Seminoles name QB Winston starter for opener

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Updated: 8/23/2013 9:38 pm

Tallahassee, FL (Sports Network) - Florida State head coach Jimbo Fisher named redshirt freshman Jameis Winston the starting quarterback over Jacob Coker for the Seminoles' opener against Pittsburgh on Sept. 2.

Winston, a five-star recruit out of Hueytown High School in Hueytown, Alabama, was considered the best dual-threat quarterback recruit in the nation by Rivals.com in 2012.

In addition, the 6-foot-4 Winston plays baseball as an outfielder and relief pitcher, and was drafted by the Texas Rangers in the 15th round of the 2012 MLB Draft. However, he decided to go to college instead.

Winston beat out Coker after splitting first-team repetitions over the past 2 1/2 weeks. Coker, a redshirt sophomore, completed 3-of-5 passes for 45 yards and a touchdown last season.

"Just a little more consistency ... for a longer period of time," Fisher said on why Winston won the job. "Jake is ready to play, too. Jameis, I thought -- as we ranked and talked about it as a staff -- did some different things. Both of them really started to take command of things as camp wore on. I thought Jameis did a little better job in the beginning. You're being close; you're splitting hairs when you really get down to it. That's not 'coach talk' or anything else. That's the truth."

Winston will be the first redshirt freshman to start at quarterback for Florida State since EJ Manuel in 2009. He replaces Manuel, who started the past two seasons for the Seminoles and was selected by the Buffalo Bills with the 16th overall pick in this April's NFL Draft.

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