The Big Board: Looking for takeaways 

November, 6, 2012
Two weeks before the season started, Jimbo Fisher lamented the hype his defense had earned. He preached caution, noting that it would be nearly impossible for any unit to live up to the level of expectations that surrounded Florida State's defense at the time.

[+] EnlargeLamarcus Joyner
AP Photo/Don Juan MooreLamarcus Joyner's interception against Boston College is one of few turnovers the Seminoles have forced this season.
Three months later, Fisher's conservative projections appear unnecessary. Florida State's defense has largely lived up to those lofty expectations.

The Seminoles are tops in the nation in total defense, allowing just 227 yards per game. They're third in scoring defense and rushing defense, with top-ranked Alabama the only team ahead in both categories. No team in the country has allowed fewer passing yards per attempt, and the 77 percent success rate on third down isn't just the best mark in the nation, but a number that matches up as one of the best in recent history.

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