Northern Illinois vs. Florida State Bowl Picks for Orange Bowl 1/1

Last Updated: January 1st, 2013 by Adam Markowitz (Bankroll Sports Columnist)
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The X’s and O’s of the Orange Bowl predictions aren’t shared by many expert handicappers, but here at Bankroll Sports, we are giving up all of our insight and telling you all of the keys to the game for the Northern Illinois Huskies vs. Florida State Seminoles. The Orange Bowl picks are some of the hardest to make this year of all of the bowl games, so don’t miss out on all of our Northern Illinois vs. Florida State predictions!

2013 Orange Bowl: Northern Illinois Huskies vs. Florida State Seminoles
2013 Orange Bowl Location: Sun Life Stadium, Miami Gardens, FL
2013 Orange Bowl Date/Time: Tuesday, January 1st, 8:30 p.m. (ET)
2013 Orange Bowl On TV: ESPN

Click Here For The Rest Of The 2012-13 Bowl Game Schedule And Other Bowl Game Previews

Key #1: The Seminoles have to want to win this game
It’s tough to question whether a team wants to show up and play in a BCS bowl game, but even here, at the highest level of bowl games, you get teams that just fail to show up from time to time. The truth of the matter is that this is the only way that FSU is even getting remotely challenged. Yes, the team is banged up on defense, but we have seen the Noles sleepwalk through the season. NC State picked them off. Florida did, too. Virginia Tech and Georgia Tech came close. And why did that happen? It’s either because the Seminoles were severely overrated, or they just had a hard time getting motivated for games. Remember that the garnet and gold were the only team in America favored by at least a touchdown in each and every one of their games this year. If Head Coach Jimbo Fisher can’t get his boys up for this one though, it could end up being an embarrassing day for Florida State.

Orange Bowl Odds at BetRevolution Sportsbook
Northern Illinois Huskies +13.5
Florida State Seminoles -13.5
Over/Under 58.5
Click Here to Bet Your Orange Bowl Picks!

Key #2: Jordan Lynch has to figure out how to get something going offensively
This really is the key for the Huskies in this one. For as inconsistent as Florida State’s offense has been this year, the defense has really consistently been pretty darn good. This is going to be the biggest challenge that the Huskies have ever seen defensively, and it is the biggest game of Lynch’s career. His stats speak for themselves; we don’t care what the level of competition is. If you throw for nearly 3,000 yards and rush for nearly 2,000 yards, even if it is in the MAC, you’ve still done something pretty remarkable. The question that we have for Lynch and the Huskies, though? Can you do it against an FBS team? Remember that the two worst offensive performances of the year for NIU came against the Iowa Hawkeyes and the Kansas Jayhawks. The argument could be made that that was all because it was early in the year, but the argument could also be made that the MAC really is just an overrated conference that has to right to stack up with the big boys. We’ll see the answer to that on New Year’s night.

BetGuardian

Key #3: EJ Manuel has to go out with a bang
QB EJ Manuel is going to go down as one of the most efficient quarterbacks that Florida State has ever seen, but few are likely to ever remember him for all that much, aside from the fact that every loss the team suffers is considered to be on his back. Statistically speaking, this was the best year that Manuel has ever had, as he threw for 3,101 yards and 22 TDs against 10 picks and rushed for 284 yards and three more scores. More importantly, he stayed healthy all season long, which really helped matters as well. That being said, the senior is playing in his final game, and he doesn’t want to be remembered in Tallahassee as the man that lost to Florida and then lost the only BCS bowl game that the team has been at in quite some time. Manuel has thrown at least one pick in four straight games, and that just doesn’t cut it for a team that has such a remarkable defense. The offense has to at least do something for the Noles, and with RB Chris Thompson out of the fold and a running back by committee approach not always being the most effective, it could be up to Manuel’s arm to make the few big throws to win this game.

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Posted in College Football - Last Updated on Tuesday, January 1st, 2013 @ 6:00 am (EST)
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