TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -Boston College and Virginia Tech have played each other more in the last 14 months than any two Atlantic Coast Conference schools, so when they say they know each other well they mean it.
The Eagles (9-3) and Hokies (8-4) meet for the fourth time since 2007 in Saturday's ACC championship game, with the winner earning the league's automatic BCS spot and a return trip to Florida for the Orange Bowl.
Not bad for a couple of teams few thought had much of a shot at repeating as division champs after meeting in last year's title game in Jacksonville, Fla. And not many saw B.C.'s 28-23 home victory against Tech less than two months ago as a championship game preview.
``Last year it was expected. This year, no one expected it and we still did it. That's gratifying,'' Jeff Jagodzinski, Boston College's second-year coach, said during a conference call this week.
hemselves for last year's 30-16 loss in the title game. ``That would be a huge deal for us.''
Not that Jagodzinski is counting on revenge to inspire his team.
``I think the motivation of being in the ACC championship game will be plenty. ... Our kids love to compete against them,'' Jagodzinski said. ``I think we bring out each other's best.''
Virginia Tech Frank Beamer agreed. But he said that so much has happened since the Hokies' loss to B.C. on Oct. 18, that it will have little bearing on Saturday, when his team can win its third title since joining the ACC in 2004.
Following that loss, the Hokies lost two of their next three games and dropped out of the Top 25 before regrouping to beat Duke and Virginia to win the Costal Division title.
``What we know is they're a hard team to beat,'' Beamer said. ``That's what you know when you've played a team like Boston College.''
Boston College, ranked 18th, has won four in a row. The Eagles followed the Hokies from the Big East to the ACC in 2005 and are looking for their first outright championship in either league. Boston College has won the last two regular season meetings against Tech, but trail the all-time series 10-6.
``Every time we get together, it's a big game,'' Tech defensive end Orion Martin said.
``It would be huge to get to a BCS bowl. But to do that, you've got to play an unbelievable game,'' Jagodzinski said. ``Frank's been there before, his kids have been there before, and our guys haven't. Hopefully, we can make the next step.''
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