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1 Xavier Lee Question = Tons Of Passion

Posted Jun 24, 2007 by Aaron Knox

Updated Jun 25, 2007 at 12:38 AM

The passion of college football fans never ceases to amaze me. Sometimes that passion borders on psychotic obsession, but generally speaking, there’s not another sport in America that has such a rabid fan base.

In my decade as a sports writer, the closest comparison I have to the fervid devotion of a Florida State or Florida fan is the edginess that accompanies the Yankees-Red Sox rivalry. Those teams dislike each other, but not nearly as much as their fans. I recall walking behind a pair of Red Sox fans entering Yankee Stadium during the 2003 ALCS and listening to the abuse they took from Yankees fans. I was surprised they made it into the stadium in one piece.

Since moving from Tampa to Tallahassee a year ago to start covering Florida State’s athletic program – with an extra emphasis on football obviously – I’ve been constantly reminded of that passion in reader e-mails, blog comments (not nearly enough) and the occasional phone call from an irate reader.

And nothing draws more reaction from readers than talking about FSU’s quarterback quandary. Should Drew Weatherford be the starter, or is Xavier Lee the man for the job? Of course, that answer remains as elusive as a scrambling Charlie Ward.

Fans

We’ll know a lot more starting the first week of August when the Noles report to fall practice to begin preparing for the season opener at Clemson.

For now, the debate is confined to talk radio, Internet message boards and blog posts like the one I filed a few days ago. The question I posted was simple enough: What does Lee have to do this season to avoid possibly being labeled as the most overhyped recruit in FSU history?

I figured I’d get a few responses and that would be it. I have received a handful of responses on the blog and most of them make sense.

However, my little blog question was posted as a thread on Warchant.com, online home of some of the most rabid college football fans in the country. I became aware of it over the weekend when a couple of people e-mailed me, so I checked it out.

As a result, I am once again reminded how hot of a topic FSU’s quarterback situation is as the season creeps closer and closer. So much of FSU’s quest to return to prominence rests behind center. Based on many of the fans’ responses, most believe Lee has more talent, but for multiple reasons, it seems there is a belief among the Warchant Warriors that Lee remains No. 2 on the depth chart despite changing his jersey to No. 1 in the offseason.

Who knows at this point? I certainly don’t and I don’t think Jimbo Fisher does either. If I were a betting man, my money would be on Weatherford to start the season opener at Clemson.

As for answering my own question, I’d say Lee needs to win the job and start putting up some big numbers and big wins to stay out of the race for biggest bust in FSU football history.

As for which player holds that honor now? I’d have to agree with several posters on Warchant who voted Dan Kendra as the biggest flop in FSU history.

So for you Xavier Lee fans out there, the X-man might never be No. 1 on Bobby Bowden’s depth chart, but at least he probably won’t be No. 1 on the biggest-bust chart either.

Reader Comments

Por (Rich Wright) on June 26, 2007 (Suggest removal)

Both of these QBs have suffered for the lack of a good QB Coach/OC, see Jeff Bowden. Were they in a program that had a Mark Richt, for example, either would likely have a been a very good starter in other programs. Based on what I’ve seen Fisher do in the past I would think he’s leaning more toward “X” due his athleticism, scrabbling ability, etc. Rumor has it that “X” has had a lot of trouble grasping the offense hence his lack of production. If I were to make a wager I’d say “X” will still come out of the fall as the starter, then he’ll produce. I still think he is the closet thing to the next Charlie Ward we’re going to see. Only question is can he step up?

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Por (ronnie d lee) on June 26, 2007 (Suggest removal)

since BB/JB/DD WERE THE ONES THAT WANTED TO STICK WITH DW,I THINK JF SHOULD START DW.BB IS THE ONLY PERSON LEFT AT THE PROGRAM & IT’S EVIDENT DW IS HIS MAN,NOW WITH THAT BEING SAID BB WAS NOT THE QB COACH,SO OTHER THAN HIM BEING THE HEAD MAN HE TRUSTED HIS SON,LIKE WE ALL WOULD HAVE.IT’S A NEW DAY AT FSU,AND JF’S REP IS ON THE LINE.I PERSONALLY LIKE X,BUT I ALSO LIKE DW.JB FAILED HIMSELF WHEN HE TRIED TO BE LOYAL TO DD,AND IN TURN DW.X LOST ALL HOPE AFTER HE SAW WHAT WAS HAPPENING @ HIM.CAN SOMEONE TELL ME WHO RECRUITED DW,AND WHO RECRUITED X?I WISH THE TEAM LUCK IN 07!BB WILL DO THE RIGHT THING!

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Por (ronnie d lee) on June 26, 2007 (Suggest removal)

there is know qb contriversy at fsu period!BB/JF/RT/LD/DC/XL/DW(JUST WIN BABY)!IT’S A NEW DAY AT FSU,both qb’s bring different styles to the table.fsu will win,and you people will forget @ who the starter is.the real question should be how early should jf pull the two starters to play dr/cp to keep the score down!FSU is for real again,and i respect you coach bb.remember bb kept saying he wanted to make changes,but the school wouldnt pay up!fsu is back the fans just don’t realize it yet,but the other coaches do!

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Por (Rich Wright) on June 27, 2007 (Suggest removal)

Ronnie,
There will be a question abt QB until the starter is named. In addition, the schedule is no cake walk. A 10 win season will be one helluva’ job. The offense will be more productive but I’m not sold on them being overwhelming, as you seem to be. I hope you’re right. By the way, Jeff Bowden was forced out, had it not been for the boosters raising the money he would still be there. Sad but true.
Keep the faith, and go Noles!
Noleman

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Por (Patrick Dotson) on June 29, 2007 (Suggest removal)

i like what bobby did this offseason,we brung in people that know fsu football and know how it should be played,but seeing jimbo work his magic with this offense is what im looking forward the most,why not have a 2 qb system,it can be done…...use lee for scrambling and drew for pocket passing,you have the best of both worlds,why not use them….i see drew being the starter but dont think old bobby wont pull the trigger on drew and put lee in…nole fans i think were in for a pretty interesting year…GO NOLES

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Por (Jamal Smith) on July 04, 2007 (Suggest removal)

We’ve already seen Drew Weatherford for a entire season plus some. Why shouldn’t Lee be given the same amount of time to start. Lee hasn’t been given the time to work throw the tough stretchs and get better. Weatherford had his shot!

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