(FSUncesored's thoughts and words spoken through the phone.)
The preview will be much shorter this week because I'm on the road, and the Bowden coverage was the main coverage of the week. Last year Georgia Tech gashed the Noles for 31 pts and 400 yards in 3 Quarters. That's 8 yards/snap. The Noles never stopped Georgia Tech while their Quarterback was in the game. But then Florida State got two major breaks. First, Georgia Tech's quarterback sprained his ankle on a non-contact play. Second, Zebrie Sanders got away with a hold that would've made Hulk Hogan jealous. The refs didn't call it, Florida State avoided a safety and went on to score. Georgia Tech's backup quarterback produced two ugly turnovers which helped FSU get back in the ballgame. Then GT got their break as Marcus Simms' fumble on the go ahead score. The point here is that if you think FSU was unlucky, you're not being objective. Both teams had good and bad luck throughout the game.
This year Tech's offense is still good. While Clemson and Miami severely limited Tech's offense, Florida State does not have the personnel to copy their gameplan. In fact, I would say that Florida State does not have a single Defensive Line starter that could start for the Canes or Tigers. FSU has planned for most of this offseason to stop this attack, and should better prepared this time around. It would be nice if the Noles CB Patrick Robinson would play as he has been hampered by an ankle injury while GT's WR D Thomas is excellent. Georgia Tech will get their yards and some points, however, their recent revelation that their coach doesn't trust their quarterback to make reads but rather calls predetermined run plays could help the Noles in this game of rock, paper, scissors. I dont like the matchup of the Noles man-to-man defense against this attack, but FSU does not run a good zone defense so man-to-man will still be played. I expect GT to get 30 pts and 455 yards on 61 plays. I also expect them to yield two turnovers.
While Georgia Tech's offense is still very good, their defense has taken a large step back this year. They lost three of four starting defensive lineman, all to the NFL. A starting safety, a starting linebacker, a starting defensive end as well as his backup will all be out because of injury. Tech however, has the best player on the field on either team in #91 DE Derrick Morgan. He lines up across from Zebrie Sanders which means that Florida State will give Sanders a ton of help in pass protection. Their secondary does feature an All-Conference Safety and two good Corners all of which are vulnerable to giving up the big pass play because of their agressiveness. I feel that the run game is close to being corrected, as the errors I saw on film are minor and not fatal. In the red zone where Florida State has struggled recently, I expect Florida State to use more spread sets because their young TEs and FBs are simply not suited for a goalline jumbo package at this point in their careers. I see FSU scoring 35 pts and gaining 440 yards on 70 plays with no turnovers. I also expect a big special teams play in the return game as Georgia Tech has been vulnerable to that this year.
35 - 30 Noles. I think people are overestimating the impact of this week's media attention on the coaching dysfunction. This team is use to seeing coaches fighting, and the turmoil that comes with that. They have been affected in every game this year, however, I see no reason why this week's turmoil will be worse than previous weeks.