While FSU coach Jimbo Fisher won’t quite anoint him as Jameis Winston’s successor, it looks like Sean Maguire is in line to be Florida State’s quarterback when the ‘Noles open the 2015 season against Texas State Sept. 5.
Fisher explained to ESPN’s Andrea Adelson why Maguire has the inside track on winning the job, which largely boils down to the New Jersey native’s experience. Maguire quarterbacked Florida State to an overtime win over Clemson last year while Winston was suspended for yelling something incredibly stupid on campus, with his 74-yard touchdown heave to Rashad Greene midway through the fourth quarter bringing the ‘Noles level.
In that game, Maguire completed 21 of 39 passes for 304 yards with two interceptions and one touchdown. Perhaps with a better grasp and more control of the offense he’ll play a less tentatively than he did against Clemson, though we don’t have much else on which to evaluate him.
Maguire appeared in three other games last year: A pair of blowout wins over The Citadel and Wake Forest, and FSU’s blowout loss to Oregon in the College Football Playoff.
Even if those three cups of coffee were his only in-game experience, though, he’d have more than the other three quarterbacks on Florida State’s depth chart. John Franklin redshirted last year, four-star recruit De’Andre Johnson enrolled early and incoming freshmen JJ Cosentino won’t get to campus until the summer.
Making matters difficult for Maguire will be the amount of turnover around him. Only four 2014 starters return on offense, with guys like Greene, Nick O’Leary and Cameron Erving all done in Tallahassee (though having Dalvin Cook around will be awfully nice). Still, ESPN ranked Florida State No. 15 in a way-too-early top 25, so there’s plenty of reason to be optimistic in Florida’s panhandle this year.