Monday Morning Tomahawks- Monday, 07.13.09 Edition

Inside, you'll find:

  • Mickey Andrew's Q&A session with the Greater Orlando Seminole Club as provided by Bill kid (Crowlnole)
  • Another free photo gallery of Thursday's practice session and some notes on that session.
  • A summary of the "Bridge Program"
  • Notes from some observers of the Bobby Bowden Camp (including some major prospects)  
  • Darius___joyner_1_medium  Darius_and_joyner_2_medium 

    Pictured:  Darious Cummings and Lamarcus Joyner, as captured by an e-mailer.  Cummings is a 6'2.5" 255lb defensive end/ tackle prospect, ESPNU 150 Watch List, Rivals 250 member, and of course, a 'Nole commit.  Everyone knows about Lamarcus.  Look how long LJ's arms are!  He might only be 5'9", but with those wings and that vert, who cares.

  • NEW @ 11 EST:  Andrew Carter on the SEC Contract
  • NEW @ 11 EST:  Gobbler Country- Do Offensive Lines still matter?

Mickey Andrews at the Greater Orlando Seminole Club 

First of all, apologies for taking so long to get this posted. Busy day and evening on Friday.

We had quite the contingent of celebrities joining us on Friday. Aside from Mickey, Corey Sawyer, Tom Block and Paul Kennedy all joined us for the evening. Corey is getting involved with the SCGO and will be putting together a program to have former players get involved with the Seminole community in the Orlando area. You all know my stance on former players, and if certain offices in Tallahassee aren't going to give the former players the respect and love they deserve and have earned, Orlando damn sure will.

Now onto Mickey. Corey laid back as a bit of a surprise and Tom brought him up as a surprise. They shared a couple old stories and one was especially interesting:

Corey was named an All American in 1992. He tied a school record in the NC State game with 3 picks, but got beat for a long TD late in the 4th quarter of that game. As we was taught to never walk off the field, he jogged off but Mickey was glaring at him the whole time. Corey went to the other end of the sideline but Mickey stalked him down, and let loose with "I don't know how you were named an All-American after a play like that" It was a great example of the excellence Mickey demanded from his players.

Gotta love mickey.  I don't think anyone in the college game has a better scowl.


Georgia Tech was brought up by Mickey before we even got to the questions. He immediately owned the loss, and stated that he has been asked a lot about the fumble by Sims costing FSU the game. He simply said that the defense was to blame. Marcus never would have been put in the situation if Ga Tech didn't score so much.

He went on to talk a bit more about the game. He acknowledged that the defensive tackles were lined up too tight on the center, and it is something that was realized and will be corrected. He did want to make note of something though. While FSU gave up 288 yards rushing, he wanted to look at the comparison of some other strong defenses to put it in perspective. Ga Tech's performance against a few others:

Georgia: 409 rushing yards

Miami: 472 rushing yards

Virginia Tech: 278 rushing yards

North Carolina: 328 rushing yards

That not an excuse by Mickey to our poor performance, which he admitted, but wanted to show that other strong defenses got shredded by Ga Tech as well.

I'm glad Mickey is taking responsibility for this game, because his defense played awful.  He neglected to mention that before GT's QB rolled his own ankle, they were rolling at almost eight yards per play!  

For comparison purposes, 

Opponent Yards/Play
@ 15 Virginia Tech 6.6
21 Florida St. 6.7 (7.8 before QB left game)
@ North Carolina 5.5
Miami (Fla.) 8.3
@ 13 Georgia 6.9

To be sure, Georgia Tech has an amazing offensive scheme led by one of the best coaches in the nation, but I think it's a little silly to rely on total yards there, when yards per play tells a much clearer story.


Onto a few questions. The first of which is that pink elephant of a spread offense:

What needs to be done to slow down the effectiveness of spread offenses?


Where could this question have come from?  Maybe these two articles?  

Size Matters on Defense, part 1

Size Matters on Defense, part 2

I would like to make note this was touched on by me in 2008 with Mickey, but this was a MUCH more thorough explanation than a year ago

We need to account for the QB. Too much the focus was on the running game and the receivers. From the threat of the option to QB's like tebow being a lead blocker for his running backs. He's realized the fear of the option needs to limit the blitz. The safeties need to be more involved with the running game and the action happening closer to the line of scrimmage. The drawback to this is that it puts a lot of pressure on the corners to lock up with the outside receivers.

Its a very crowd pleasing answer, and I don't want him to say anything else.


What can we change or do to beat an option offense much like the one Georgia Tech runs?

Mickey has had some people very familiar with this offense come in and talk with him about how to slow it down. The defensive staff has already reviewed the Yellow Jacket films and have set a new defensive game plan. The defense will be dedicating 10 minutes of practice time every day from day 1 to learn how to defend this defense, and practicing this game plan. It will give the the equivelent of three weeks of full prep and practice time for it by the time the game comes. 


