Miami football ACC Title Game chances hurt by ND win over Clemson

Dec 2, 2017; Charlotte, NC, USA; Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 2, 2017; Charlotte, NC, USA; Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports /

The change for the Miami football team to reach the ACC Championship game this season was hurt by Notre Dame defeating Clemson on Saturday night.

The epic 47-40 double-overtime victory by Notre Dame over Clemson on Saturday night in South Bend hindered the chances of the Miami football team reaching the ACC Championship Game. The victory by the Fighting Irish over the Tigers evens Miami and Clemson in the loss column in the ACC Standings.

The win by Clemson over Miami last month gives the Tigers the head to head tiebreaker over the Hurricanes. A Miami and Notre Dame tie in the loss column would have been more beneficial to the Hurricanes. Miami and Notre Dame do not play this season. Even a Notre Dame loss creating a three-team tie makes it tough for Miami.

If Clemson wins out as expected, Notre Dame loses one more game and Miami wins out the Hurricanes would still lose the three-way tiebreaker. According to the ACC official website, the first tiebreaker is “Combined head-to-head win percentage among the tied teams.”  Miami would lose out in that scenario.

The Fighting Irish will have a 1-0 record in a three-way tie with Clemson and Miami, the Hurricanes 0-1 and Tigers 1-1. Miami needs to win out and somehow hope Clemson sufferers one more loss or Notre Dame loses twice. Neither seems likely.

Clemson has a bye this week before playing at Florida State, hosting Pittsburgh and playing at Virginia Tech. At 2-5, the Seminoles are on pace for their worst season since going 3-8  in 1975 in their last season before Bobby Bowden was hired.

Pittsburgh just ended a four-game losing streak and Virginia Tech lost on Saturday to Liberty. Miami plays at the Hokies on Saturday followed by Georgia Tech at Hard Rock Stadium, at Wake Forest and North Carolina at home in the last game of the regular season. Notre Dame plays three of its last four games on the road.

Notre Dame plays at Boston College on Saturday which is reminiscent of their 1993 season. Notre Dame defeated Florida State in South Bend in 1993 in a game between the top-ranked Seminoles and the second-ranked Fighting Irish. Boston College won at Notre Dame the following week on a David Gordon field goal as time expired.

Notre Dame plays at North Carolina, hosts Syracuse and finishes 2020 at Wake Forest. Miami has to just focus on their own season and let the remainder of the year play out. The Hurricanes will be the underdog to Virginia Tech on Saturday. Miami will be favored against Georgia Tech, Wake Forest and North Carolina.

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If the Hurricanes finish the 2020 season 10-1 with their only loss to Clemson at the very least they will play in a New Year’s Six bowl game. There is a possibility that if Florida is not in the College Football Playoff the Hurricanes and Gators could play in the Orange Bowl.