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ACC Weekend Recap

By Carlos Pineda
SouthernPigskin.com
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While the sampling size is small, Georgia Tech's defense looks to be improved. It has allowed 31 yards less through two games this season compared to this time last year.

Game of the Week

Georgia Tech 38, Duke 14

Duke led for about three minutes in the first quarter before Georgia Tech scored 28 unanswered points. Durham-native Vad Lee threw a career-high four touchdowns as the Yellow Jackets (2-0, 1-0 ACC) cruised their way to a comfortable victory. Lee accounted for 201 offensive yards and five touchdowns. He was the team's second-highest rusher.

Tech rushed for 344 yards and held the Blue Devils to 254 total yards — 225 yards below their offensive average. Paul Johnson improved to 10-1 all-time against Duke (2-1, 0-1).  

While the sampling size is small, the Yellow Jackets' defense looks to be improved. They've allowed 31 yards less through two games this season compared to this time last year.

Looking ahead, Georgia Tech hosts North Carolina and Virginia Tech in the next two weeks and faces Miami on the road on Oct. 5. It's a critical stretch for the Yellow Jackets in the Coastal Division.

Three Stars

1) Vad Lee, QB, Georgia Tech — In his return to Durham, Lee completed eight passes for 125 yards and four touchdowns. He added 76 rushing yards and a touchdown as Georgia Tech took care of business, 38-14. Lee had a vital role in all five of the Yellow Jackets' scores.

2) C.J. Brown, QB, Maryland — It was Randy Edsall's homecoming at Connecticut, and Brown did his part in making sure his coach left with a win. Brown completed 15 of 28 passes for 277 yards and rushed for 122 yards on 16 carries. With Maryland down 7-0, Brown tied the game in the second quarter with a 41-yard touchdown run.

3) Karlos Williams and Devonta Freeman, RBs, Florida State — Despite playing a sluggish first half, Williams and Freeman combined to rush for 219 yards. With almost identical numbers, Williams had a game-high 110 yards on eight carries and a score, and Freeman added 109 yards on nine carries, also with a score. As a whole, the Seminoles rushed for 377 yards against Nevada in a 62-7 win.

Final Verdict

— Virginia Tech may have won, but it didn't come easy. The Hokies trailed twice in the game, scoring what would be the winning touchdown late in the third quarter. While the defense kept East Carolina at bay, the offense struggled. Virginia Tech has a tune up next week against Marshall before facing Georgia Tech in two weeks.

— Saturday's result was not what Wake Forest had expected when it scheduled Louisiana-Monroe. It's been five seasons since the Demon Deacons had a winning season and there's no doubt Jim Grobe's seat is heating up. 

Week 3 scores

Virginia Tech 15, East Carolina 10

Louisiana-Monroe 21, Wake Forest 19

Pittsburgh 49, New Mexico 27

USC 35, Boston College 7

Florida State 62, Nevada 7

Syracuse 54, Wagner 0

Maryland 32, Connecticut 21

Look Ahead

— Clemson faces its first major challenge in the Atlantic Division at NC State on Thursday night. While the Wolfpack don't necessarily match up on paper, these are the games the Tigers must be on high alert.

— While North Carolina's run-game isn't living up to last year's standards, Saturday's game at Georgia Tech is the first major test in the battle for the Coastal Division. This game will provide a better gauge on just how improved the Yellow Jackets defense is and which of these two squads are legitimate contenders.

*I went 6-2 in my predictions for this past weekend.

Carlos Pineda - Carlos Pineda is a featured writer for Southern Pigskin. He covered the UCF Knights football team for Florida Today in 2010. Carlos' work has been published in the South Florida Sun Sentinel, Miami Herald, Orlando Sentinel and Orlando Business Journal. He attended the University of Central Florida. Follow Carlos on Twitter @CarlosFPineda.