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Mississippians lead the way in Florida State’s rout of Southern Miss

Greenville native Trey Benson went for three touchdowns in Florida State's 66-13 win over Southern Miss Saturday night (Photo from FSU Athletics/X)

Saturday’s game at Doak Campbell Stadium turned out to be a battle of Mississippians with five of the contest’s touchdowns coming from Magnolia State natives.

Florida State running back Trey Benson – a Greenville native who played his high school years at St. Joseph Catholic School – led the way for the Seminoles in their 66-13 win with three touchdowns on the ground.

Jarrian Jones – a Magee native who transferred to Tallahassee from Mississippi State after his freshman year – returned an interception for a score in the third quarter. Southern Miss’ lone touchdown came from Starkville product and running back Rodrigues Clark.

Overall, the unranked Golden Eagles could not keep up with the No. 4 Seminoles, who are early favorites to make the College Football Playoff.

“Great football team we played tonight,” Southern Miss head coach Will Hall said. “They are experienced, well-coached, and have been through the fire. Credit to Coach Norvell and their play. We had some self-inflicted wounds and that cost us.”

Hall, who served as associate head coach and tight ends coach under Norvell at Memphis during the 2018 season, pointed all the way back to the second drive of the game where his team gave up three fourth-down conversions en route to Benson’s first touchdown.

Southern Miss also had 13 penalties, resulting in 90 yards lost, in comparison to Florida State’s three penalties for 45 yards. Those mistakes combined with giving up 554 total yards to the Seminole offense led to the big loss.

Topping the stat sheet for Southern Miss was Clemson transfer quarterback Billy Wiles who went 11 of 34 passing for 154 yards with no touchdowns and an interception. Clark finished with 86 yards on 15 carries, and kicker Andrew Stein went two for two on field goals while splitting the team’s only PAT through the uprights.

For Florida State, Benson had 79 yards on nine carries with 20 yards receiving. Quarterback Jordan Travis went 15 of 29 for 175 yards with two touchdowns, and Keon Coleman had 48 yards on three receptions and a score. Other Seminole touchdowns came from Tate Rodemaker, Caziah Holmes, Markeston Douglas, Darion Williamson, and Vandrevious Jacobs.

Next up for the Golden Eagles (1-1) will be a home game against No. 24 Tulane – who fell to Ole Miss Saturday 37-20 – in the annual Battle for the Bell. Florida State (2-0) will host Virginia Tech.

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