The Seminoles dominated the Tigers in the second half on the way to a 45-24 win Sunday night. Florida State scored 31 consecutive points in the second half to put the game away and beat LSU in Week 1 for the second straight season.
During his weekly coach’s show Thursday, Kelly played to the audience in attendance by saying his team was going to head to Orlando and beat Florida State despite having nearly 30 players who were making their first road trip with the team.
“I think we’re in a really good position in Year 2,” Kelly said on his show. “Look I will say there are still some areas that need to be improved. We’re going to take 15 freshmen on this trip and 14 transfers so nearly 40% of this travel roster are going to go overnight for the first time with LSU. And that’s not a disclaimer of any kind, we’re going to go beat the heck out of Florida State. I guess what I’m saying is we’re still developing our football team with new players, freshmen players, transfer players, so we’re in that process of developing.”
On Tuesday, Kelly was asked about his proclamation that turned out to be incorrect. At first, Kelly appeared to downplay what he said.
“I have no idea. Look, I think you all know me, I’m pretty careful with what I say and how I said it,” Kelly said. “Never have I been cavalier or disrespectful to an opponent in my 33 years so if somebody wants to prop up a comment like that and inflate it into something that it is not, that’s what social media is about today. But I have nothing but the utmost respect for coach [Mike] Norvell. I know who the opponent was. It’s just not in my background or nature to make those kinds of comments.”
Kelly was then directly asked a follow-up question about if he said LSU would beat Florida State and that’s when he appeared to deny saying it at all. You can watch the full exchange in the video above.
“Yeah it’s just — like I said, the position of head coach or any leadership position, you’re going to get things thrown out there that are absolutely untrue and you have no way to combat them because you can just sometimes throw stuff out there and hope it sticks," Kelly said. "But that’s not something I would ever say.”
If you’re familiar with coach’s shows at all, it’s not uncommon for a coach or host to say something to play to the home crowd. But it’s still easy for a coach to own what he said on the show. Wrong predictions happen and it was clear from the audio of Kelly's Thursday comments that he meant no disrespect to Florida State and was playing to the base. Kelly should have simply said that, owned what he said, and moved on.