Florida State quarterback Jordan Travis was carted off the field with an air cast on his left leg after getting hurt on a run in the first quarter against North Alabama on Saturday night.
Travis was crossing midfield when North Alabama players converged on the tackle. His leg bent at an awkward angle underneath him as he landed on the turf and stayed down. Trainers immediately rushed to Travis as the sold-out Florida State crowd fell into silence.
Teammates took a knee and watched in stunned silence as the cart came out for him. An air cast was placed on his leg, and as he was loaded onto the cart, the crowd started chanting “Jordan Travis.” He was immediately placed into an ambulance after being carted off the field.
Coach Mike Norvell said he had no update on Travis’ injury after the 58-13 victory but discussed how difficult it was for the entire team to see its leader go down on Senior Night.
“Jordan is so important to this team, not just as the quarterback but just who he is and what he stands for,” Norvell said. “So when you see a player get hurt and not really knowing what that’s going to be, it was emotional for everybody. I thought our guys were able to gather themselves and just continue to play and thought a lot of guys played at a very high level and were there and in support of what was needed.”
Tate Rodemaker, who has spent the past two seasons as Travis’ backup, entered the game and threw for 217 yards and two touchdowns as the Seminoles scored 58 unanswered points.
Travis posted to his Instagram stories from what appeared to be a hospital bed, showing he was watching the Florida State game on a cellphone.
Travis has led Florida State to an undefeated season and the No. 4 ranking. In his sixth year, Travis has emerged as one of the best signal-callers in the country after starting his career at Florida State as a Wildcat quarterback.
Norvell saw promise in Travis and has helped him become a complete player — using both his running and passing abilities in 16 straight victories. This season, Travis has thrown for 2,734 yards with 20 touchdowns and two interceptions, adding seven rushing TDs.
“We knew this was Jordan Travis’ last game at Doak Campbell Stadium,” Norvell said. “I wanted to see him have a special game. Anytime somebody gets hurt, it’s painful to see, it’s painful to have to go through. You just want so bad for that kid because he does everything right.
“I can’t say that I did block it out. You go and you coach and you do everything for the players that are out there on the field. I owe it to them too, but it doesn’t lessen the impact of when you have any player that goes down. It’s hard.”
Norvell said Rodemaker is ready for his opportunity moving forward, with a big game against rival Florida next Saturday to try to close out the regular season undefeated.
“He’s been preparing all season,” Norvell said. “A few weeks ago in my office, we had a one-on-one just talking about being prepared in case the moment ever called for you. Tate does a great job in his preparation. Our guys have a lot of confidence in Tate because they watch him practice every day. They know the talent, they know the ability. He never seemed rattled in the moment. He was prepared and ready, and I thought he did a wonderful job and played really well.”