2. The Most Underrated Thing Was …
Notre Dame 21, Virginia Tech 20
This year, considering how blah the conference is, how much do you want to see ACC and ACC-related teams in the top bowl games?
If Clemson gets into the College Football Playoff, that means there will be two ACC teams among the 12 in the New Year’s Six/CFP games. The Orange gets the ACC champion, but if it’s in the playoff, the next ACC team up goes, and that’s no fun this year.
You really want to see Wake Forest or Virginia Tech – instead of Clemson – face Florida, LSU, Ohio State, Penn State, or some other big boy in the Orange? You might have to.
And then there’s Notre Dame.
The Irish continue to enjoy their wonderful friends with benefits relationship with the ACC, and that includes being a part of the bowl picture.
With Ian Book leading the way to the thrilling win over Virginia Tech, that kept the hope alive of going to the Cotton Bowl in the New Year’s Six. If that doesn’t happen – and there’s a loss at some point the rest of the way, or if the CFP doesn’t like a 10-2 Irish team enough in the rankings – they get one of the ACC bowl slots. That’s not a horrible thing.
That means everyone else in the ACC moves down a spot, and that means better ACC teams in the bowl matchups. However, the Irish are going to get really, really close to getting one of the bigger bowls.
In other words, that drive by Book might have ensured that three ACC and ACC-related partners will get into the New Year’s Six instead of two or possibly one.
Get all that? Basically, Book might have just made the ACC a whole lot more money, and he might have created a slew of worse bowl matchups.