Duke football is currently in first place in the ACC, ahead of former Top 25 teams Virginia Tech and Clemson.
(Did you ever think you'd actually hear that sentence?)
Okay, we're technically tied for first place, but it's no technicality that we have a better record than VT or Clemson. The Tigers played against a tough opponent from the SEC, but they got flattened by 24 points. Virginia Tech lost at their own game to lowly East Carolina, who blocked a punt and returned it for a TD with 3 minutes left in the game, which was the game-winning play and a signature play of VT's "Beamerball". Almost this year's App. State, if I may.
But it's not really valid to compare Duke football to those teams right now. What's important is that we won a game at Wally Wade Stadium for the first time since defeating VMI 3 years ago. What's important is that we equaled our combined win total for the last two seasons by stomping JMU 31-7 on Saturday night. What is important is that David Cutcliffe is undefeated as Duke's head coach. What's important is that we started our season off right.
David Cutcliffe is the best thing to happen to Duke football since Steve Spurrier left in 1989 for Florida. Firstly, he's a seasoned, respected, veteran leader, having coached both Super Bowl-winning Manning boys at UT and Ole Miss. Secondly, and almost as important, he's gotten Dukies excited about Duke football again. The Wally Wade Wackos were out in full force on Saturday night, filling 4 sections of the stadium... I'm pretty sure that's the most students to attend a game since we last won a bowl. Cutcliffe brought an air of success and change to the school, and so far he's made good on his promise.
Then again, we can't get ahead of ourselves here. It was just one game, against an FCS opponent. But regardless, I noticed marked improvement in our team Saturday night, and I hope it continues to shine through for the duration of the season. It's quite possible for us to win 4-6 games this year, but it's also quite possible for us to not win any more. It all depends on whether we continue improving as we have, and keep the momentum rolling. If we come into Navy 2-0, or Virginia 3-0, the snowball effect could build us up to bigger victories as the season rolls on...
So, how soon will we see Duke football in a bowl game? In the next three years, so that I could personally attend? I sure hope so...