Florida State Seminoles: Power Rankings

FSU power rankings: Week 13

November, 25, 2013
Florida State is likely to be hurt a bit in a lot of the All-America and All-ACC balloting because so few of the starters have been able to stay on the field thanks to a number of blowout wins. But in the power rankings, credit where it’s due.

(Last week’s rankings in parentheses)

1. Jameis Winston (1): With Johnny Manziel and Bryce Petty both losing Saturday, the Heisman race is pretty much over, as long as Winston’s legal difficulties don’t scare voters away.

[+] EnlargeTimmy Jernigan
Melina Vastola/USA TODAY SportsFlorida State defensive tackle Timmy Jernigan has 4.5 sacks this season.
2. Lamarcus Joyner (2): Four tackles in the game, but one was worth noting. Joyner came on a blitz but couldn’t get to QB Taylor Davis in time. Davis completed a pass to Dezmon Epps, who raced for a 68-yard gain. The only reason it wasn’t a touchdown is because Joyner ran nearly the entire length of the field to chase him down.

3. Timmy Jernigan (3): If Jernigan was the only player on the field for FSU’s defense, he still would have won a majority of the battles. He dominated Idaho’s O-line, racking up six tackles, 4.5 for a loss and 2.5 sacks in less than a half of action.

4. Devonta Freeman (4): His chase for 1,000 yards is back on after a stellar 11-carry, 129-yard day against the Vandals.

5. Telvin Smith (6): Four tackles and a pick-six. A fitting send off in front of the home crowd for one of FSU’s most vocal leaders.

6. Rashad Greene (5): Another quiet day for Greene, who had just two catches for 29 yards. But while teams focus on him, his counterparts are racking up a myriad of big plays.

7. Jalen Ramsey (8): If you ranked the five biggest hits delivered by FSU defenders Saturday, Ramsey would’ve had at least three of them.

8. Kenny Shaw (NR): Finally hit the 100-yard mark, catching five passes for 107 yards and two scores. Shaw, like Greene, is on pace to top 1,000 receiving yards this year, but he’s already over 1,000 all-purpose yards.

9. Christian Jones (7): Relatively quiet day for Jones, but that’s to be expected given how little time the first-team D spent on the field.

10. Nick O’Leary (9): Just one catch for 13 yards, but O’Leary continues to be a huge weapon over the middle.

Honorable mentions: S Terrence Brooks, WR Kelvin Benjamin, RB Karlos Williams

Florida State power rankings: Week 12

November, 18, 2013
Eventually, Florida State’s starters will get more than two quarters to pad their stats, right? Right? OK, so the Seminoles are a 56-point favorite against Idaho, so that probably won’t happen soon.

(Last week’s rankings in parentheses.)

1. QB Jameis Winston (1): Here’s the list of quarterbacks since 2000 to have two games in the same season with at least 15 completions in which they completed at least 90 percent of their throws: Winston. That’s it. That’s the list.

2. CB Lamarcus Joyner (2): Four more tackles, 1.5 more sacks. Joyner is making a strong case to be named the ACC’s defensive player of the year.

3. DT Timmy Jernigan (5): Of course, if Joyner’s not the ACC’s top defender, maybe Jernigan deserves the honor. He had six tackles (one for a loss) all in the first half, and he now has 37 tackles on the season. While he was in the game, Syracuse had five yards rushing on 18 carries.

4. RB Devonta Freeman (3): A few weeks ago, Freeman’s quest for 1,000 yards looked like a sure thing. After two blowouts in which he’s carried just 10 times, he now needs to average 75 yards a game to make 1,000.

5. WR Rashad Greene (4): He’s suffering a similar fate as Freeman. He’s had just 87 receiving yards in his last two games -- a total he’s topped in a single game five times this season. Still, Greene is just 140 yards shy of 1,000 for the year.

6. LB Telvin Smith (6): Four tackles, one for a loss, and a pass break-up -- Smith’s draft stock is rising by the week.

7. DE Christian Jones (10): His move to the line has been huge, and he finished with four tackles (one for a loss) against Syracuse.

8. S Jalen Ramsey (7): Three tackles, a QB hurry, and another terrific performance from one of the country’s most consistent true freshmen.

