For the past three weeks, Kyle Griffis has given you his glorious takes on who to root for each weekend as Florida State football fan and he didn’t disappoint. It’s been quite difficult to stay positive, as you and I both know, so this guide allows us to channel all of that negative energy else where (kinda like therapy). For week four, I’ve decided to give it my best shot, so feel free to chime in below and let me know what you think about this weekend’s upcoming contests.
Week four is sure to bring some spectacular moments and hopefully the Seminoles finally play a full game of football (fingers crossed). As previously mentioned, all times are listed in Eastern.
Friday, September 20th
No. 20 Boise State vs. Air Force | 9 p.m. | ESPN2 Last week, Air Force stepped into Boulder as an under dog (- 2.5) and came out a champion. Boise State (3-0) is the easy favorite in the Mountain West, but the Falcons aren’t going to make it easy on the Broncos in this late Friday night match-up. Boise State’s defense has dominated during its last two and a half games, so I don’t expect that to change much, but it’s crucial that the the Broncos continue to win in order to improve the quality of Florida State’s loss.
Saturday, September 21st
No. 2 Alabama vs. Southern Miss | 12 p.m. | ESPN2 Did you hear that Alabama created an app with the ability to track the location of students in an attempt to prevent students from leaving home games early? What is the benefit of staying you ask? Students who stay for the entire game are able to rack up points to increase their chances of obtaining bowl game tickets. If the student leaves early, he or she will be penalized accordingly. To top it off, the SEC lifted the Alcohol ban on in-game beer and wine sales for this year, but the Crimson Tide elected to remain alcohol-free. Cheering for Southern Miss to pull off the upset is incredibly naïve, but I’m willing to bet that attendance will still steadily decrease in yet another Alabama Noon-game blowout under the scorching southern sun despite any incentives. Any takers?
·No. 9 Florida vs. Tennessee | 12 p.m. | ESPN You might think that Florida State has it the worst, but the Volunteers take the win in this category. Imagine a world where Florida loses to a Tennessee team that paid $950,000 to lose its home opener to Georgia State and then followed up by losing its second home game of the season in overtime to BYU. It will almost feel as good as when the Gators lost to FCS Georgia Southern in the Swamp in 2013. Either way, just a nice a little reminder that things can always be worse. Tennessee hung 45 points on Chattanooga last week, so at least we know the offense isn’t totally inept. Let’s see if the Vols’ are capable of pulling off a miracle in Rocky Top.
No. 4 LSU at Vanderbilt | 12 p.m. | SEC Network Another game that really doesn’t affect the state of Florida State football. Although the Commodores will play the Tigers in Nashville, LSU is the heavy favorite. Don’t try and convince yourself into thinking that Vandy will actually pull it off, but an upset would undoubtedly give us some new power rankings.
No. 23 California at Ole Miss | 12 p.m. | ESPNU The Bowl Ban is finally over for the Rebels after a three-year long hiatus from the post-season. Ole Miss can finally close the door on its epic rise to the top that quickly dismantled faster than Alabama’s goalposts in 2014… After losing its home-opener to Memphis, Ole Miss is looking to pick up a massive win against a ranked opponent to get back on its feet. California is also at a disadvantage thanks to the time change.
Western Michigan at Syracuse 12 p.m. (ACC Network)
Syracuse was ranked 22nd before the season started, but the Orange didn’t last in the top-25 very long. After a week two blowout loss at the hands of Maryland, Syracuse returned to New York only to be held to a pair of field goals by the Tigers. Florida State will play Syracuse at home towards the end of October hoping to avenge last year’s disappointing loss and while we don’t want Syracuse to defeat the Seminoles in back-to-back years, Florida State will look better if the Orange is seen as a worthy opponent and the Seminoles are able to come out on top.
Elon at Wake Forest 12 p.m. (ACC Network Extra)
Same as above, well kind of. Wake Forest is on a roll, and if the Demon Deacons can continue to build its resume, Florida State can look to pick up a quality win over them in mid-October as well.
Boston College at Rutgers 12 p.m. (BTN)
Boston College was embarrassed at home last week by Kansas. The Eagles need to gain some of their confidence back, and a not-so-great Rutgers team should help them get there.
