Our 2016 Capital One Orange Bowl free pick features two nationally ranked teams, #6 Michigan Wolverines and #11 Florida State Seminoles. This is the final of five bowl games that will be played on Friday, Dec. 30.
The Michigan Wolverines (10-2 Overall, 7-2 Big Ten Conference) finished third in the Big Ten East. They won nine straight until Iowa surprised them 14-13. They regained their footing by beating Indiana 20-10. In their final game of the regular season they met #2 Ohio State. They Buckeyes won that contest 30-27.
The Florida State Seminoles (9-5 Overall, 5-3 Atlantic Coast Conference) went 3-2 against nationally ranked teams. In the first game of the season, they beat #11 Mississippi 45-34. Later they lost to #10 Louisville 63-20 and #3 Clemson 37-34. Between those two losses came a 20-19 win against #10 Miami. Their last game is the season was against #15 Florida. The Seminoles dispatched them 31-13.
#6 Michigan Wolverines
Michigan has an exceptionally productive offense. Their red zone offense is 90.83%. On average, they are scoring 41.0 PPG. QB Wilton Speight (62.5 COMP%, 17 TDs, 6 INTs) runs an efficient offense. Amara Darboh (52 REC, 826 YDs, 15.9 AVG, 7 TDs) is his prime receiver. The Wolverines have a whole squad of accomplished runners, including top ground gainer De’Veon Smith (165 ATT, 810 YDs, 4.9 AVG, 10 TDs)
The Wolverine defense is as tough and stingy as they come. Opponents are scoring a mere 12.5 PPG. Their red zone defense is one of the best in the nation, as teams are scoring 68% of the time. Their other statistics are also prodigious. The Wolverines have 44 sacks, 114 TFL, and 48 QB hurries. In addition, Michigan has cause seven fumbles, broken up 48 passes, and made 12 INTs. Their turnover margin is plus six.
#11 Florida State Gators
The Seminoles are averaging 35.3 PPG. They have an extremely efficient red zone offense at 96.3%. Deondre Francois (60.6 COMP%, 18 TDs, 8 INTs) is a passing quarterback. He favorite receivers are Travis Rudolph (53 REC, 807 YDs, 15.2 AVG, 7 TDs) and Auden Tate (25 REC, 609 YDs, 16.4 AVG, 6 TDs). RB Dalvin Cook (268 ATT, 1620 YDs, 6.0 AVG, 18 TDs) is tough to stop.
The Florida State defense is allowing opponents 24.4 PPG. Their red zone D is decent at 78.05%. Their stats include 47 sacks, 14 INTS, and 24 QB hurries. Plus, the team has notched 36 PD, 9 FF, and 79 TFL. Their turnover margin is on the plus side at four.
2016 Capital One Orange Bowl Free Pick
In our 2016 Capital One Orange Bowl free pick, we like Michigan at -6.5 and the over at 51.5 from BetDSI. The Wolverine defense should, for the most part, hold. And their offensive weapons should overwhelm the Seminoles.
The 2016 Capital One Orange Bowl will be played on Dec. 30 at 8 p.m. ET at the
Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, FL. It will be aired on ESPN.