ACC Week 6 Overview: Odds Stacked Against Flawed FSU at Miami

Monday, October 1, 2018 1:28 PM UTC

Monday, Oct. 1, 2018 1:28 PM UTC

Florida State opened as a 13.5-point underdog at No. 17 Miami, equaling the most points for the Seminoles in the series since at least 1980. Let's look at Saturday's matchup and the other ACC action.

ACC Spotlight: Florida Sate at No. 17 Miami (-13.5)Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET (ABC)Free NCAAF Pick: 'Under'Best Line Offered: BetOnline

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Florida State (3-2 SU, 1-4 ATS) overcame a 14-point halftime deficit to earn a 28-24 ACC road victory over Louisville last Saturday. It proved a gutsy performance in which the Seminoles persevered over a host of core issues affecting the squad.

The most improved aspect for first-year head coach Willie Taggart was the offensive line, which has functioned as a revolving carousel to begin the year. Center Alec Eberle, in fact, is the only player to start every contest at his position. The difference-maker was the move of Landon Dickerson to the all-important left tackle spot from the right. Dickerson settled down nicely after a bumpy start and offered quarterback Deondre Francois the best pass protection he’s received all season. Look for an identical configuration at Miami (4-1 SU, 3-2 ATS)

The Hurricanes’ defense, which forced six turnovers in its 47-10 rout of UNC on Thursday, will likely be too much to handle, nonetheless. Florida State’s offense is severely flawed. It ranks 121st in rushing nationally. The go-to running backs (Cam Akers, Jacques Patrick) did not achieve a run longer than nine yards at Louisville, combining for 55 yards on 21 carries. Francois has played inconsistently all season, full of erratic throws. The squad lacks much discipline, called for nine penalties a contest. Moreover, the special teams play is darn-right sloppy.

On offense, ‘Canes head coach Mark Richt quietly turned to N’Kosi Perry as his first-team quarterback in place of veteran Malik Rosier. The freshman Perry is a more dynamic passer, delivering in limited opportunities before capturing a start against the Tar Heels. It’s part of a current trend among elite teams this season not afraid to give the keys to talented young signal-callers (Alabama, Clemson).

Miami is 4-1 SU and 1-4 ATS hosting unranked conference opponents when represented in the AP Top 25 under Richt. The defense is always rock solid, allowing 20.2 points per game. No visitor, in fact, has scored more than 28 points in this situation. The Seminoles’ offense is too disjointed to present much of a challenge; whether the Hurricanes’ offense fires is another story. Florida State, despite its many issues, is certainly tough-nosed and gritty. They will find a way to keep this rivalry close, despite putting up few points. Value lies in the "under," regardless of the oddsmakers’ numbers. Do not gamble on a near two-touchdown spread either way.

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Around The ACC (All Games Saturday Unless Noted)

Georgia Tech (-3.5) at Louisville, Friday, 7 p.m. ET, on ESPN: Louisville’s (2-3 SU, 1-4 ATS) 15.2 points per game against FBS opponents ranks 128 out of 130 teams nationally, and last among Power 5 programs. Georgia Tech (2-3 SU, 1-4 ATS), meanwhile, is 0-6 SU and ATS as road chalk in ACC play since the start of 2015. The Yellow Jackets are failing to cover a -4.8 average line by 16.3 points per game.

Syracuse (-4.5) at Pittsburgh, 12:20 p.m. ET, on ACC Network: This is just the third time in the last 20 years Syracuse (4-2 SU, 5-0 ATS) has been favored against an ACC opponent, last given the honors in a 30-7 win at Wake Forest as 5.5-point chalk in 2014. Pitt (2-3 SU, 1-3-1 ATS), meanwhile, is just 7-15-1 ATS all-time at home behind head coach Pat Narduzzi.

Boston College (OFF) at No. 23 N.C. State, 12:30 p.m. ET, on ACC Network: Oddsmakers are slow to set a line for the Boston College (4-1 SU, 3-2 ATS)-N.C. State (4-0 SU, 3-1 ATS) clash with Eagles star running back AJ Dillon questionable. The ACC’s leading rusher (652 yards) and preseason Player of the Year rolled his left ankle in the third quarter of BC’s 45-35 victory over Temple. The Wolfpack have dropped six of their last eight straight up when ranked.

No. 4 Clemson (OFF) at Wake Forest, 3:30 p.m. ET, on ESPN: The line is off the board until more is known about the status of quarterback Trevor Lawrence. The freshman phenom left Clemson’s (5-0 SU, 1-4 ATS) 27-23 comeback win against Syracuse in the first half with a possible concussion. Wake Forest (3-2 SU, 1-4 ATS) has covered the spread in each of the last four meetings by a 5.9 average margin.

No. 6 Notre Dame (-4.5) at No. 24 Virginia Tech, 8 p.m. ET, on ABC: The "under" is 9-2 in the last 11 games Virginia Tech (3-1 SU, 3-1 ATS) welcomes a ranked opponent to Lane Stadium. Notre Dame’s (5-0 SU, 3-2 ATS) 94 points over the last two games is the most in consecutive outings for the program since 2011.

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