2024 College Football: Bet a Little on This Long Shot to Win Title
Time to get your future bets in for next year’s college football playoff.
It’s college football’s final Final Four as the format expands to 12 teams in 2025.
There’s a clear favorite this year to win its third consecutive national championship: Georgia, which could become the first program in the modern era to pull off the three-peat feat.
I’m already on the record as saying the Bulldogs are going to do it. Too much talent and too easy of a schedule.
However, there’s another team that I believe will be special this season:
Florida State. I’ve got them winning 11, which may seem crazy with this schedule. Predicted wins in bold, though.
Sept 3. LSU (in Orlando)
Sept. 9 Southern Miss
Sept. 16 at Boston College
Sept. 23 at Clemson
Oct. 7 Virginia Tech
Oct. 14 Syracuse
Oct. 21 Duke
Oct. 28 at Wake Forest
Nov. 4 at Pitt
Nov. 11 Miami
Nov. 18 North Alabama
Nov. 25 at Florida
One loss? Are you insane, you ask? Possibly.
You wouldn’t be the first person to question my sanity.
The Seminoles have 14 players listed on the Senior Bowl Watch List. They have a bunch of players who made All-ACC teams returning.
It all starts with a dynamite offense led by quarterback Jordan Travis, a sleeper Heisman Trophy pick (+1200 from Fan Duel), who threw for 32 touchdowns last season. Stud running back Trey Benson (990 yards, 9 TDs, 6.4 yards per catch) and 6-foot-7 (gulp!) receiver Johnny Wilson.
According to 247Sports, the Seminoles had the sixth-best transfer portal offseason of any team in the country. Per The Athletic’s rankings, Florida State landed three of the top 20 transfers in the nation: Speedy 6-foot-4 receiver Keon Coleman (rated No. 5 overall from Michigan State), 6-foot-5, 300-pound defensive lineman Braden Fiske (rated No. 12 from Western Michigan) and tight end Jaheim Bell (No. 20 from South Carolina).
All three of those bad dudes are going to pose major problems, each in their own way, on both sides of the ball.
We’ll find out exactly what FSU has when it plays LSU in a Sunday night showdown (Sunday, Sept. 3, 7:30 p.m. ET on ABC) that should be exceptional.
Last season the Seminoles beat the Tigers in a thriller by blocking a potential game-tying PAT in the closing seconds.
LSU defensive lineman Maason Smith, a former five-star recruit who showed promise before suffering a season-ending injury against FSU in the season opener last year, will also miss this season’s showdown after being suspended one game by the silly NCAA.
That’s a significant loss, but the point spread hasn’t changed since the announcement.
I think the Seminoles win that game and then lose just one more – on the road against Clemson which is always a brutally tough place to play – and then win the rest.
With only one loss they should be in position to win the ACC title game and make it to the CFP.
Yeah, sure, everything needs to fall in place.
But here’s a fun stat from The Lines: More teams with preseason odds of +2500 or longer have won the championship since 2002 than favorites have. Just two preseason favorites have captured the title – 2017 Alabama and 2004 USC. Some of the longest odds to have gone the distance include 2010 Auburn (+5000), 2014 Ohio State (+4000), and 2019 LSU (+3300).
Longest Preseason Title Odds: Teams to Reach College Football Playoff
200-1, TCU 2022 (L Title Game)
150-1, Cincinnati 2021 (L Semis)
100-1, Michigan 2021 (L Semis)
50-1, Michigan 2022 (L Semis)
40-1, Ohio State 2014 (Won Title)
30-1, Notre Dame 2018 (L Semis)
30-1, Clemson 2017 (L Semis)
30-1, Washington 2016 (L Semis)
30-1, Oklahoma 2015 (L Semis)
Now, if you’re not that confident in Florida State, which I am, you can certainly bet on them to at least reach the four-team playoff but the odds suck.
If you like ‘em as much as I do, may as well throw a little at them at 25-to-1 to win the whole shebang.
There’s also this: January 2024 will be the 10th anniversary of FSU’s last national championship when Jameis Winston threw a 2-yard touchdown pass to Kelvin Benjamin with 13 seconds left to beat No. 2 Auburn 34-31 and take the BCS crown.
Could history repeat itself?
I’m telling ya it could.
I like this Seminoles team a ton.
They went 10-3 last season and appear to have improved at every position.
Florida State head coach Mike Norvell is in his fourth season, is an offensive mastermind and has an arsenal of offensive weapons this season. The Seminoles averaged 35 points last year and good luck stopping this O in 2023.
There will be plenty of blowouts so keep an eye on the over/under totals on all of FSU’s games. Hint: Most are going over.
I don’t think 57 points is enough for that first game against LSU.
Anyhow, best of luck this season and be sure to check out my other previews/predictions on:
Enjoy your weekend and Happy First Football Saturday of 2023, everybody