All sorts of action happening at the top of the ACC's Coastal Division came a week after the Atlantic Division had all the attention with the Florida State-Clemson tilt. This time there was the upset that happened (Duke toppled Virginia Tech) and the one that didn't happen (Miami survived against Wake Forest). The Miami magic act received most of the attention because it preserved the showdown between undefeated teams when the Hurricanes go to Florida State for their next game. Florida State will be a healthy favorite, but the matchup with Miami still figures to be closer than what the Seminoles did to Clemson. It was a strange week for the Hurricanes, but it ended just like all their other game weeks this season. They won, so despite the scare from Wake Forest there were more good vibes around the Hurricanes. The Hurricanes learned a few days earlier that they would be eligible for postseason play this year after consecutive self-imposed postseason bans. But they didn't look much like an elite bowl type of team for much of this game against Wake Forest, which was aiming for its third consecutive victory. If there's a recent trend developing for the Hurricanes it's that they've turned to a late-game rushing attack that has been effective. It worked in the comeback against North Carolina and it was called upon again against Wake Forest. But the Hurricanes figure to need better across-the-board offense in order to keep up with Florida State. For that to happen, QB Stephen Morris will look to become more efficient, though at least he shook off the interception bug that had crept into his profile. He completed 17 of 28 passes without a pick-off against Wake Forest. Florida State could have fallen into the proverbial trap this week after a stomping of Clemson a week earlier and a showdown with unbeaten Miami looming in another week. That wasn't the case against N.C. State. Freshman sensation Jameis Winston threw three first-quarter touchdown passes, keeping pace in the Heisman Trophy sweepstakes. The attention to detail has to be pleasing to coach Jimbo Fisher. WR Rashad Greene has three consecutive games with 100 or more yards of receiving, so Winston is keeping his connections in good order. However, another element has come into play for the Seminoles. They've become legitimate contenders to be playing in the BCS championship game if they can maintain their current trend. That's a possible distraction, but with in-state rival Miami on the docket next there should be no problem maintaining their focus. FIVE BIGGEST TAKEAWAYS FROM WEEK 9 IN THE ACC 1. Duke might be for real in football as the Blue Devils shave notched bowl eligibility, meaning they'll be going to bowls in consecutive seasons for the first time in school history. And Duke could still poke its way back into contention for the Coastal Division title. 2. Miami might have gotten off easy from the NCAA when the governing body's rulings on sanctions came down, but there's nothing easy recently on game days for the Hurricanes. They've escaped against North Carolina and Wake Forest, so it figures to be a tougher deal with a trip to Florida State next. 3. Florida State is taking care of business and this tends to bring back memories of the glory days for the Seminoles. They've blown out opponents on a regular basis this season. 4. North Carolina State and Virginia are the only teams in the ACC without a conference victory. It could stay that way because these teams don't meet each other this year. 5. Georgia Tech seems to have rediscovered its mojo with back-to-back victories, scoring at a rapid clip while they're at it. They blew out Syracuse on Oct. 19 and welcome the other ACC newcomer, Pittsburgh, for their next game.
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