Saturday’s match-up between the Noles and the Hurricanes marks the complete two-thirds part of the season. Now it’s down to the home stretch!
Florida State enters the first of their two instate rivalry games against the Miami Hurricanes on Saturday. While this is always a heated battle, both teams come into the game far below normal expectations. FSU is at 4-4 overall and 3-3 in the ACC. The Hurricanes also sport a 4-4 overall record but sit at 2-3 in conference play. This game is pretty much a make or break as far as postseason aspirations are concerned.
The Noles go on the road next week at Boston College, come back home for a game with Alabama State and then finish the regular season with their other in-state rival Florida. The game is in Gainesville this year.
Miami may have a slightly easier season-ending path. After the Noles, they are at home against Louisville and finish with two road games. The two road games are a bit of an exaggeration, as one of those games is in Miami against FIU. Their last regular-season game is at Duke.
While the Noles have no chance at an Atlantic Division title, Miami at 2-3 sits behind both North Carolina and Virginia in the Coastal. Both of those teams sit at 3-2 in an extremely tight division race.
The Seminoles will be out for revenge after squandering a 27-7 lead last year in Miami. The Hurricanes 28-27 come from behind victory pretty much set FSU in a tailspin for the balance of the season.
Ironically, when Miami joined the ACC in 2004, many thought that the ACC Championship Game would be dominated by these two teams. All told, FSU has been in five of the championship games and are 4-1 overall. Miami has been to just one championship and is 0-1. The teams have never met for the ACC Championship!
Since beginning play in the ACC, the Noles hold a 10-5 advantage over the Canes in the regular season.
I look for a hard-fought game in Tallahassee, and my thinking is the loser will most likely miss the postseason.