Casey Weldon saw no reason to be happy with his performance, even though it was good enough to earn him Florida State's starting quarterback job for at least this week. Weldon came on in relief of starter Brad Johnson during FSU's 20-17 loss to Auburn on Saturday night and guided the Seminoles to 17 first-half points. On Sunday, coach Bobby Bowden said Weldon would be his starter this week against LSU.
"I would have rather Brad played the whole game and we had won than to see what happened," Weldon said Sunday. "I would have rather thrown three interceptions and looked terrible and win than lose the way we did."
Weldon and his FSU teammates were still feeling low Sunday after Auburn's comeback at Jordan-Hare Stadium. Jim Von Wyl kicked the winning 38-yard field goal with two seconds remaining, dropping FSU (4-2) out of the national championship race.
But the Seminoles are a young team with most of their starters returning next year, including Weldon and Johnson, who was rated ninth in the country in passing efficiency entering the game.
Weldon entered the game on FSU's fourth offensive series _ after Johnson was intercepted once and couldn't get FSU a first down _ and quickly guided the Seminoles to a field goal and two touchdowns.
"Casey can provide more mobility and he can throw better downfield," Bowden said. "It's been looking that way the last two or three weeks (in practice). Our coaching staff has discussed whether Casey should be playing more. But Brad had been doing so good, we didn't want to change.
"But we felt like we needed to go with him, and right now he is the No. 1 quarterback."
Weldon is a redshirt junior from Tallahassee whom many people expected to be the starter this year. Johnson, however, won the job in spring practice and didn't give it up at the start of fall practice.
But beginning with FSU's third game at Tulane, Bowden hinted that Weldon might be more than a backup. He played him early against Tulane, Virginia Tech and Miami.
Against Auburn, Weldon completed 20 of 30 passes for 244 yards and one touchdown. He was not intercepted. He also scrambled for 25 yards. His only sack was for 22 yards, and it came on fourth down, setting up Auburn's game-winning field goal.
"He played a very good game and threw some outstanding passes," said offensive coordinator Brad Scott. "We've kind of been seeing it in practice the last two weeks. He's starting to get sharp."