What Miami scandal means for FSU

Updated: August 18, 2011, 12:31 PM ET
By Ryan McGee

Remember when the biggest story in college football, the topic no one could stop yammering about, was conference expansion? Like, way back a whole week ago?

On Tuesday afternoon, the good folks at Yahoo! Sports made that go away thanks to their now-famous exposé on The U.

But here at Three Downs and Punt, we've found a place where those two worlds collide. It's called Tallahassee, Fla.

First down: The Florida State Seminoles, the SEC and the Miami effect

We know (OK, we think we know) that the Texas A&M Aggies want to join the SEC. We know that the SEC has put that idea on hold. Why? The most widely accepted theory is that the SEC wouldn't go to an asymmetrical 13 teams by adding only A&M. It wants 14 (maybe 16) and needs a moment to think about who those teams should be. (Again, this is the theory.)

And in case you've had your head buried in the sand deeper than the Miami compliance office, the most mentioned candidate for that 14th slot is Florida State. Even though everyone involved with the Seminoles program is in circle-the-wagons denial.

"I've said it before, and I'll keep saying it: We're getting ready to play this fall in the ACC," FSU head coach Jimbo Fisher says, politely irritated. "We've got to win in the ACC. We've got to win a couple of big nonconference games. And we've got to win an ACC championship game."

Still, the speculation won't go away. And it won't be going away any time soon. Just as it won't be silenced at Georgia Tech, Clemson, or even Virginia Tech.

But no matter how disrespected one feels or no matter how green the grass -- or the bank accounts -- may appear on the other side, leaving for the SEC might be the biggest mistake any serious ACC football school could make.

The FSU head coaches don't disagree.