The FSU football team has the advantage of a relatively easy start to their season, opening with games at home against Texas State and USF before traveling to Boston College and Wake Forest. However, the down side to an easy start is that the tougher opponents are all later in the season. This is evidenced by the section of the Seminoles' schedule which begins on October 10th against Miami and sees Florida State play what are quite possibly their 4 toughest games of the regular season (Miami, Louisville, GT, and Clemson) in a 5-week stretch. Fans could learn a great deal about just how good this FSU team is in their annual showdown against in-state rivals, Miami. Here is a look at how FSU matches up with Miami in history, a look back at the most recent matchup, and what factors for the Hurricanes could influence the game one way or the other.
Florida State enters their match-up against UM winners of 5 straight over the 'Canes. Despite the recent success for the Seminoles, Miami still leads the all-time series 31-28. However, Jimbo Fisher has had Miami's number throughout his head coach tenure, holding a 5-0 record and having outscored UM 172-96 in those 5 wins.
Most recent match-up
Early in the 2014 matchup between FSU and UM, it seemed like the tides had turned. The Hurricanes jumped out to an early 16-0 lead behind the arm of then-freshman quarterback Brad Kaaya and running back Duke Johnson who led a potent attack that seemed impossible to stop, racking up 320 yards and a 23-10 lead by half time. But, as they did nearly every week last season, the 'Noles came charging back in the second half, outscoring the 'Canes 20-3 after half time on the way to a 30-26 win which was sealed by a Jalen Ramsey interception with 39 seconds left. With the win, FSU improved to 10-0.
Dalvin Cook did not get a massive amount of touches but he made the most of each one, gouging the Miami defense for 92 yards on only 7 carries (13.1 yards per carry, his career high). Jameis Winston struggled early and rebounded late, throwing for 304 yards with 1 touchdown and 1 interception. In the end, UM outgained FSU, both on the ground and through the air, held the ball for over ten minutes more than FSU, and converted on twice as many third downs as Florida State and still couldn't get the win at home over the Seminoles.
Miami Season Preview
Bill Connelly released his season preview for Miami today and although the whole thing is worth a read, here are a few important highlights.
Although lots of talent is gone on offense, there is plenty waiting in the wings
The biggest issue: a brand new supporting cast. Johnson's gone, meaning Miami's replacing both a 1,600-yard rusher and a solid No. 2 passing target. And while Kaaya found downfield passing success, most of it was due to Philip Dorsett and tight end Clive Walford, who combined for 1,547 receiving yards at 12.3 yards per target. They're both gone, too.