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BATTLE FOR N.C.: No changes in slow week

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A referee seperates East Carolina's Marcus Holton Jr., left, and North Carolina's Thomas Jackson during their game on Sept. 8, 2018, in Greenville. (Molly Mathis/The Daily Reflector)

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The Daily Reflector

Sunday, October 7, 2018

It was a light weekend of college football in North Carolina.

Duke, Appalachian State and North Carolina all had off dates, and Wake Forest and East Carolina both lost as underdogs. Things nearly got interesting in Raleigh, but N.C. State held off Boston College to win.

Here are The Daily Reflector’s updated “Battle for N.C.” power rankings:

1. N.C. State

Record: 5-0.

Why No. 1? The 28-23 victory over Boston College wasn’t pretty, again, and it wasn’t perfect, but N.C. is the best team in the state because of that zero in the loss column. It is that simple. After a timely bye week, State will play Clemson, Syracuse and Florida State in consecutive games.

2. Appalachian State

Record: 3-1.

Why No. 2? Through six weeks of the college football season, App. State’s lone Sun Belt game is a 52-7 rout of South Alabama. The Sun Belt is looking like a three-team race featuring the Mountaineers, Troy and Georgia Southern set to battle it out.

3. Duke

Record: 4-1.

Why No. 3? No game for Duke on Saturday and it has some comfort knowing that Wake Forest is the team behind the Blue Devils in these rankings.

4. Wake Forest

Record: 3-3.

Why No. 4? The drop-off from the top-3 is real. Wake gets a bye week to regroup after a 63-3 loss to Clemson, but it also has some comfort knowing that East Carolina is the team behind it in these rankings.

5. East Carolina

Record: 2-3.

Why No. 5? ECU stays put, and could for a while, because it already beat UNC 41-19 on Sept. 8. This is despite the Pirates just having their most underwhelming performance of the season in Philadelphia, falling 49-6 to American Athletic Conference East foe Temple.

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