This Saturday the ‘Noles will host the UMass Minutemen at noon on the ACC Network.
UMass is 1-5 with losses to Pittsburgh, Boston College, Eastern Michigan, Coastal Carolina and Toledo with the lone win coming against Connecticut.
This will be the first meeting between the two schools.
Observations from the last game
With a healthy offensive line, the ‘Noles were able to impose their rushing attack on the Tar Heels. Jordan Travis threw for 145 yards and ran for 121 yards, going over 100 in both categories for the second straight game. Treshaun Ward ran for 77 yards and Jashaun Corbin chipped in 52 yards.
Freshman receiver Malik McClain used a flawless double move to score his first career touchdown. His route running, blocking ability and athleticism will keep him in the lineup for years to come.
The defense slowed down Sam Howell and the powerful UNC offense once again. The ‘Noles didn’t let Carolina rip huge chunk plays but instead forced them to drive the length of the field. UNC played right into the bend but don’t break strategy by dropping passes, committing penalties and turning the ball over.
Florida State offense versus UMass defense
UMass is in the bottom ten of the FBS in total defense, passing defense, rushing defense and points per game. Florida State should be to run the ball consistently with Travis, Corbin and Ward the entire game. When FSU decides to throw Travis should have plenty of time as the Minutemen have only 5 sacks on the year.
Florida State defense versus Massachusetts offense
The UMass offense was just as bad as their defense until switching to freshman Brady Olson at quarterback. (Still in bottom 30 of FBS in rushing, passing and total offense.) Olson has 848 yards passing to go with 6 touchdowns and 4 interceptions. His favorite targets are Rico Arnold (17 catches) and Tray Pettway (10 catches). The Minutemen have a tough time hanging on to the ball, but are able to keep the penalties to a minimum.
The kicker for UMass, Cameron Carson, is dependable but his longest make is 35 yards. FSU kicker Ryan Fitzgerald has struggled with his consistency so I would say this kicking game is a push. The punters stats are fairly even as well.
UMass is one of the worst teams in the FBS and FSU has been playing better in all areas. I don’t see a repeat of Jacksonville State this week. Florida State will get out to a big lead behind the running game led by Travis, Corbin and Ward. When the game is out of hand the second team will give up a few points to trim the Seminoles margin of victory. The Vegas oddsmakers have the ‘Noles as 37-point favorites but I want to see more consistency before picking FSU to blow someone out. Seminoles 40 UMass 20.