After staging a huge rally against a very good SEC team in Ole Miss on Monday, things are just a tad bit easier for No. 3 Florida State on Saturday as the Noles open their home schedule against FCS school Charleston Southern. FSU is of course a massive favorite on college football lines.
Here’s a Closer Look at Charleston Southern at FSU Week 2 Free Pick, Lines & TV Info
Why Bet on Charleston Southern?
The Buccaneers have played twice following a 57-7 win over some school called Kentucky State on Saturday. Alan Barnwell rushed for 108 yards on four carries and had a touchdown, and Mike Holloway added against Division II-member Kentucky State. Charleston Southern amassed 527 yards in total offense — 405 on the ground — and scored six rushing touchdowns.
Redshirt freshman quarterback Shane Bucenell performed well in his debut, leading three touchdown drives in relief of Kyle Copeland. Bucenell reached the end zone on a three-yard keeper to give CSU a 36-0 advantage and then threw a dart to Jared Scotland for an 84-yard touchdown to continue the onslaught. Scotland caught the pass at the 40-yard line and broke a pair of tackles on his way to the longest play of the day. Redshirt freshman London Johnson took the reins at quarterback in the second half and showcased his ability in the option game, carrying 10 times for 67 yards. Johnson evaded a tackle in the backfield before sprinting for a 33-yard score to account for the final 57-7 margin.
The Buccaneers (1-1) were coming off a season-opening overtime loss on the road at North Dakota State last weekend. Charleston Southern has now won eight straight home games dating back to November 2014.
The win was costly for Charleston Southern, though. Starting quarterback Copeland will miss the rest of the 2016 season after suffering a major knee injury trying to score on a run in the first quarter. Copeland said after the game he suffered a torn ACL and MCL in his right knee. He is a redshirt junior with eligibility remaining. After Copeland’s injury, later in the first quarter, senior Darius Hammond was injured on a punt return and did not return to the game. Hammond had 122 yards on four punt returns before the injury. Hammond is the Big South Conference preseason offensive player of the year
Why Bet on Florida State?
FSU didn’t look good for most of the first half Monday night in trailing Ole Miss 28-6 but dominated in the second half for a 45-34 win. Actually, the rally started late in the second quarter. Noles freshman QB Deondre Francois stood in the pocket and delivered a 16-yard touchdown pass to Travis Rudolph, the first of 33 consecutive points for the Seminoles in the largest comeback victory in school history. Francois completed 33 of 52 passes for 419 yards and two touchdowns, and also rushed for 59 yards. It was good enough to render star running back Dalvin Cook with what was likely the quietest 192-yard night (91 rushing, 101 receiving) he’ll ever have.
“It was tremendous,” coach Jimbo Fisher said afterward of the late second-quarter TD to start momentum. “I thought it was the drive of the game that gave us a chance to come back. … You keep chopping, you keep sawing. When you’re in a heavyweight fight, you’re going to take shots. People are going to hit you.”
After an uneven first half, FSU’s defense answered the bell in the second, limiting the Rebels to just one scoring drive amidst the Seminoles’ offensive onslaught. Ole Miss went into halftime with 312 yards of total offense. The Rebels finished the game with 380.
Since 2010, Florida State has the second-best red zone conversion rate in the country at 90.4 (OK State – 90.8) and Monday night they did even better. FSU not only was a perfect 7-for- 7 in the red zone, the offense scored on nine consecutive drives starting in the second quarter until they ran out the clock on the final drive to seal the win.
Meanwhile, freshman kicker Ricky Aguayo set a school record with six field goals. In setting the record, Ricky surpassed his brother Roberto, who made five field goals (tying the FSU record at the time) in one game his sophomore season. Roberto was one of the best kickers in NCAA history and now plays for the NFL’s Buccaneers. He was in attendance on Monday.
My Free Pick
Give the points here in NCAAF betting, go over the total as FSU probably scores 60 itself.