Originally written on Crystal Ball Run  |  Last updated 9/7/12

Ten touchdowns. Savannah State is getting 10 touchdowns – plus an an extra half-point – for its game at Florida State tomorrow. In case you were wondering, Savannah Guthrie would only be a nine-touchdown underdog in Tallahassee.

Ten touchdowns-plus, or 70.5 points. No school has ever been a greater underdog as far as the odds makers are concerned. We might call this uncharted territory for the Savannah State Tigers except that they were the largest underdogs (67.5) in history last Saturday when they played at Oklahoma State.

As you know, Savannah State failed to cover, losing 84-0.

You have to expand your horizons beyond college football, beyond the realm of sport, to find entities as prohibitively favored as Florida State is tomorrow. Crazy Horse and his team at the Little Big Horn. Gravity. Death.

The list does not expand much beyond that.

Florida State must outscore Savannah State by five touchdowns per half – and then find a half-point somewhere else – simply to cover. If you are Tiger coach Steve Davenport, why not make this your real game? Your players may not be able to cover Seminole wide receiver Rashad Greene, may not be able to cover kickoffs and punts, so why not cover the spread?

If, for no other reason, to keep your players interested.

Let’s do the math here. If a team can exhaust 40 seconds between the time a play is whistled dead and the start of the next one, then Savannah State should be able to run off at 2:30 or so of actual time during each possession – we strongly advise taking a knee on first-, second- and third downs.

That amount of time equates to 1/6 of a quarter and 1/12th of a half. Stay with us here. The Seminoles must score five touchdowns per half to remain at the pace –actually, just below it due to the ½ point – of the point spread. If Florida State kicks away after each touchdown (would Jimbo Fisher really attempt an onside kick versus the Tigers?), that’s a minimum of five possessions, or 12:30, per half that Savannah State would hold the ball.

So it would come to this. The Seminoles have the ball for 17:30, or thereabouts, per half, and the Tigers are charged with trying to hold them below five touchdowns in that span of time. Not easy, but definitely possible. If you are the Tigers you punt out of bounds and, as we said before, you take a knee.

Call it your “Beat-the-Spread Offense.”

If the fans at Doak Campbell Stadium heckle you, so what? You’re here for the $475,000 check, not for a victory, and both you and the Seminole fans know it.

Why not create some real drama? Instead of worrying about beating the Seminoles, focus on beating the spread. Now if only Brent Musburger were announcing this game.

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