Florida State Opponent Preview series: Duquesne

We probably don’t need to spend too much time previewing Duquesne. Hopefully this just a tune game for FSU to get in rhythm for the big game against LSU. Nonetheless, let’s take a look and see what they’ll bring to Tallahassee for a week zero match-up.

Duquesne finished 7-3 in 2021 and played one game against a power 5 opponent which was a TCU team that finished 5-7. TCU won 45-3 in a game that was shortened to 12-minute quarters in the second half. Duquesne only managed to put up 137 yards of offense while giving up over 400 in a game they were clearly outmatched in. 

If you look at their Pro Football Focus team grade for that game it was 32.6 which was far their than any other game last season with the next lowest being 62.5. Obviously, this is not a surprising outcome but it gives us an idea of how they performed against another power 5 team. It provides a glimpse of what type of game we should see August 27th.

Duquesne offense

The 2021 Duquesne offense finished the season ranked 70th in yards per game (346) and 39th in points per game (29.5) at the FCS level. The good news for the Dukes, they return quarterback Darius Perrantes who threw for a little over 1,600 yards in 9 games with a completion percentage of 59.1% and had 17 touchdowns to 7 interceptions. They also return their leading rusher who put up over 700 yards in 10 games last season.

They bad news, they have to replace leading receiver, Cyrus Holder, who signed as a free agent with the Chicago Bears. Holder’s 629 receiving yards was over double that of any other receiver on the team and he also led them in receiving touchdowns as well.

They are also tasked with replacing running back Garrett Owens who accounted for almost 40% of their rushing production last season. Owens was also a capable receiver as well which helped him lead the team in all-purpose yards. Duquesne will also need to find replacements for 2 of their 5 starting offensive linemen from last season.

Duquesne Passer Preview

Duquesne Defense

On defense, the Dukes finished top 30 in the FCS in most categories allowing an average of 333.6 yards and 22.9 points per game. They return a good number of starters from last season, but need to find replacements for departing impact players at multiple positions. The lost 3 of their top 7 tacklers, leader in defensive stops, and 2nd leading sack producer from a year ago. The Duquesne defense only allowed 30 or more point in 2 games in 2021, one of which was against TCU.

Duquesne 2021 Stat review

Wrapping up

Duquesne has little experienced depth on both sides of the ball when you go over the snap count sheet. They will be out manned and out gunned from a size, skill and depth standpoint.

FSU should easily over match the Dukes resulting in lopsided game where the starters hit the bench by halftime. I know what you’re thinking, but for the record Duquesne is no Jacksonville State and I doubt the staff will get caught overlooking an opponent this time around.

FSU should use this game to get in rhythm before LSU and see what some of the backups have. If FSU were to lose this one the entire staff should be fired before they make it to the locker room. Last year scarred us as a fan base, especially yours truly who sat row 1 behind the JSU bench for that loss… Norvell knows he can’t mess around like he did last year and have another embarrassing loss to an FCS team. I think FSU is past that stage now and will look to run it up. Hopefully, for the first time since 2016 the Noles start the season 1-0 and roll into New Orleans with some momentum.

We’ll wrap this preview up here, be sure to check out the rest of the game previews as they are rolled out. The remainder of the games are against FBS teams and therefore will be a more in-depth preview than Duquesne. If you want them all right now plus a lot more information to get prepared for the season, go grab your copy of our 2022 FSU Football Season Preview Digital Magazine, it’s FREE! Thanks for reading and Go Noles!

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