This Game doesn’t have as much meaning as previous matchups, but Miami is still in the hunt for the ACC Coastal division so there is something to play for. Florida State is only trying to make a bowl Game at this point and this is just one of its remaining difficult Games. The Hurricanes were -13 point home favorites with an over/under of 48.5 as of Wednesday at 5Dimes Sportsbook.
Even in different divisions, these teams play each other every year with the last Four contests all being decided by five points or less. However, this spread is bigger than any of the prior Four. When these teams met last year, it was still early in the season when FSU had hope and Miami had yet to turn into a national conversation.
It was a close Game that only had 13 total points in the first three quarters and the Hurricanes ended up needing a last-second touchdown to get the win. Neither team played well as Malik Rosier was just 19-of-44 and Miami’s ground Game managed 83 yards on 2.9 yards per carry. Florida State moved the ball better with 203 rushing yards, but James Blackman threw a couple costly picks. Given that result, there are a few reasons to take the Seminoles in this matchup, but only a few. Another reason is that Miami still hasn’t beaten a good team this year after losing to LSU in the opener. Sure, the ‘Canes destroyed teams like UNC and Toledo, but that’s not entirely impressive. Sure, it’s not guaranteed FSU is better than those teams, but Deondre Francois at least has the offense moving the last couple Games, both wins.
Speaking of Francois, he’s the main reason to back Florida State along with top wide out Nyqwan Murray. Only a year ago Francois was in the Heisman discussion before going down with a season-ending injury. After a few tough performances, he’s come around with six touchdowns in the last two Games and could be a real threat for the Miami defense even though it’s allowing less than 140 passing yards per Game, best in the nation. Of course, it’s important to note Miami hasn’t played a quality quarterback or passing team yet. The downside for the ‘Noles has been the rushing attack, which is averaging only 2.8 yards per carry due to Francois getting sacked a slew of times. And even then, neither Cam Akers nor Jacques Patrick are above 4.1 ypc. If Francois can’t get anything going against this defense, it could easily be another blowout, especially since FSU is allowing 385 yards per contest.
FSU had a chance in this Game last season because it won in the trenches, but that doesn’t look like it’s going to happen this year. Still, it’s not like Miami’s offense is elite despite averaging 44 points per Game. N’Kosi Perry started at quarterback over Malik Rosier last Game and that position remains a work in progress. FSU’s strong suit on defense is against the rush, which happens to also be Miami’s best route of attack between Travis Homer and DeeJay Dallas. If those guys find any resistance (which hasn’t been the case since the LSU Game), this one could be closer than some think. The problem for FSU is that this meeting is in Miami and the Hurricanes often thrive at home.
The Seminoles are 1-4 ATS in their last five overall and 0-9-2 ATS in their last 11 Conference Games. The Hurricanes are 2-6 ATS in their last eight in the ACC and 1-4 ATS vs. a team with a winning record. The under has hit in the last seven meetings between these schools and the underdog is 13-3 ATS in the last 16.
Our Pick – Florida State +13