9. TE Nick O’Leary (NR): His third-quarter touchdown reception from Sean Maguire made O’Leary Florida State’s record holder for career TDs by a tight end.

10. S Terrence Brooks (9): He returned from a concussion with four tackles as FSU’s secondary was once again dominant.

Honorable mentions: DB Nate Andrews, WR Kermit Whitfield, RB James Wilder Jr., WR Kelvin Benjamin, WR Kenny Shaw, RB Karlos Williams, DT Eddie Goldman

FSU power rankings: Week 10

November, 4, 2013
For the second time in three weeks, Florida State dominated a top-10 opponent. There isn’t a team with a winning record remaining on the schedule, which means there could be some big numbers shifting the power rankings in the weeks to come. As it stands though, there was little movement from a week ago.

1. QB Jameis Winston (Previous rank: No. 1): If the worst game of Winston’s career is a 27-point win in which he throws for 325 yards, Florida State fans won’t be too concerned.

[+] EnlargeJameis Winston
Stephen M. Dowell/Orlando Sentinel/MCTThough Jameis Winston threw two interceptions vs. Miami, the Seminoles' signal-caller was 21-of-29 for 325 yards and a touchdown.
2. CB Lamarcus Joyner (2): Ho-hum, another six-tackle day for Joyner, who is second on the team with 43 for the season. Add in the fact that receivers and tight ends not named Allen Hurns -- i.e. players Joyner was on for most of the game -- caught just eight passes for 92 yards for Miami.

3. RB Devonta Freeman (6): Yes, Freeman racked up an impressive 176 yards of offense and three TDs, but here’s another area his impact was felt: Winston was 10-of-11 for 183 yards on play-action against Miami.

4. WR Rashad Greene (3): One of just six ACC receivers averaging more than 90 receiving yards per game this year.

5. LB Telvin Smith (4): Four tackles, including one for a loss, in the win over Miami.

6. DT Timmy Jerngian (5): Four tackles and he sat on a guy vs. the Hurricanes. Jernigan has been an absolute beast in the middle all season for Florida State.

7. S Terrence Brooks (7): He left early with concussion symptoms, but coach Jimbo Fisher said Brooks appeared fine in the locker room after the game. He made his impact early anyway, finishing with six tackles, including a big sack, in the early going.

8. LT Cameron Erving (9): Thoroughly dominated Anthony Chickillo throughout and helped open running lanes against a stout front seven for Miami.

9. DE Christian Jones (7): Continues to look like a strong addition in his new role coming off the edge.

10. DE Mario Edwards Jr. (NR): The biggest difference for FSU’s defensive line the past few weeks has been a healthy Edwards, who finished Saturday with four tackles, including two for a loss.

Honorable mentions: TE Nick O’Leary, WR Kenny Shaw, WR Kelvin Benjamin, LB Terrance Smith, DT Eddie Goldman

FSU Power Rankings: Week 9

October, 28, 2013
Few changes at the top after the starters rested in the second half, but here are this week’s Power Rankings. (Last week’s spot in parentheses.)

1. QB Jameis Winston (1): The back-and-forth scoring decision on a throw to Kelvin Benjamin was finally ruled an interception. That kept Winston from topping three touchdowns and 300 yards for his fifth straight game against an ACC foe. He finished with 292.

2. CB Lamarcus Joyner (2): Four tackles, a TFL, a pass breakup and a QB hurry. Not bad for 30 minutes of work.

3. WR Rashad Greene (4): Greene has now scored in six of seven games this year and 10 of Florida State’s last 13 overall.

4. LB Telvin Smith (3): Six tackles, a fumble recovery, a pass breakup and a QB hurry. Also not bad for 30 minutes of work.

5. DT Timmy Jernigan (5): Three tackles, including one for a loss against NC State. Jernigan continues to eat up interior linemen, opening things up for FSU’s linebackers.

6. RB Devonta Freeman (6): 12 carries, 92 yards and two touchdowns, and Freeman is well on his way to snapping that ridiculous 17-year drought without a 1,000-yard rusher.

7. S Terrence Brooks (NR): Brooks is quietly becoming one of FSU’s premier defenders. He racked up the defensive hat trick Saturday, picking off a pass, forcing a fumble and recording a TFL.

