The Florida State Seminoles were No. 2 in the polls last week but then suffered one of the worst losses in school history at Louisville in the ACC opener for both. FSU dropped to No. 13 in the polls and it heads back out of conference this week with a dangerous game at South Florida. The Noles are less than touchdown favorites in college football odds.
Take a Closer Look FSU at South Florida Betting Odds, Free Pick & TV Info
When: Saturday, Sept. 24, Noon ET
Where: Raymond James Stadium, Tampa
Opening NCAA Football Lines: FSU -5.5 (61)
Why Bet on Florida State?
FSU was destroyed by the Cardinals 63-20 last Saturday. Louisville’s Lamar Jackson cemented his status as the Heisman Trophy favorite with a 372-yard, five-touchdown performance that kept the FSU defense guessing all day. Playing in his first true road environment, redshirt freshman quarterback Deondre Francois completed seven of 18 passes for 101 yards and a touchdown. But he also threw an interception and mishandled an exchange with running back Dalvin Cook that led to another turnover. And Francois was sacked five times.
Prior to that loss, Florida State had won seven consecutive regular season games when trailing at halftime, including each of the past two seasons against Louisville. In the season opener against Ole Miss, the Seminoles trailed 28-13 at the break before posting a 45-34 win over the No. 11 Rebels. In 2015, Louisville led 7-6 at the break before FSU won, 41-21. The last regular season loss for FSU when the Noles trailed at halftime was a 37-26 (13-3 at half) loss against Florida in 2012.
The FSU star running back Cook is struggling this season. Against FBS competition, he’s 30th in the ACC in yards per carry, while his backup Jacques Patrick ranks eighth. Cook is 104th in yards per rush after contact, gaining less than half of his 3.3-yard average in 2015, which ranked fourth nationally. His 4.1 yards per carry before contact ranked 18th in 2015, but he’s dropped to 2.13, which ranks 106th. Only 23.1 percent of his rushes have gained at least 5 yards, which puts him 108th among running backs with at least 15 carries. He has one rush longer than 18 yards, and it came against FCS Charleston Southern. He had 22 last season.
Cook was unstoppable against USF in the last meeting between these teams on Sept. 12, 2015, rushing for a career-best 266 yards on 30 carries to go along with three touchdowns in a 34-14 win. FSU is 11-3 coming off a loss since Jimbo Fisher became head coach in 2010.
Why Bet on South Florida?
USF is 3-0 and coming off a 45-20 victory at Syracuse on Saturday as the Bulls scored 28 straight points in the second quarter to erase a 17-0 deficit. Senior receiver Rodney Adams scored a career-high tying three touchdowns (two rushing) during the 28-0 run. Adams has scored 16 touchdowns (five rushing) in his past 12 games.
USF’s Gulf Coast Offense has scored at least 45 points in its past three games to match the school record and continues a school record run of seven straight games with at least 35 points. USF is averaging 48.1 points over the past seven – the second-best average in the FBS over the time span. USF’s up-tempo attack ranks seventh nationally this season 49.7 points per outing.
Marlon Mack extended his school record of 100-yard rushing games to 14 with 115 yards on just nine carries (12.8 ypc) vs. Syracuse. Mack rushed for two touchdowns and his 52-yard score helped extend the lead to 35-20 in the final minute of the third quarter. USF posted four touchdown drives of 2 minutes or less at Syracuse and now has 12 on the year. The Bulls had 31 such drives in 2015. The Bulls’ longest scoring drive on the season (a TD) is 3:56.
USF is one of just 16 teams nationally to win 10 of its past 12 games. Only six teams have a better record than the Bulls during the 12-game stretch, led by Alabama and San Diego State at 12-0. USF is 3-0 for the first time since 2011 after pulling off the second-largest comeback in school history. The 2008 Bulls also erased a 17-point deficit against Kansas, a feat only topped by USF’s 20-point comeback at Tulsa in 2014. Now the Bulls eye the program’s first 4-0 start since 2011 and the first win in the FSU series since a 17-7 upset victory in Tallahassee in 2009.
My Free Pick
Seminoles are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 games following a straight up loss of more than 20 points.
Seminoles are 8-1- 2 ATS in their last 11 games after allowing more than 40 points in their previous game.
Over is 5-0 in Bulls last 5 home games.
Bulls are 4-0- 1 ATS in their last 5 games after allowing more than 280 yards passing in their previous game.
Give the points here in NCAA football betting and go over the total.