Second Guessing

Sexton was lifted in the third quarter for Rix.

The Florida Gators made the most of their chances on Saturday, upending the Florida State Seminoles for their first victory in Tallahassee since 1986. FSU fell behind early and could not make up the deficit, though the Seminoles made a late charge behind quarterback <b>Chris Rix.</b> As expected, FSU players were upset and frustrated by their performance, one that knocked them out of a Bowl Championship Series game and leaving more questions than answers.

Chauncey Stovall made his cut and knew almost immediately he did not have any chance of making the reception.

Game over.

Chris Rix drove the Florida State Seminoles to the Florida 18-yard line in the waning seconds on Saturday night.

However, under pressure, Rix's last pass -- a square-in over the middle to Stovall -- was intercepted Jarvis Harris with 8 seconds to play.

Florida 20, Florida State 13.

It was the Gators' first victory in Tallahassee since Galen Hall-coached UF won in 1986.

"It was what we were beating them on all night -- square-in across the middle," Stovall said.

"I guess the pass just got away from him (Rix) a little bit and led me a little bit too far. And the safety was right on it."

Although Stovall agreed with the play selection on the Seminoles' final drive, he also thought FSU would attempt a fade pattern or two against the Gators' press defense.

Rix threw a pair of passes in the end-zone corners, but both came while he scrambled away from pressure. FSU quarterbacks usually take a quick drop and lead the receiver into the end-zone corner on fade routes.

"I thought we were going to run a couple corner routes, a couple fades. But, we just ran what was called. It was there, though. It just kind of slipped away from us," said Stovall, who finished with a game-high 11 receptions for 181 yards and a touchdown.

No other FSU receiver had more than three receptions.

"It was press coverage," Stovall said of the Gators' pass defense in the waning moments.

"They weren't doing anything we hadn't seen all year. It was press coverage. That's why I thought we were going to run a fade. We've been running fades all year. Press coverage, that's nothing for us. I thought we were going to run the fade."

Tailback Leon Washington, meanwhile, believed the Seminoles should have had better success against the Gators' rush defense.

FSU had zero rushing yards on eight attempts in the first half. The Seminoles finished with just 34 yards, running primarily outside.Lorenzo Booker had 25 yards on five carries, while Washington finished with 11 yards on eight carries.

"They had some young guys at linebackers and the last couple of years we've been run the ball pretty well against them, running straight at them," Washington said.

"I thought we were going to run the ball. It turns out that it didn't go that way. We have to learn from our mistakes. Give them credit. They played big for their coach."

Quarterback Wyatt Sexton, who was lifted in favor of Rix late in the third quarter, also was upset by the Seminoles' lack of production.

"We just killed ourselves in the first half," Sexton said.

"Some dropped balls, penalties, and a few misreads by me. It was all of us in the first half. I felt real good in the second half. Just got a little unfortunate on the interception. It has been kind of the story of our season with balls down the field, us not making the big plays when we needed it.

"I was feeling really good.

"I was very disappointed to come out of the game."

FSU failed to score a first-half touchdown for the sixth game this season as it trailed 10-3. While the scoreboard didn't reflect a wide-open approach offensively, Sexton said that was the Seminoles' intention.

It didn't pan out.

"We knew coming into the game we were going to have a wide-open style offense in the first half," Sexton said.

"We just continued to to shoot ourself in the foot play after play. Even when we did convert a big play or a big third down, we would commit a penalty or something."

A composed Wasington, meanwhile, summed up the night's effort perfectly.

"As a team -- everybody -- the whole entire team, coaches, players, I don't think did a good job tonight."

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