NC State +23.0 over Florida State for College Football Picks

Ross Benjamin

Monday, September 22, 2014 7:39 PM UTC

Monday, Sep. 22, 2014 7:39 PM UTC

Our resident sports handicapping guru has gone 13-2 to start the college football season with his free picks right here at SBR. Read his informative football betting article on Saturday’s game between Florida State/NC State which culminates with another point-spread free pick winner. Online sportsbooks are asking for the Seminoles to cover a large number, but has the bar been set too high?

ACC Unbeatens Meet on Saturday
The NC State Wolfpack will host the Florida State Seminoles at Carter-Finley Stadium in Raleigh, North Carolina, and the opening kickoff is slated for 3:30 PM ET. According to SBR's college football odds page, Florida State is a 23.0 point road favorite. The last time the Wolfpack hosted the Seminoles was in 2012, and they came away with a 17-16 upset win as a 17.0 point underdog. The Seminoles were able to get sweet revenge with a 49-17 blowout win at home versus the Wolpack last season.

Lets preview this matchup and determine the best options for our college football picks, as the odds makers look to have set the line a bit high.

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Surviving a Scare
Florida State had their hands full at home this past Saturday with the Clemson Tigers. However, they found a way to win despite being without their suspended Heisman Trophy winning quarterback Jameis Winston. They were able to tie the game late in the 4th quarter, and proceeded to come away with a 23-17 win in overtime. There’s no doubt the defending national champions are a very talented ball club, but they haven’t been overly impressive during their 3-0 start. They held on for a 37-31 win in their season opener versus Oklahoma State, and then were lackluster in a 37-12 win over the Citadel. Their defense certainly doesn’t appear to be as dominant as they were a season ago. They especially have looked vulnerable in stopping the run, allowing 171-yards rushing per game in 2014, and last week allowed Clemson to pass for over 300-yards. The good news is that Jameis Winston will return on Saturday after sitting out his 1-game suspension.

Florida State to be a Bad ATS Bet in 2014?

Deceivingly Good Start for the Wolpack
NC State has jumped out of the gate to a 4-0 start to the 2014 campaign. However, they’re level of competition leaves a lot to be desired. They were very fortunate to come away with a 24-23 win in their season opener at home versus Georgia Southern, the defense allowed over 500-yards in a 36-24 home win versus Old Dominion, then there was the last 2-wins over a struggling South Florida program, and last week versus Presbyterian that competes at the FCS level. Putting things into perspective, it’s extremely rare to see a 4-0 team from a major conference be installed as a 23.0 point underdog.


Final Analysis
The Wolpack will be able to move the ball on the Seminoles, and I fully expect them to be able to run the ball very well on Saturday. The concern for me, can there defense get enough stops to stay in the game, and can they play mistake free football (-3 turnover differential in 2014). One of these games the Seminoles are going to play up to their capabilities, and in doing so really hammer an opponent. Until I see that happen, I’m not comfortable with laying 23.0 points on the road in a conference game, versus an opponent that’s tasted success up until this point.

Free College Football Pick: NC State +23.0 over Florida State

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