Clemson, FSU are real BCS contenders

Florida State and Clemson are on a collision course for their Oct. 19 game. Getty Images, AP Photo

A year ago Saturday, Florida State choked away a second-half lead at North Carolina State, and before the season’s halfway mark, it signaled another year of embarrassment that the ACC would not have a title contender.

“I can’t believe this is happening again,” one league official told me then.

Fast forward to the present, and the league still has two contenders. (Maybe three, if you’re willing to stick your neck out on Miami improving in the coming weeks.)

Quarterback play is the reason, as Clemson’s Tajh Boyd and FSU’s Jameis Winston (in his first season as a starter) have their teams on a collision course for their Oct. 19 meeting in Death Valley.

Both teams are playing so well that the winner of that game should emerge as a legitimate national title contender. Which leads off our Takeaways for Week 6.

1. Winner of Clemson-FSU matchup could make BCS title game

Boyd and Winston entered dangerous games Saturday at Syracuse and against Maryland, and they exited with their Heisman campaigns padded significantly. Winston’s candidacy, in fact, might have been announced in earnest.