CORAL GABLES, Fla. (AP) -- -

For a little more than five full seasons, not one voter thought a team from the Atlantic Coast Conference was the best in the country. Not since Dec. 2, 2007 had an ACC school gotten a single No. 1 vote in the Top 25.

That is, until this week, when Clemson got one.

It's a small step in the ACC's climb back toward the college football mountaintop. The SEC has reigned supreme for nearly a decade, and very few expect that to change anytime soon.

But with Clemson already ranked No. 4, and with a eight ACC schools having scored 30 points on the same weekend for the first time in league history, there seems to be hope the conference might be turning a corner toward the game's elite ranks.