Virginia Tech and Florida State are favored to be at the top of the ACC again this year—at least as much as the media is concerned, that is.
At the 2009 ACC Football Kickoff on July 27, at the Grandover Resort in Greensboro, NC, Virginia Tech and Florida State were voted as the top teams of the Costal and Atlantic Divisions, respectively.
Seventy-eight first-place votes went to the Hokies, and 56 first-place votes were awarded to the Seminoles.
Virginia Tech and FSU are the most likely teams not only to take their divisions, but also be the leading contenders for the ACC Championship game. Both are destined for bowl games this year...the only question at this point is how both teams will make the most of their seasons.
Virginia Tech is stacked early on in the season with non-divisional games, including fights against Marshall and the Huskers of Nebraska.
A kick-off game against Alabama on Sept. 5 will serve as a litmus test against teams like Georgia Tech and FSU—two of the most likely villains to the Hokies this year.
The key will be getting around the October fights with BC, the aforementioned Yellow Jackets, and North Carolina.
Easy-goings in November will help out VT immensely, with games against Maryland, NC State, and Virginia. Frank Beamer and Co. shouldn't rule any opponent as too easy or weak though. Underestimating the abilities of teams such as Duke and Maryland have come back to haunt teams hoping for an easy road to the ACC Championship game.
The Hokies are at the top, which makes them easy targets for everybody below them.
FSU is in the same pot as VT this year, with tough conference games against Georgia Tech, Wake Forest, and North Carolina. Out of conference, the 'Noles must be on the lookout against Bringham Young University, and a trip to Gainesville for an end of the season bout against Florida.
Georgia Tech looks to mess with any plans for a post-season that either of these teams have. The Yellow Jackets and Paul Johnson are outside runners for a chance at the ACC Championship, coming into this season with a 9-4 overall record, and right behind Virginia Tech last year in the Coastal Division.
Both teams have a fight against Tech in October, and whoever is able to fend off their spread triple-option offense could become the next ACC Champion.
Both FSU and Virginia Tech have a tough season ahead of them. With Georgia Tech in killing range of both of their seasons, and out of conference tests to prove themselves, the only good thing they have going for them is the goodwill of reporters who expect to see them on top come December.
Originally Posted on SportInformant.com