Busting Brackets

Florida State vs Louisville: 2020-21 college basketball game preview, TV schedule

LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY - FEBRUARY 22: David Johnson #13 of the Louisville Cardinals dribbles the ball against the North Carolina Tar Heels at KFC YUM! Center on February 22, 2020 in Louisville, Kentucky. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY - FEBRUARY 22: David Johnson #13 of the Louisville Cardinals dribbles the ball against the North Carolina Tar Heels at KFC YUM! Center on February 22, 2020 in Louisville, Kentucky. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /

TV Schedule: Monday, January 18th, 7 pm ET, ESPN

Arena: KFC Yum! Center, Louisville, KY

On Monday night, the Florida State Seminoles (7-2, 3-1 ACC) will travel to take on the Louisville Cardinals (9-2, 4-1 ACC) with a matchup between two teams with one loss in the conference.

Florida State and Louisville are two of six teams with one loss in the ACC. Currently, the Seminoles and Cardinals are behind ACC frontrunner Virginia, which is the only team that is undefeated in the conference.

This will mark the 49th all-time meeting between Florida State and Louisville. The Cardinals lead the all-time series 34-14, while Florida State has won the last three meetings. Last season, the Seminoles won both matchups 78-65 and 82-67.

Both teams have a quick turnaround for their matchup on Monday, with Florida State and Louisville last playing on Saturday.

The Seminoles got out to a slow start this season with double-digit losses to UCF and Clemson. However, Florida State has appeared to have turned a corner this week and is heading into Monday’s matchup riding a two-game winning streak.

On Wednesday, the Seminoles powered their way through North Carolina State with a 105-73 victory. Senior guard, RayQuan Evans (7.4 ppg), scored a career-high 24 points in 19 minutes.

During their last game on Saturday, Florida State was able to pull out the victory 82-75 over North Carolina. Five-star freshman point guard, Scottie Barnes (11.1 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 4.1 apg), did not play on Saturday due to an ankle injury. Despite leaving the game in the second half for a brief period of time due to an ankle injury, senior guard, M.J. Walker (15.8 ppg), led the Seminoles with 21 points on four made three-point shots.

In Louisville’s last game, the Cardinals were able to hang in with Miami during the second half, but could not complete the comeback. The Hurricanes got out to a 33-21 lead at halftime and were able to pull off the upset over Louisville 78-72.

Senior point guard, Carlik Jones (17.2 ppg, 6.6 rpg, 4.7 apg), kept on rolling with his impressive graduate season on Saturday, scoring a season-high 25 points. Freshman forward, Jae’lyn Withers (9.2 ppg, 6.8 rpg), logged in his second double-double of the season with 18 points and 11 rebounds.

For Florida State, the Seminoles have a deep roster with nine players averaging at least 10 minutes per game. During their last two games, Florida State’s offense has broken out, as the Seminoles currently lead the conference averaging 82 points per game through four ACC games.

The key for Florida State will be whether they can stop the Cardinals perimeter attack, led by Carlik Jones and sophomore guard, David Johnson (13.7 ppg, 5.7 rpg, 4.2 apg). Louisville’s top two scorers, Jones and Johnson, are shooting 39 percent or better from three-point range.

On Saturday, the Seminoles struggled to defend North Carolina’s perimeter shooting. UNC entered their matchup 11th in the ACC in three-point shooting. The Tar Heels made 10 three-point shots as a team, with Kerwin Walton and Caleb Love combining to make nine of those three-point shots.

The main strength for Florida State is their free-throw shooting, which was on full display on Saturday. The Seminoles were able to pick up the victory over North Carolina in large part due to their efficiency at the free-throw line.

Florida State went 26-for-27 at the free-throw line against North Carolina. On Wednesday, the Seminoles were perfect at the free-throw line making all 11 free throws.

This season, Louisville has been led by their defense. The Cardinals are currently third in the ACC allowing conference opponents to score 63.5 points per game. Louisville will need to bring their best defensive effort on Monday when they take on the ACC’s top-ranked offense with Florida State.

The two keys for Louisville will be to lock up the perimeter and to win the rebounding battle. Louisville’s perimeter defense will be left with the tough task to defend the Seminoles perimeter shooting attack, which is currently first in the ACC converting on 43.3 percent of their three-point shots.

Where Louisville could have the edge on Monday is on the glass. The Cardinals are currently first in the ACC averaging over 44 rebounds per game. However, Louisville struggled on the glass on Saturday night against Miami. The Cardinals were outrebounded 38-31 by the Hurricanes. Florida State will enter their matchup 11th in the ACC averaging around 32 rebounds per game.

Offensively, Louisville will need to start making their three-point shots and to get David Johnson going. During their last game against Miami, Louisville shot just 3-for-20 from the outside (15 percent), while Johnson was held to five points.

During his last two games, Johnson has struggled offensively, going 4-for-14 (28.6 percent) from the floor, scoring only 10 points during the last 60 minutes.

On Monday night, the stakes are high as both teams will enter their matchup with one loss in the conference chasing Virginia at the top.

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Florida State is looking to extend their winning streak to three and to grab their first victory on the road this season, While, Louisville is looking to bounce back and extend their home record to 7-0 this season.

Prediction: Louisville 74, Florida State 71