No.17 Florida State vs Tulane Preview and Prediction
No.17 Florida State vs Tulane Preview
No. 17 Florida State, coming off an impressive 81-60 season-opening victory over rival Florida, will try to build more momentum when it heads to Louisiana to play Tulane in their season opener.
FSU’s 21-point margin of victory was its largest in the rivalry series since 1969.
“We’re just starting to figure out who we are. I’m not ready to start taking bows yet,” said FSU coach Leonard Hamilton, whose team went 23-12 last season and made a thrilling run to the Elite Eight as a No. 9 seed.
“We still have a long way to go and we have to maintain. We still have enough memories from last year that it keeps us in check. We don’t want to get too far ahead of ourselves; it’s one game.”
The Green Wave were a disappointing 14-17 last season, but are coached by one of the best. Mike Dunleavy Sr. took over the program last season and is looking to see improvement in year two.
That will be difficult without their leading scorer Melvin Frazier, who left after his junior season and was selected No. 35 overall by the Orlando Magic. The Green Wave’s second-leading scorer, guard Cameron Reynolds (15.1 points, 6.3 rebounds), completed his eligibility.
Tulane’s leading returning scorer is 6-foot-9 forward Samir Sehic, who averaged 10.5 points and 5.2 rebounds per game last season. He and sophomore guard Caleb Daniels each scored 17 points in Tulane’s 85-74 exhibition victory over Loyola-New Orleans.
“I am a little disappointed in how they played,” Dunleavy said of his team.
“I thought we started the game the way we wanted to start the game out, but turnovers and offensive rebounds are a bad combination to have a bad nights with, which leads to easy opportunity points for the other team.”
The goal is to improve on last year’s record–but from the outside looking in, it will be difficult for Tulane to find consistent success this season.
That begins in their season opener…
Florida State can go 11 players deep (all 11 played at least five minutes against the Gators) and they have multiple players who can hit from long-range. The Seminoles went 11-for-23 from beyond the arc.
Senior guard PJ Savoy led the way with 20 points, making 5 of 7 3-point attempts. He entered the season eighth in school history with a shooting percentage of 38.8 from 3-point range.
Guards Trent Forest (13 points) and M.J. Walker (10) also reached double-digit point totals.
LINE: -14.5 FSU
I love this line of -14.5 for FSU—my only concern would be a letdown or the Seminoles overlooking their opponent (the team has the AdvoCare Invitational next week) and are coming off a huge high beating their in-state rivals.
FSU has the talent to beat Tulane by 30.
Florida State 81 Tulane 60