The Florida State Seminoles spent the week answering questions that had nothing to do with football. But the team didn’t let those distractions deter them on Saturday when they thrashed the Syracuse Orange in Doak Campbell to the tune of 59-3. They didn’t allow it to hurt them on Sunday, either, in the latest BCS standings as the Noles remain entrenched at No. 2 and on track to punch their ticket to the BCS National Championship.
There were concerns not only about how the team would handle the distraction of the Jameis Winston legal situation on the field, but how the speculation surrounding the star quarterback would affect FSU in the polls. They answered the questions about their focus on the field soundly in the rout of the Orange and the concerns about the polls turned out to be unfounded as well. FSU actually gained two first place votes this week in the AP poll and closed the gap slightly on the Alabama Crimson Tide.
Holding strong in the human polls was key as they computer polls weren’t likely to punish the team for off-field accusations. That paved the way for the Noles to keep their spot at No. 2 in the latest BCS rankings, still firmly behind the Tide to get to Pasadena for the national title game. In their rear-view, the Baylor Bears and Ohio State Buckeyes continue to try and gain ground but don’t appear to have the time or big-time wins left on the schedule to overtake FSU.
There will continue to be questions asked of the Noles that have nothing to do with their play on the field. Can they continue to play focused football, finish strong and keep their spot for the national title game?