Jameis Winston's Dominance of Inferior Opponents Shows Culture Change for FSU

Randy ChambersAnalyst IOctober 26, 2013

TALLAHASSEE, FL - OCTOBER 26: Jameis Winston #5 of the Florida State Seminoles throws for a touchdown pass against the North Carolina State Wolfpack during the first half at Doak Campbell Stadium on October 26, 2013 in Tallahassee, Florida.  (Photo by Jeff Gammons/Getty Images)

Remember last year's 17-16 loss to North Carolina State? The 2011 35-30 loss to Wake Forest? Or how about the back-to-back losses to North Carolina State and North Carolina in 2010, both of which happened to be unranked opponents at the time?

Head coach Jimbo Fisher sure does, per Kareem Copeland of the AP:

"Feel that pain," Fisher said. "Pain is preparation. You want that pain again? Don't prepare. You want to eliminate that pain? Prepare and take care of your business."

Needless to say, Florida State has built a reputation of losing a game it shouldn't. Even Bobby Bowden's 2003 team that won 10 games and reached the Orange Bowl ended up losing to a struggling Clemson team that wasn't ranked until the end of the year.

It has made many critics hesitant on buying into Florida State over the years. 

We can't trust the Seminoles just yet, they still have to play Syracuse and Idaho! You never know what may happen when the mighty Vandals come to town.

However, those days appear to be over thanks to quarterback Jameis Winston leading the way. The redshirt freshman has proven that he is one of those few quarterbacks who comes along every 10 years or so and takes over college football. Think Cam Newton, Tim Tebow or Matt Leinart.

In Saturday's 49-17 win over North Carolina State, Winston completed 65.4 percent of his passes for 312 yards and three touchdowns. The game was 42-0 at halftime and forced the coaching staff to put in backup Jacob Coker to earn some valuable experience. After all, he's not going to see the field very often as long as Winston is on the team.

The kid is absolutely unbelievable and the difference maker that Florida State has needed all of these years to get over the hump. Every year, the Seminoles were supposed to rise to the top of the totem pole, but they always let everybody down by running into that one hiccup. A lot of it had to do with inconsistent quarterback play. 

You just don't get that with Winston.

Arm strength? Check.

Florida State hasn't even come close to losing a game this season, as all seven wins have been decided by at least two touchdowns. North Carolina State has seemed to have Florida State's number over the years, winning two of the last three meetings, and was supposed to provide a challenge this time around with a respectable defense. But Winston doesn't give an underdog a chance to bite, let alone breathe.

No more doubting the Seminoles. It's safe to say they can beat anybody in the country and will no longer lose to the team nobody is watching.

Winston is the difference.