The predictions surrounding the 2015 FSU football season have commenced, as myriad outlets are weighing in on what to expect from the ‘Noles this year. Phil Steele has forecasted the Seminoles' spot in the initial AP Poll, and Vegas has set the over-under for regular-season Florida State wins at 9.5. And at least one national publication is taking the over.
Athlon has published its national and ACC preview issues, and they have FSU going 10-2 during regular-season play, capturing yet another Atlantic division title (with a conference mark of 6-2), and beating Georgia Tech for a fourth-straight ACC championship. The ninth-ranked ‘Noles are then forecasted to take on No. 11 Ole Miss in the Peach Bowl in Atlanta.
Individually, Athlon sees Florida State running back Dalvin Cook as the top Heisman Trophy hope for the ACC, ranking him as the country's No. 9 Heisman contender, one spot ahead of Clemson's Deshaun Watson. The Seminoles are also projected to have a pair of first-team All-Americans: cornerback Jalen Ramsey and kicker Roberto Aguayo.
As far as FSU All-ACC honors go, Athlon has Cook, Aguayo, and Ramsey joined on the first team by tackle Roderick Johnson and linebacker Terrance Smith. The second team features receiver Travis Rudolph and nose guard Nile Lawrence-Stample, while third-team projections include guard Kareem Are and defensive end DeMarcus Walker.
But what does Athlon think of Florida State's opponents? Here are the predicted records (and bowl games, when applicable) of the teams the ‘Noles will face next season:
- Texas State (7-5, 5-3 Sun Belt)
- South Florida (4-8, 2-6 AAC)
- at Boston College (6-6, 3-5 ACC, Arizona Bowl vs. Illinois)
- at Wake Forest (4-8, 2-6 ACC)
- Miami (7-5, 3-5 ACC, Austin Bowl vs. Indiana)
- Louisville (7-5, 5-3 ACC, Military Bowl vs. Navy)
- at Georgia Tech (8-5, 6-2 ACC, Sun Bowl vs. Arizona)
- Syracuse (3-9, 1-7 ACC)
- at Clemson (9-3, 6-2 ACC, TaxSlayer Bowl vs. Texas A&M)
- NC State (9-3, 5-3 ACC, Belk Bowl vs. Florida)
- Chattanooga (10-4, 7-0 Southern, No. 8 in FCS and projected playoff qualifier)
- at Florida (8-4, 5-3 SEC, Belk Bowl vs. NC State)
Athlon has No. 1 Ohio State topping No. 4 Auburn in one College Football Playoff semifinal and No. 2 Alabama beating No. 3 Baylor in another.