2017 ACC Football: Coastal Division Power Rankings week 8

BLACKSBURG, VA - OCTOBER 21: Safety Reggie Floyd
BLACKSBURG, VA - OCTOBER 21: Safety Reggie Floyd /
4 of 7
DURHAM, NC – OCTOBER 21: Ben DiNucci
DURHAM, NC – OCTOBER 21: Ben DiNucci /

Come Back Song

Pittsburgh earned its first win over a Power Five team as well as its first conference win, by coming back from a 10-point deficit late against Duke.

The comeback was initiated when Darren Hall returned the kickoff 92 yards for a touchdown with 10 seconds remaining in the third quarter. Duke had just scored on a 29-yard pass from Daniel Jones and looked to be in control.

Duke didn’t score again as the Hall touchdown sparked the Panthers to 17 unanswered points and a seven-point win.

Hall was the star of the game, finishing with 254 rushing yards and three touchdowns, along with the kickoff return. Hall’s 254 rushing yards were nearly 150 more yards than Duke had allowed teams to rush for per game.

Also, for the first time this season Coach Pat Narduzzi did not make a change at quarterback. Ben Dinucci played the entire game and finished with 149 yards on 8-for-18 passing. It isn’t a great line, but with the play of Hall, Pitt didn’t need great play from the quarterback.

The Pitt defense also stepped up big, getting to Daniel Jones a lot. The Panthers sacked the Duke quarterback twice, forcing him to fumble and throw an interception. The interception ended Duke’s final drive at the Pitt 22, sealing the win for the Panthers.

Pittsburgh will be hoping the comeback is the start of a new season for a team that can still make a bowl game with three more wins. They still have three home games left, so anything is possible. The dream starts this week with a game against Virginia.

CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA – October 21: Andre Levrone
CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA – October 21: Andre Levrone /

It Won’t Be Like This for Long

Virginia lost for the second time this season, ending a four game winning streak for the Cavaliers. Virginia entered the game just one win shy of bowl eligibility and left the same way.

However, the more concerning sign for Virginia shouldn’t be the loss, as they were playing a Boston College team coming off an upset win of Louisville, but how bad they lost. The Cavs were never in the game.

Boston College led by 17 points after one quarter, 27 after the third quarter, and won by 31 points. They outgained the Cavaliers by 265 yards, despite only possessing the ball for an additional seven minutes.

Virginia turned the ball over three times and saw quarterback Kurt Benkert fail to pass for over 180 yards for the first time this season.

Jordan Ellis, who rushed for 136 yards against North Carolina a week earlier, finished with 56 yards, ending a four-game streak of at least 90 rushing yards.

Meanwhile, the defense allowed Boston College to rack up 512 yards of total offense. The Eagles had averaged 356 yards per game going into this contest.

Boston College quarterback Anthony Brown had season highs in yards, completion percentage, and touchdowns.

The worst part, though, was that Virginia was the home team. Luckily for Virginia, since the game was against an Atlantic opponent, they still control their own destiny in the Coastal Division.

The Cavaliers also still have five more chances to win that sixth game, though three of those chances are on the road. Four of those five games come against teams with winning records. Next up, Virginia travels to Pitt in their one remaining game against a losing team.