2023 Orange Bowl Odds: Georgia Bulldogs vs. Florida State Seminoles Preview

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The Florida State Seminoles expected to be in the College Football Playoff this year. They went 13-0. They didn’t lose a game. They won the ACC championship. They felt they had done more than enough to get in. Yet, they were passed over in favor of an Alabama team which lost one game. It was a highly controversial decision, and it came from the fact that Florida State’s starting quarterback, Jordan Travis, was injured and knocked out for the rest of the season a few weeks ago. He was not going to be able to play in any bowl game or playoff game. The selection committee held that against Florida State and put Alabama in instead.

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Now Florida State is left to play in a non-playoff bowl where it obviously didn’t want to be. As you can see below in our game notes, a lot of Florida State players have either gone to the transfer portal or have opted out of this game, a clear indication of how little they want to be playing in this contest.

It’s the undeniably central story of the 2023 Orange Bowl odds, and it will be fascinating to see if Florida State’s backup at key positions can play well enough to defeat a Georgia team which won the previous two national championships but got dethroned this year when it lost to Alabama in the SEC Championship Game. Let’s take a closer look at the betting strategy for this contest.

Georgia Bulldogs vs Florida State Seminoles

Date: Saturday, December 30th, 2023 – 4:00 PM ET

Location: Hard Rock Stadium, Miami Gardens, FL

2023 Orange Bowl Odds Odds: Georgia -14.5

*Odds courtesy of YouWager. Read the full YouWager review for more details about the book.

Georgia Bulldogs

Georgia linebacker Darris Smith, edge rusher C.J. Madden, offensive tackle Austin Blaske, backup quarterback Brock Vandagriff, cornerback Smoke Bouie, edge rusher Marvin Jones, linebacker Jamon Dumas-Johnson, defensive back A.J. Harris, linebacker Xavian Sorey, and offensive lineman Joshua Miller have all entered the transfer portal. They will not play in this game.

Georgia was trying to defend its back-to-back national championships, but the dream died as the Bulldogs were left out of the playoff (correctly). Georgia’s motivation level for this game might be in question. However, head coach Kirby Smart has a pretty good track record of getting his team to play well on a consistent basis. It is precisely why Georgia has won multiple national titles and become a college football superpower. Younger players on this team, plus players who will be coming back for the 2024 season, will want to play well and build momentum heading into the offseason. Crucially, quarterback Carson Beck is returning for next season. He will want to play well in this game. He gives Georgia a huge advantage at quarterback with Jordan Travis out for Florida State.

Florida State Seminoles

Quarterback Jordan Travis is injured. He will not play. Tight end Markeston Douglas, linebacker Dylan Brown-Turner, running back C.J. Campbell, backup quarterback A.J. Duffy, offensive tackle Colin King, receiver Winston Wright, defensive tackle Malcolm Ray, linebacker D.J. Lundy, defensive tackle Joshua Farmer, and defensive end Jared Verse have all entered the transfer portal. They will not play.

Receiver Keon Coleman has opted out to prepare for the NFL draft. He will not play.

The absence of Jordan Travis is the main reason Georgia is a big favorite over Florida State, but Keon Coleman opting out is also significant. He is Florida State’s best receiver. FSU might be motivated to play, but a lot of top players have already declared their intent to not play. Florida State’s backups will be thrust into action, so it’s really hard to base anything in this game on the way the Seminoles played for the bulk of the season when Jordan Travis and Keon Coleman (plus others) were on the field.

Georgia vs. Florida State Prediction:

Georgia 38, Florida State 14