This Saturday (9/16/23), Boston College will host #3 Florida State for the annual Red Bandana Game. Get Florida State vs. Boston College odds, predictions, and best bets below, as our best bet is over 49.5 total points.
Florida State vs. Boston College Prediction & Best Bet
This Saturday will be Boston College’s Red Bandana Game, one of the most touching and meaningful traditions in college football. The game is in memory of Welles Crowther, a Boston College lacrosse alum and stock trader who was working in the South Tower on September 11th during the attacks. He courageously saved as many as 18 people, all while wearing his signature red bandana, and tragically lost his life. BC often wears special bandana-patterned jerseys for the occasion, and it’s a big day for the whole community.
Unfortunately, and rather heartbreakingly, the game doesn’t often go well for the home team, as it’s often scheduled for a matchup with a marquee opponent. After knocking off #9 USC in the first-ever Red Bandana Game back in 2014, they’ve gone 3-5 in the subsequent editions. The most recent installment was a 31-3 drubbing at the hands of Clemson, while none other than Florida State spoiled the occasion in 2019. This year, it’s not too likely to be different; the Seminoles are rolling into Chestnut Hill as the #3 ranked team in the AP poll.
By contrast, the Eagles have had an incredibly tough start to the season. They dropped their home opener to Northern Illinois in an absolute stunner against a mediocre MAC squad, and then barely eked out a win over Holy Cross amidst some weather delays. With one of the best teams in the country coming into town, just a couple of weeks after a major week one win over LSU, this one could get extremely ugly for a team that has shown no ability to compete at a high level.
FSU’s quarterback, Jordan Travis, has entrenched himself in the Heisman debate, while BC’s opening day starter, Emmett Morehead, has already been benched in favor of Thomas Castellanos, who is a much better athlete but not a special passer. Travis has a superstar wideout to throw to in MSU transfer Keon Coleman, while BC’s best receiver in many years is now on the Baltimore Ravens. We could do this position by position, and the takeaway for each would be the same; these two teams do not have comparable talent levels. There are definitely some questions about the Seminoles that have yet to be answered, such as the acumen of head coach Mike Norvell, but the Eagles won’t push them hard enough to show the cracks.
With a 25.5 point spread, it’s hard to bet on a road favorite, especially on such a meaningful occasion for the home team. Instead, let’s play the over; Florida State’s supercharged attack could push that number all by themselves- they hung 45 on a theoretically-elite LSU team, and 66 on C-USA team Southern Miss. This could be one where the Seminoles run up the score early, and the Eagles are able to chip in a few points of their own after the FSU defensive starters are pulled.
Florida State vs. Boston College Prediction & Best Bet: Over 49.5 Points (-110)
Florida State vs. Boston College Betting Odds
FSU is a major road favorite with a 25.5 point spread, and -110 odds on either side. For a 49.5 point total, the odds are also an even -110 either way.
Florida State vs. Boston College Key Matchups
BC can’t fully shut down the FSU offense, but let’s look at how they can at least attempt to make it one-dimensional, and own the line of scrimmage on offense as well.
Florida State Rushing Offense vs. Boston College Run Defense
Last season, in addition to the Travis-led air attack, FSU had one of the best rushing offenses in the country as they averaged 214.1 yards per game at a clip of 5.5 per carry. Leading rusher Trey Benson is back, and he’ll be looking for a thousand-yard season after coming up 10 yards short last year. The offensive line is also graded as a top-25 run blocking unit so far, an improvement over last year, amidst a whole bunch of turnover.
BC’s run defense is ranked 51st in the nation thus far, as per PFF, continuing to be a relative strength for this team once more. Cam Horsley has been an absolute superstar on the d-line, with no missed tackles and four runs stuffed. Donovan Ezeiruaku and Neto Okpala have formed a formidable edge duo, while Vinny DePalma and Kam Arnold hold it down as off-ball linebackers. It’s a solid crew, and they’re one of the better tackling teams in the country; they just need to put it all together in terms of scheme to limit a prolific FSU attack.
Boston College Offensive Line vs. Florida State Front Seven
Boston College’s main offensive strength is the front five, the core of any great offense- and of BC’s as well. After a lot of injuries across the position group last season, the Eagles have reloaded with newly-healthy veterans and young talents. Christian Mahogany is one of the latter, an NFL-bound guard who anchors the unit. Incoming transfer Kyle Hergel has kept pace at the other guard spot, with a 89.3 pass block grade from PFF. Ozzy Trapilo is having a great year at right tackle, but Logan Taylor has struggled on the other side, a major weak spot for an otherwise solid group.
They’re facing off against a FSU front seven that barely ranks within the top 100 in PFF’s run defense grade, while they’re 65th in pass rush. Linebacker Kalen DeLoach has been a relative standout, and d-linemen Dennis Briggs Jr. and Joshua Farmer already have a pair of sacks each. Jared Verse is the big star on the edge, but hasn’t had a hugely productive start to the year- watch out for this unit when he really gets going.
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