The home crowd started cheering at approximately 8:05 p.m. on Saturday night when Louisiana-Monroe kicker Jacob Meeks missed the extra point kick in overtime to give the Seminoles (1-1) a 45-44 victory.

Perhaps they didn’t know that Florida State’s season was already dead. At least that’s the impression one might get reading the eulogies published earlier this week by prominent national reporters.

Florida State is 15-3 all-time against Virginia, but this week the Cavaliers (2-0, 1-0 Atlantic Coast Conference) are No. 25 in the AP poll and favored to win by as much as a touchdown or more by some oddsmakers.

Virginia coach Bronco Mendenhall was asked the following two questions at the start of his press conference on Monday.

Traditionally, Florida State has had a roster with lots of big, fast, athletic guys. Is that still the case?

Building on that, Florida State has been down the last couple seasons. I think they still have the reputation as one of college football's big boys. Does that add any challenges to preparing for them or make it easier to get the guys up for that game?

“If Boise State is 18th or 17th or the 20th best team, I'm not sure how when you lose to a team like that that all of a sudden means that you're down,” Mendenhall said. “So I don't see anything on film that says they're down.”

Boise State (2-0) is actually No. 22 this week but boasts a schedule that suggests the Broncos will continue to climb in the rankings as the season progresses.

Had Florida State held onto its double-digit lead over Boise State in the first week, the perception of the coaching staff would be a lot different now.

But it didn’t, and the near-total collapse against the Warhawks (1-1) last weekend has drawn some fair criticism of the program in recent days. Still, grouping the Seminoles up with both Tennessee (0-2) and UCLA (0-2), as former powerhouses stuck in the mud, might be somewhat unfair.

Since 2013, Florida State has a record of 60-21, earned a playoff berth in 2014, and secured a national championship in 2013. In that same stretch of time, UCLA and Tennessee have gone 41-37 and 39-38, respectively.

The Seminoles last won 10 games in 2016 to extend their streak of 10-win seasons to five. UCLA last won 10 games in 2014. Tennessee hasn’t won that many games since 2007, although the Volunteers did have two 9-4 campaigns from 2015-2017, which broke up an otherwise mediocre stretch.

If this is rock bottom, Florida State coach Willie Taggart has been here before. Western Kentucky won two games total in the two years before Taggart arrived. He won two games in year one, seven in year two, and seven in year three.

His time at South Florida might make for a better comparison. The Bulls were averaging four wins a season in the two years before Taggart arrived in 2013. The first year the team bottomed out with two wins, then they got four in 2014. In 2015 and 2016, Taggart guided the program to 8-5 and 10-2 seasons, respectively.

“We kept getting little wins here and there, not necessarily in the win column, but there was little wins here and there that added up, and eventually those wins on the field started to come,” Taggart said of his previous stops. “They started to figure it out. They started to play better.”

The leash for this coaching staff can’t be as long here, not at a program with Florida State’s tradition. The wins have to come and soon, but losses to teams such as Boise State and even Virginia this weekend might not look quite so bad in hindsight.

A potential loss to a Louisville team that also appears to be in rebuilding mode on Sept. 21 will probably be another matter.

“I think guys believe in me and believe in the plan,” Taggart said. “And for our guys continue to stay locked into the plan and not letting anything take them off the plan. that's the key. That's why those other places were turned around, as we stayed focused on the plan and were patient with the plan.”