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FSU’s best shot at competing might be on the defensive side

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If the college teams of Florida are to be successful, this much is clear.

They will ride their defenses to do it.

So far, the offenses of the state schools are sputtering. Everett Golson, the quarterback of FSU, still has spans where he does not play well to keep the pressure off of Dalvin Cook. Will Grier cannot convince his own coach that the job should be his. And even Miami’s offense stopped scoring against Nebraska in its overtime win.

But defensively.

Ah, there, the state schools make a muscle.

FSU has the national’s eighth-ranked defense with Jalen Ramsey and Antonio Smith, giving up 256.3 yards per game. and it’s seventh in third downs. It’s sixth in scoring defense.

Florida, with Vernon Hargreaves and Jon Bullard, is ranked 22nd, giving up 298.3. In scoring defense, it’s 30th.

Miami is ranked 27th. USF is 45th. FIU is 50th. UCF is 78th. FAU is 84th.

Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit [email protected]

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