With all of the insanity going on over in the Big East, we wanted to give a breakdown of each of the ACC‘s schedules — how the teams stack up, and some thoughts on overall difficulty. If these change at all, we’ll also be sure to update them on a rolling basis. All information is up-to-date as of publishing, based on the latest from FBSchedules.com.
Today’s breakdown: Florida State Seminoles
As you may have heard, Florida State’s still in a little bit of a bind to fill their fourth and final non-conference scheduling spot. After West Virginia canceled on them (and the entire Big East), there’s been a frantic search to fill those empty dates. For FSU specifically, it’s even bigger than that. As they enter the season likely ranked in the top 10, the ‘Noles were looking to make 2012 a real banner year. That included another big non-conference home date (similar to their date with Oklahoma last year) en route to contending for a national title. Instead, looking at a $2.5 million hole, and few programs at all to choose from, Florida State’s searching frantically to fill that final spot. Lead candidates are future conference-mates Syracuse and Pittsburgh, but those programs also have elite teams on their schedule already.
In terms of the remainder of their non-conference slate, the Seminoles have already scheduled pretty well — meeting Murray State and the arch rival Florida Gators in Tallahassee, while also heading down to Tampa to take on USF. As a refresher, Florida State lost their previous meeting to USF, but on the flip side, exacted some overdue revenge on the Gators to wrap up the 2011 regular season.
In-conference, Florida State’s due to face the league’s projected bottom-three, along with their fellow preseason ranked teams. Games against Boston College, Maryland and Duke will likely be warm-ups for their true challenges, especially with two of those at home. Two of their three fiercest tests will occur on the road, though. They’ll have to take trips to both NC State and Virginia Tech (neither a forgiving environment), and are also paid a visit from Clemson, with hope they’ll outmatch Tigers QB Tajh Boyd this time around. The picture will get clearer once the ‘Noles fill that final spot in the schedule, but regardless of opponent, it’s a formidable, yet highly-manageable set from start to finish.