8. LB Christian Jones (7): His new role rushing off the edge has made all the difference. Jones had four tackles, a sack and a QB hurry against NC State. He has 3.5 TFLs in the last two games after just one in his first four games.

9. LT Cameron Erving (8): Easy day for Winston means a big day for the O line, and Erving was exceptional once again.

10. WR Kenny Shaw (9): Shaw had just three catches for 44 yards against NC State, both season lows, but he’s still on pace to top 1,000 yards for the year.

Honorable mentions: TE Nick O’Leary, WR Kelvin Benjamin, DT Eddie Goldman, RB Karlos Williams, CB Ronald Darby

FSU power rankings: Week 6

October, 7, 2013
There's no question who tops the power rankings yet again. Instead, it's really a matter of where he shows up on the Heisman watch list.

Last week's rankings in parentheses.

1. QB Jameis Winston (1): Seven more touchdowns, another acrobatic escape act turned highlight-reel TD, and another big win. Ho-hum. But how about these numbers: This season, on the final drive of the first half and first drive of the second half, Winston is 26-of-30 for 493 yards and seven touchdowns. FSU has scored on all 10 drives, including nine TDs.

2. RB Devonta Freeman (5): It has been 17 years since an FSU runner went over 1,000 yards. Freeman is currently on pace for 1,001.

[+] EnlargeTelvin Smith
Melina Vastola/USA TODAY SportsTelvin Smith (22) and the Seminoles held Maryland to 33 rushing yards.
3. DT Timmy Jernigan (8): The big mover in this week's power rankings, he set the tone for a major turnaround on the D line, which held Maryland to just 33 yards one week after giving up 200 to Boston College.

4. WR Rashad Greene (3): There may not be another player in the country who so easily floats under the radar after putting up 108 yards on four catches.

5. CB Lamarcus Joyner (2): Just one tackle, but he got solid pressure on Maryland quarterbacks throughout and forced a fumble.

6. LB Telvin Smith (6): The success from the D line opened things up for Smith, who created significant chaos in the Maryland backfield. He finished with five tackles and a PBU.

7. WR Kenny Shaw (4): What's a guy have to do to get a 100-yard game? Shaw has been between 89 and 96 each time out this year.

8. S Terrence Brooks (8): No one played with more ferocity Saturday than Brooks, who has come into his own as a force in the FSU secondary.

9. DB Jalen Ramsey (7): Another strong performance from the freshman in his new role at safety. Given the concerns about Tyler Hunter's neck injury, Ramsey's presence looms large with Clemson on the horizon.

10. WR Kelvin Benjamin (10): Fisher pushed Benjamin to do the little things better this year. He has responded, as evidenced by his five-catches, 60 yards and two TDs against Maryland.

Honorable mentions: Tackles Cameron Erving and Bobby Hart, DTs Jacobbi McDaniel and Eddie Goldman, DE Chris Casher, RB Karlos Williams, K Roberto Aguayo, CB P.J. Williams.

FSU power rankings: Game 4

September, 30, 2013
Let's face it: There's Jameis Winston, and then there's everyone else. Nevertheless, after four games, the power rankings still go all the way to 10.

(Last week's ranking in parentheses)

1. Winston (1): Four more touchdown passes, ho-hum. Just to prove he's not a one-trick pony, however, Winston also ran for 96 yards (not counting yardage lost to sacks).

2. CB Lamarcus Joyner (2): Six tackles for Joyner, who played well and cleaned up a few of the messes the run defense made.

3. WR Rashad Greene (4): Four catches, 90 yards, two touchdowns. Greene has now touched the ball 147 times in his career and has racked up 21 touchdowns.

4. WR Kenny Shaw (5): Can someone get this guy a 100-yard game? In all four of his games this season, Shaw has finished between 89 and 94 yards. Something to be said for consistency.

5. RB Devonta Freeman (3): The tailbacks finished with just 21 carries between them, so it was hardly a banner day for the running game. Freeman finished with 49 yards, averaging 5.4 per carry. Not terrible, but it's worth noting that in his two ACC games, he's got 101 yards and no TDs. In his two games vs. lower-tier foes, he has 221 yards and two TDs.

