Keys to the Game and Matchups to Watch: Florida State

Virginia Tech is coming off their best all-around game of the season after
demolishing a good Georgia Tech squad 27-3. The offense led by Sean Glennon
gained a season-high 481 yards against one of the top-ranked defenses in the
country, and the Hokie defense created six turnovers in the resounding Thursday
night win. Florida State one-upped the Hokies by knocking off #2 ranked Boston
College at Chestnut Hill. So, how will this renewal of an old rivalry play out
between these peaking teams?

Virginia Tech-Florida State series dates back to the 1950s, with some of the
biggest Hokie wins coming against the Seminoles. However, FSU has owned the
series since 1975, and Bobby Bowden has never lost to a Virginia Tech team. The
Noles have recorded huge wins over the Hokies in the national championship Sugar
Bowl game in 2000 and the first ACC Championship game in 2005. Frank Beamer has
never defeated a Bobby Bowden coached team. So, do the Hokies stand a chance?

Florida State has struggled, at least for the Seminoles’ standards, in the
last couple of years, particularly on offense. Bobby Bowden revamped his
offensive coaching staff in the off-season, letting go of his son, Jeff, as the
offensive coordinator. Bowden brought in heralded offensive coordinator Jimbo
Fisher from LSU and one of the top offensive line coaches in Rick Trickett from
West Virginia. However, the Noles have still struggled on offense. Part of the
reason may be the adjustment to the new offensive system, but I believe the real
problem is that FSU does not possess the talent of previous Seminole squads.

When looking at the Florida State team, ask yourself one simple question,
“Who is the star of this FSU squad?” The Seminoles have traditionally
had numerous All-American candidates on their team, but who on this year’s
roster is truly an all-star candidate? Defensively, FSU has several young
players with All-American potential, such as strong safety Myron Rolle and weak
side linebacker Geno Hayes, but the offense lacks stars, a rarity for the