However, Bacon wasn't about to be in Dunk City without participating in the festivities. After an alley oop from Braian Angola-Rodas to 7-foot-1 Michael Ojo, FSU led 28-19 with just under eight minutes left in the first half.
First, the standard stuff: Dwayne Bacon led Florida State with 25 points and nine rebounds on 11-17 shooting.
Before NCAA Tournament pairings were completely revealed, CBS commentator Seth Davis was all but guaranteeing that East Tennessee State will, if allowed, bust brackets.
Despite the Noles getting out to the early lead, FGCU was unfazed and unafraid. If the Seminoles want to continue in the Big Dance, that number will need to improve. The Seminoles had the size and athleticism advantage, which made it hard for the Eagles to get to the paint.
All of those higher seeds stumbled down the stretch and have enough flaws that professional and amateur bracketologists across the country have them on upset alert.
Along with the dunks and blocks, FSU utilized its size on the glass. The Seminoles shot 56 percent from the field and out-rebounded Florida Gulf Coast 46-26.
Next up for Florida is a meeting on Saturday at 8:40 p.m. against No. 5 seed Virginia. "We'll get an X-ray and have our doctor look at it and hopefully it it's good".
Florida responded well to a dismal end to its first half against the Bucs, turning a one-point halftime edge into a seven-point lead in short order, then nursing that lead to as many as 16 points by outscoring ETSU 47-33 in the second half.
NOTES: Gators F Gorjok Gak, who entered the game just 1 for 6 from the foul line, had an embarrassing trip there in the first half.
Devin Robinson led the way for the Gators with 24 points. The Eagles never really threatened from that point on.
While the victory was encouraging for Florida State, the miscues are causes for concern for the Seminoles, who are hoping to make a deep NCAA Tournament run.
This time, though, the 14th-seeded Eagles' stay as a part of March Madness was a short one thanks to a 86-80 loss to the third-seeded Seminoles Thursday night at the Amway Center.
Out in the First Round of the NCAA Tournament for the second consecutive season, the Eagles have all but two players returning next year, Marc-Eddy Norelia and Morant, and they're excited to have their new pieces join the team and make another at the NCAA Tournament next season. The 26 wins for FSU are one shy of the school record of 27, set by the 1971-72 team that advanced to the championship game. "I think we'll have a slight little bit more people, but I feel like they'll have a lot of people as well because I think they're closer than we are actually".
Florida trailed 37-35 in the early minutes of the second half before forward Justin Leon nailed a 3-pointer.