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Rapid Reaction: FSU 80 Idaho 14

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Florida State handled their business against Idaho on Saturday afternoon.

It wasn't the best they've looked this season, wasn't the sharpest, but the Seminoles had little trouble dispatching the Vandals 80-14.

FSU amassed 645 yards of total offense, including 336 on the ground. Devonta Freeman lead the way with 129 yards and a touchdown on 11 carries, Karlos Williams had 114 yards and two scores on 10, James Wilder Jr had a TD and 85 yards on four carries and Ryan Green accounted for 48 total yards and caught a TD.

The receivers had a nice day too with Kenny Shaw and Kelvin Benjamin both hauling in two TD's and Shaw going for over 100 yards for the first time this season.

But one thing the box score will not show on Sunday morning is how undisciplined the Seminoles looked at points in this game.

Despite scoring more points than FSU had ever scored at any point in its history, this was hardly the Seminoles' best game. There were defensive penalties and miscues, poor tackling, coverage mistakes and moments where it looked as if the Vandals had more interest in the game than the Seminoles did.

Credit Idaho for playing hard. The Vandals were out-matched but they fought with everything they had against the Seminoles and were able to head home with a few moral victories -- namely a ten play, 63 yard touchdown drive at the end of the second quarter.

That's not to say Florida State wasn't impressive at points on Saturday. The defense held Idaho to just 59 rushing yards, Tim Jernigan had three sacks and they scored on a couple of interception returns.

But the poise --the focus -- was not as strong as it has been in weeks past. For the first time all season Florida State looked as though some of the distractions of the past couple weeks had taken a toll.

Jimbo Fisher swore up and down in build-up to this game that his team was focused and having a great week of practice -- and they played like it at times today -- but it's hard to imagine doubts weren't beginning to seep in. It's not just ESPN or sports television covering this situation anymore, you can't turn on the TV, period, without seeing Jameis Winston and Florida State in the news.

For his part Winston was excellent on Saturday. Not his best, but still excellent. The redshirt freshman went 14/25 for 225 yards and four touchdowns. He's now tied for second all-time at FSU for touchdowns in a season with Danny Kannell -- one behind Chris Weinke for the record. 

In fact, with Johnny Manziel failing to impress and Oregon laying an egg, were it not for the sexual assault allegations swirling around Winston, he'd probably have won the Heisman trophy today.

As it stands though, state attorney Willie Meggs indicated on Saturday -- via another interview with Associated Press -- that he likely won't have a decision on whether to charge Winston until after Thanksgiving.

That means the distractions will drag on for another week and FSU will have to continue to fight to block out those distractions and focus on football. 

Idaho was not the team to make the Seminoles pay. And frankly -- after losing to FCS Georgia Southern today at home -- UF might not be capable either. 

But it's going to get harder and harder for the Seminoles to stay the course, stay focused. And after showing signs of the strain -- albeit small ones -- on Saturday, this will be something to watch as Florida State continues its season.

Statistical Leaders:

Passing: Jameis Winston (14/25, 225, 4TD)
Rushing: Devonta Freeman (11-129, TD)
Receiving: Kenny Shaw (5-107, 2TD)

 

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