OK, so. Before we begin this preview, a history lesson. The trophy shown above is the Jefferson-Eppes Trophy. This is the trophy given to the winner of the FSU-UVA football game. Yes, there is a trophy. Yes, there is a reason.
It’s pretty common knowledge that Thomas Jefferson founded the University of Virginia. Thus, the Jefferson part of this equation. But who is Eppes? Francis Eppes was the grandson of Thomas Jefferson, and a wealthy planter in his own right in the mid-1800s. He served as a Justice of the Peace for Leon County, and as what we’d consider a mayor today of Tallahassee. He later proposed a seminary west of the Suwanee River and funded it with his own money. Thus, the institution that would later be known as Florida State University was born.
Pop quiz: What building is this?
Answer: That’s FSU’s Law School. It was modeled after Thomas Jefferson’s home, Monticello.
So. Enough history. To the football, shall we?
2019 FSU-UVA Game Info
- Charlottesville, VA
- 7:30 Eastern, ACC Network
- UVA -7, O/U 57
- Last Game:
- FSU: W, 45-44, ULM
- UVA: W, 52-17, William & Mary
When FSU’s on Offense
So apparently, we have an offense now. And it has to support a “defense”. Virginia plays tough, and is very disciplined on defense. Their defense is ranked almost equally with Boise’s by SP+. The good news is that they did lose a lot off of a Top 35 defense from a year ago. Cam Akers is a beast, and if we can scheme open some of our receivers, we’ll be in business. But one thing to watch for will be the O-Line, as always. Brady Scott was hurt in the Boise game, and Jauan Williams is still in a walking boot, so expect Abdul Bello to get the start. If we keep losing O-Linemen for long stretches of games, it’s gonna be tough to keep moving the ball.
When FSU’s on Defense
Ugh. As optimistic as I am about the offense, the defense is the exact opposite. We have shown no way to stop anyone, let alone this offense. If we play zone, we’ll get ripped to shreds passing. If we play man, we’ll get ripped to shreds by the QB run. For us to have a sliver of a chance, we need to get consistent pressure in the face of QB Bryce Perkins and keep him from escaping the pocket. This means being physical with our linebackers and keeping good gap discipline. If our linebackers fail to trigger and play physically (as has been the trend), we will get beaten.
How does this team respond to adversity? Nole Nation is ready to either storm the Moore Center and demand change, or be pleasantly surprised. I wonder, personally, if the time away from home and away from the pressure of our own fan base will loosen up the defense and allow them to play more instinctively. Only time will tell.
John: 42-31 UVA – We start out hot, but the defense can solve the designed runs by Bryce Perkins as it gives them an extra blocker.
Cory: 41-38 UVA – We’re able to move the ball well, but our defense is again absent. Bold Endeavor: FSU goes for it on 4th down on an easy FG early in the 2nd half, doesn’t make it, and that ends up costing later.
James: 45-43 OT FSU – FSU’s defense is able to make one more stop and get the win.
Mike: 41-24 UVA – In Week 1, FSU let an 18-point lead slip away to a Boise State team that was traveling from two time zones away, bused to a game that was moved up seven hours. They recorded the third-most yards ever against the Seminoles with a true freshman quarterback making his first start. In Week 2 against Louisiana-Monroe, FSU somehow found a way to regress. It’s entirely possible that FSU could go into Charlottesville and win, but given the strength of Virginia’s defense along with the Seminoles’ glaring weaknesses on that side of the ball and propensity for mental errors, it’s hard for me to imagine that happening.