6. LB Telvin Smith (6): Tough to account for the number of missed assignments and missed tackles on the defense -- a few of which Smith had a hand in -- but the senior at least finished with 10 tackles, including two for a loss.

7. DB Jalen Ramsey (NR): Six tackles in his first game at safety. Ramsey is a natural regardless of where Jeremy Pruitt puts him.

8. DT Timmy Jernigan (7): The rest of the D line was shaky, but Jernigan played well enough. He finished with seven tackles.

9. S Terrence Brooks (8): He had one ugly penalty -- a late hit on the QB that extended a drive -- but beyond that he played well, finishing with seven tackles, including two for a loss.

10. Kelvin Benjamin (NR): After a rough start, Benjamin responded with his first 100-yard game.

Honorable mentions: RB Karlos Williams; LB Christian Jones; K Roberto Aguayo; CB P.J. Williams

FSU power rankings: Game 2

September, 16, 2013
Florida State burnished its stats in an easy win over Nevada. So how did the win shake up the power rankings? Safe to say the top spot went unchanged. (Previous week's rank in parentheses.)

1. QB Jameis Winston (1): Three incompletions? An interception? What a bum!

[+] EnlargeRashad Greene, Kenny Shaw
Stephen M. Dowell/Orlando Sentinel via Getty ImagesRashad Greene (left) and Kenny Shaw moved up the FSU power rankings after their performances against Nevada.
2. WR Rashad Greene (3): Just 39 yards on three catches, but his TD grab was as good as it gets.

3. CB Lamarcus Joyner (2): Tied for team lead with six tackles. In fact, FSU had four players with at least five tackles. Three of them were DBs.

4. LB Christian Jones (7): Five tackles and was all over the field making plays early in the game, particularly when the rest of FSU's D was struggling.

5. WR Kenny Shaw (8): Two weeks, two games of 90-plus receiving yards. Shaw scored FSU's first touchdown and racked up 147 all-purpose yards.

6. LB Telvin Smith (4): Four tackles and a strong day after a few hiccups on Nevada's opening drive.

7. DT Timmy Jernigan (5): Relatively quiet day with just three tackles. He had a fourth, but it came without his helmet and led to a 15-yard penalty.

8. RB Devonta Freeman (10): Karlos Williams was all the buzz after the game, but it was Freeman who starred early. He finished with 109 yards, a TD and a 60-yard scamper.

9. S Terrence Brooks (9): Tied for the team lead with six tackles, 10 tackles and an INT through the first two games.

10. TE Nick O'Leary (6): Just two catches for 16 yards. They can't all be three-TD games.

Honorable mention: Williams, RT Bobby Hart, CB Jalen Ramsey, S Tyler Hunter

FSU power rankings: Game 1

September, 4, 2013
One week in, and the top spot in the power rankings couldn't be more obvious.

1. Jameis Winston: The hype was for real. So what happens next for FSU's quarterback? Odds are Jimbo Fisher still manages to find room for improvement.

2. Lamarcus Joyner: First game back at corner? No problem. Joyner led the team in tackles and collected two sacks.

3. Rashad Greene: With three senior WRs gone, Greene showed he belongs among the elite receivers in the ACC. He hauled in eight passes for 126 yards -- his third career 100-yard game -- and a TD.

[+] EnlargeNick O'Leary
Jeanine Leech/Icon SMIFSU tight end Nick O'Leary might be quiet off the field, but his play speak volumes about how hard he's worked to get better and better this season.
4. Telvin Smith: He delivered the pregame speech then delivered a stellar first half for the Seminoles, as the rest of the defense looked somewhat uncomfortable with the new scheme. Smith finished with eight tackles.

5. Timmy Jernigan: Four tackles, two for a loss and one sack. Yeah, he'll be just fine as a starter. By far FSU's most productive D-lineman on Monday.

6. Nick O'Leary: All of 2012, three TDs for O'Leary. First game of 2013, three TDs for O'Leary. Being Winston's favorite red-zone target has its privileges.

7. Christian Jones: An eight-tackle night wasn't bad, but Jones could've done more. He looked tentative at times coming off the edge, and FSU's D is going to need him to get more pressure when he lines up with his hand in the dirt.

