For most of the football season, the FSU football team was giving out reasons why it couldn’t complete.
The quarterback was too young. The running back was too hurt. The defense was too weak.
Now, with two weeks to go before the Tigers come town, the Seminoles have suddenly taken on the look of a team that has a chance.
The quarterback, Deondre Francois, has proven to be a tough competitor, although coach Jimbo Fisher winces with all the hits he takes. The running back, Dalvin Cook, is chewing up yardage again.
And the defense?
Suddenly, it is playing hard, aggressive football.
Perhaps it started against Miami, when FSU held the ’Canes to less than 300 yards. Perhaps it was validated in a 17-6 win over Wake Forest. But suddenly, the defense looks as if it can do more than chase Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson.
“They played great today,” Fisher said. “Controlled the line of scrimmage. … I’m very proud of them. Man, you talk about the situations they got put in today? Man, they played their tails off.”
Oh, Clemson will still be favored. But for the first time all season, it wouldn’t stun people if FSU won.