Focus on the game, and ignore the implications.
That's the task for Duke and No. 16 Virginia Tech this week as the Hokies try to move one step closer to playing for the Coastal Division title and a berth in the conference title game, and the Blue Devils seek one more victory that would make them bowl-eligible for an unprecedented second straight season.
Such goals offer no time to look at the big picture, Duke tight end Braxton Deaver said.
"I think playing them, it's going to take the utmost execution, the utmost importance for all of us to go in there and play as well as we can," Deaver said. The Hokies have won 12 straight in the series. "The bowl berth and bowl eligibility will be huge, but at the same time it's about beating them right now."
The Hokies (6-1, 3-0 Atlantic Coast Conference) are coming off a bye weeks that allowed bruises to heal, while Duke turned some heads last week, rallying from a 22-0 deficit to win 35-22 at Virginia.
"This is not the same Duke program that was here about four or five years ago," Hokies coach Frank Beamer said. "These guys are playing well. I think offensively they're the most efficient offense (Tech has faced) probably since Alabama really. They've got talent and they're well-coached.
"Defensively, I think they play extremely hard, don't make many mistakes."
Beamer also noted that the Blue Devils average 36 points, but they haven't played a defense like Virginia Tech's. The Hokies ranked second nationally in total defense, allowing 256 yards per game.
"We are playing a team that sets the tone physically in the league," Blue Devils coach David Cutcliffe said. "They've set the tone for quite some time."
The Hokies did against the Blue Devils last year when the teams also met at Lane Stadium. Duke stunned the crowd by jumping to a 20-0 lead before the Hokies collected themselves and won going away, 41-20.
Blue Devils left guard Dave Harding thinks this team is different.
"We really just have to play Duke offense. We can't let Virginia Tech dictate what we need to do on offense," he said, adding that handling the crowd noise is also a challenge. "As an offense, you have to go in there with kind of blinders on and execute the way we know we're capable of executing."