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Odds & Ends. Week 8: Duke week.

It's Duke week. No, not that one.


I'm supposed to warn you that Duke's offense is averaging 35 points per game.

I'm supposed to remind you that Duke's 5.5 TFLs per game on defense is their best rate in three years.

Supposed to advise you that Duke's 19 sacks are only three off Florida State's total of 22 sacks.

To say that Duke is bowl eligible for the first time since 1994. That they became bowl-eligible by beating their basketball rival, their first over the Tar Heels since 2003. That 6-2 is Duke's third-best start in almost 20 years.

To tell you that FSU players are taking this game seriously:

But I'm not worried about this game.

TN's 48-13 prediction indicates the same.

Or consider that FSU has played two other home FBS games this year where they were favored by four scores: Wake Forest (-24.5 opening line), and Boston College (-27 opening line). FSU won those games by a combined score of 103-7. Duke opened as 27-point underdogs to FSU earlier this week.

Really not worried.

F/+ rankings
Wake 97 40 88 71
BC 86 91 62 89
Duke 47 85 54 72

It's fair to say Duke is a better team than Boston College. They could be the dark-universe mirror to Wake Forest by combining a decent offense with a poor defense. Duke did beat Wake on the road by 7, no doubt helped by winning the turnover battle 4-1.

I'm definitely not worried.

F/+ rankings
2011 61 105 41 77
2012 47 85 54 72
Change +14 +20 -13 +5

Duke has improved on both sides of the ball compared to their 2011 team, but their special teams have regressed. The net result? A five-rank improvement.

Not worried at all.

Unfortunately, it's easy to imagine our players having struggles with that mindset come Saturday afternoon.