The ACC said Sunday that the contact Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston made with an official during Saturday's game against Boston College was believed to be incidental and insignificant by the center judge who Winston contacted.
"The center judge's positioning, which was due to the experimental year of having an eighth official, combined with the late substitution and by rule the need to allow the defense to matchup, led to contact between himself and the player," ACC coordinator of officials Doug Rhoads said in a statement. "The official believed the contact was incidental and insignificant and did not rise to the level of unsportsmanlike conduct and automatic disqualification."
If you haven't seen the incident, here it is. According to the NCAA rulebook, intentionable and forcible contact with an official is punishable with a 15-yard penalty and ejection. Winston was not flagged on the play.
After a gain on first down, Florida State rushed to the line and Winston wanted to snap the ball. However, the center judge had stopped the play because Boston College was substituting. By rule, if the offense substitutes before a play, defenses must be allowed to substitute as well.
After the game, Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher said he thought Winston got caught up in the moment because the play was designed to be snapped as soon as possible.
- - - - - - -