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Staff and Wire Reports | September 17, 2014

FSU's Winston suspended first half vs. Clemson

Jameis Winston
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston has been benched for the first half of Saturday's game against Clemson after making ''offensive and vulgar'' comments about women and FSU officials say that the quarterback will undergo internal discipline.

The decision was announced Wednesday in a joint statement by Florida State interim President Dr. Garnett S. Stokes and athletic director Stan Wilcox. Several students tweeted Winston stood on campus Tuesday and shouted a lascivious comment that may have derived from an Internet meme.

"As the university's most visible ambassadors, student-athletes at Florida State are expected to uphold at all times high standards of integrity and behavior that reflect well upon themselves, their families, coaches, teammates, the Department of Athletics and Florida State University," Stokes said in the statement. "Student-athletes are expected to act in a way that reflects dignity and respect for others.

As a result of his comments [Tuesday], which were offensive and vulgar, Jameis Winston will undergo internal discipline and will be withheld from competition for the first half of the Clemson game."

Winston, 20, addressed his inappropriate comments before Wednesday's practice at his weekly news conference, saying: ''I have to tone it down.''

The Heisman Trophy winner gave a statement in which he added, ''I just want to apologize to my university, my coaches and my teammates. I'm not a me person, but in that situation it was a selfish act. That's not how you do things. I really want to apologize to my teammates because I have now made a selfish act for them.''

Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher had said earlier Wednesday that the quarterback would be held accountable for his ''derogatory'' remarks.

''It's not something we want or we're indicative of and it's not a good decision,'' Fisher said. ''It was something that has to be addressed.

''You can't make certain statements that are derogatory or inflammatory in any way toward any person, race, gender,'' said Fisher, whose top-ranked Seminoles play host to No. 22 Clemson on Saturday in an Atlantic Coast Conference showdown. ''The statements in which you make are always going to be made more public than statements that other individuals make,'' the coach said. ''And that's just the nature of the business of who you are and what you are. That's the situation it is and you have to understand that.''

Florida State Athletics and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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