In one of the most anticipated battles of week one of the 2023 college football season, Florida State and LSU will meet in Orlando, FL in a battle of two top 10 teams at the opening of the season. Last season, FSU pulled out the win with a last-second block winning 24-23. What will the sequel provide? Let’s take a look at some of the players that will make a difference in the matchup.
Wide Receivers – While we could sit here and talk about individuals, the group for the Seminoles stands out. They established themselves last season and the Seminoles did a great job reloading bringing in Keon Coleman from Michigan State as well as freshman Destyn Hill. Both playmakers will add a level of excitement to the offense and complement Johnny Wilson very well. Although the receivers for the Tigers are good, the talent level for the Seminoles puts them in a better position. Edge- Seminoles wide receivers. Johnny Wilson will look to continue what he did in 2022 and Coleman brings his athletic ability to new surroundings.
Defenses – Being in the SEC defense is vital so LSU will have a formidable defense. The Seminoles’ defense is no slouch though. Returning starters in almost every position, the defense knows how to not only play complimentary to each other, they know how to get after the ball and wreak havoc on opposing offenses. The veteran presence on the defense will prove vital against the Tigers offense. The trio of Akeem Dent, Jared Verse, and Tatum Bethune provide the Seminoles leaders at every level of the defense. Edge- The Seminoles’ defense should be a difference maker again as they have another year of experience playing together.
Intangibles – These two teams are both deserving of their rankings heading into the season. Both are great teams with top-notch coaches. They both have programs that have developed players to succeed at the next level. Coach Kelly has redirected the LSU program to be in the mix for SEC Titles and the Playoffs. Coach Norvell has rebuilt a program that prior to his arrival was struggling (to put it nicely). The difference in coaching is subtle, but where the difference seems is that at FSU led by coach Norvell and his staff, the players have bought into his way of doing things. When I had the opportunity to ask both Jermaine Johnson and Jammie Robinson both spoke very highly of Coach Norvell, with Johnson saying Norvell was a primary reason for him to play at FSU. Edge- Coach Norvell
Prediction – While this game won’t be taken lightly by either team it will be a close score, it will come down to who makes fewer mistakes. The Seminoles take their next step after how they finished the 2022 season and come out with a win. Final score – 35-31 FSU.