BCS National Championship: Florida State vs. Auburn Spread Pick

Thursday, January 2, 2014 2:16 PM UTC

Thursday, Jan. 2, 2014 2:16 PM UTC

Seven straight BCS Championships have been earned by the Southeastern Conference, the last four by teams from the Yellowhammer State. But only once in that run of college football titles has the game ended with the two teams less than 10 points apart.
<p>The Auburn Tigers will try and make it eight straight for the SEC -- and five straight for the State of <st1:state>Alabama</st1:state> -- Monday night at the Rose Bowl in <st1:city>Pasadena</st1:city> when they take on the unbeaten and top-ranked Florida State Seminoles. Kickoff is set for a little past 8:30 PM (ET) with the self-anointed <i>Worldwide Leader In Sports</i> providing the broadcast, along with all the diarrhea of the mouth their commentators can spew.</p> <p>If <a target="_blank" title="Live college football odds for the BCS National Championship" href="/betting-odds/college-football/">the college football odds</a> are any indication, the trend of double-digit scoreboard winners just might continue while the SEC's run comes to an end. <a target="_blank" title="Discuss with other bettors whether you think either team will cover the spread" href="https://www.sportsbookreview.com/forum/college-football-betting/2748166-why-fsu-vs-auburn-line-dropping.html?highlight=FSU">The Seminoles are favored by 8.5</a>, that spread down a point since it was first released nearly a month ago.</p> <p>Series history says the odds are wrong; Auburn owns a decided 13-4-1 advantage going back to a 33-0 whitewashing in the first gridiron contest between the schools in 1954, FSU's first campaign as a Div-I squad. But <st1:place><st1:placename>Florida</st1:placename> <st1:placetype>State</st1:placetype></st1:place> has the 3-1 edge in recent meetings, if you can call nearly a quarter-century ago recent, so matchup history should probably be thrown right out of the window.</p> <p style="text-align:center;" class="preview-title"><em><a target="_blank" title="NCAAF Picks: Auburn vs. Florida State BCS Championship" id="articleTitle" href="/college-football/free-picks/ncaaf-picks-auburn-vs-florida-state-bcs-championship-a-35901/">NCAAF Picks: Auburn vs. Florida State BCS Championship</a></em></p> <p><b>Will The Magic Continue For <st1:city><st1:place>Auburn</st1:place></st1:city>?</b></p> <p><img style="font-size:1em;" src="https://www.sportsbookreview.com/picks-pictures/auburnqb.jpg" class="imgSelectedPicture article-image" alt="Image preview" id="ctl00_head_ArticleAdministrator_picturePreview_imgSelectedPicture" />There's no questioning the job Gus Malzahn and his staff have done getting the <st1:place>Auburn</st1:place> football program turned around pronto. Turning a team coming off a 3-win season into a conference contender is accomplishment enough, much less a national title contender. And there's no questioning how well the Tigers provided for their backers, besting the spread in 11 of 13 games, a perfect 5-0 ATS as underdogs.</p> <p>But we also can't help notice it took a lot of magic along the way for <st1:city>Auburn</st1:city> to reach this point. The final two regular season games illustrate that best, the tipped pass in the last half-minute to beat <st1:country-region>Georgia</st1:country-region> and a blocked field goal returned for a touchdown to stun two-time <a target="_blank" title="Read our predictions from this game" href="/college-football/free-picks/college-football-picks-alabama-vs-auburn-a-35326/">defending national champion <st1:state>Alabama</st1:state></a> as the clock expired.</p> <p>Of course, as the late great Branch Rickey said, "Luck is the residue of design." And Malzahn sure has designed schemes and strategies to get the most out of his team.</p> <p>Start with the top running game in the nation. Nick Marshall and a very talented trio of running backs get all the glory and stats running and throwing behind a very good offensive line. As strong and prevalent as the ground game is, it would be a mistake to call the offense one-dimensional, especially when wide receiver Sammie Coates is on the turf.</p> <p style="text-align:center;" class="preview-title"><em><a target="_blank" title="BCS National Championship Picks: Florida State vs. Auburn" id="articleTitle" href="/college-football/free-picks/bcs-national-championship-picks-florida-state-vs-auburn-a-36179/">BCS National Championship Picks: Florida State vs. Auburn</a></em></p> <p><b>How Will Winston, 'Noles React If Game is Close?</b></p> <p><img style="font-size:1em;" src="https://www.sportsbookreview.com/picks-pictures/fsucoach.jpg" class="imgSelectedPicture article-image" alt="Image preview" id="ctl00_head_ArticleAdministrator_picturePreview_imgSelectedPicture" />You also can't argue with the job Jimbo Fisher and his crew did in <st1:city>Tallahassee</st1:city> this season. <st1:place><st1:placename>Florida</st1:placename> <st1:placetype>State</st1:placetype></st1:place> officials obviously liked what they saw after giving Fisher a new 5-year contract worth a reported $21 million following a perfect 13-0 run through the schedule. The Seminoles head into the championship -- their 32nd straight bowl appearance -- with the toughest defense to score on (10.7 ppg), the second-most prolific offense (53.0 ppg) and a Heisman Trophy winner at quarterback.</p> <p>But while we don't have any questions about how FSU got here, one question we do have is what happens if the Seminoles actually find themselves in a close ballgame? Florida State's narrowest victory in 2013 was <a target="_blank" title="Read our coverage of this game" href="/college-football/free-picks/college-football-picks-florida-state-vs-boston-college-a-33734/">a 48-34 win at Boston College</a> near the end of September, a game in which the 'Noles rallied from an early 14-point hole, and four games against ranked opponents saw FSU cruise by a combined 200-35 margin!</p> <p><st1:placename>Florida</st1:placename> <st1:placetype>State</st1:placetype> definitely has the defense to at least slow, if not stuff, <st1:city>Auburn</st1:city>'s ground game and Jameis Winston has the arm and receivers that can exploit a rather pedestrian <st1:city>Auburn</st1:city> pass defense. The Tigers secondary might also be without senior safety Ryan White who remains questionable due to a concussion, and that could prove to be a double-whammy on the Tigers since White is also the holder for placekicker Cody Parkey.</p> <p>Malzahn, <st1:city>Marshall</st1:city> and the Tigers might still have one bit of magic left in their bag, but I'll go with Winston and the FSU defense for my <a target="_blank" title="Free college football picks and predictions from SBR" href="/college-football/">free college football pick</a>. While you're hanging around at SBRforum.com, make sure to check out my take on the right side of the total to wager in the BCS Championship.</p> <p> <b>My pick:</b> <st1:place><st1:placename>Florida</st1:placename> <st1:placetype>State</st1:placetype></st1:place> -8.5</p> <p>[gameodds]6/252272/?r3=43-19-349/dec&amp;r-1=43-19-349/us[/gameodds]</p>
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