FSU football will look to continue its winning ways when they travel to face the Pittsburgh Panthers on Saturday at 3:30 ET on ABC. The Noles enter the contest as -23 point betting favorites, with a points total of 51.5. Those odds imply a 35-15 win for the Noles.
The Panthers are coming off a 58-7 old-fashioned taken behind the woodshed whipping courtesy of Notre Dame.
It was a classic letdown game after Pittsburgh gave away a win against Wake Forest the week before.
Pittsburgh has lost two consecutive games after pulling a major upset against Louisville.
Here’s how they stack up by the numbers:
- 22.4 ppg
- 28.8 ppg allowed
- 5.13 ypp
- 5.32 ypp allowed
- 3.39 ypc
- 3.31 ypc allowed
- 34.29 percent third downs converted
- 36.27 percent third downs converted allowed
-Offensive FEI(opponent adjusted with garbage time removed): No. 108 nationally
-Defensive FEI (opponent adjusted with garbage time removed): No. 33 nationally
Pittsburgh’s offense has been dreadful this year, and they’ve made a switch at quarterback with Phil Jurkovec going to the bench the past couple of weeks. Christian Veilleux has gotten the start the past three weeks with mixed results. He’s thrown six interceptions and isn’t a threat to run at 6’4″ and 220 pounds.
He’s completing 52 percent of his passes, and Pittburgh hasn’t run the ball effectively like in years past. The offensive line has allowed 23 sacks and 46 tackles for a loss. They have two receivers they go to in Konata Mumpfield and Bub Means. They have 33 and 23 receptions, respectively, for around 400 yards and seven touchdowns combined. Their tight end is serviceable, with 17 receptions for 310 yards and one touchdown.
The strength of the team is its defense, though they lost a ton to the NFL Draft last season. It’s something Pat Narduzzi mentioned in his post-game comments after Notre Dame, and some of his players got offended. He apologized to his players, but we’ll see how they come to play Saturday. Their defensive line isn’t what it was, but they can still get after the quarterback and get tackles for a loss. However, teams have lit them up through the air, allowing a 65 percent completion percentage on 8.4 yards per attempt.
They’ve allowed 11 touchdown passes. Their defense has been pourous in the red zone, allowing touchdowns 75 percent of the time. It’s a game that appears similar to Wake Forest, where FSU could look to spread Pittsburgh out with the passing game to set up the running game. Pittsburgh offense doesn’t scare me at all, and they have turned it over 13 times. That aspect doesn’t bode well against an FSU defense that’s been lights out, especially with a guy that’s not mobile.