State roundup: This year, Florida-FSU is interesting

by Gary Shelton on November 18, 2018 · 2 comments

in general

Franks continues to be criticized by fans./CARMEN MANDATO

Sunday, 1 a.m.

This year, it finally means something. This year, it matters.

No, Florida and FSU won't play for the stakes they once played for, the national titles and the Heismans and the like. But this year, when the teams play in Tallahassee Saturday, both teams will be trying to make a footprint into the years to come.

Florida will be looking for a top 10 ranking. It will be looking to snap a a losing streak to the FSU's recent dominance. It will hope to show the progress of a program.

FSU? The Seminoles will try to extend their streak of bowl games to 36 straight and their streak of winning seasons to 41. It will hope to end a regular season that has been embarrassing at times. It wi.l hope to show that Willie Taggart's hiring wasn't a mistake, after all.

Oh, there was a time it was the nation's most important rivalry. From 1990-2000, both teams were in the top 10 as they played. Six of those years, the teams played for the national title.

This year? Florida State has been the more disappointing of the two. Saturday, however, will erase a lot of black marks for the winner.

FSU 22, Boston College 21: The Seminoles won their biggest football game of the year, upsetting 20th-ranked Boston College when Deondre Francois completed a 74-yard pass to Tamorrion Terry with 1:49 left to play.

Francois threw for 322 yards in the comeback win.

It hasn't been a great year for the Seminoles, who had beaten only Samford, Northern Illinois, Louisville and Wake Forest coming into the game. The Seminoles had dropped three straight.

Cam Akers rushed for 110 yars for FSU, and Terry caught three passes for 112. yards. For Boston College, A.J. Dillon carried 37 times for 116 yards.

"An incredible win for our guys," said FSU coach Willie Taggart. "I'm very proud of our team, proud of their resilience throughout the season and finding a way to keep this streak alive. We have a prideful university. We pride ourselves on winning. It's a resilient group of guys. 

"Today they didn't give up. They found a way to come back."

Florida 63, Idaho 10: The Gators, like a lot of SEC teams, took Saturday off. Georgia  beat UMass, Alabama beat The Citadel, Auburn beat Liberty, South Carolina played Chattanooga, Kentucky played Middle Tennessee and Florida played the outclassed Idaho team.

Idaho has had enough problems in the Big Sky conference, but it had no chance against Florida. The most interesting part of the game was when freshman Emory Jones got heavy minutes at quarterback.

No, he didn't measure up to Feleipe Franks, the starter who threw for 274 yards and three scores. But Jones hit 12 of 16 for 125 yards, which isn't going to ease the criticism of Franks.

"I was really pleased to get him in as early as we did and get him as many reps as we could because he is one play away from being in the game next week," said Florida coach Dan Mullen. "He’s got a little bit more experience on game day, in there, running the show by himself, not just with a small package -- having to run the whole offense.”

Miami 38, Virginia Tech 14: The Hurricanes snapped a four-game losing streak with a victory over the Hokies.

Quarterback N'Kosi Perry wasn't sensational with 171 yars, but he threw for two touchdowns and ran for another one as the Hurricanes won.

“The guys just kept waking up every morning, showing up, going to work and kept doing what we asked them to do,” Miami coach Mark Richt said of the losing streak. “Just proud of our staff and our players for how they handled it.”

FIU 42, Charlotte 35: It wasn't easy, but FIU kept alive their hopes of playing in the Conference USA title game.

The Panthers did away with Charlotte on a night when quarterback James Morgan threw for 268 yards and two touchdowns.

FIU now must beat Marshall to advance to the Conference USA title game against UAB. FIU is now 6-1 in conference play.

Napolean Maxwell rushed for 102 yards for FIU. Anthony Maloney caught three passes for 107 yards.

“I was proud of these guys,” said coach Butch Davis. “They really fought hard, although we were a lot more effective in the second half.”

FIU closes the regular season Saturday at home against Marshall, and either a Panther victory or a Middle Tennessee loss against West Division leader UAB will send Davis’ team into the conference championship Dec. 1.

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