FSU at Louisville Expert Pick & Betting Spread
It’s possibly the biggest game ever at the University of Louisville on Saturday afternoon as the No. 10 Cardinals face No. 2 Florida State in an ACC showdown. Since both teams still have to play Clemson, the loser of this one will have it tough to get to the ACC Championship Game. FSU is a slight favorite on college football lines.
How To Bet on the FSU at Louisville Expert Pick, Betting Spread & TV Info
When: Saturday, Sept. 17, Noon ET
Where: Papa John’s Stadium, Louisville
Radio: FSU / Louisville
Opening NCAA Football Lines: FSU -2 (65)
Why Bet on Florida State?
The Seminoles (2-0) routed Charleston Southern 52-8 last week. Redshirt freshman quarterback Deondre Francois continued his hot start to the season, connecting on 25 of 32 passes for 262 yards and three touchdowns. Dalvin Cook ran for two touchdowns and had 83 yards on 11 carries. With a one-yard touchdown run in the first quarter and a 37-yarder in the third quarter, Cook moved into fourth place all-time at FSU with 29 career rushing touchdowns. His second touchdown of the day passed Travis Minor (1997-00) and Cook is now one behind Amp Lee (1989-91) and Devonta Freeman (2011-13) for third place.
Senior Bobo Wilson polished off the scoring spree with an 89-yard punt return for a score. It was FSU’s first punt return for a touchdown since Tyler Hunter did it against Duke in 2012. Francois also tossed his first career interception midway through the second quarter, but, by then, FSU was well on its way to a lopsided victory.
Coach Jimbo Fisher said he was curious going into the game how Francois would do with a quick turnaround off a Week 1 Monday win over a good Ole Miss team. There was even more of a possibility of a slight letdown after he became the first Atlantic Coast Conference freshman QB to throw for over 400 yards in his first game. Including the Ole Miss game and the first four drives last week, Francois led the Seminoles to points on 13 straight possessions with eight resulting in touchdowns.
The Noles will be without perhaps their best defensive player against Louisville in safety Derwin James after having surgery Monday to repair cartilage damage in his left knee. In 2015, he finished second for Florida State in tackles, tackles for loss, sacks, forced fumbles and recoveries. But senior safety Nate Andrews is expected to return after missing the first two weeks with a calf injury.
Why Bet on Louisville?
The city of Louisville is buzzing with anticipation for Saturday’s top 10 matchup — the first in Louisville since 2006 when the No. 5 Louisville defeated No. 3 West Virginia. ESPN College GameDay – college football’s longest-running and most-celebrated pregame show – is making its first stop in The Derby City on Saturday. Lee Corso, a graduate of Florida State, is returning to Louisville, where he coached from 1969-72. He held a 28-11- 3 mark in his four years, including a 9-1 record in his final year.
The Cardinals (2-0) lead the nation in scoring and total offense. Louisville rolled Syracuse 62-28 last week. Sophomore QB Lamar Jackson ran for four touchdowns and threw for another, and the Cardinals routed Syracuse 62-28 on Friday night in the ACC opener for both teams. Jackson tallied 610 total yards, the most by a player in a game in ACC history. Jackson has scored 13 touchdowns in just two games, and he’s already accounted for 1,015 total yards (697 passing, 318 rushing). Jackson is averaging 507.5 yards of offense per game, which is better than 97 FBS teams. Suddenly, Louisville has gone from a relative unknown to must-see appointment TV just to catch what Jackson might do next.
While Jackson has been the catalyst, the Cardinals are receiving production from a lot of different people, with one being running back Brandon Radcliff, who recorded a career-high 156 yards rushing and a touchdown against Syracuse. FSU beat Louisville 41-21 at Doak Campbell Stadium, but Jackson, then a freshman, threw for 307 yards and three touchdowns for the Cardinals, who held a lead midway through the third quarter.
My Expert Pick
James is a big loss, but FSU still is the more talented team. Give the points, go over on NCAA football lines.