Jordan Travis didn’t win Saturday’s start, but he might just have won the starting job.
Looking for a spark on offense, Florida State coach Mike Norvell benched junior quarterback James Blackman on Saturday and gave freshman Tate Rodemaker the starting nod against visiting Jacksonville State.
With not much happening through four drives, Norvell inserted the redshirt sophomore Travis behind center, and the Seminoles’ offense took flight for the first time all season.
Travis led FSU on five straight touchdown drives to rally for a second-half lead and pulled away for a 41-24 victory before an announced crowd of 13,589. The Seminoles are now 1-2 on the season heading into next Saturday’s game at Notre Dame.
Box Score: FSU 41, Jacksonville State 24
Florida State fell into a quick hole when Rodemaker threw a pick-six on his second pass attempt of the game. It was 14-0 just a few minutes later when Jacksonville State put together a six-play, 69-yard touchown drive.
The Seminoles got a spark in the second quarter, however, when Travis took over at quarterback.
First, he hit sophomore receiver Keyshawn Helton for a 41-yard touchdown. Then he capped off a 13-play, 75-yard drive with a 1-yard touchdown plunge to cut Jacksonville State’s lead to 21-14 at halftime.
Travis stayed hot after intermission, hitting wide receiver Tamorrion Terry for a 48-yard completion that set up a nifty 15-yard touchdown run by La’Damian Webb to make it 21-21.
After giving up a field goal, the Seminoles took a 28-24 lead late in the third quarter on a 13-yard touchdown run by freshman tailback Lawrance Toafili. Sophomore tailback La’Damian Webb then rumbled in from six yards out to put the Seminoles ahead by 10.
FSU’s scoring was capped off by a short touchdown run by tailback Jashaun Corbin from a wildcat package. After not rushing for a touchdown in either of their first two games, six of the Seminoles’ seven touhdowns Saturday came on the ground.
Travis finished with 215 yards through the air on 13-of-18 passing, and he added 39 yards on the ground.
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