8. Kenny Shaw: As quiet a four-catch, 94-yard performance as you'll see, but Shaw looked like a solid option in the slot to complement strong games from Greene and Kelvin Benjamin.

9. Terrence Brooks: Four tackles and an interception isn't too shabby, though Brooks will be the first to say it could've been more. He had a couple of passes thrown his way that could've been picked.

10. Devonta Freeman: Really, it's splitting hairs between Freeman and James Wilder Jr., who split reps just about evenly through most of the game. Freeman finished with nine carries for 52 yards and added two catches for 11 yards.

Honorable mentions: Wilder, Benjamin, CB Jalen Ramsey, C Bryan Stork, DT Eddie Goldman

ACC preseason power rankings

August, 26, 2013
Ranking the teams in the ACC heading into the first weekend of the regular season:

1. Clemson: There's no questioning the talent at Clemson, where Tajh Boyd is in the hunt for a Heisman and Sammy Watkins looks to regain his place among college football's elite playmakers. But the burden of massive expectations will be with the Tigers from the start, and they'll be tested early with a season opener against Georgia.

2. Florida State: A lot of talent has left Tallahassee since last year's ACC championship, but the cupboard isn't bare for Jimbo Fisher. There are bound to be some growing pains with a new quarterback and a new defensive scheme, but Florida State still might be the most talented team in the conference.

3. Miami: The black cloud of NCAA sanctions has passed, and Al Golden has a team poised to finally take a step back toward relevance on a national stage. Stephen Morris and Duke Johnson headline a potent offensive attack, and the Hurricanes return one of the most experienced teams in the conference.

4. North Carolina: The Tar Heels need to replace Giovani Bernard and find some answers on both sides of the line, but Bryn Renner & Co. are now well versed in Larry Fedora's system, making North Carolina a legitimate threat in the Coastal Division.

5. Virginia Tech: After last season's implosion, Virginia Tech figures to enjoy something of a rebound, but there are still some major questions looming. The offensive line could be a significant issue, meaning more pressure on QB Logan Thomas. And, with a showdown versus Alabama to start the season, the Hokies could find themselves in an early hole.

6. Georgia Tech: The defense improved down the stretch last season, and new coordinator Ted Roof seems to have found a system that fits the legitimate talent Georgia Tech has on that side of the ball. Vad Lee takes over at quarterback for what could be a prolific offense, giving the Yellow Jackets a legitimate shot at another ACC championship game appearance.

7. Wake Forest: The Deacons have a veteran roster and a manageable schedule, so improving on last year's 5-7 finish shouldn't be a reach. The key will be finding some success offensively after ranking 116th nationally in scoring offense and struggling mightily to run the football last season.

8. NC State: New coach Dave Doeren inherits a roster in transition, but there is some talent returning. NC State has a solid stable of receivers, even if the quarterback position remains a question mark. The Wolfpack should be thrilled with another winning season, but there's plenty of work to be done.

9. Maryland: At the very least, Maryland should have a more settled situation at quarterback this season after sifting through five starters at the position in 2012. Add a potentially strong defense and an impressive playmaker in Stefon Diggs, and the Terps have a shot at leaving the ACC on a high note.

10. Pittsburgh: The ACC didn't exactly roll out the welcome mat for the Panthers, who have the misfortune of opening their season against the defending conference champs. But if Paul Chryst's crew can hold its own against Florida State on Labor Day, the outlook for Pitt could improve markedly.

11. Syracuse: A new coach, a new quarterback and a new conference mean plenty of question marks for the Orange as they enter 2013, but Syracuse figures to have one of the better defenses in the league, led by linebacker Dyshawn Davis.

12. Duke: There's no question 2012 was a big step forward for the Duke program, which reached a bowl game for the first time in nearly two decades. But there's plenty of rebuilding to do, even if new QB Anthony Boone looks ready to take over the offense. Plus, for all of last year's success, Duke still lost six of its final seven games.

13. Virginia: Mike London appears to be finding his footing at Virginia, but the rebuilding process continues. The Cavaliers lost both of last year's quarterbacks, and major question marks remain on both sides of the ball.

14. Boston College: The Eagles won just one game against an FBS opponent last season, and, not surprisingly, a massive overhaul of the coaching staff followed. Steve Addazio has injected some life into the program, but Chase Rettig & Co. still have a long way to go.

