The Yellow Jackets and Seminoles will face off without the chance to prepare with a cupcake game to start the year. The ACC is playing a conference only schedule, so the season gets right into the action.
The Seminoles will get another new coach in Mike Norvell, who becomes the third coach in four years. The storied program has not finished over .500 in ACC play in the last three seasons.
The Yellow Jackets have very low expectations. They finished 3-9 last season and 2-6 in conference play. Georgia Tech was picked to finish last in the ACC.
Georgia Tech Looks to Continue Success Against Florida State
Most people would not guess that Georgia Tech has been the better of the two teams in recent matchups. The Yellow Jackets won the last meeting between the two teams, 2015, and have won three of the previous five meetings.
Georgia Tech has not announced a starting quarterback, but it is looking like it will be freshman Jeff Sims. It will be an interesting game for Sims, who de-committed from Florida State before deciding to go to Georgia Tech.
The offense will go through running back Jordan Mason. Mason rushed for 899 yards on 172 carries with seven touchdowns last season. If the Yellow Jackets are going to finish anywhere near .500, they will need a big season from the junior running back. Ahmarean Brown will be Sims’ go-to receiver as he was the only player on the team with more than 20 catches last season.
It is hard to predict what this Yellow Jacket defense will look like. They were much better than people gave them credit for last season. They spent way too much time on the field as the Georgia Tech offense was abysmal.
Seminoles Look to Re-establish Program
Since Bobby Bowden retired, the glory days of Florida State football have yet to be rekindled. James Blackman should lead an improved bunch on offense. The junior has thrown for over 5,000 yards with 41 touchdowns.
While losing running back Cam Akers is significant, Tamorrion Terry should lead a talented group of receivers. Terry caught 60 passes for 1,188 yards and nine touchdowns last season.
The defense will be led by All-ACC player Marvin Wilson. Wilson was still named to the all-conference team despite only playing nine games due to a hand injury. He received the most votes of any player for the preseason all-conference team and will be drawing the eye of NFL scouts every time he is on the field.
Bulldogs/Bears Betting Lines
Florida State is the favorite at -12.5. The total is set at 51.5 points.
Free Betting Pick
I expect both teams’ defense to shine in this one. The Yellow Jacket team returns pretty much everyone, and the Seminoles group has a good mix of experience and talent.
The Georgia Tech offense will be better, but should still be one of the worst in the ACC. I expect a low scoring affair, so I am playing the under 51.5.
Free Pick: Under 51.5