Before the season ends the nickname “Famous Jameis” will roll off the tongue as easily as “Johnny Football”. FSU’s redshirt freshman quarterback Jameis Winston is that good.
He’s already grabbed the attention of the college football world in leading the Seminoles to a 5-0 record and No. 5 ranking. He’s already listed among the top Heisman Trophy contenders.
But Winston’s true coming out party will be Saturday night in Clemson, S.C. when FSU plays the No. 3 Tigers. The college football world will be watching. Winston has been spectacular against a decent, but not overpowering schedule. How will he perform under the bright lights of prime time TV, in front of a hostile crowd and against a national title contender that leads the nation with 24 sacks?
I think he’ll be more spectacular than he’s already been. He has that special and rare combination of being a superb athlete with the physical skills required to excel as a quarterback – plus the quarterback instincts you can’t be taught.
There’s no doubt in my mind that by the time he exits Tallahassee for the gold of the NFL – or maybe Major League Baseball – his name will be at the top of the list of all-time FSU quarterbacks, an impressive list that includes Charlie Ward and Chris Weinke, both Heisman winners and national champions.
Clemson will provide Winston with his “Heisman moment”. The Tigers are a legitimate national power with a superb quarterback of their own in Tajh Boyd, who also has Heisman dreams.
The winner will remain in the thick of the quest for the national championship. I hate to shock SEC snobs who think of the ACC as the minor leagues, but this game has the look and feel of one of those epic SEC battles. It belongs on the same page as the FSU-Miami battles of the 1980s and 90s. The talent, size and speed of the players on both sides will attract top scouts from every NFL team.
In the end, “Famous Jameis” will make enough plays for FSU to win 38-30.
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