Florida State quarterback Deondre Francois, according to Jim Henry of the Tallahassee Democrat, will undergo surgery today. Francois is out for the season after tearing the patella tendon in his left knee in Saturday night’s loss to Alabama leaving the Seminoles little option but to put the their 2017 regular season fate in the hands of true freshman James Blackman at quarterback.
While the coaching staff raised Blackman’s depth chart status with his solid reps during camp and the fact the three-star recruit was the 389th-ranked player in the 247 composite for the 2017 class the injury to Francois has all but cost the ‘Noles any chance at making the 2018 College Football Playoff Final Four.
According to Ryan Phillips of MSN “Blackman worked his way into the backup role with his play during camp, impressing the coaches with his size and arm strength. He’s 6’5″ and 185 pounds, so he has a prototypical build for the position. Unfortunately, Blackman is also really raw. There is zero chance he’d ever see the field this year if Francois hadn’t been injured. He’s just not ready.”
It is just one game and one loss in the standings and noteworthy that the FSU offense was facing arguably college football’s best defense but the Seminoles as a whole in the Week #1 loss were dysfunctional. The offensive line was never on the same page and the result was a mere 40 team yards rushing on 27 carries. And before leaving the field with his fourth quarter injury Francois had completed 19-of-33 pass attempts for 210 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions. The aforementioned Seminoles offensive production came under the leadership of a talented and experienced quarterback. Pushing a true freshman under center ultimately means that head coach Jimbo Fisher and his staff will move to a more run-heavy scheme.
While there has been no official team announcement that Blackburn is in fact the starter for this weekend’s contest all indications point to Blackburn taking over the starting role with redshirt junior J.J. Cosentino, a four-star and the 238th-ranked recruit in the 2014 class, playing backup. The Seminoles’ next game is Saturday against Louisiana Monroe.
The South Point Race and Sportsbook have updated their ACC Conference futures and Florida State is still even money to win the conference championship at even-money. However, the Seminoles have four more ranked teams on their schedule (Miami Hurricanes, Louisville Cardinals, at Clemson Tigers and at Florida Gators).
A complete list of South Point‘s Odds to Win 2017 College Football Conference Championships: