Seminoles Back To Reality: Quarterback Decision Holds Back Florida State

Walter Thompson Jr.Contributor ISeptember 20, 2008

Tallahassee, Fla: Seminole fans left Doak S. Campbell Stadium on Saturday night disappointed, frustrated, and whatever other words you want to add. 

Wake Forest kicker Sam Swank and the Demon Deacon defense defeated FSU 12-3.  Drew Weatherford, please stand up, you are needed on the field.

The fact is, Seminole fans were tricked into believing that the offense was better than it really was.  After two straight weeks of explosive, high powered offense against inferior opponents, the truth was revealed on Saturday night against No. 18 Wake Forest (3-0). 

FSU (2-1) head coach Bobby Bowden told reporters in his post game press conference that his team has some work to do.  

"We're not where I hoped we were," Bowden said.  Coach Bowden did, however, give credit to the defense for keeping it close.  "Now our defense played about as good as theirs.  If our defense hadn't been playing good tonight, that score would have been awful."

The defense gave the Seminoles a chance to win this game time and time again.  The defense managed to keep the Demon Deacons out of the end zone all night long, only allowing four field goals.  

One thing is for sure.  Mickey Andrews had the defense ready to play.  The offense was basically at full strength with Preston Parker back in the lineup, but someone forgot to tell Jimbo Fisher that his No. 1 and 2 quarterbacks do not have nearly enough experience, not even enough to beat Wake Forest.

Swank hit 4-of-7 field goals. Swank made field goals from 48, 29, 49 and 31 yards.  By missing three field goals from point-blank range, Swank left the door open for Florida State to take the lead on numerous occasions, but the Seminole offense never took advantage. 

In fact, the offense drove into Wake Forest territory only to turn the ball over seven times, including two fumbles and five interceptions. 

Seminole fans learned one thing on Saturday, and that is Christian Ponder and D'Vontrey Richardson are not ready to play quarterback in the ACC.  They are simply not experienced enough.  That left some fans muttering the all-too-familiar name of Drew Weatherford. 

Weatherford is the most experienced quarterback on the team with over 7,400 yards passing and 39 touchdowns in his Seminole career.  He can lead this team and give them the experience at quarterback that they need.  The receiving corps needs a quarterback that can get the playmakers the ball.  That did not happen tonight. 

Offensive Coordinator Jimbo Fisher made the call to go with Ponder as starting quarterback days before the opening game with Richardson as his backup.  The huge question is: What did Weatherford, a senior, do to lose his job, and would he be a better fit at quarterback?

Preston Parker returned tonight and was game with three receptions for 34 yards, but did not get the ball nearly enough.  When in the red zone, Greg Carr was not targeted at all.

The Seminoles still have to face Colorado, Miami, Georgia Tech, Virginia Tech, and Florida this season.  This is not a time to have a quarterback out there learning.  Drew Weatherford gives this team the best chance to win football games.

With this latest loss, Bobby Bowden falls one win behind Joe Paterno in all time wins.  Paterno earned his 376th win on Saturday against Temple.  This team has a lot of work to do, and the schedule just became a lot harder with this unexpected setback.

Paging Drew Weatherford...Drew Weatherford, you are needed on the field immediately.