FSU doesn’t need an ACC title

AP Photo/Lynne Sladky

I owe all credit for this idea to my buddy Brett Jula, and I think it deserves a deeper discussion.

Would it really matter all that much if Florida State didn’t win the Atlantic Coast Conference this season?

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At first glance, that might seem like a stupid, reckless statement. If the Seminoles can’t fulfill the biggest goal of playing in the national title game, the next-biggest goal of winning the ACC should be completely in-focus.

And I assure you — for the football team, it is. But why should FSU’s fans strive for an Orange Bowl trip when they can go to the Rose Bowl or the Sugar Bowl?

Here’s how this scenario breaks down. The Seminoles no longer control their own destiny in the ACC Atlantic race because they lost to NC State, who currently holds the tiebreaker between the two one-loss teams. In other words, there’s a chance FSU could win out, finish the regular season at 11-1 (7-1 in ACC play) and still not win their own division.

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For fans of other teams, put yourself in our shoes. If Florida State can win out, they’ll definitely be ranked high enough to be an automatic qualifier for a BCS bowl, meaning they wouldn’t need to win their own conference to be placed in one of those prestigious bowl games (and yes, this scenario rules out the possibility of FSU getting a spot in the national championship game).

Would you prefer to see your school playing in the Sugar Bowl against LSU or in the Orange Bowl, taking on Louisville?

The Orange Bowl would be a lose-lose for the Seminoles. If they win, big deal — they were supposed to win that game. But if they come out flat and lose, they get trashed for losing to a likely underdog.

Now, if they were to take on Oklahoma in the Fiesta Bowl, we’d have ourselves a heck of a game that would be front-and-center in the college football world. The ACC-Big East battle that has become an annual tradition at the Orange Bowl seems to be an afterthought in the BCS picture, and I’m not sure an ACC title outweighs the beauty of seeing the Garnet and Gold possibly play in the Rose Bowl.

Am I crazy in thinking this?

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