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5. Boston College's Ground Game vs. NC State's Linebackers
No one has slowed down the Eagle ground troops, which lead the conference at 316 rushing yards per game and more than six yards a carry. The Pack will try this week by flooding the box with safeties and linebackers Rodman Noel and Jerod Fernandez to help support an experienced D-line. The Eagles will hit State with diverse looks, from the quickness of QB Tyler Murphy and WR Sherman Alston to the power of running backs Jon Hilliman and Myles Willis.
4. Syracuse backs Adonis Ameen-Moore and Prince-Tyson Gulley vs. Florida State's Front Seven
QB Terrel Hunt is out with a broken fibula, so the Orange will lean on its backs now more than ever. If unproven hurlers Austin Wilson and A.J. Long, both of whom will play, have any shot of succeeding in the face of the talented Seminole D, Ameen-Moore and Gulley must pick up chunk yards on first and second downs. Third-and-long is a recipe for sacks and turnovers, with DE Mario Edwards Jr. and outside linebackers Terrance Smith and Lorenzo Featherston forcing Hunt’s heirs into costly mistakes.
3. Miami QB Brad Kaaya vs. Cincinnati's Secondary
Kaaya had a rocky outing in last week’s loss to Georgia Tech, throwing two interceptions in a game for the fourth time this season. But the true freshman will look to get back on track at the expense of the Bearcat secondary. Through four games, Cincinnati has yielded 11 touchdown passes and picked off just one, despite getting help from the pass rush. Kaaya wants to exploit the Bearcat corners via connections with Phillip Dorsett, Herb Waters and Stacy Coley, who was surprisingly quiet in the first half.
2. Duke RB Shaun Wilson vs. Georgia Tech's D
Georgia Tech wants to establish the running game in this week’s key Coastal Division showdown on the Flats. So, too, does Duke. The Blue Devils are averaging more than six yards per carry, the perfect antidote for a passing game that’s been slow out of the gate in 2014. Wilson, a rookie, has been the catalyst in Durham, rushing for 435 yards and four scores on only 36 carries. He’ll be hunting for the seams and the daylight in a Yellow Jacket defense yielding more yards per carry than any other ACC team.
1. Clemson's Passing Attack vs. Louisville's Secondary
Tiger QB Deshaun Watson has been on a torrid pace, as he becomes increasingly comfortable feeding the ball to budding receivers Mike Williams, Artavis Scott and Germone Hopper. But can the true freshman’s prosperity continue against a feisty Louisville defensive backfield that ranks No. 10 nationally in pass efficiency D? The Cards are keeping the play in front of them, while effectively jumping routes and batting down throws. SS Gerod Holliman is the frontman of the larceny, picking off an FBS-high seven passes as a part-time starter.