Houston after a big season and conference championship, finds themselves facing a team they can prove to everyone how good they are today. I have seen this story before though, smaller school who plays well during the regular season and then plays a top school and gets taken out to the toolshed. Florida State is familiar, because Northern Illinois tried to prove to everyone they could play with the big boys and fell. I recall a lot of people jumping on the Huskies and that game and were asking why they bet them shortly after the game started. Right now I don’t know before I handicap it more closely if Houston is going to suffer the same fate. Florida State on paper will look shorthanded due to the loss of Everett Golson. Golson is the same guy who was at quarterback when Notre Dame went to the national championship. I don’t want to say led them there, because I think the defense of that team more than anything led them there. Golson won’t be playing, but Dalvin Cook will be for Florida State.
Cook is the centerpiece of the offense at Florida State, and may have felt a bit disrespected with no invite to the Heisman ceremony. Cook has the potential to be the best running back out of his class at the next level in the NFL and it is a stacked class. I think any other year and Cook would be getting a lot more recognition carrying the rock. Cook will have the Peach Bowl, one of the bigger bowls on the circuit, to showcase his talents for scouts. Houston’s ability to win this game will center around slowing Cook down.
To put things into perspective, Cook ran for 183 yards and 2 touchdowns on the Florida defense. A defense I might add that was stuffing Alabama in the SEC Championship game. Florida wasn’t a great team this season, but it was the offense, not defense holding them back. With that said, 27-2 over Florida was an impressive win. And don’t get it confused, Florida State quarterback Sean Magiure, he is fully capable, and has been playing better than Golson. This is his team now. Find what I think below about Florida State and Houston in the Peach Bowl.
Houston Cougars vs. Florida State Peach Bowl Betting Odds:
vs. Florida State -7(-110)
Odds provided by Bovada.lv
Houston vs. Florida State Pick:
The so called sharp pick would probably be with Houston in this game. Everyone knows about Florida State and well they can play. It has been well documented how good they’ve been the past few years. While Houston has been good this season, beating a good Temple team to win the American Athletic Conference. Or is Temple actually good? I’m not so sure. I think their best win came against Navy in a 55-31 beat down. Sean Maguire has been a nice compliment to Dalvin Cook lately. The main thing is he hasn’t been turning ball over and making mistakes. Giving Houston a short field in the Peach Bowl would give the Cougars the shot at the upset. Maguire hasn’t been that guy though, passing for 9 touchdowns and only 2 interceptions on the season.
I mentioned two teams who matched up equally statistically speaking yesterday, N.C. State and Mississippi State. However, looking at the strength of schedule really disclosed a lot of information. The Bulldogs played the much superior schedule, the Wolfpack weren’t even close in that regard. What happened is a big win for Mississippi State, which ended up not even being all that close. Houston is going to find it difficult to pass on one of the best secondary’s in football, who allow only 185 yards per game. Houston looks like the cute pick, but I think Florida State takes this one by 10 points.
PICK: FLORIDA STATE -7 (-110)