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Staff Predictions: Florida State vs Duke

Some team will win. Somehow. We think.

NCAA Football: Florida State at Duke Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

It’s mid-December, and FSU is playing ACC football.

No, not that kind.

This one is for bragging rights. Someone is walking— nay, exulting—out of the gates of harrowed Doak Campbell Stadium with their second ACC win of the season in tow. Duke (99th) and FSU (93rd) will face-off as the second- & third-worst teams in the conference (via F/+ rankings), trailing only hapless, harmless, and hopeless Syracuse (107th, and loving it).

As usual, our staff offers their completely unmerited & unasked-for opinions on the week’s matchup.


This team is the healthiest it’s been since August, which is particularly welcome news for the QB and along both lines. Many of the malcontents on the roster are... no longer on the roster. Those who stayed will be victors.

FSU 34 Duke 31


Watching a head-coach play a pocket 2-7 off-suit is intellectually, if not morbidly, fascinating. FSU has had more departures than LAX, and Duke is coming fresh off ::opens New Tab, lazily type ‘duk fb 2020’ in the URL box, thinks about the national deficit/debt problem, resumes important work of reading about a group of guys somehow scholarship’d to play oblong tackle ball:: hey, a 48-point shutout loss in Miami in front of their normal number of fans! We’ve got a chance, fellas.

FSU 19, Duke 29.

Frank PissedNole:

We are a spoiled rotten fanbase.

Those so-called FSU writers, insiders, and podcasters, with the exception of the Tomahawk Nation Contributors who actually know about their sports and stuff, all they want to do is bitch about what this Norvell fella tweets about one of his former player who does good in the NFL during a game, and bitch about this Fuller fella who is doing the best he can with the hand he has been dealt.

FSU has a small base of so-called “fans” and many on the “FSU Twitters” who, and pardon my use of harsh words and my lack of etiquette, are the ne’er-do-wells and scofflaws of this fanbase, who as far as I am concerned, can go their own way.

Recently, have you noticed how many commercials are now playing Fleetwood Mac’s “Go Your Own Way” like it is a sign of strength and independence when in reality the real meaning of the song is a guy telling his cheating girlfriend to get the F’ out of his life? But I digress as I tend to do.

This will be the game that the Noles will finally be able to take out all of their built-up aggression on the Blue Ball Devils, who have absolutely no idea of the buzz saw they will be running into on Saturday. It will be a fun game for the Noles.

The Florida State Seminoles 45 - Duke Satanic Worshiper 21


I can’t wait to see the fighting Ham’s take on the Coach K.... wait a second it isn’t a basketball game? Ohhhhhh fudge... only I didn’t say fudge.

Okay the Blue Devils have already said they don’t want to be playing football anymore. FSU has at least tried every week. Jordan Travis is back at full health. Can FSU block Chris Rumph? Can the FSU defense do anything? These are a few storylines I’m paying close attention to.

Give me the Noles in a blowout....

FSU 38 - Duke 17

Evan Johnson:

I feel confident there will be a game played this week. From the sounds of things FSU’s players (those that are still on campus at least) have been engaged in practices and hopefully the three weeks in which FSU ducked Clemson, UVA and BYE will have them rested and focused. I think it will but I also don’t really care. Show effort on Saturday and I’ll be happy.

FSU 31 - Duke 21


If this year has taught me anything, it’s that the worst case scenario happens and happens often. For Florida State, it’s been a season of worst case scenarios from injuries to complete breakdowns. But tis the season of holiday cheer, so Merry early Christmas, Jordan Travis goes bananas and leads FSU to a win.

FSU 24, Duke 17

Perry Kostidakis

I am ready to be hurt, as for the first time since FSU took on Pittsburgh (in like July, right?) I actually feel pretty confident in FSU coming out and performing. Maybe it’s the fact they’ve basically had a month to prep, but there’s a feeling that’s come from practice that the players who are still there are making sure their time isn’t being wasted. Duke, thankfully, presents a perfect confidence-boosting opportunity — but as Norvell mentioned all throughout the week, whether it’s capitalizing off turnovers or mistakes on the opponent's side, it’s all just a matter of taking advantage of it.

FSU 34, Duke 21

Jon Marchant:

I carry over a very rational hatred for Duke's basketball team to their football team this year. Has FSU finally passed thru their hard reset? The kids left at FSU want to be here. They will fight. Records from this season don't matter.

FSU 31 - 23 Duke

Saiem Gilani:

I stopped in to let everyone know that I do not care for Duke. This is a perfect opponent to get the Seminoles back on track because they are a team with a bad offense. FPI suggests 66% pre-game win probability, I tend to agree. I expect the ‘Noles to run their way to victory.

FSU 31 - Duke 27

Austin Cox:

Offense will rule the day in this one. I think Jordan Travis and his athleticism matches up well with Duke. But I am not so sure FSU has the coaching advantage on defense going up against veteran Blue Devil play-caller David Cutcliffe. This will be a high-scoring game in my opinion.

Florida State 44, Duke 40