The Florida State Seminoles topped the Auburn Tigers in the BCS National Championship in a close 34-30 win. The game was a hard fought battle between two teams who had a surprisingly successful season.
The win was significant in more ways than one. This is the first national title a non-SEC team has won since the Texas Longhorns in 2005. It’s also the third time a Heisman winner Jameis Winston has won the national championship. Winston becomes the fourth black quarterback to win the trophy as well as the third player from Florida State to win the Heisman.
This season also marked Florida’s second perfect season since 1999.
Outside of overcoming the obstacles of facing and defeating a SEC team, Winston has had his own share of adversity. In early December, Winston faced sexual assault allegations. Fortunately for Winston, no charges were filed and the entire investigation was dismissed.
Many believed that his off-the-field issues would hurt his chances of winning the Heisman. However, Winston won the Heisman by over 79 percent votes over Alabama’s A.J. McArron and Texas A&M Johnny Manziel. Winston’s win is the largest margin since Newton’s 81 percent margin in 2010. Winston became the youngest player to win the award at 19 years, 342 days.
FSU has shown resiliency through adversity. The National Championship win is only a testament to the beginning of a new era in college football. An era where teams no longer have to fear the Alabama Crimson Tide or the rest of the SEC.
The SEC has always been considered the powerhouse for college football, sending more athletes to the NFL each and every season. When faced against a non-conference opponent, SEC teams would win by large margins. It was believed that any non-conference team could never beat an SEC team. This was true until Texas A&M beat Alabama its first year in the SEC. This proved that not only the Aggies were SEC-worthy but perhaps the pedestal we placed on the SEC should not exist.
Hopefully next year, we will see another team outside of the SEC win the national championship.
Joshua Freeman is a senior mass communication major from Baton Rogue.