FSU 10: End of Season edition 

January, 3, 2013
The 2012 season has drawn to a close, and the final judgement of this Florida State team and so many of its core players will be based largely on the expectations thrust upon them way back in August.

On the one hand, Florida State won 12 games, an ACC title, a BCS bowl. On the other hand, it was never really close to competing for a national title -- as so many had predicted -- and the losses to NC State and Florida were both aggravating for various reasons.

[+] EnlargeBjoern Werner
Bob Donnan/USA TODAY SportsBjoern Werner produced in every way possible, on the stat sheet and off, to guide the Seminoles.
The same is true for a number of the star performers. To put together our final FSU power rankings for the year, weighing expectations against performance is a must. So, with that in mind, here's how our final rankings for the season shook out. (Previous rankings in parentheses.)

FSU 10: Week 14 power rankings 

December, 3, 2012
Florida State wrapped up an ACC championship Saturday, and though the win was expected it hardly came easily. While a handful of youngsters (Karlos Williams, Mario Edwards Jr.) provided some of the biggest plays, the Seminoles' penultimate game of the season also provided a showcase for a few veteran stars, and, for its struggling quarterback, one more missed opportunity to win over a tepid fan base.

With only a bowl game remaining on the schedule, FSU's defensive line dominates the top spots in the power rankings as the offense still struggles to find consistency. Last week's rankings are in parentheses.

1. Bjoern Werner (1)

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FSU 10: Week 13 power rankings 

November, 26, 2012
The regular season has come to a close, and Florida State got two huge performances from players at the top of the power rankings, both potentially playing in their final home game. For a third, however, things were much different, as EJ Manuel struggled through a dismal home finale in a loss to Florida.

So, as we get set for the ACC championship game, here's how FSU's top 10 looks (last week's rankings in parentheses).

[+] EnlargeEJ Manuel
Kevin Liles/US PresswireEJ Manuel didn't have his finest day against Florida.
1. Bjoern Werner (2)

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FSU 10: Week 12 player power rankings 

November, 19, 2012
Maryland didn't figure to put up much of a fight against Florida State, and the Seminoles big lead at the half was no surprise. But while a win was expected, the overall performance -- particularly from the running game -- was a much-needed rebound after the struggles of the previous game.

Here's how the power rankings shake out after 11 games (last week's ranking in parentheses).

[+] EnlargeBjoern Werner, Timmy Jernigan
AP Photo/Patrick SemanskyBjoern Werner (left) continued his stellar play for FSU.
1. Cornellius Carradine, DE (1)

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Florida State 10: Week 10 rankings 

November, 12, 2012
Rashad GreeneAP Photo/Steve HelberRashad Greene had his best performance of the season and caught the game-winner at Virginia Tech.
With 10 games in the books, there hasn't been a lot of shuffling in the power rankings for Florida State, whose top performers have remained consistent throughout the season. But Thursday's dramatic, come-from-behind win over Virginia Tech included a handful of marquee performances, and that's forced a change at the top of the rankings and a few new names sneaking in toward the bottom. (Last week's ranking in parentheses.)

1. Cornellius Carradine, DE (3)
It might have seemed impossible to believe before the season started, but Florida State's best defensive player might have been the guy on the bench at defensive end for Game 1. Since Brandon Jenkins was lost for the season, however, Carradine has blossomed, and he could be well on his way to landing in the first round of the 2013 NFL draft. His 11-tackle performance against Virginia Tech was dominant, and with 64 tackles this season, Carradine leads all ACC defensive linemen. His nine sacks also ranks No. 1 in the conference, and he is eighth in tackles-for-loss with 10.

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Florida State 10: Week 9 power rankings 

October, 29, 2012
With Chris Thompson -- last week's No. 1 player in our Florida State power rankings -- gone for the season, the Seminoles need others to step up on offense. If Saturday was any indication, that won't be a concern.

Florida State's offense racked up five touchdowns in a dominant win over Duke, and had it not been for four fumbles, it might have been a lot more.

So, with a bye week finally at hand, here's how the power rankings stack up after nine games. (Last week's ranks in parentheses.)

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Goodell Has Sit-Down With Jameis Winston
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