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November 3, 2011
CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. - If Florida State's five-day turnaround, 1,100-mile road trip or impending rival saddled any doubt as it stepped in to face Boston College, that doubt disappeared in a flash.
Continuing a string of dominating victories, the Seminoles wasted no time taking care of this one, starting fast and cruising along to a 38-7 win over Boston College on Thursday night.
Thursday marked the Seminoles' fourth straight win of 25 points or more, something the Seminoles haven't matched since 2000. It also made FSU (6-3, 4-2 ACC) bowl eligible for the 30th straight year.
"To come out there with the immediacy, with the dominance that we came out with, that's just great, that's what you need on the road," safety Lamarcus Joyner said. "We struggled with that in the (first) half of the season, and Coach Fisher said we needed to step that up."
In front of a crowd of 38,729, the Seminoles capitalized on a Boston College turnover to take a 7-0 lead in the first, then poured on three more scores in the second quarter on the way to a 28-0 halftime lead. True freshman Devonta Freeman scored twice in the second quarter and totaled a game-high 62 rushing yards on 12 carries.
The halftime cushion was more than enough for a defense that allowed only 90 first-half yards and didn't relinquish a first down for the first 25 minutes. Florida State has only allowed six combined points in the first half of its last four games.
Sophomore linebacker Telvin Smith was the standout, nabbing a fumble recovery and an interception to go along with four tackles.
"The defense was dominant from start to finish," FSU coach Jimbo Fisher said.
FSU quarterback EJ Manuel endured a sluggish start and a physical first half to piece together another efficient night, going 12 of 16 for 180 yards and a touchdown. He added 37 rushing yards and a score on a sneak in the second quarter.
"I thought EJ was very efficient on the night, ran the ball well," said Fisher, whose team takes on Miami next Saturday. "We're getting better, we've got to continue to get better and hopefully we'll just take another step next week."
Boston College scored its only points of the game on a 12-yard touchdown pass with 9:56 left in the third quarter, but the Seminoles never wavered, answering with a 47-yard Dustin Hopkins field goal to make it 31-7 and a 1-yard Lonnie Pryor touchdown run to seal it up early in the fourth. The 31-point margin of victory was FSU's largest in a road game since its 37-3 win at Maryland in 2008, a span of 14 total road games.
The Eagles (2-7, 1-5 ACC) turned the football over four times in all and could muster only 207 total yards - a 3.5 per-play clip. The Eagles played two different quarterbacks, punted seven times and had only one play of 12 yards or more. Boston College has scored 19 points or less in all seven of its losses this season.
"They are a really nice football team," Boston College head coach Frank Spaziani said. "They are well coached. They have good athletes. We got licked."