Florida State blew out Charleston Southern 52-8 on Saturday. The third-ranked Seminoles dominated every facet of Saturday’s home opener against a Buccaneers squad that was decimated by injuries and NCAA suspensions.
Undermanned Buccaneers No Match For Seminoles
Deondre Francois continued his impressive play Saturday. The redshirt freshman quarterback completed 25 of 32 passes for 262 yards and three touchdowns. However, his performance did have blemishes. The Buccaneers were able to force him into throwing his first career interception.
Dalvin Cook led the Seminoles ground game. The Heisman Trophy hopeful gained 83 yards on 11 carries. He also scored his first two rushing touchdowns of the year. Cook’s combination of power and speed was on full display on his second score. The junior running back was able to stay on his feet through the line of scrimmage, break a tackle and scamper 37 yards to the endzone.
He gone! ?? pic.twitter.com/sIYY0cZKxl
— FSU Football (@FSU_Football) September 10, 2016
Junior receiver Travis Rudolph led Florida State’s receiving efforts. Rudolph caught seven passes for 105 yards and two touchdowns. Auden Tate, the 6-5 sophomore receiver, hauled in Francois’s third touchdown pass on a back shoulder fade from the goal line.
Senior receiver Jesus Wilson was also able to get in on the scoring action on special teams. Wilson returned a Buccaneer punt 89 yards for a touchdown. The score was Florida State’s first punt return touchdown in three years.
Defensively, Florida State was once again able to win the turnover margin. The Seminoles forced three fumbles as Charleston Southern struggled to find much success offensively. The Buccaneers’ lone offensive points came on a Robert Mitchell 57 yard touchdown pass to Kameron Brown shortly before halftime. A coverage bust between safety Derwin James and cornerback Marquez White left Brown wide open and streaking down the sideline.
Another coverage bust in the second half proved to be costly for Florida State. Trailing 42-6, Charleston Southern’s Mitchell found another wide open receiver in the third quarter. James came down from the middle of the field to bring down the receiver on the sideline. After the tackle James landed awkwardly. He left the game with a left knee injury and did not return.
That injury could be a major setback for the Seminoles who have to travel to take on Lamar Jackson and the Louisville Cardinals on Saturday.