TALLAHASSEE — Florida State quarterback Deondre Francois spoke after the Seminoles suffered a 41-14 loss to No. 11 Florida on Saturday afternoon in Doak S. Campbell Stadium. The loss resulted in multiple streaks – winning seasons and bowl game appearances – being snapped for the Seminoles.
“Tough,” Francois said as he fought back tears. “Just tough.
“Right now it hurt. It cuts deep right now,” Francois added about the emotions of the loss. “Went to a bowl game every year that I have been here. It just hurts not to go to a bowl game. This is something that I don’t think I have ever not seen Florida State in a bowl game since I’ve been alive. To end the bowl streak and me be the starting quarterback, it just hurts. It is not a good feeling for me, my family, my teammates, the fans – it is just not a good feeling right now.”
FSU trailed just 13-7 at the half after Francois connected with running back Cam Akers for a 15-yard touchdown. He felt confident at that point in time in FSU’s ability to make it a game against their in-state rivals. That didn’t happen as Francois threw two second half interceptions and the Seminoles surrended 28 points over the final 30 minutes of action.
“We was good. We had them. It is a game of momentum,” Francois on his thoughts heading into the locker room.
The Gators came out and scored a touchdown, aided by a Florida State penalty. The Seminoles offense would then go three-and-out, punting it away. It was never competitive again after that point.
“Once they got the momentum, it was over with. They kept moving the ball. We couldn’t move the ball. And then when we could, we would have a big play and it would get called back by a stupid penalty, which ultimately means that we are just undisciplined,” Francois said.
After finishing 14-for-29 for 154 passing yards, a touchdown and two interceptions, as well as rushing for a touchdown and 41 yards thanks to a season-long scamper of 32 yards, Francois pointed to how the Seminoles continue to be their own worst enemies in many ways. Among the many reasons why this team snapped multiple streaks is their inability to get out of their own way.
“Mistakes, we just took turn making mistakes,” Francois said of FSU’s faltering in crucial moments against the Gators. “Playing an undisciplined game as a team. Giving up big plays on defense. Didn’t move the ball on offense. Florida capitalized and made big plays as an offense and they stopped us on defense. We just didn’t execute.”
The offseason now begins for the redshirt junior. He was speaking on looking ahead to next year and where they go from this 40-plus year low point for FSU’s program.
“Regroup,” Francois said. “Take a look in the mirror. Regroup. Do what we have to do to not feel this way again.”
More from quarterback Deondre Francois can be seen in the video below: