Does FSU deserve their title shot?

By Jeff Batt |

Florida State University beat Georgia Tech University on to win the ACC Championship 37-35. Their continuing trend of winning games in the last few minutes or final drive has many wondering if they deserve to be in the position they currently hold.

The Seminoles have been one of the best teams record-wise for the past two years. All of their publicity and success has been led by Heisman-winning quarterback Jameis Winston. Their win streak has extended to 27 games, which is currently the best in Division I football.

But other than the National Championship win last year, how many of those victories are truly impressive?

Since Florida State is in the Atlantic Coast Conference, they play against teams like Clemson, Wake Forest, University of Miami and NC State, all of whom have had successful seasons in the past decade, but now are mostly viewed as sub-par teams.

They did play a former top five team in Notre Dame, an inconsistently ranked Clemson team and an Oklahoma State team, which seems to have trouble finding their own identity in the Big 12.

The one problem that continues to be brought up with Florida State is that they play in this conference. The ACC has had a rich tradition of strong sports programs, like basketball, but in football a majority of the programs have become inconsistent, preventing them from entering the top 25.

The Southeastern Conference, on the other hand, has always had, without a doubt, the richest history of great, old school football teams like Alabama and LSU. Currently, the SEC hosts seven schools in the AP Poll rankings, where as the ACC has just four.

In 2013, their National Championship year, the Seminoles played all conference opponents, except for Bethune-Cookman University, University of Nevada and University of Idaho. While every team plays “guarantee win games,” it seems many feel that to earn a National Championship you should have a tougher time getting there.

This season, the Seminoles largest margin of victory came against Wake Forest University on Oct. 6 when they won by 40 points. About 50 percent of their wins have only been won by a very small margin. These close games include University of Florida, Boston College, University of Miami, Oklahoma State and Notre Dame, who was a National Championship contender, but has faded away the past few weeks.

Time and time again, college football analysts will say, “who have they played?” or “what was their margin of victory against those top teams?” There are a lot of logistics that go into the perfect team. Outside of the Florida State fan base, football fans and analysts look to other teams who seem to be more deserving of that number one spot.

The newly constructed playoff committee, which was created this past off-season, was composed to diffuse all controversy and select the appropriate teams for each bowl. This committee consists of 13 highly knowledgeable athletic directors, former coaches and even former Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice.

According to, “the committee will select the teams using a process that distinguishes among otherwise comparable teams by considering conference championships won, strength of schedule, head-to-head competition, comparative outcomes of common opponents (without incenting margin of victory) and other relevant factors that may have affected a team’s performance during the season or likely will affect its postseason performance.”

What frustrates me the most is that FSU got a spot over Texas Christian University. The Horned Frogs have proven themselves worthy the past couple of years, and have further solidified that this season. FSU’s schedule is completely mediocre compared to other conference schedules.

A win streak is meaningful, but if the committee focuses on strength of schedule during point of review, why do they continue to ignore this?

This season TCU has played five teams in the top 25 AP poll rankings. The teams include Oklahoma State University, Baylor University, Kansas State University and West Virginia University. TCU won all of these games, except for a tough three-point loss to Baylor University. Only two of those teams are still currently in the top 25, but they still have a more complete and “muscular” resume compared to Florida State.

When it comes down to it at the end of the season, it’s the playoff committee’s job to look at each of the top teams by strength of schedule and margin of
victory. Even though Florida State has an impressive winning streak, their schedule and wins continues to leave us all wondering: “what if?”

In my opinion, Florida State does not deserve to their position. Although they remain a top 10 team, they continue to beat sub-par teams by minimal margins. With this in mind, we can only wonder how they are going to perform against Oregon on Jan. 1.

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