The Florida State Seminoles are in Louisville in advance of their Thursday night showdown with the Cardinals in an important ACC tussle.
The team held its standard pregame practice in downtown Louisville on Wednesday at a local public park, and following the practice, the team walked past an establishment called Joe's Crab Shack.
You can see where this is going.
The presence of media at the practice did not sit well with Florida State brass. Photographer Chris Humphreys, who took the above picture, noted that Florida State attempted to remove all media from the practice area. This is typical practice in most instances, but the issue here is that Florida State was practicing at a public park, meaning that the staff didsn't have the authority to remove people from the premise.
Adam Himmelsbach, who covers the Cardinals for The Courier-Journal of Louisville, also attempted to watch the practice at the public park near the Big Four pedestrian bridge in downtown Louisville.
A security guard asked me to step off the edge of the grass and onto the sidewalk, and I did.
Then I took out my phone to take a picture, and two FSU staff members started freaking out.
"Put that away!"
I calmly told them that this was a public park, and that anyone can take pictures at a public park. They told me they had reserved the field. I said that I wasn't trying to use the field they had reserved. I was just taking a picture of it.
They told me to talk to the police, and then pointed me toward a Waterfront Park staff member, who was clearly not a policeman. I explained my situation to him, and he understood. He just asked that I stay back from the practice, and that was reasonable.
That's not a huge deal right? Himmelsbach even noted that FSU has frequently practiced in public settings and nothing like this had ever happened before. So this must be the end of it, right?
According to Jared Stillman of ESPN Louisville, there was a confrontation between the Florida State SID and the director of football operations regarding the decision to have the team walk past Joe's Crab Shack, a national franchise restaurant.
Apparently there was a confrontation in the lobby of the FSU team hotel between SID and DOFO about team walking in front of Joe's Crab Shack— Jared Stillman (@JaredStillman) October 29, 2014
Friend was in lobby of hotel when it happened with "100 other people".— Jared Stillman (@JaredStillman) October 29, 2014
Now, having the team walk in front of a place called Joe's Crab Shack given the Jameis Winston ordeal probably wasn't the best decision in the world, but it's also a very minuet issue. The only thing that could come of it is a picture of the team walking in front of the restaurant and people on the internet cracking jokes about it.
But as we've seen in major college athletics on a frequent basis, controlling the message is very important, and in this case it looks the message was unable to be controlled and that did not sit well with members of the football program.