Tajh Boyd threw for 344 yards and tied a school record with five touchdown passes for the second straight week to help 10th-ranked Clemson beat Duke, 56-20, on Saturday night in Durham, N.C.
DeAndre Hopkins caught three TD tosses in the opening quarter for the Tigers (8-1, 5-1 Atlantic Coast Conference), who scored 42 points by halftime and rolled to their fifth straight win — all by at least 14 points.
Sammy Watkins and Martavis Bryant also had first-half touchdown catches, helping Clemson rack up nearly 500 yards by halftime and 718 for the game.
The win moved Clemson into a tie with No. 9 Florida State atop the Atlantic Division, though the Seminoles beat the Tigers in September for the head-to-head tiebreaker in the division race to reach the ACC championship game.
The loss dropped Duke (6-4, 3-3) a game behind Miami for the Coastal Division lead. It was Duke’s first loss in six games at Wallace Wade Stadium this season.
Boyd threw for a school-record 428 yards with five touchdown passes in an easy win at Wake Forest last week, then added another five TD passes by halftime against Duke. He also ran for a 21-yard score to give Clemson a 42-17 halftime lead, setting up the Tigers for a stress-free second half.
The Tigers played almost the entire game without Andre Ellington, the ACC’s second-leading rusher. Ellington suffered an unspecified leg injury on a 26-yard carry on the game’s first offensive play and didn’t return.
With Clemson rolling, Boyd was pulled late in the third quarter. Hopkins finished with four catches for 128 yards, while also setting the program record with his 22d career touchdown catch.
Georgia Tech 33, Maryland 13 — The visiting Yellow Jackets amassed 370 yards on the ground against the nation’s fourth-ranked run defense. Orwin Smith rushed for 89 yards and a touchdown as all but 31 of Georgia Tech’s 401 total yards came on the ground.
After building a 20-0 lead at halftime, Georgia Tech (4-5, 3-3) attempted only one pass over the final 30 minutes, and just four for the game. It was 27-0 late in the third quarter before Maryland (4-5, 2-3) finally scored in dropping its third straight.
Because of injuries the Terrapins were down to their fifth-string quarterback, converted linebacker Shawn Petty. He passed for a pair of scores but also fumbled twice and threw an interception while finishing 9 of 18 for 115 yards.
Virginia 33, N.C. State 6 — The visiting Cavaliers (3-6, 1-4) forced five turnovers and had six sacks in snapping a six-game losing streak. Phillip Sims ran for one touchdown and threw for another, and Kevin Parks rushed for 115 yards and a late 31-yard score.
The Wolfpack (5-4, 2-3) were held to 19 yards rushing with three interceptions, two lost fumbles, and a safety.