What Went Right, What Went Wrong: Atlantic Edition

Bennett

What Went Right, What Went Wrong: Atlantic Edition

And just like that, the regular season of ACC football is done. It was a season full of highs and lows for every one. Let’s break down each team’s season starting with the Atlantic Division.

Atlantic Edition

What went right: The emergence of A.J. Dillon. It’s not a coincidence that once the Eagles offense started relying on him heavily, starting with the Louisville game, the team started winning. The Eagles won five of their final six games, and his stat line was rather impressive. In those final six games, Dillon carried the ball 179 times for 1099 yards, averaging 6.1 yards per carry, along with 11 touchdowns. Dillon accounted for 30.8% of the Eagles yards this season.

What went wrong: The defense struggled to stop the run, and gave up the second most yards in the ACC. In a span of two weeks against Notre Dame and Clemson, the Eagles allowed 857 yards rushing.

Atlantic Edition

What went right: The defense. The Tigers defense had the sixth lowest yards per game average in the country, allowing 283 yards per game. Their best performance was against Auburn, where they allowed just 117 yards of offense, and sacked the quarterback 11 times. Two FBS teams had fewer sacks than that the entire season.

What went wrong: The Syracuse game. Kelly Bryant had no business playing in that game, and that was magnified when he went out in the second quarter with an injury. That game was also one of their worst defensive efforts of the season.

Atlantic Edition

What went right: The emergence of Cam Akers. The highly touted freshman lived up to the billing in his freshman campaign, rushing for 814 yards, with at least one game left. He averaged at least 4.0 yards per carry in seven of 11 games.

What went wrong: Everything else. Losing Deandre Francois to a season ending injury after the first game started a chain of bad events for the Seminoles this season. Several other players missed time at various points of the season due to injury. The on field product suffered as a result, especially on defense. The Seminoles averaged 137 yards per game less this season compared to 2016.


What Went Right, What Went Wrong: Atlantic Edition

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Atlantic Division

What went right: Lamar Jackson continued to be himself in 2017, and sadly, will probably not get the Heisman consideration he deserves. In terms of yards per game, he was actually better this year. Jackson averaged 411 yards per game this year, which is 18 yards better than last year. A lot of that had to do with improved offensive line play.

What went wrong: Nobody else was a consistent contributor on offense. Jackson accounted for 73% of Louisville’s yardage this season. Jackson accounted for 4932 yards. The second most on the team was 518. That is a huge margin. Louisville is lucky Jackson was healthy all season.

Atlantic Division

What went right: While the defense was as stout as expected, the offense was better than expected. A lot of that had to do with the emergence of Nyheim Hines. An all purpose back as a freshman, Hines barely played as a sophomore, and became a 1000 yard rusher as a junior.

What went wrong: Not a whole lot went really wrong for the Wolfpack this year. If you want to point to something, it should be of no coincidence that in the four losses NC State suffered, they had a negative turnover margin.

 

Atlantic Edition

What went right: The running game was better this year. The Orange ran for 500 yards more this year compared to 2016. The yards per carry improved by nearly a full yard as well. Of course, upsetting Clemson also went right.

What went wrong: the final five games of the season saw Syracuse resort to what I like to call the “matador defense.” Twice during their five game losing streak to end the season the defense allowed over 700 yards. For the season, the Orange ranked near the bottom of the league in pretty much every statistical category.

 

Atlantic Edition

What went right: I was pleasantly surprised how well John Wolford played this season. His passing numbers were astronomically better this year compared to 2016. Last year Wolford’s game high for passing yards was 263. This year, he eclipsed that mark four times, including a three game streak of at least 300 yards passing.

What went wrong: The defense ranked last in the ACC in yards per game. The Deacs allowed 30 or more points in five of their final six games this season. They also allowed over 500 yards in four of their final five games.


What Went Right, What Went Wrong: Atlantic Edition




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