Bowl Eligibility Watch
|FSU at NC State. Image via NBC Sports.|
The biggest surprise in the ACC in Week 10 of the 2016 college football season is either the fact that a) It took until Week 10 for Florida State to get the six of the season that it needed to become bowl eligible, or b) Wake Forest got to six wins and became bowl eligible before either Miami, Pitt, or Georgia Tech did.
FSU began last season with a six-game winning streak before losing to Georgia Tech in Week 8. A stronger cross-division schedule this season saw the Seminoles lose to ACC Costal Division leader North Carolina. Losses against ACC Atlantic Division rivals Clemson and Louisville also slowed down FSU on its pathway to bowl eligibility, as well as putting to bed any chance for a place in the College Football Playoff as well.
Wake Forest hasn't been to a bowl game since it lost to Mississippi State in the 2011 Music City Bowl. Conference wins over Duke, Syracuse, and Virginia, along with quality out-of-conference wins over Tulane and Indiana, have help make it the surprise team of the ACC this season.
Here is the Post-Week 10 Bowl Eligibility Watch List for the ACC. Six teams are bowl eligible, three can clinch bowl eligibility with wins in Week 11. while three more teams are 4-5, and battling the clock to find two more wins before the end of the season.
An "*" indicates teams who became bowl eligible in Week 10.
Bowl Eligible (Six or more wins)
North Carolina (7-2)
Virginia Tech (7-2)
*Wake Forest (6-3)
*Florida State (6-3)
On the Brink (Five wins, one game away)
Miami (5-4) (Week 11: @Virginia)
Pittsburgh (5-4) (Week 11: @Clemson)
Georgia Tech (5-4) (Week 11: @Virginia Tech)
Miami may have the best shot of the 5-4 record schools for a sixth win in Week 11. Virginia is a pitiful 2-7, with it's only ACC conference win coming against a struggling Duke.
Running Out of Days (Four wins, two games away)
Syracuse (4-5) (Week 11: vs. North Carolina State)
North Carolina State (4-5) (Week 11: vs. Syracuse)
Boston College (4-5) (Week 11: @ Florida State)
One of these the three above teams is guaranteed a win in Week 11. Hint: it isn't Boston College. Syracuse and NC State face each other on Nov. 12, so one of them has to win.
Beyond Week 11, Syracuse has to face FSU (Nov. 19), and Pitt (Nov.26) on the schedule. NC State has Miami (Nov. 19), and UNC (Nov. 26). Boston College has UConn (Nov. 19) and Wake Forest (Nov. 26). All three will have tough roads ahead to become bowl eligible.
If Syracuse, NC State, and Boston College do manage to get too six wins, it could mean that the entire ACC Atlantic could be bowl eligible. That would be a feat that only the SEC West was able to pull off in the 2015 season.