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ACC Ready for More This Postseason

By BJ Bennett
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This is a conference ready for a repeat.

The ACC has developed into one of college football's premier leagues, perhaps even the game's best conference for large stretches of the past few years. Ahead of bowl season, the ACC is in prime position to restake its claim; ten teams are bowl eligible, with top-ranked, defending national champion Clemson making a third-straight trip to the College Football Playoff. Though no longer in need of validation, last postseason's showdowns were an absolute showcase for the league. This is a conference ready for a repeat.

A year ago, the ACC went a remarkable 9-3 in bowl games, with two of the losses coming by a combined nine points. Dabo Swinney's Tigers shutout Ohio State 31-0 in a Fiesta Bowl semifinal before a dramatic title bout triumph over Alabama lifted Clemson, and the league, into the national spotlight. Additional wins, including Florida State beating Michigan in the Orange Bowl and Miami's Russell Athletic Bowl victory over West Virginia, helped the conference finish the season with an exclamation point.

Once more, Clemson leads the ACC into bowl competition with a highly-anticipated third-consecutive clash with Alabama in the Sugar Bowl. Already final four regulars, the Tigers are only solidifying themselves as a dominant superpower, all with potential back-to-back national championships within reach. Clemson has and is representing more than just itself on the big stage. 

League teams will get opportunities against nationally-ranked foes in the Orange Bowl, with Miami taking on one-loss Wisconsin, in the TaxSlayer Bowl, featuring Louisville and Mississippi State, and in the Camping World Bowl, with Virginia Tech and long-time playoff contender Oklahoma State. The conference will have at least three contests with the SEC. A number of high-profile pairings have mass appeal.

Outside of the top matchups, three ACC teams will look to secure winning seasons this December: Duke, Florida State and Virginia. Though the Seminoles have had a very disappointing year, they are in the postseason for a record 36th consecutive time.

Through multiple waves of expansion, boosted by key coaching hires and significant facility upgrades, the ACC is a major college football brand. Most importantly, this is a conference that has won when it matters most, success league teams will look to continue in the coming weeks.

BJ Bennett - B.J. Bennett is's founder and publisher. He is the co-host of "Three & Out" with Kevin Thomas and Ben Troupe on the "Southern Pigskin Radio Network". Email: / Twitter: @BJBennettSports