PALO ALTO (CBS SF) – It’s a thought that might have some Stanford fans salivating – having Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston follow Andrew Luck as the starting quarterback for the Cardinal football team.

On a conference call with San Francisco 49ers beat writers Wednesday, Winston – now the starting quarterback of the Tampa Bay Bucs – said he now regrets signing with Florida State over Stanford as a high school senior in 2012.

“Very close, very close,” said Winston when asked if he thought about attending Stanford. “When I had gotten accepted into Stanford, me and my family were excited. I took my visit out there to make my final decision and when I came back from Stanford I was blown away.”

“But I decided to go to FSU.”

Winston starred for the Seminoles. He won the Heisman Trophy as a starting redshirt freshman quarterback on FSU’s national championship team.

He led FSU back to the Rose Bowl the next season before deciding to turn pro.

Off the field, Winston had problems including a highly publicized shoplifting charge and a sexual assault allegation for which there was no prosecution.

Winston told the reporters he often wonders what his life may have been like had he chosen to be a Cardinal.

“Stanford is a great school,” he said. “And you know, you are who you place yourself around. I would have loved to have the opportunity to go to Stanford and be with my friends out there.”

The friends who Winston is referring to are linebacker Noor Davis and safety Drew Madhu, whose Cardinal career was cut short by concussions.

But while some fans may be thinking what might have been, the David Shaw-coached Cardinal had a great run over that time span behind Kevin Hogan, who ended his career among the Stanford greats at quarterback.


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