Part of BCI's season preview week.
Yesterday, we unveiled our picks for the 2009 Atlantic Division race. Here is how we see the Coastal Division race playing out this season.
Brian’s Coastal Division predictions
Miami (Fla.) 9-3 (6-2)
Georgia Tech 10-2 (6-2)
Virginia Tech 9-3 (6-2)
North Carolina 9-3 (5-3)
Duke 5-7 (2-6)
Virginia 3-9 (0-8)
My ACC Coastal ends up looking like last year’s Big XII South, with a three-way tie atop the division. In a bold and surprising move, I give Miami Fla. the nod over both the Hokies and the Jackets. Miami will lose at both Florida State and Wake Forest, but knocks off the Hokies, Jackets and Heels to earn a spot in their first ACC Championship Game.
Virginia Tech loses to Miami and at Georgia Tech while Georgia Tech loses at Miami and at home vs. North Carolina.
Of course the biggest disappointment for the conference is that no team (cough, cough, Virginia Tech) emerges as a BCS National Championship Game contender this season. We will continue to here the meme about how the ACC has parity but no powerhouse programs.
Duke doubles its ACC win total from 2008 by defeating both Maryland and Virginia (for a second straight season, I might add). However, the Blue Devils come two games short of making a bowl. Finally, Virginia goes 0-for-ACC and is shopping for a new coach come December.
Jeff’s Coastal Division predictions
Virginia Tech 10-2 (6-2)
Miami 8-4 (5-3)
Georgia Tech 8-4(5-3)
Duke 6-6 (3-5)
Virginia 6-6 (3-5)
North Carolina 7-5 (3-5)
I, like many others, have Virginia Tech winning the Coastal Division (again). Of the rest of the division, I like Miami's chances best to change that and expect the Canes to defeat the Hokies this year. However, I think Virginia Tech will finish with a better conference record. I also think the Canes will beat Georgia Tech, but will slip at a few less predictable points throughout the season to finish at 5-3 in conference.
Georgia Tech should have another nice season but I think they'll lose to Georgia to finish 8-4 overall.
Duke will be the big surprise when they beat North Carolina this season. This W will give the Blue Devils a chance to become bowl eligible going into their final game of the season against Wake Forest (spoiler alert: Duke falls to Wake Forest and won't go bowling again this season).
Virginia will come up with a few wins this season in Coastal Division play to finish 6-6 including a win vs. North Carolina, which leaves the Tar Heels in last in the division.
North Carolina should roll in non-conference play but will struggle in the tough Coastal Division and fail to live up to their preseason expectations/ranking. Even though I picked them to beat Boston College, they will rack up the losses against Coastal Division opponents. Seven wins is just enough to get the Heels bowling in December.