TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- The only thing that could rein in the Florida State offense Saturday night was a pair of lightning delays and a running clock.
Despite each, the sixth-ranked Seminoles had no trouble racing past overmatched FCS opponent Savannah State for a 55-0 victory in a shortened game at Doak Campbell Stadium.
Moments into the second delay, ESPN announced that the remainder of the game had been terminated with 8:59 left in the third quarter, but official word did not come until nearly 45 minutes later.
"Well, that's a first," FSU coach Jimbo Fisher said. "I've never had that occur in my career."
After scoring four touchdowns in its first 13 plays, Florida State (2-0) appeared on pace to at least match the 84 points hung on SSU in last week's opener at Oklahoma State.
But after waiting out the weather and monitoring another incoming system, Fisher, Savannah State coach Steve Davenport and the game officials agreed to play under a running clock for the final 34 minutes of the contest. The game was called 42 minutes into a second delay that halted things three minutes into the third quarter.
After halting things for a second time, FSU and SSU officials consulted with the NCAA and Atlantic Coast Conference and determined that the remainder of the game would not but played but that it would be considered a completed game for statistical purposes.
"There was a discussion there at the end, after the weather delay, of whether or not we were going to have to call it a 0-0 tie, and that was obviously not fair to (FSU)," Davenport said.
"I wish we would have finished it, could have finished it, but we can't," Fisher said. "There were some young guys that I really wanted to see keep playing, but I understand the circumstances."
A running clock is common for high school games that get out of hand but is extremely rare in college football. It's believed to be the first time FSU has played under one.
"This was an opportunity to come to Doak Campbell Stadium -- something you've only seen on TV -- and test your measure against Florida State and their fantastic athletes," Davenport said. "I think we had some one-on-one battles that we won on certain plays, and that's what we challenged them with."
Florida State ran, passed and scored at will in building a 48-0 halftime lead.
Quarterback EJ Manuel connected with Rodney Smith for a 61-yard touchdown on the second play from scrimmage, and the Seminoles built a 28-0 lead before the midway point of the first quarter.
Manuel threw for 161 yards and three touchdowns on 11-of-13 passing before leaving after just one quarter of work for the Seminoles, who piled up 391 yards in the first two quarters.
"Everything was open that we thought would be open," Manuel said. "All the looks that we saw in practice they showed to us in the game."
Florida State didn't miss a beat with backup Clint Trickett under center. He went into the break having led two touchdown drives, both of them capped by James Wilder scoring runs. Wilder has four rushing touchdowns in less than two full games this season.
After finishing the first quarter with minus-20 yards, Savannah State went into the break with just 36 yards and three first downs. Quarterback Antonio Bostick managed just nine yards and two completions.
NOTES: Florida State's 48 first-half points were its most since scoring 56 against Tulane in 1992. ... The Tigers have been outscored 139-0 after last week's 84-0 loss at Oklahoma State. ... Manuel's 161 passing yards gave him 4,693 for his career, moving him into 10th place on FSU's all-time list. He passed Casey Weldon, who threw for 4,628 yards from 1988 to 1991. Next on the list is Bill Cappleman (4,904). ... Kicker Dustin Hopkins' streak of 145 consecutive extra points came to an end in the second quarter when he missed one off the upright. It was the longest active streak in the nation and the sixth-longest in NCAA history.