South Florida Bulls vs. Florida State Seminoles Point Spread – Pick Against the Spread

South Florida Bulls (1-0 SU, 1-0 ATS) vs. No. 10 Florida State Seminoles (1-0 SU, 1-0 ATS)
College Football Week 2
Date/Time: Saturday September 12th, 11:30AM EST
Where: Doak Campbell Stadium Tallahassee, F.L.
by Jay, NCAA Football Handicapper,

Point Spread: USF +27.5/FSU -27.5
Over/Under Total: 53

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The 10th ranked Florida State Seminoles will host the South Florida Bulls inside Doak Campbell Stadium early Saturday. The Seminoles blasted Texas State in a snooze worthy opener last week by a score of 59-16 and proved to the nation that they have the tools in place be a national power yet again in 2015. This week the road back to the college playoffs has a meeting with a South Florida team that is desperately trying to return to the national stage. The Bulls will get their shot at national recognition this week but they will be huge 27.5 underdogs when they go into Tallahassee.

South Florida opened their season last week with a 51-3 rout over Florida A&M. While last weeks victory was over one of the inferior Florida schools, the Bulls will have their shot to knock off the flagship school in the state of Florida in what could be one of the bigger games of the Willie Taggart era. Just as recently as 2009, the Bulls marched into Tallahassee and pulled out a 17-7 victory in the 2nd most recent meeting with the Seminoles. So what are the chances of that happening again on Saturday?

Unfortunately, the problems for USF chances this weekend are plentiful. The biggest problem is that they are at a huge talent disadvantage. Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher has recruited as well as any coach in the nation over the last few years and the Seminoles just keep reloading with all-american type talent. The Bulls on the other hand have just 5 starters returning from their 2014 offense and do not have the playmakers to exploit one of the better defenses in the country.


Quarterback Quinton Flowers is not exactly battle tested and concerns linger behind center. Running back Marlon Mack did record 1,041 yards with 9 touchdowns in 2014 and returns for a potentially even bigger season. While Florida State did have some struggles against the run last year, they are still really talented in the trenches which should be very obvious against a team like South Florida limiting how much damage the Bulls can accomplish on the ground alone.

For South Florida to have a legitimate chance to stay in this game, they are going to need some big plays whether it is a homerun play or two on offense or some big plays in the defense/special teams area. The Bulls biggest challenge will be finding a way to stop a Seminoles offense that looks every bit as dangerous as they did a year ago. Last week Florida State effortlessly destroyed Texas State in Everett Golsons debut. The former Notre Dame quarterback was just named the starter a little over a week ago and did not disappoint completing 19 of 25 passing for 302 yards and 4 touchdowns in his first appearance.

Golson had the looks of a polished quarterback much different than the thrower we saw for the Fighting Irish. It will be interesting to see how that pace continues going forward. Behind Golson, is a pretty shaky Sean Maguire so I imagine Jimbo Fisher will stick with Golson unless something drastically changes? Despite Golsons start, running back Dalvin Cook may have been the biggest playmaker in the Texas State opening.

Cook touched the ball 19 times to carry for 156 yards with 2 touchdowns and looked to have the motor that this offense can lean on. Behind Cook, junior Mario Pender also got 14 touches for 92 yards and a score. Obviously Cook is the main guy but Pender could get some valuable touches in the backup role. I actually believe Florida States running ability may be a bigger benefactor for the Seminoles this season. South Florida had major issues stopping the run last year giving up nearly 200 yards per game on the ground. If those issues have not been solved or improved substantially, it could be a long afternoon for the visitors.

Jay’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: Florida State continues to impress and exploits South Floridas one dimensional offense. Take Florida State -27.5

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