FSU to Face Football's 2 Best Goal-to-Go QBs in 2020
Pro Football Focus recently tweeted out its top rated pair of college quarterbacks in goal-to-go situations for each of the last two years, and they've something in common: they'll each be facing Florida State in the 2020 season.
The 2018 leader was former Houston signal-caller D'Eriq King, who transferred to Miami during the offseason. King saw action in 10 games in 2016, but really emerged as the Cougars' leader over the 2017 and 2018 seasons before playing in four games and then redshirting last year. King is a dual-threat touchdown machine, with 70 so far in his career: 28 rushing and 52 passing. His versatility makes him difficult to defend in the shadow of your own goalpost.
Clemson's Trevor Lawrence rated out higher than any other quarterback in the country for 2019, which is no surprise. He's the odds-on favorite to both win the Heisman Trophy and be the first player selected in the 2021 NFL Draft. He also enjoyed a Tiger rushing attack that averaged more yards per carry (6.37) than any other FBS team last season, and came in second (6.55) during the 2018 campaign . An excellent running game around the goal makes a defense respect not only your generational QB, but the ground game as well.
How has FSU's defense been in the red zone over the last two seasons? Well, it's heading in the right direction. A note: I'm not employing scoring percentage here-- holding an offense to a field-goal attempt in the red zone is typically a win for the defense, and that number puts way too much importance on college kickers' accuracy. Instead, I'm using touchdown percentage.
In 2018, Florida State's touchdown percentage (allowed, of course) was 45th out of 130 FBS teams (56.90%). Last year, that number improved to a tie for 10th (46.88%). But the Seminoles have a new defensive coordinator debuting in Tallahassee this fall, so let's also check out his numbers.
Two years ago, Adam Fuller was the DC at Marshall, and the Thundering Herd were a very respectable 21st in TD percentage (51.06%). Last year, with Mike Norvell at Memphis, Fuller's Tigers held opposing offenses to touchdowns an even 60% of the time: tied for 66th, nationally-- middle of the pack.