Our beloved Wolfpack travel to Tallahassee to take on Famous Jameis Winston and the second-ranked Florida State Seminoles today at 3:30pm. If you can stomach watching, the game will be televised (split) on either your local ABC channel or ESPN2.
Obviously, State’s thin and inexperienced secondary will have to find a way to neutralize FSU’s all-everything freshman quarterback. I don’t really understand how that is supposed to happen when I think about how poorly the secondary has played all season, especially in key third down situations. But,maybe Jack Tocho is really an interception machine like he showed against Syracuse before his injury. How good has Winston been this year?
Winston is averaging 12 yards per attempt and 314.2 yards per game, has a 20-3 ratio of touchdowns to interceptions, and a passer rating that ranks second nationally. He strolled into Death Valley under some incredible pressure and played like it was nothin’. Sometimes recruiting rankings are off, and then other times they are really, really right.
CFN has this preview and it picks Florida State 47-13.
The most important item I am watching today is the injury report. NC State desperately needs some good news regarding health as we head into a November schedule that presents a string of games that are all winnable if we can roll out the first stringers — UNC, Boston College, Duke, East Carolina and Maryland provide Coach Doeren five opportunities to win at least three games to become bowl eligible in his first season.
The injury news did get better this week. In addition to Mitchell’s return, the depth chart for today indicated that almost everyone who could return has returned with the lone exception being Robert Crip (still out). Even though FSU’s defense is ferocious, it will be good to see Rashard Smith and Marquez Valdes-Scantling back on offense; so, I’m looking to today to provide Brandon Mitchell something akin to a ‘scrimmage’ to allow him shake off the rust and get some experience under center to be prepared for November.