ACC College Football Betting Picks: #1 Florida State Seminoles at North Carolina State Wolfpack

 #1 Florida State Seminoles at North Carolina State Wolfpack
Carter-Finley Stadium – Raleigh, North Carolina 

Saturday, September 27, 2014, 3:30 pm Eastern, TV: ABC or ESPN2
Opening Line: Florida State -27 1/2
Current Line: Florida State -18 1/2
Opening Total: 58
Current Total: 58 1/2
Opening Money Line: Florida State -2158 / NC State +1492
Current Money Line: Florida State -1200 / NC State +750

Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston returns from a suspension as the Seminoles take on NC State Saturday in Raleigh.
Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston returns from a suspension as the Seminoles take on NC State Saturday in Raleigh.

The Florida State Seminoles have won 19 straight games dating back to the 2012 ACC Championship game, including the BCS Championship game last year. The Seminoles are 3-0 in 2014, but they have had close calls against Oklahoma State and Clemson so far. Next up, FSU travels to 4-0 North Carolina State Saturday. This is the ACC opener for the Wolfpack who have feasted on a tissue soft non-conference schedule.

Florida State leads the series 23-11 against North Carolina State including 9-7 in Raleigh. The Seminoles won last year in Tallahassee 49-17 after scoring 35 points in the first quarter. FSU has lost in their last two trips to Raleigh in 2010 and 2012.

Florida State is coached by Jimbo Fisher. The Seminoles beat Oklahoma State 37-31 in Arlington, Texas and the Citadel 37-12 in Tallahassee. Last week, Florida State survived at home against Clemson 23-17 in overtime without star quarterback Jameis Winston who was suspended after shouting a vulgarity in the FSU Student Union. The Seminoles are 0-3 ATS this season and the total is 1-2 this season. FSU was a 9.5 point favorite against Clemson and the total was 55.

North Carolina State is coached by Dave Doeren. The Wolfpack have home wins over Georgia Southern 24-23, Old Dominion 46-34, and last week against Presbyterian 42-0. NC State also has a road win at South Florida 49-17. The Wolfpack are 2-2 ATS and the total is 2-2 as well. NC State was a 40 point favorite against Presbyterian and the total was 58.5.

Florida State is outscoring teams 32-20 this season. The Seminoles are averaging 429 yards per game on offense including 319 passing and 110 rushing yards per game. Florida State is #21 in passing offense nationally, but #111 in rushing. FSU is allowing 364 yards per game on defense including 194 passing and 171 rushing yards per game. The Seminoles are -1 in turnovers with 3 takeaways. Florida State averages 44 penalty yards per game and opponents average 33. The Seminoles are 12/38 on third and fourth down conversions and opponents are 24/53. FSU has forced 2 sacks and allowed 7 this season. The Seminoles are 13/14 scoring in the red zone with 7 touchdowns and opponents are 8/12 with 6 touchdowns. FSU has a pick six this season.

Winston returns from his suspension this week. The defending Heisman Trophy winner has completed 70.1% of his passes for 626 yards with 3 touchdowns and 2 interceptions, plus a rushing touchdown. Sean Maguire filled in for Winston last week against Clemson. He threw for over 300 yards with a touchdown and 2 interceptions. Running back Karlos Williams has 42 carries  for 177 yards and 2 touchdowns, plus 8 catches for 78 yards. Mario Pender has 18 carries for 84 yards and 2 touchdowns. Receiver Rashad Greene has 24 catches for 418 yards and 2 touchdowns. Tight end Nick O’Leary has 14 catches for 156 yards and a touchdown. Four defensive players are questionable or out for the Seminoles.

North Carolina State is outscoring teams 40-19 this season. The Wolfpack are averaging 502 yards per game on offense including 253 passing and 249 rushing yards. NC State is #26 in total offense and #25 in rushing nationally. On defense, the Wolfpack are allowing 338 total yards including 180 passing and 159 rushing yards. NC State is in the top 40 in total, scoring and pass defense nationally. The Wolfpack are +3 in turnovers with 6 takeaways. North Carolina State is averaging 33 penalty yards per game and opponents are averaging 37. The Wolfpack are 30/54 on third and fourth down conversions and opponents are 31/67. NC State has forced 7 sacks and allowed 4 this season. The Wolfpack are 16/18 scoring in the red zone with 15 touchdowns and opponents are 9/12 with 5 touchdowns. NC State has allowed one defensive touchdown this season.

NC State quarterback Jacoby Brissett has completed 69.7% of his passes for 1,005 yards with 10 touchdowns and an interception, along with 23 carries for 118 yards and a touchdown. Running back Shadrach Thornton has 42 catches for 283 yards and 5 touchdowns. Matt Dayes has 35 carries for 267 yards and 3 touchdowns, plus 14 catches for 185 yards and 3 touchdowns. Tony Creecy has 26 carries for 170 yards, plus a receiving touchdown. Receiver Bo Hines has 16 catches for 209 yards. Marquez Valdes-Scantling has 12 catches for 164 yards and a touchdown. Bra’Lon Cherry has 11 catches for 97 yards and 3 touchdowns plus 2 rushing touchdowns.

Florida State is 5-1 ATS against teams with winning records, 4-1 in ACC games, 6-2 after allowing 20 points or less, 11-4 on grass, 9-4 after passing for 280 yards or more, 11-5 after a straight up win, 4-9 in September and in road games, 2-5 after rushing for less than 100 yards, 2-6 against teams with winning home records, 2-8 after allowing more than 280 passing yards, and 0-4 overall. The under is 5-2 overall in this series, and 5-1 in the last six meetings in Raleigh between the teams.

North Carolina State is 16-4-1 ATS against teams with winning road records, 4-1 in September, 5-12-1 after rushing for 200 yards or more, 2-6 on grass, and after allowing less than 20 points, 2-7 overall, 1-5 against teams with winning records, 1-6 at home, 0-4 in ACC games and 0-6 after gaining more than 450 total yards. The Wolfpack are 13-3-1 ATS in the last 17 games against the Seminoles and were the underdogs in each of those games. In Raleigh, NC State is 5-0-1 ATS recently against Florida State.

The good news is North Carolina State is 4-0 and only needs to win 2 ACC games to become bowl eligible. However, they have not played very strong competition, so we don’t know how good they really are. After winning every game in the regular season by at least 14 points last season, Florida State has escaped with six point wins against very good Oklahoma State and Clemson teams. Even against a lowly Citadel team, the Seminoles weren’t very impressive. I think the Seminoles want to prove a point and beat North Carolina State handily.

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