North Carolina State Wolfpack (2-1 SU, 0-3 ATS) vs. No. 12 Florida State Seminoles (0-1 SU, 0-1 ATS)
College Football Week 4
Date/Time: Saturday September 23rd, 2017. 12:00PM (EST)
Where: Doak Campbell Stadium Tallahassee, F.L.
by Jay, NCAA Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: NCST +12/FSU -12
Over/Under Total: TBA
After a two week hiatus caused by the destruction of Hurricane Irma in the state of Florida, the 12th ranked Florida State Seminoles will get to host their first home game of the season this Saturday when they meet the North Carolina State Wolfpack inside Doak Campbell Stadium. With all thoughts and prayers with those impacted in the state of Florida, I imagine it will be nice to see some normalcy with the Seminoles returning to action this week. However, Florida State will not have an easy opponent in their home opener as they battle a North Carolina State team that many have listed as a dark horse in the ACC.
The Wolfpack lost their opening game of the season against South Carolina but bounced back with consecutive wins against Marshall and Furman in recent weeks. This North Carolina State team was considered by many to be one of the breakout teams in 2018. The were plenty of reasons for the expectations. A strong offense led by quarterback Ryan Finley and one of the most talented defensive fronts in the FBS. However, those expectations were trampled in the opener against South Carolina when turnovers and special teams deficiencies lead to their demise. Even with the bounce back victories the last two weeks against inferior teams, the Wolfpack have still failed to cover the spread in their 3 outings this season.
So how can this North Carolina State revamp those preseason expectations? In my opinion, the possibilities start up front along the defensive line this week. Florida State lost quarterback Deondre Francois for the season in the opening loss to Alabama. As a result, the Seminoles will turn to freshman James Blackman at the quarterback position. From my research, Blackman is a dual threat quarterback that looks to run first. In fact, he may have some limitations down the field in the passing department until proven otherwise. Therefore, North Carolina State has to keep pressure on Blackman to make things tough and keep him uncomfortable with each snap.
If the Wolfpack can be disruptive on defense, they have an offense that can score. Quarterback Ryan Finley is one of the better quarterbacks in the ACC. On the season, Finley has completed 75% passing for 987 yards with 6 touchdowns and 0 picks. Additionally, the Wolfpack have the size in receiving corps to challenge Florida States defense. WR Kelvin Harmon and Stephen Louis are big downfield targets and tight end Jaylen Samuels is a sneaky weapon in the passing game as well. Together, the Wolfpack have the personnel to attack Florida States stout defense and it is imperative that they stay on the field.
Florida States defense has tremendous talent and speed. If they can get off the field, the Seminoles will be fine despite the uncertainties at quarterback. They have enough weapons on offense to run the football with Cam Akers or create some quick passing routes to create space with their speedy receivers. However, I do not believe that Florida State wants to get into a high scoring game as they would favor the Wolfpack. Therefore, I believe this game comes down to the play on the defensive side of the ball perhaps more importantly than it does on the offensive side of the football.
Jay’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: I am not quite sure I understand this betting line. I know North Carolina State has not yet fulfilled their potential but this is still a good football team. Meanwhile, Florida State was abused by Alabama in the opener and are breaking in a freshman quarterback as double digit favorites? I dont get it. Take North Carolina State +12 with extreme confidence! If you went to the store and two of the same exact product were sitting side by side; One for $105.00 and one for $110.00, which would you buy? THE CHEAPER ONE OF COURSE! So why are you still betting at -110 odds when you could be betting at -105? Dump your overpriced bookie TODAY and start enjoying the benefits of discounted odds at the web’s BEST sportsbook: 5Dimes!