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Francois reclaims top QB job, will start opener vs. Virginia Tech

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Gene Williams/Warchant

After missing almost a full year of football, Deondre Francois is once again the starting quarterback for Florida State University.

The redshirt junior, who suffered a season-ending knee injury in the opener last year against Alabama, beat out sophomore James Blackman and redshirt freshman Bailey Hockman for the job, head coach Willie Taggart announced Monday morning.

Francois was limited throughout spring practice and did not play in the Garnet & Gold game in April, but he was able to win the job with his play in August.

The Orlando native was far from a no-doubt choice to be the starting quarterback when the competition began. Not only was he competing against a sophomore in Blackman who had a full year of starting experience under his belt, but he was also trying to prove to his new head coach that he could be trusted to be his starting quarterback.

Taggart said multiple times in the offseason that he wanted to see improvement from Francois off the field. He needed to see more leadership. He wanted to see a better teammate.

The head coach apparently saw what he needed to, awarding the starting job back to the 2016 ACC Rookie of the Year.

As a redshirt freshman that season, Francois threw for 3,350 yards, 20 touchdowns and seven interceptions. He had five 300-yard passing games -- the second most in school history by a freshman.

He was considered one of the top returning quarterbacks in the country in 2017 before he was knocked out for the season in the fourth quarter vs. Alabama. He was 19 of 33 for 210 yards, one TD and two interceptions in that game before getting injured.

Stay connected with Warchant.com for more on this story.

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