No. 8 Auburn at No. 17 Texas A&M | 3:30 p.m. | CBS
When I was a sophomore in college, I went to Auburn for the first time to celebrate New Year’s Eve. Before I could even ring in the New Year, a brawl broke out in the bar. Myself, being an incredible 5’2” mediator between the two guys, was caught in the crossfire and punched in the face as a result (okay, I’m dramatic, grazed is a far better word to describe it), but anyway, I cried and my night was ruined. NYE truly never lives up to the hype, so here’s to hoping that the Aggies and Jimbo Fisher have an identical experience to mine, but in their own house.
·No. 15 UCF at Pitt | 3:30 p.m. | ABC/ESPN2 The Panthers (1-2) opened as the underdog, and the Knights will have one last shot at building its resume by defeating a Power Five team before heading into American Athletic Conference play. Please for the love, let Pitt pull off the upset and bring UCF fans right back down to earth.
No. 21 Virginia vs. Old Dominion | 7 p.m. | ESPN2 Cheering for a ranked team “that you almost” just beat on the road is never an easy task, but football is a game of inches, and there’s no participation award for “almost winning.” A Virginia victory will keep the Cavaliers in the conversation and slightly help the Seminoles’ case.
No. 1 Clemson vs. Charlotte | 7:30 p.m. | ACC Network Charlotte is 0-4 against Power Five teams, and I don’t expect them to start winning in Death Valley. The Tigers opened as 41.5 point favorites and while Dabo attempted to give the 49ers some credit by stating that “Charlotte has the ability to surprise us,” I ask you nicely to not take that at face value. I know I’m certainly not going to spend my Saturday evening watching the Tigers rout another team, but if you are dying on that hill, go for it.
No. 3 Georgia vs. No. 7 Notre Dame | 8 p.m. | CBS
I can’t stand Georgia, and I can’t hide it. Notre Dame is practically an ACC team, so the Fighting Irish should be your obvious choice. That being said, Florida State doesn’t play Notre Dame this year, so for my sanity, root for a sweet Bulldog beat down in Athens to keep all of the Georgia fans on my Facebook feed humble. If that’s not convincing enough, the SEC has three teams ranked in the top four, so why wouldn’t you want to shake it up with a UGA loss.
No. 12 Texas vs. Oklahoma State | 7:30 p.m. | ABC The match up between the Longhorns and Oklahoma State could potentially have significant implications for how the rest of the season pans out in the Big 12. The Pokes are the only team remaining in the Big 12 that Tom Herman has yet to defeat as the head coach of Texas. The Longhorns have lost its last 5-home games to Oklahoma State, but are favored this year by less than a touchdown. I’m personally hoping that Sam Ehlinger has a big day and gives Texas the momentum to eventually take down Oklahoma in two weeks.
No. 24 Arizona State vs. Colorado | 10 p.m. | Pac-12 Network The Buffs endured a heart breaking loss to Air Force last week in overtime. While this game virtually has zero direct effect on the Seminoles, let’s see Colorado pull off a road victory over the ranked Sun Devils.
No. 19 Washington State vs. UCLA | 10:30 p.m. | ESPN Does Chip Kelly know that he’s not coaching in the NFL anymore? If not, will somebody please let him know that tanking the season will not allow him to select the 5-star athlete of his choice? Remember earlier when I said it could always be worse? Well, be glad you’re not a UCLA fan because the Bruins have started 0-3 for the second year straight and are only averaging 14 points a game. Cheering for the Bruins is a lost cause, but UCLA receives my sympathy vote, so maybe they can shake things up?
Here are a couple more ranked teams playing this weekend that are worth mentioning. As you should know, I’m always here for an upset.
No. 10 Utah at Southern California | 9 p.m. Friday | FS1
No. 22 Washington at BYU | 3:30 p.m. | ABC/ESPN2
No. 25 TCU vs. SMU | 3:30 p.m. | FS1
No. 6 Ohio State vs. Miami (Ohio) | 3:30 p.m. | Big Ten Network
No. 16 Oregon at Stanford | 7 p.m. | ESPN