The ACC and SEC meet to get the 2016 College Football Season started with a bang as the 4th ranked Florida State Seminoles will take on the number 11 Ole Miss Rebels in Orlando’s Camping World Stadium this weekend. It’s arguably the biggest matchup of what’s being billed as one of the best opening weeks of college football in the modern era.
The game is practically a Florida State home game as it’s being hosted about 4.5 hours from Tallahassee, which may sound like a hike until you consider that Ole Miss is about 150 miles further away. Expect a packed house in favor of the Seminoles to kickoff week 1 of this season.
Ole Miss will have a familiar face at quarterback as Chad Kelly returns as the starter this year. He’s the top-ranked prospect by NFLDraftScout.com. The Seminoles will counter with an offensive star of their own, running back Dalvin Cook. Cook has already rushed for 2,699 yards in two seasons and is within reach of Warrick Dunn’s FSU’s school record with 1,261 more yards to go.
The two teams have only played once in their history, back in 1961 when Ole Miss defeated the Seminoles by a score of 33-0 at a neutral field in Oxford.
Florida State is poised to make a National Championship run if they can figure out their quarterback position. Their starter, Sean Maguire is expected to miss the first few weeks of the season with a stress fracture in his foot, and red shirt freshman Deondre Francois will start in his place after doing well in Maguire’s place. With running back Dalvin Cook being a legit Heisman Trophy Candidate, the Seminoles don’t need much from their quarterback position, they just need them to be serviceable.
In addition to having one of the best running backs in the nation, Florida State will also return all of its receiving corp from last year, as well as their entire offensive line. This is by far the most returning starters the Seminoles’ team has ever returned, and with that kind of veteran presence on the team, they’re built to make noise come BCS time late in the year.
The latest FSU vs. Ole Miss Odds can be found here
For the Rebels to have a good chance to pull off the upset, they’ll need Chad Kelly to have a stellar game at quarterback. He certainly possesses the talent, as he’s an NFL-caliber quarterback with superior talent and athleticism. He can beat you with his feet as well as his arm.
Ole Miss will be a good team this year, and they’ll very likely finish in the Associated Press’ Top 25 at the end of the year, but they’re simply outmatched by this Florida State team. Heinemann hopeful Dalvin Cook is too good, and even if Ole Miss’ entire gameplay is to stop him, I still have my doubts that they can do that. Expect Florida State to pull away late in the game with Cook leading the way.