2016 Preseason ACC Football Predictions


The ACC has three legit contenders for the college football playoff in 2016.  Clemson nearly brought home the national championship for the conference last year and once again will be in contention.  Florida State and North Carolina will be right there battling for the conference as well.  Who takes the ACC in 2016?  Find out in our ACC football predictions below.

What's Inside

2016 Predicted Records and Standings for ACC Football:
8 Florida State Seminoles 12 0 8 0
4 Clemson Tigers 11 1 7 1
37 Louisville Cardinals 9 3 6 2
47 NC State Wolfpack 6 6 4 4
92 Wake Forest Demon Deacons 6 6 3 5
74 Boston College Eagles 5 7 1 7
87 Syracuse Orange 1 11 0 8
6 North Carolina Tar Heels 11 1 7 1
50 Pittsburgh Panthers 8 4 5 3
56 Virginia Tech Hokies 7 5 5 3
58 Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets 7 5 4 4
55 Duke Blue Devils 5 7 3 5
63 Miami Hurricanes 5 7 3 5
75 Virginia Cavaliers 2 10 0 8


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1. Florida State Seminoles – The Noles are loaded on offense.  Dalvin Cook will be the focal point against for FSU and he can carry them to the ACC Championship and possibly a trip to the playoff.  On defense there are some holes to fill, but Jimbo Fisher has recruited well and simply reloads season after season . The disappointing performance in the bowl game should have the Noles motivated for the 2016 football season.

2. Clemson Tigers – DeShaun Watson is back so Clemson is going to be in every game this season.  He showed in the national championship game, he would rise to the occassion.  The offense has eight starters back and will be potent.  The defense has some question marks.  They lost NFL talent on that side of the ball so huge holes are going to need to be filled.  Talent is there but can they handle the target that will be on their back all season?

3. Louisville Cardinals – Bobby Petrino has a team that could surprise this season.  The Cardinals have sixteen starters back with eight on each side of the ball.  Lamar Jackson should great promise as a freshman and returns at QB.  Davonte Fields, a preseason All-American, leads the defense that makes them contenders.  Look out for the ‘Ville in 2016, this is a dangerous football team.

4. NC State Wolfpack – The Wolfpack are trying to make the leap up to the top of the division.  With eight starters back on defense, it’ll be the strength of the team.  The offense though has a new, inexperienced QB and offensive line.  The Pack will go bowling but a .500 season looks to be their destiny.

5. Wake Forest Demon Deacons – The Demon Deacons bring 15 starters back from a 3-9 team in 2015.  The schedule is much better and should lead them to a bowl game.  The -13 turnover margin hurt last year, but with a more experienced team look for that to be turned around and the Demon Deacons to head to a bowl.

6. Boston College Eagles – The offense simply has to get better.  The defense was outstanding last year yet the Eagles only won 3 games.  Steve Addazio can coach so he’ll have his offense better but expecting a huge turnaround to make them contenders simply isn’t going to happen.  If the Eagles can pull an upset, they could go bowling.

7. Syracuse Orange – The Orange come off a 4-8 season and face one of the toughest schedules in the country.  With 15 starters back they’ll be more competitive, but the record will show more losses.  Dino Babers will get the ‘Cuse headed in the right direction but with this schedule, it’ll be a long season ahead.


1. North Carolina Tar Heels – The Heels were a bit of an under the radar team last season.  A loss in the opener against South Carolina, kept the country from noticing them winning the next 11 and playing in the ACC Championship Game.  The Heels must break in a new QB but with the offensive line back and Larry Fedora coaching, the Heels will be just fine on offense.  Gene Chizik coordinates the defense for the second consecutive season and should have it ready despite the turnover on that side of the ball.  UNC is a good team but not ready to beat the Atlantic Division Champ for the ACC title.

2. Pittsburgh Panthers – Pat Narduzzi is hoping James Connor can make a full recovery from injury and illness to lead his team.  They have several starters back and hope to challenge for a spot in the ACC Championship Game.  Look for another eight win season from the Panthers.

3. Virginia Tech Hokies– Frank Beamer retired last season.  The Hokies are now led by Justin Fuente who was hired away from Memphis.  With eight starters back, it might be easier to transition to Fuente’s offense.  Bud Foster still coordinates the defense so it should be solid again.  They play Tennessee in week 2 so you’ll find out a lot about the Hokies early in the season.

4. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets – The Jackets will have many new starters in 2016.  After a 3-9 2015 that might not be a bad thing.  Have ACC defenses finally figured out how to stop their option attack?  It has to get better in 2016.  Bringing back Justin Thomas at QB has to help and they have experience on the offensive line.  The Jackets get back to a bowl after missing one last season for the first time in 18 seasons.

5. Duke Blue Devils – An exciting OT win last year let Duke head to the off-season with eight wins.  Thomas Sirk injured himself during workouts in February and is a question mark to start the season.  They’ve seen changes on the coaching staff so there are questions for Duke, not to mention seeing new starters at over half the positions on the field.

6. Miami Hurricanes – Mark Richt is now the HC at the U.  He played there and fans are excited.  He’s gotta transition this team though.  The 3-4 of Al Goden is out on defense.  The offensive line must improve.  Richt will win with the ‘Canes eventually but this year will see the pains of transition as we don’t think the ‘Canes go bowling.

7. Virginia Cavaliers – Bronco Mendenhall left BYU to take over the program at UVA.  He inherits a team needing direction.  He hopes to bring over the success he had at BYU.  With only 10 starters back, he’s got to get a lot of people to buy in right away and lean on the job.  It’s gonna take some time to rebuild this program in this division.

2016 ACC Championship Game

Florida State vs. North Carolina

2016 ACC Champions

Florida State

Get bowl projections, preseason All-Americans and more in our 2016 College Football Preview. 2016 COLLEGE FOOTBALL PREVIEW-1

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