What’s your biggest initial takeaway?
Perry Kostidakis: Honestly, it’s maybe that there isn’t really a guaranteed loss on schedule? That’s not to be conflated with “these are all easy games” and after last season’s debacle vs. Jacksonville State the idea of “guaranteed wins” seems to have dissipated, but just based on how other programs project and the growth FSU has made under Mike Norvell, it seems as if there’s a chance to be truly competitive in all games this season.
NoleThruandThru: What a difference for FSU, not having to deal with a Swofford-ized schedule! Mike Norvell has to get FSU to a bowl game this season, no excuses, and the initial impression for me is that this schedule sets up well for the Seminoles to get a minimum of six wins. You have bye weeks before Louisville and Georgia Tech, both must-wins for me, and an extra day of prep before another in Boston College. Getting Louisiana prior to UF may actually help FSU prep for the Gators and see some similarities between the two opponents.
LastNoleOfKrypton: My biggest takeaway is that it sets up favorably for FSU on the backend. FSU didn’t do itself any favors in the non-conference component but it seems as though the ACC is finally remembering that a healthy FSU is what’s best for this conference going forward. The brand is still the brand.
CoachAB: Jim Phillips is a breath of fresh air for the ACC and FSU. The schedule is difficult because of the depth of the ACC Coastal and scheduling UF/LSU but the ACC actually did FSU some favors. Is a return to prominence by FSU is actually important to the ACC now?
TimScribble: That the ACC Atlantic is superior to the ACC Coastal. NC State, Boston College, and Wake Forest all return multi-year quarterbacks that have a future in the NFL. Clemson has an under performing, but former top quarterback in the nation, and Louisville has a quarterback that is producing stats that we have not seen since Lamar Jackson. Though it’s FSU’s best schedule in years, the ACC Atlantic will not be a walk in the park.
The ACC is not usually kind to FSU in terms of scheduling — is that the case this year?
Perry Kostidakis: It’s really not the worst arrangement of games. A bye leading into the Friday game vs. Louisville is nice way to get acclimated to a weird game week schedule early in the year, and not putting Miami in a terrifyingly inconvenient spot on the schedule is already a step up.
NoleThruandThru: This is the best schedule layout that FSU has had in years. We know that doesn’t automatically translate into wins, but it’s still nice to see FSU avoid the types of schedules they were given under Swofford in the past.
What’s your take on two Friday games?
Perry Kostidakis: The 2017 Boston College game still gives me nightmares so, to be honest, not a huge fan of them, but that’s just my prebias kicking in. The FSU-UF game being played on a Friday is super weird, but I get the reasoning behind it.
LastNoleOfKrypton: I like them a lot from a primetime standpoint; especially if you’re playing well. Being the only game on is always fun. It’s nice that they chose Louisville and Florida (on Black Friday) because you’re not missing out on a Friday recruiting visit while on the road or the day after Thanksgiving. Well done ACC.
NoleThruandThru: As far as the football team is concerned, I see more positives than negatives. They have a bye week prior to the Louisville game, and the Friday game gives them another prep day for Boston College. While the Friday night UF game isn’t ideal for my tastes, playing Billy Napier’s prior team, led by his former offensive coordinator, may give FSU an insight or two as they prep for the Gators. From a revenue and attendance standpoint, I can see the negatives, and recruiting is actually a wash for me. It’s always nice for coaching staffs to attend Friday night football games of prospects, but if this staff doesn’t win more games this year, recruiting won’t matter.
CoachAB: Anywhere, anytime is my theory. The ACC helped them out with a bye before and ULL before the Friday’s though. Going to be tough games and prime time showdowns which is kind of exciting.
What’s the hardest 5-game stretch on the schedule?
Perry Kostidakis: Norvell’s teams at FSU have seemingly needed a few games to find their groove, and so while those last 5 games are tough, setting the tone early in the season is going to be a huge challenge.
NoleThruandThru: First five games, because a lot of new faces are going to have growing pains. That Wake/NC St/Clemson triple header is the worst stretch, though. I like the bye week placements for FSU this season, so hopefully health and continued development will pay dividends down the home stretch.
LastNoleOfKrypton: Going to agree with NT&T here and go the first five which may seem contrary to popular belief because it doesn’t include Miami and Clemson. FSU has 22 mid-year enrollees on campus; that’s one spring ball and about nine months to get them up to speed; to me that’s more challenging than facing a couple of rivals with a talent advantage late in the season.
CoachAB: Can I say middle 5? That Louisville, BC, Wake, NC State, Clemson stretch is the toughest in my opinion. This is going to make or break the season for the Noles and potentially Mike Norvells tenure at
TimScribble: Agree with AB. The Louisville through Clemson results goes a long way towards bowl eligibility.
Give your way-too-early prediction for FSU’s record in 2022
LastNoleOfKrypton: W, L, L, W, W, L, L, W, W, W, W, W. 8-4 for FSU as the Climb continues. Progress is not linear and it’s time for some injury luck to break FSU’s way.
NoleThruandThru: I think six wins is absolutely attainable with this schedule. I’d be pleasantly surprised if FSU wins every game they should win (Duquesne, Boston College, Georgia Tech, Syracuse, and Louisiana), and games against Louisville and Clemson should be toss-ups and FSU must get one win of the two. We don’t know what Miami and UF will look like by November and FSU gets LSU early on, so this schedule could easily net FSU a win or two in games it isn’t favored in. The only game I am confident FSU will not win is at NC State. Give me a 7-5 record and a bowl game, with 6-6 more likely than 8-4.
CoachAB: I’m going to lay this out real simple and will provide much deeper thoughts on the next Triple Option show. W, L, W, W, W, L, L, W, L, W, W, W. That’s 8-4 final record and a return to a stinking bowl game. I don’t see any games they cannot win. Potentially only one game they are a double digit underdog in.