Florida International Panthers 2023 College Football Preview
June 13, 2023
Record – 4-8
ATS – 4-7 (vs FBS)
Year one of the Mike MacIntyre experience was bad (outscored 447-224) but it wasn’t as horrible as many pundits expected. They managed to win four games, and as crazy as it sounds, they were actually 4-4 at one point. They fell apart in the final month and had a three-game stretch in which they yielded 52,52, and 40 points.
The Panthers showed they could be competitive at times in 2022. Do they have the MINERALS to make positive strides in 2023? Let’s dig in.
Florida International Panthers 2023 Outlook
The offense wasn’t anything to write home about LY as they struggled to run the football (#118 FBS) as well as MATRICULATE the ball down the field via the air attack (#84). QB Grayson James might show some improvement this year after showing some flashes of competence in 2022 (11-11 TD to INT, 223 rush, 3 TD). The THROW GAME targets look a bit sketchy outside of WR Kris Mitchell (15.1, 4 TD LY) and we’re concerned that they’ll have trouble stretching the field like they did last season (5.6 YPA, #124). The news doesn’t get much better when you consider that they lost #1 RB Lexington Joseph due to injury and both of their starting offensive tackles to the transfer portal. Hopefully, transfer RB Shomari Lawrence (South Dakota) can be the workhorse that they so desperately need. <grabs popcorn>
The Panthers struggled to stop their opponents LY (#110 rushing defense, #115 pass efficiency D) and that wasn’t more evident than during their 73-CACK loss to Western Kentucky. There’s reason to expect improvement this year as they return virtually all of their top-10 tacklers from a season ago including their fine pair of LBs Donovan Manuel (#2 tackler) and Shaun Peterson Jr. (team leading 6 sacks). They’ve also added a few interesting pieces via the transfer portal including LB Avery Huff (Miami Fla) and safety JoJo Evans (Kent St). This stop unit looks like it’s ready to take at least a small step forward.
Punter Daton Montiel is a reliable specialist (42.1) but they’ve gotta get better production from PK Chase Gabriel who’s a disappointing 15-25 on FGA since 2021.
Overall – It’s not too bad. They have three (dare we say) winnable games in non-conference play (Maine, North Texas, at Connecticut) and Conference USA is definitely weaker overall in 2023.
Potential ATS Trouble Spot – at Arkansas (Nov 18)
RUH ROH. This could be a LAY DOWN AND DIE spot as it’s sandwiched between a pair of conference games and their season might be over by this point in time. We can’t see ourselves taking the yuuuge road underdog in this situation.
Season Win Total
Market consensus June 12
Over 3.5 -120
Under 3.5 +100
We’ve seen a rogue “3” out there with high juice and that’s the way you should go if you wanna take a shot with the “over”. Three or four wins feels like the right range so we’ll take a pass for now.
We’re coming up on the 17th anniversary of THE MELEE IN MIAMI. Back in 2006, the Panthers and YOUR Miami Hurricanes had a bench-clearing brawl that involved players and coaches from both teams. Over a dozen players were ejected and the game was shortened by two minutes. No word on if there were eye gouges or ATOMIC WEDGIES as part of the rumble.
It’s hard to imagine the offense being much better than last year’s version but we expect the defense to play an improved brand of football. HC Mike MacIntyre has a long history of getting teams to play over their heads so it’s not like it would surprise us if they overachieve. After all, he coaxed four wins out of a TURD SANDWICH last year. Go Panthers!