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ACC rankings: Florida State a cut above conference foes

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The biggest mystery left in the ACC this season is who wins the Coastal Division and takes on FSU in the league championship game. Duke, which plays at Syracuse on Saturday, is the current leader and doesn't play a very taxing schedule down the stretch -- Virginia Tech, North Carolina and Wake Forest, all at home, are on the schedule after this week.

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1. Florida State (8-0, 5-0 in ACC)

Up next: vs. Virginia, Saturday, Nov. 8
The skinny: FSU has won 24 in a row, which is the longest active winning streak in the nation, and the Seminoles are aiming to become just the 25th team in college football history to win 25 in a row.

» Six things we learned from CFB Playoff rankings

2. Clemson (7-2, 6-1)

Up next: at Georgia Tech, Saturday, Nov. 15
The skinny: Clemson is in excellent shape for an Orange Bowl bid. If the Tigers win out and FSU is in the playoff, a second consecutive Orange Bowl berth looks likely for Clemson.

3. Duke (7-1, 3-1)

Up next: at Syracuse, Saturday, Nov. 8
The skinny: Duke is in first place by itself in the Coastal Division race. Back-to-back division titles is a legitimate possibility.

» Bowl projections: Duke could face Baylor

4. Louisville (6-3, 4-3)

Up next: at Boston College, Saturday, Nov. 8
The skinny: Louisville looked great in the first half against FSU. Unfortunately, it looked like its normal inconsistent self in the second half, and that cost the Cardinals the upset.

5. Georgia Tech (7-2, 4-2)

Up next: at North Carolina State, Saturday, Nov. 8
The skinny: The Yellow Jackets are aiming for just their 12th eight-win season in the last 44 years; they should get their eighth win Saturday.

6. Miami (6-3, 3-2)

Up next: vs. Florida State, Saturday, Nov. 15
The skinny: Miami is playing well of late, on both sides of the ball, and junior TB Duke Johnson has inserted himself into the Heisman discussion. Now the Hurricanes have a week off to prepare to wreck their archrival's season.

» Heisman Watch: Johnson leaps into top 10

7. Boston College (6-3, 3-2)

Up next: vs. Louisville, Saturday, Nov. 8
The skinny: Who says you need to pass to win? The Eagles rank 123rd nationally in passing (131.7 yards per game), the worst of any Power Five conference school.

8. North Carolina (4-5, 2-3)

Up next: vs. Pitt, Saturday, Nov. 15
The skinny: The defense has been atrocious (actually, maybe we should use "bad" instead of "atrocious" for all the former UNC athletes reading this). Next week's game against Pitt might decide whether the Tar Heels will go bowling.

9. Pittsburgh (4-5, 2-3)

Up next: at North Carolina, Saturday, Nov. 15
The skinny: Pitt has struggled on both sides of the ball since a 3-0 start. Next week's game against UNC might decide whether the Panthers will go bowling.

10. Virginia (4-5, 2-3)

Up next: at Florida State, Saturday, Nov. 8
The skinny: The Cavs started 4-2, coach Mike London looked safe, and folks were wondering where Virginia would spend the postseason. Now a bowl bid seems unlikely, and London might want to be thinking about calling some realtors.

11. North Carolina State (5-4, 1-4)

Up next: vs. Georgia Tech, Saturday, Nov. 8
The skinny: An embarrassingly easy non-conference schedule plus games against Syracuse and Wake Forest mean the Wolfpack almost certainly are going to go to a bowl.

12. Virginia Tech (4-5, 1-4)

Up next: at Duke, Saturday, Nov. 15
The skinny: Is it time to start wondering whether it's time for Frank Beamer to retire? The Hokies are in danger of having their first losing season since 1992. This already is their third consecutive season with at least five losses -- the longest such streak since 1990-92.

13. Syracuse (3-6, 1-4)

Up next: vs. Duke, Saturday, Nov. 8
The skinny: Duke-Syracuse basketball? We'd watch. Football? No.

14. Wake Forest (2-7, 0-5)

Up next: at North Carolina State, Saturday, Nov. 15
The skinny: The Demon Deacons are in danger of suffering their first 10-loss season since 1995, when Jim Caldwell -- yes, that Jim Caldwell -- was their coach.

Mike Huguenin can be reached at mike.huguenin@nfl.com. You also can follow him on Twitter @MikeHuguenin.

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