Wellman said in a prepared statement. “Notre Dame has long been recognized for its excellence both academically and athletically and we expect that our fans will thoroughly enjoy having the Fighting Irish come to BB&T Field.”

R.I.P. George Blanda

George Blanda, who played longer than anyone in pro football history and racked up the most points in a career that spanned four decades, mostly with the Chicago Bears and Oakland Raiders, died Monday. He was 83.

Blanda retired a month shy of his 49th birthday before the 1976 season. He spent 10 seasons with the Bears, part of one with the Baltimore Colts, seven with the Houston Oilers and his final nine with the Raiders.

Blanda held the pro scoring record when he retired, with 2,002 points. He kicked 335 field goals and 943 extra points, running for nine touchdowns and throwing for 236 more.

He also threw for 26,920 yards in his career and held the pro football record with 277 interceptions until Brett Favre(notes) passed him in 2007. His points record stood until it was topped by several players in recent years.

The 1970 campaign was the one that made Blanda a legend among the gridiron geriatric set. In an amazing five-week stretch in the middle of the season, he twice came off the bench in place of Daryle Lamonica to throw game-winning touchdowns in the fourth quarter, and three times kicked game-winning or game-tying field goals in the final seconds, including two kicks longer than he was old: a 48-yarder to tie the Chiefs and a 53-yard boomer the following week to beat the Browns.

Blanda nailed a 41-yard field goal in his final game, a 16-10 loss to the Steelers in the 1975 AFC title contest.

ACC Lunchtime Links

By Heather Dinich/Espn.com/ACC Blog


*I's the offense's fault. No, the defense. No, the offense.
*Duke coach David Cutcliffe had a feeling his offense might be erratic.
*Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher has been trying to tell us his defense has potential. It showed in a shutout against Wake Forest. Here are some important things to know about that FSU win.
*Rushing touchdowns? Who needs 'em? Not Virginia.
*Virginia Tech saw on film that BC quarterback Dave Shinskie "folds under pressure." So they pressured him. Smart Hokies.
*Boston College might have to take a gamble on a freshman quarterback four weeks into the season.
*What's up with Georgia Tech? Even CPJ is trying to figure this one out. Miami quarterback Jacory Harris remains the "same unflappable guy" despite throwing six picks in the past two games.
*Here's a breakdown on your Tobacco Road teams.
*Welcome back to national relevance, NC State. Watch out, ACC, the Pack are back.
*Miami might offer Clemson's defensive backs their toughest test of the season (or, they'll show the Canes' receivers how to catch).
*Do the Terps have a new quarterback in Danny O'Brien?
*With Georgia Tech wide receiver Stephen Hill being a little inconsistent, Tyler Melton and Correy Earls have helped pick up the slack.
*Clemson right tackle Landon Walker compared blocking Miami's Allen Bailey to former Georgia Tech defensive end Derrick Morgan.
*NC State has a chance to be great, but history reminds us that a 4-0 start doesn't always translate to further success.
*UNC can't afford to lose any more players, especially ones as valuable as Johnny White and Quan Sturdivant, who were both injured at Rutgers.
*FSU quarterback Christian Ponder says his arm is feeling much better.
*With the rest of Virginia's secondary banged up, cornerback Chase Minnifield has had a chance to shine.
*Message to ACC defensive coordinators: Virginia Tech is going to run the ball when in the red zone, in case you didn't figure that out already.
*Miami linebacker Jordan Futch had to overcome personal tragedy along with an injury.

Pictures of the Day

AREN’T YOU SUPPOSED TO RIDE THE BIKE? A rider makes his way up Ingleborough during the 48th Annual Three Peaks Cyclo-Cross Race on September 26, 2010 in Horton-in-Ribblesdale, England. (Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images Europe)
EYES WIDE SHUT. Outfielder Matt Joyce(notes) #20 of the Tampa Bay Rays catches a fly ball in spite of the fact that his eyes are closed during a against the Baltimore Orioles at Tropicana Field on September 28, 2010 in St. Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by J. Meric/Getty Images)
FOLLOW THE BOUNCING BALL. Pittsburgh Panthers cornerback Jarred Holley intercepts the ball intended for Miami Hurricanes wide receiver Travis Benjamin (who isn’t even looking at the ball) during their game at Heinz Field on Sept. 23 in Pittsburgh. Miami won 31-3. (Photo: Fred Vuich/Sports Illustrated)
PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE. Rory McIlroy of Europe tees off during a practice round prior to the 2010 Ryder Cup at the Celtic Manor Resort on September 28, 2010 in Newport, Wales. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images Europe)

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