NCAA Football: 5 Reasons Why Florida State Will Beat Clemson
5 Reasons Florida State Is The Better Team
Without a question, No. 5 Florida State visiting No. 3 Clemson is by far the marquee matchup of this weekend's college football lineup. The Seminoles have not won in Clemson since 2001, but this weekend will turn the tables on the Tigers.
This is the first matchup between two Top-5 Atlantic Coast Conference teams in eight years, going back to 2005 when No. 5 Miami took down No. 3 Virginia Tech 27-7. Coincidence that game also featured a fifth-ranked team upset over a third-ranked squad? I think not.
Both Florida State and Clemson will have Heisman-trophy worthy quarterbacks on display Saturday night. The Seminoles' freshman Jameis Winston has burst onto the scene with a mighty force this season and has upstaged the Tigers' pre-season Heisman favorite Tajh Boyd. The questions remains, though, which man under center will have the ability to lead his team to a victory and almost assure an ACC Championship appearance?
Florida State won the matchup between these two teams in Tallahassee last season. The Seminoles ended up defeating the Tigers 49-37. Clemson is ranked higher on every national poll, but Florida State comes in a three-point favorite over the Tigers.
Who will win the best ACC game this season? Only time can tell, but here are five reasons why the Seminoles will come out victorious.
5. Seminoles Enter Game With Chip On Shoulder
Florida State has not won on the road at Memorial Stadium since 2001, but this time around the Seminoles come in three-point favorites over the Tigers. Plenty of motivation is there for Florida State to come in and end its losing streak at Clemson and ruin the Tigers' hopes for an ACC Championship. The Seminoles will arrive in Clemson, South Carolina, will a huge chip on their shoulder hoping to be the first Florida State team to win in that stadium in more than 12 years.
4. Seminoles Will Be Well-Rested
Florida State will be well rested coming into Saturday's spotlight matchup. Two weeks ago, the Seminoles crushed then No. 25 Maryland 63-0. The Terrapins were not expected to seriously compete with Florida State, but the Seminoles showed just how competitive a football team they are by defeated Maryland by such a wide margin. Combine the satisfying victory with two full weeks of rest and the Seminoles should come out firing on all cylinders Saturday evening in South Carolina.
3. Florida State Offense Is More Potent
Led by freshman quarterback Jameis Winston, the Florida State offense ranks third in the nation in scoring with a 53.6 points per game average. The Seminoles offense is extremely balanced as well, ranking 18th nationally in passing yards and 17th in rushing yards. On the ground, Florida State is led by Devonta Freeman and has two suitable backups in Karlos Williams and James Wilder Jr. The trio has combined for 843 yards and 11 touchdowns. The Seminoles also have one of best receiving duos in the nation in Kenny Shaw and Rashad Greene.
2. Seminoles Defense Out-Weighs Clemson's
As good as Florida State is on offense, its defense is even further superior than Clemson's. By allowing an average of just 12 points per game this season, the Seminoles rank third nationally in scoring defense. Tigers quarterback Tajh Boyd will have difficulty finding star receiver Sammy Watkins on Saturday as he will draw a lot of attention from the Seminoles defense. Clemson's No. 3 receiver Martavis Bryant will need to step up despite an inconsistent season. He caught just two passes in the Tigers' 24-14 win over Boston College last weekend.
1. Jameis Winston Is The Man
Seminoles quarterback Jameis Winston is just freshman and not only is he only better than Clemson senior quarterback Tajh Boyd, but he's been the one of the best quarterbacks in the nation this season. Winston is ranks third in all of college football with a 73.2 completion percentage and is tied for fifth with 17 touchdown passes. Mix in Winston's 135 rushing yards and two rushing touchdowns and he possesses the perfect potion to upset No. 3 Clemson on the road this Saturday.