Tallahassee, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - Jameis Winston's successful and controversial run as Florida State's quarterback has come to an end.
This time, by his own choice.
Winston's camp had initially indicated that an announcement wouldn't come until after the College Football Playoff national championship game next Monday.
However, ESPN on Wednesday morning cited Winston's father as saying his son has decided to enter the NFL Draft and Seminoles coach Jimbo Fisher later in the afternoon confirmed it in a statement.
"I would like to wish Jameis nothing but success at the next level as I think he'll be extremely successful," said Fisher. "It was a blessing to be able to coach him. He's one of the unique players that I've ever had the privilege to coach. He embodies what you as a coach want as a person, a student and a player. He's one of the greatest players in Florida State history."
Despite Fisher's sentiments, it was a bumpy two-year ride for Winston with the Seminoles. There were plenty of troubles off the field, but on it he was sensational.
Winston won the Heisman Trophy and led the Seminoles to the national championship in 2013 with a 14-0 record as a redshirt freshman. Florida State was 26-1 with Winston as the starting quarterback, with the only loss coming this past New Year's Day in the College Football Playoff semifinals against Oregon at the Rose Bowl.
During his freshman year, Winston set national freshman records with 4,057 passing yards and 40 touchdowns. This past season, he finished with 3,907 yards and 25 touchdowns, playing 13 of the team's 14 games.
Winston sat out the Sept. 20 game against Clemson as a suspension for making a lewd comment about women on campus.
There were other alleged off-field issues for the Alabama native.
Winston was accused of sexual assault back in December 2012 during his redshirt season and battled those allegations throughout the next two years. He was cleared by the state of Florida in December 2013, then went through a university code of conduct hearing on the matter last month and was cleared once again.
There was also an autograph controversy in October when allegations arose that he may have taken money for signing items and memorabilia.
"I want to thank him for the way he represented himself and the organization in so many tough situations and the professionalism in which he handled the ability to be such a great teammate to his teammates and always put them and the program above himself," Fisher added. "That's a very unique ability to be able to do especially at his age. I have nothing but respect for everything Jameis stands for, what he is and what he will do in the future."
Winston, also a star baseball player for the Seminoles, has been projected as a top pick in the NFL Draft.