College Football Predictions Week 3: No. 5 Florida State to Upset No. 1 Oklahoma

Nick McAndrewsCorrespondent IIISeptember 13, 2011

ATLANTA, GA - DECEMBER 31:  Chris Thompson #23 of the Florida State Seminoles celebrates scoring a touchdown against the South Carolina Gamecocks with Willie Haulstead #82 during the 2010 Chick-fil-A Bowl at Georgia Dome on December 31, 2010 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Perhaps the biggest matchup in the country this week belongs to No. 5 Florida State and No. 1 Oklahoma.

These two teams could have been the two teams in the BCS National Championship if they didn't play each other in the regular season.

Although Oklahoma has only played one game thus far, it still seems to be the spot-on favorite to finish No. 1 in the country at the end of 2011.

The Sooners' one matchup was against Tulsa, which they outscored 47 to 14. This game, like any other early matchup, was just a tune-up game for an obviously talented Sooners team.

One thing I don't understand, however (and this could come from complete ignorance of how the BCS rankings system works), is how Oklahoma remains No. 1 with only one win, while other teams have two wins and more impressive statistics and still get snubbed from a top vote.

Yes, I'm talking about the Seminoles.

In two games, Florida State has outscored its opponents by a combined 100 points to 10 points. I realize that both games were against substantially weaker teams, but the margin of victory for the Seminoles truly shows the strength they have on both sides of the ball.

Seminoles QB E.J. Manuel answered questions about his ability with 581 yards and six touchdowns on 69 passing attempts over two games.

Meanwhile, Sooners QB Landry Jones only threw for one touchdown in Oklahoma's sole game so far this season. Jones is considered a front-runner to win the Heisman Trophy in 2011, but without putting the ball in the end zone more than once a game, he won't be winning many trophies.

On the other hand, Sooners RB Dominique Whaley has already impressed after one game. The junior has four touchdowns and 131 yards on a mere 18 carries.

Whaley could give the Seminoles defense a headache in this matchup, but up to this point Florida State's defense has been exceptional, only allowing 10 points in two games.

I think that among the statistical differences, Florida State could take down Oklahoma simply based on the momentum it has from coming off two consecutive wins, while Oklahoma had a week off.

The Seminoles also come into this game with the advantage that they can play the upset. If Florida State tops the Sooners they automatically become the best team in the nation (to be the best, you have to beat the best). At the same time, if FSU loses, it lost to the No. 1 team and its ranking really isn't affected significantly.

I think that because this is Florida State's only chance at a No. 1 ranking, it will come into the game with the right mentality to win the game.

This will be the first time both teams really have to prove their ranking, but because the Seminoles have the chance to be the take-away, I think they automatically have an advantage going into the game.

If Florida State is able to upset Oklahoma in this game, it will pretty much be able to waltz its way into the BCS National Championship game. The No. 1 Sooners are the only real competition on Florida State's schedule, being the only ranked opponent other than No. 16 Florida, who wasn't much of a challenge for the Seminoles in 2010.


Final Prediction: 56-48, No. 5 Florida State over No. 1 Oklahoma



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