Florida State Review
|Tuesday, October 15, 2013, 9:33 AM- -|
Florida State Preview
I know Clemson fans have a healthy respect for Florida State. In fact, many I talk to are probably tired of hearing how good the Seminoles are. If you fit into that category then you may want to skip today's blog.
FSU is one of the top five teams in America in my opinion. However, so is Clemson. This one is huge for a reason and the major reason is that this one has national championship implications.
In many ways FSU looks like they have for the past 15 years. They have four and five stars everywhere you look. However, the Seminoles have not won in Death Valley since 2001. Why? In my opinion, it has all been about the quarterback.
The Seminoles still have a terrific defense. They are third in the nation in scoring defense. They have five stars at all three levels. Eddie Goldman, Jacobbi McDaniel and Mario Edwards were all five stars coming out of high school and currently star on the defensive line. Timmy Jernigan and DeMarcus Walker are former four stars who will be high draft picks in the NFL. This defensive line is as good as any in America, but FSU has always had this kind of talent on its defensive line.
At linebacker, Christian Jones and Matthew Thomas were five stars and players like Telvin Smith and Reggie Northrup were four stars. All of those guys will make it in the NFL. But FSU always has four and five stars at linebacker, too.
In the secondary, Lamarcus Joyner and Jalen Ramsey were five stars with PJ Williams, Ronald Darby, Nick Waisome and Terrence Brooks rounding out a very talented third level. However, this secondary looks like those of the past in Tallahassee.
On offense, the wide receiver corps is as good as any in the country. Rashard Greene is the most productive. Kelvin Benjamin looks like Randy Moss. Kenny Shaw and Christian Green are future pros as well. But doesn't this group always look the same?
The tight end is Nick O'Leary, who is a future NFLer. The offensive line is solid despite not having big names from recruiting.
The running backs feature two five stars in James Wilder, Jr. and Karlos Williams, plus four star starter Devonta Freeman. These are all big backs that run hard and have proven to be a load to handle this season, but then again they look like former running backs at FSU.
To say this team looks like other FSU teams at every position is a huge compliment. Few teams recruit like FSU and few have this many good looking athletes.
So, how has Florida State not been in national title contention in recent years and how have the Seminoles not won in Death Valley in 11 years? They have not had the kind of quarterback to lead them to those heights.
Jameis Winston is that guy. He was a five star coming out of high school and has been extremely impressive so far this season.
The Seminoles entered the season as an underdog to Clemson for the division title. Not many had them in the top 10 in the country yet they come into Saturday ranked fifth. They were an underdog to Clemson in Las Vegas before the season but they enter the game Saturday as the favorite. How did FSU become a favorite on the road at the nation's number three ranked team? Jameis Winston.
The only question I have about FSU revolves around Winston. In a game that matches two of the top teams in America, how will he react? In what could be the biggest game in the history of the ACC, how will the freshman quarterback respond? In one of the loudest environments in all of sports, how will Winston handle it? That is the single biggest key to Saturday night and the single reason why FSU has a chance to win at Clemson.
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