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Schedule Sets up Nicely for Hokies and Noles
by Chris Coleman, TechSideline.com, TSLMail #486, May 27, 2011

A good schedule can sometimes be the difference between playing for a championship and being just another team. Virginia Tech has been the best coached team in the ACC since they joined back in 2004, their talent level is higher than most of the other teams in the league, and this year they have the benefit of having an outstanding schedule on their side.

Virginia Tech's eight ACC opponents in 2011 combined to go 24-40 in conference games last season. That's the lowest mark in the entire conference.

Before we get to the Coastal Division and the Hokies, let's take a quick look at the Atlantic Division.

Atlantic Division
Team Opp. Wins Opp. Losses
Clemson 37 27
Wake Forest 37 27
Boston College 35 29
Maryland 30 34
NC State 29 35
Florida State 26 38


Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney will have a very difficult conference schedule to navigate as he tries to save his job. The Tigers must play at Virginia Tech, Maryland, NC State and Georgia Tech. They also host Florida State, Maryland and North Carolina. Their only easy game is a home game against Wake Forest. Things are just as bad out-of-conference, with a home game against Auburn and a road game at South Carolina.

Wake Forest was one of the worst teams in the ACC last season. This year they probably won't be much better: road trips to Boston College, UNC and Clemson, while hosting NC State, Florida State, Virginia Tech and Maryland. The Demon Deacons don't have a lot of talent, and perhaps Jim Grobe should have taken another job while he had the chance.

Boston College should open 2-0 in ACC play. The Eagles host Duke and Wake in their first two conference games. However, their last six conference games are against Clemson, Maryland, Virginia Tech, Florida State, NC State and Miami. The Clemson, Maryland and VT games are all back-to-back-to-back, and all on the road.

The Terps are a sleeper in the Atlantic Division this year, behind All-ACC quarterback Danny O'Brien. Their toughest ACC game will be at Florida State on October 22, but they do kick off the season by hosting Miami in an 8pm game on September 5. Maryland also has Virginia and Wake Forest on the schedule.

Finally, NC State and Florida State have the two easiest schedules based on last year's results. Florida State plays all three 1-7 teams - Virginia, Duke and Wake Forest - this season. They also get Miami at home. NC State gets Wake and UVA at home, but they must travel to Florida State. However, Clemson and Maryland must visit Raleigh.

The Coastal Division looks like this ...

Coastal Division
Team Opp. Wins Opp. Losses
Virginia 38 26
Georgia Tech 33 31
Miami 33 31
Duke 33 31
UNC 29 35
Virginia Tech 24 40

Like Florida State, the Hokies play Duke, Wake Forest and Virginia. They get Clemson and Miami at home, as well as Boston College and North Carolina. Their toughest road game is at Georgia Tech, who finished 4-4 in the ACC a year ago and 6-7 overall. The schedule couldn't set up any better for Virginia Tech.

Miami has road games against Virginia Tech, Florida State, Maryland and North Carolina. It will be very difficult to get through that group unscathed. They also host Boston College and Georgia Tech, who aren't pushovers.

North Carolina has a pretty favorable schedule, from a record standpoint. However, road trips to Virginia Tech, Clemson, Georgia Tech and NC State could end any chances the Tar Heels have of winning the Coastal.

Virginia and Duke are not threats to win the division, while Georgia Tech is probably on the outside looking in as well.

Virginia Tech and Florida State were the favorites to meet in the ACC Championship Game before the schedule was even released. After a closer examination of the schedule, it's really difficult to pick any other ACC team to make it to Charlotte this year. Other teams just don't have the right schedules on their side.


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   TechSideline.com Updates From the Past Week
Tech a Sleeper in 2011
May 27, 2011
College football is wide open in 2011. There is no clear #1 team going into the season. Every team out there has a weakness, and many of the teams that are considered National Championship contenders will face a very tough non-conference opponent early in the year. This is anybody's year.

Highly Recruited DE To Visit Virginia Tech
May 26, 2011
Stephenson (Stone Mountain, GA) rising senior Jarontay Jones has visited Auburn, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, Georgia Tech and Vanderbilt so far. The 6-3, 240-pound defensive end, who has been offered by all of those schools and more (he has over 30 offers), will begin his next round of visits in early June. First up is Virginia Tech.

TSL Audio: Chris Coleman on ESPN Radio Blacksburg, May 25, 2011
May 25, 2011
This week on The Sean Bielawski Show, TSL's Chris Coleman and host Sean Bielawski discussed the future of VT basketball player Allan Chaney and the October football schedule.

Recruiting Targets, Defense: May 25, 2011
May 25, 2011
Virginia Tech is targeting a number of highly-touted prospects on defense, particularly on the defensive line. Today's recruiting targets update will focus on Bud Foster's side of the football.

Diary: Prosise Reaches Double-Digit Offers
May 25, 2011
The Evaluation Period has been good to Woodberry Forest (VA) safety/wide receiver CJ Prosise, who added four more offers this month. Prosise, who just a few months ago seemed to be leaning towards ultimately staying in-state, now has a different outlook on where he may end up.

Recruiting Targets, Offense: May 24, 2011
May 24, 2011
It's been several weeks since our last recruiting targets update. Today we'll take a look at the offensive side of the ball and see how Virginia Tech's recruiting is working out. The Hokies currently have a commitment for every position on offense, but they'll be looking to add more as the summer moves along.

Offers Mount For Centreville's Ekanem
May 23, 2011
With 15 major FBS offers in the fold, 6-3, 230-pound defensive end/linebacker Ken Ekanem has become one of the most highly recruited prospects in the state of Virginia's 2012 class. Florida and Tennessee coaches have expressed heavy interest and could be on the verge of offering, but for now the Centreville (Clifton, VA) star is content with offers from Boston College, Central Florida, Duke, Illinois, Maryland, Michigan, Michigan State, Notre Dame, Oregon, Pittsburgh, Rutgers, Syracuse, Vanderbilt, Virginia, and Virginia Tech.

Basketball Notes
May 23, 2011
Virginia Tech's opponent for the 2011 Big Ten/ACC Challenge will be the Minnesota Golden Gophers, as announced last week by the ACC. Also, multiple media outlets are reporting that Seth Greenberg has hired former Maryland assistant Rob Ehsan as Tech's latest staff member.
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