Jameis Winston tops the list of what to watch during the 2014 NCAA Football season. Winston is coming off an amazing 2013 season as a freshman capping it off with a Hesiman Trophy as well as a National Championship. The Florida State quarterback has been in the news multiple times from the last time we saw him on the football field.
Winston made 24 appearances for the Seminoles baseball team posting a 1-0 record with a 1.08 earned run average. In 33.1 innings Winston struck out 31 batters. Not all the news was good as Winston was caught taking crab legs from Publix. Then today we learn that the Seminoles will be helping the quarterback out with his insurance to guarantee he will make a significant amount of money if he falls in the NFL draft as well as if he sustains an injury that will prevent him from playing football in the future.
Despite the good and bad of the off-season Winston enters the 2014 NCAA season as the best quarterback in the nation. Last season Winston finished with a 66.9 percent completion percentage while passing for 4,057 yards and 40 touchdown passes. This has put Winston on multiple award watch lists, including the Davey O’Brien, Walter Camp and the Heisman.
Here are a few other top players and headlines to watch in 2014:
Marcus Mariota, Oregon Ducks: The Ducks junior quarterback had the opportunity to enter the 2014 NFL draft and a very good chance of going in the first round. The talented dual threat quarterback combined to top 4,300 yards and 40 touchdowns as a sophomore. Mariota will look to lead the Ducks to a National Title game in the upcoming season.
Florida State Seminoles: The Seminoles under Jimbo Fisher with Winston at quarterback will look to repeat as National Champions after finishing at 14-0 last season. The Seminoles get the season started against Oklahoma State on August 30th during prime time on ABC. The team only plays one lower class program with that program being Citadel. The schedule includes matchups against Clemson, Louisville, Notre Dame, Miami and Florida to finish up the season.
SEC Conference: The SEC failed to win the National Title game last season for the first time since 2005 when the Texas Longhorns defeated USC. In that stretch Alabama has won three of the seven with Florida winning two along with LSA and Auburn each with one. Entering the 2014 NCAA season, the SEC has six teams in the USA Today Top 25 poll. The list includes Alabama (2), Auburn (5), South Carolina (9), Georgia (12), LSU (13) and Ole Miss (19). The first big conference game takes place on September 13th with the Georgia Bulldogs traveling to take on the South Carolina Gamecocks. Other key matchups this season in the SEC include Florida at Alabama on September 20th, Alabama at LSU on November 8th and Auburn at Alabama on November 29th.