Streeter Lecka

The big 2014 ACC football guide, from Wake Forest to Florida State

Bill Connelly's daily megapreview series of every team in the country is now on the one with the current heavyweight title belt. Follow along!

SB Nation 2014 College Football Countdown

  • Live
14 Total Updates since June 6, 2014
  • Important 14
  • Articles 14
  • All Updates 14

Searching for FSU's flaws

Florida State is the reigning national champion. The Seminoles have the reigning Heisman winner. They will probably have more players picked in the 2015 draft than any team of the last 20 years. We'll go out on a limb and say they're officially back.

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Virginia Tech can win 10 games. If ...

With a Bud Foster defense and a schedule that features only one team projected better than 30th, Virginia Tech could once again win 10+ games in 2014 ... if its offense can at least be mediocre. But it wasn't even mediocre the last two years.

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Time for Clemson to pin its ears back

Clemson loses its two most visible stars from last year's Orange Bowl squad, but the Tigers return one of the best defensive lines -- and perhaps the best set of coordinators -- in the country. They are deep and fast and might not need a rebuilding year.

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Miami's confusing expectations

Expectations are a funny thing for a Miami program with a brilliant history and the clearing smoke from the Nevin Shapiro investigation. Wherever the bar is set, though, it's going to be hard for Al Golden to clear it unless his defense improves.

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Pitt has potential, power, peril

The starting 22 for Paul Chryst's third Pitt team could be full of youth and upside. But just about every Pitt unit could get decimated by injuries or attrition. Regardless, the potential is high and will only get higher in 2015.

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Can UNC keep it going?

North Carolina has been hailed as a sleeping giant for basically each of the last 50 years. Larry Fedora's Tar Heels return an extraordinary amount of exciting offensive talent, but will shaky defense and flaky quarterback play hold them back?

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Louisville's hitman goes to work

Bobby Petrino was brought back to Louisville to do one thing: win. And he'll probably do so. He inherits a strong stable of offensive weapons, and though the defense will regress, the Cardinals are immediately one of their new league's best teams.

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GT has higher upside, lower downside

After winning 20 games in his first two seasons, Paul Johnson has settled into the seven-win groove Chan Gailey patented at Georgia Tech. But with less experience and more upside, the Jackets appear more likely to win either five or nine games in 2014.

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Is NC State a bounceback candidate?

Dave Doeren inherited an NC State roster with perilous depth, and injuries had blown up the two-deep by the end of September. With better luck, the Wolfpack could bounce back, but they're probably still a year away from making serious noise.

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Now the work really begins at BC

Steve Addazio inherited an experienced lineup and a late-blooming superstar at running back. He rode that to a five-win improvement in 2013. What happens now that the team's bigger names are gone?

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Syracuse could be volatile, exciting

Syracuse could be fun in 2014, with a high-paced, run-first offense and a TFLs-or-bust defense. But a more experienced roster will need to overcome the inconsistency that held the Orange back last fall.

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Duke enters post-breakthrough stage

After four years of fielding basically the same team, Duke got younger and improved dramatically in 2013. We now live in a world in which "Can Duke reach the conference title game again?" is a legitimate question.

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One more chance at Virginia?

Mike London has reached Year 5 at Virginia because of potential and potential alone. His Cavaliers have won six games in two years, but recruiting means upside, and Virginia has quite a bit of it in 2014. They did last year, too, though.

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Is Wake Forest the next rebuild?

Dave Clawson has three successful rebuilds on his résumé; he might pull off a fourth at Wake Forest, but it will take us a year or two to figure that out. Barring a miraculous offensive turnaround, 2014 is going to be rough for the Deacs.

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