ESPN reporter gets heat for post-game interview of FSU's Winston

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Posted: Monday, December 9, 2013 10:31 am | Updated: 2:56 pm, Mon Dec 9, 2013.

CHARLOTTE, NC - ESPN reporter Heather Cox is standing by her decision to question FSU quarterback Jameis Winston about his recent sexual assault accusations following Saturday's ACC Championship Game.

Winston was cleared of charges earlier in the week after being accused of sexual assault, but had not spoken to the media about the accusations.

Cox interviewed Winston on the field immediately following Saturday's game.  He answered three questions about the case, but on the fourth question about the investigation, when asked why he chose not to talk during the process, Winston turned and walked away.

Cox tells SI.com that she, along with her producers, decided to ask about the sexual battery investigation long before the interview began.  “I certainly knew if we talked to him I needed to ask questions about the [alleged sexual assault] investigation,” Cox said. “I had thought through the way I wanted to handle it and presented the questions to our team. We all decided it was the correct way to handle it. It was not an issue of me going rogue and deciding last-minute that I would ambush him."

The interview sparked much discussion on social media over the weekend, including tweets from Winston's attorney expressing his disgust.

FSU defeated Duke 45-7 to earn a seat in the National Championship Game in January.

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