There were certainly some positive takeaways from Florida State’s latest game, a 37-19 win over Northern Illinois, as vocalized by our Bud Elliott. The Seminoles got off to a nice start, played from ahead throughout the contest, and covered the spread against the Huskies. But there were also way too many giveaways, which came in the form of unnecessary turnovers.
Yes, there’s a certain degree of luck that applies to cashing in on turnovers— specifically a team’s success at recovering fumbles, as it typically pertains to how an oblong ball bounces. But the ’Noles continue to tempt fate by putting the ball on the ground far too often. Simply put, Florida State is allowing luck to have way too big of a role in its 2018 fortunes by not securing the pigskin. Against NIU, the Seminoles gave up four turnovers, three on lost fumbles, and for the second straight game, did not secure any turnovers of their own.
As far as turnover margin goes, FSU currently ranks 125th of 130 FBS teams. With just five takeaways compared to 11 giveaways, the Seminoles’ -1.5 turnover margin is the worst in the ACC.
Florida State has lost six fumbles so far this season. Only three FBS teams (Utah, South Alabama, and Tulsa) are worse, having lost seven. But FSU’s next opponent, Louisville, hasn’t been much better on the turnover front. The Cardinals are 120th, nationally, in turnover margin, at -1.25. This game may very well come down to which team can take care of the best better. Or, at least, less terribly.