North Carolina State Upsets No. 3-ranked Florida State

No. 3-ranked Florida State was upset on Saturday by North Carolina State, dropping the game by a score of 17-16. For a team with National Championship aspirations, this loss was an absolutely devastating blow to Florida State’s case as one of the best teams in college football. This was the highest-ranked Florida State team since 2003, and it had sky high expectations for itself. In the wake of this loss to NC State, there are some serious questions about its standing in the championship picture.

“We still control our own destiny in the ACC,” FSU coach Jimbo Fisher said. “We have to refocus and not let this loss become two in a row. We let this one slip away from us.”

Florida State led NC State 16-0 at halftime, its defense utterly dominating in the first half. However, they were powerless to stop the Wolf Pack in the fourth quarter. “We weren’t coming in thinking that we were David and they were Goliath or anything,” North Carolina State center Camden Wentz said. “We’ve beaten this team before. They’re a great football team. We weren’t coming in not sure if we could win or not. … At the end, it went our way.”

In the wake of the loss, Florida State players were eager to downplay the significance of the upset. “This is not the end of the world for us,” FSU receiver Rashad Greene said. “We know what we have in this locker room and we will move on from this loss.” However, there’s no denying it will hurt their chances. Florida State has had trouble getting over this midseason hump for a decade; the Seminoles have been unable to start a season 6-0 since their National Championship season in 1999.

How the Gamblers Did

Florida State was heavily favored in this game, with the point spread set at -14. However, there were many indicators heading into this match that NC State would give the Seminoles a heck of a fight. The Wolf Pack are historically very good against the spread, and Florida State is frequently overvalued. Here are some facts about both teams’ against the spread performances, courtesy of Bleacher Report:

  • The Seminoles were just 2-5 ATS in their last seven games following a SU win and were 3-5 ATS in their last eight games overall before this one. The total has “under” in seven of its last nine games.
  • The Wolf Pack were 6-2-1 ATS in their last nine home games before this one and 18-6-2 ATS in their last 26 games following a SU loss. The total has stayed under in five of their last seven games before this one against the ACC.
  • Head-to-head, the Seminoles have won four of the last five meetings SU, but they are 1-9-1 ATS in the last 11 meetings and 0-4-1 ATS in their last five trips to Raleigh before this most recent loss. The total has stayed under in four of the last five games between the two.

The total points line for this game was 53.5, so anyone who bet over was severely disappointed; it turned into a defensive slugfest, and the final score was a measly 17-16. The Wolf Pack are a much better team at home than they are on the road, and returned many seniors to both sides of the ball this season. They’re worth taking a look at for the remainder of their schedule as a potential good bet. Florida State, meanwhile, dropped to No. 12 in the ranking. However, the Seminoles have a pretty easy schedule the rest of the way, minus a huge matchup against in-state rivals Florida in the last week of the season. Florida jumped from No. 10 to No. 4 after their impressive victory over LSU on Saturday, so that could be a tough matchup for Florida State.

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