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What new ESPN projections say about Florida Gators, FSU football, USF

ESPN released its updated Football Power Index for the 2023 season.
 
The Florida Gators and FSU football are both in for interesting 2023 seasons under Billy Napier and Mike Norvell.
The Florida Gators and FSU football are both in for interesting 2023 seasons under Billy Napier and Mike Norvell. [ PHIL SEARS | AP ]
Published April 18, 2023

ESPN’s Football Power Index (FPI) is lower on Florida State than most sportsbooks and doesn’t expect much from the Florida Gators or USF, either.

The projections have the Seminoles tied with Oregon as the nation’s No. 13 preseason team and peg FSU for between eight and nine wins. FPI gives FSU a 17% chance of winning the ACC and a 4.4% chance of making the College Football Playoff.

That’s a weaker view than way-too-early power rankings and betting odds I’ve seen. DraftKings, for example, give FSU +1800 odds to win the national title; that’s about a 5% chance. Clemson, according to these numbers, is the ACC favorite with a 44.5% shot to win the conference.

FPI has the Gators as the No. 18 team (tied with Jimbo Fisher’s Aggies) and projects a 7-5 record with a 3% chance of winning the SEC East.

UCF sits 26th with between seven and eight wins in its first season in the Big 12. Miami is FPI’s No. 29 team, and USF is 104th. It projects the Bulls to go 5-7 in coach Alex Golesh’s first season.

ESPN’s numbers have Ohio State at No. 1 with an 82% chance to make the playoff and a 36.7% shot at winning the national title. Alabama, Georgia, LSU and Texas round out the top five.

Projections are, obviously, imperfect, especially this time of year. The transfer portal is open, so rosters are still fluid. But these numbers are a metric worth noting as we enter the long, post-spring offseason.

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