Florida State 2018 Betting Preview: Taggart’s Turnaround Will Take Time

Florida State 2018 Betting Preview: Taggart’s Turnaround Will Take Time article feature image

Melina Myers-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Dontavius Jackson and Stanford Samuels III

Florida State 2018 Betting Odds

  • To win the National Title: +5000
  • To win the ACC: +1000
  • To win the ACC Atlantic: +625
  • Makes Playoff: +775
  • Win Total: 7.5 (over -160, under +140)

All lines as of July 24. Always shop for the best line.

Florida State 2018 Schedule, Betting Odds

The Action Network Projected Wins: 7.2

Bet To Watch

Florida State Under 7.5 (+140)

Following one season at Oregon, Willie Taggart comes back home after serving as head coach of South Florida from 2013-2016. The Jimbo Fisher era in Tallahassee ended unceremoniously in 2017, thanks in large part to an injury to starting quarterback Deandre Francois. The result? Florida State had the 75th S&P+ offense with an adjusted pace of 127th. That is all about to change with Taggart.

Direct comparison between Deondre Francois & James Blackman's numbers when targeting inside the numbers the past two seasons pic.twitter.com/jPrKALyG03

— PFF College (@PFF_College) June 29, 2018

There should be an adjustment period on both sides of the ball. Taggart will implement an up-tempo offensive style for a roster that has plenty of freshmen and sophomores. The defense will also have a new look as defensive coordinator Harlon Barnett joins from Michigan State.

When there are this many changes to a team, there will be bumps in the road against experienced teams, especially in the first half of the season. Unfortunately, the Seminoles will need to deal with Syracuse, Miami and Wake Forest over the first seven games of the season, so that could spell trouble.

>> Follow Collin Wilson in The Action Network App to get free alerts on all his college football bets during the season.

The one thing that isn’t changing is the talent level in Tallahassee. Florida State has not ranked lower than 11th in overall recruiting in the past five years, but it could take some time for the new recruits to find their game. Thus, I think the Seminoles will struggle in the first half, and that’s why we’re rolling with Under 7.5 +140.

What else you need to know about Florida State

Since I think it’s wise to fade the Seminoles in the first half of the season, I’ve got a couple of Game of the Year numbers on my radar. We won’t know when the young roster will adapt to Taggart’s new schemes, but by November, his players should have it down. After a rough two-month stretch that includes Clemson, the Seminoles take on North Carolina State to open November.

Florida State -2.5 is worth an investment against quarterback Ryan Finley and the Wolfpack. The Action Network has this game projected at 4.5, and the youth on the roster should be up to speed by Game 9. Additionally, a deeper review of the NC State-Pitt box score last year shows Finley had a mediocre day against a similar defense that Florida State will present.

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