Florida State blasts Bethune-Cookman in sloppy game
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- No. 8 Florida State and quarterback Jameis Winston defeated FCS opponent Bethune-Cookman 54-6 despite plenty of sloppy play on Saturday.
The defending ACC champions (3-0, 1-0) will want to clean up their offense before starting a seven-game stretch against conference foes next week.
Winston completed 10 of 19 passes for 148 yards and two touchdowns. And Devonta Freeman ran for a game-high 112 yards and a touchdown. Karlos Williams finished with 83 yards rushing and two touchdowns, and James Wilder, Jr. added 56 yards and a touchdown.
The Wildcats (3-1) scored their lone touchdown off a seven-yard run from quarterback Jackie Wilson with 8:21 left in the third quarter.
Florida State ran away in the second quarter, but all three starting receivers had dropped passes, including two for touchdowns. The defense also missed several tackles.
Both teams committed their share of unforced errors in an odd first half. Bethune-Cookman returner Darian Baker muffed two kickoffs that left the offense starting from the 2 and the 6. Tackle Alex Monroe was flagged for holding in the end zone to give the Seminoles a safety. Quarterback Quentin Williams stared down and pointed to receiver Eddie Poole just before Telvin Smith picked off the pass and returned it 68 yards for a touchdown.
Florida State receivers entered the game without a single drop this season, but that quickly changed. The usually sure-handed Rashad Greene dropped a pass in the end zone. Kelvin Benjamin dropped a ball just outside of the end zone that would have been a score. Kenny Shaw also muffed one just before halftime.
Wilder, Jr. lost a fumble at the Bethune-Cookman 3. The defense even had its issues as missed tackles plagued the Seminoles.
Florida State held its opponent to a single score for the second consecutive game and was responsible for scoring nine points. The unit was down three starters as linebacker Christian Jones and defensive end Eddie Goldman were held out due to a violation of team rules. Defensive end Mario Edwards, Jr. sat out with a hand injury.
Telvin Smith posted a game-high 12 tackles and had his first sack of the season. The Seminoles' three sacks matched their total from the first three games. Redshirt freshman defensive end Chris Casher finished with 10 tackles, including two for loss.
Florida State will travel to face Boston College next Saturday.
Bethune-Cookman will take on Delaware State on the road on Oct. 5.
NOTES: Florida State's Tyler Hunter sustained a bruised neck contusion in the first quarter and didn't return. He was replaced in the secondary by Keelin Smith. ... Florida State Sophomore Terrance Smith made his first career start in place of Jones and recorded his first career sack in the first quarter.