What are the challenges of coaching some of the young players today as opposed to 20 years ago?

Players today are more worried about making it to the NFL. They don't have as much of an understanding of what it takes to get there, and what they need to do to win at the college level. As they were stars and much more recognized in high school now, they haven't had to work as hard as they need to do to take that next step.



Why haven't we been harder on players that have gotten in trouble, and why do we seem to have more problem players?

The kids haven't gotten any worse. The parenting isn't the same that is was a couple decades ago. They're still the same kids they've always been. Coach Bowden realizes a lot of these kids will have nothing if he kicks them out, and believes many of them would end up in jail or worse. He wants to see them turn the corner and blossom into good men, and will go to the ends of the earth to help them do so.

There definitely could be something to the parenting thing, but Coach Bowden doesn't know the names of most of the players.  


Who are the early candidates at rover, and why was Korey Mangum moved there?

The two early players are Mangum and Nick Moody. Mangum was moved by Mickey because he was having some trouble in space and he wanted to get some of the young corners reps at CB. Mangum wasn't happy with the move early on, but looked to settle in a bit better late in the spring.

He initially thought Moody was too big to stay at safety. Once they saw his body composition, and that he retained all of his speed and quickness, he stayed. He feels Moody can be an outstanding player at FSU.

Please, for the love of God, do not allow Korey Mangum to play meaningful minutes for this team.  Moody better step up.


Who are some of the freshmen standing out early?

He cannot observe the new players yet, and had no answer.

This is a bit silly.  Andrews absolutely knows which players are looking good out there.  He talks with the coaches who are allowed to observe workouts.


Who do you feel will step up into Everette Brown's shoes at defensive end?

Markus White. Markus has really looked to turn the corner from his first season. With some strong words, Mickey feels Markus can be as good a defensive end as FSU has had in several years.

Markus looks better and better very day.


What was you best defense ever?

It's a hard answer, but the 1993 defense was just nasty. But, there have been so many outstanding players over the years.


What are your thoughts on this years defense?

"Talented but inexperienced." There are 25 players on defense that will be freshmen or sophomores. The talent level has increased, but young players will make mistakes early, but they'll be playing.

Can you comment a little bit on the offense?

We have guys on the offense to win. He can say that now. He feels the offensive line has a work ethic and a mean streak to them, and thinks they'll be the best in the conference and one of the best in all of college football. He really feels Christian Ponder is the most improved player on the team.

The only major question we didn't get addressed was the issue of covering the tight end. I was out of the room for about 10 minutes to talk about our Booster program, and the Q&A was a bit shorter than normal. I do hope this is plenty to address most of the questions though.


Summer Workouts

Video and Pictures from!  For the video, press play, then "right click, zoom, full screen". Of note in the pictures: Pic #25 is C.J. Mizell in the background.


FSU's freshmen make impression | | Tallahassee Democrat
From early indications, and this is indeed very, very early, the true freshmen on the Florida State football team are making a truly good impression.

FSU Football Practice Photos| (good free gallery)



Orlando Sentinel - Football workout tidbits by
Some observations, thoughts and bits of information from football conditioning workouts earlier today:

Speaking of Thacker, I spoke with him for a bit. He is recovering nicely from off-season shoulder surgery and said he's about 90 percent. He has lost about 15 pounds and weighs a little less than 270, which is where he hopes to be during the season. He's still rehabbing that shoulder and the rehab mostly involves stretching. He sometimes spends more than an hour per day stretching.

Thacker is about 264lbs and from every report I have received, looks tiny.  He will likely be a non-factor this season and FSU will depend heavily on sophomore nose guard Moses McCray.  Thacker is just too small and untalented to be a player in major college football.


The Bridge Program.

You probably know that C.J> Mizell is training with the team.  He's current;y involved in something called the bridge program.  What is the Bridge Program?


For students who are the first in their family to go to college or who are disadvantaged by economic, cultural or educational circumstances, the culture shock can be particularly traumatic, hindering their chances for success.

To help smooth the way for such students, Florida State University's Center for Academic Retention and Enhancement (CARE) offers a "Summer Bridge Program" that gives them an opportunity to acclimate to college life at a more comfortable pace while providing them with the information and advice they need. This week, more than 310 incoming freshman students from all over Florida are on the FSU campus as part of the Summer Bridge Program. They are staying on campus at two residence facilities, Bryan and Reynolds halls, and will receive a week of orientation and transition activities prior to their first day of classes on June 26.

"Over its six years of existence, FSU's Summer Bridge Program has admitted a highly diverse population of students, both in terms of ethnicity and of academic talents," said Karen Laughlin, FSU's dean of Undergraduate Studies. "The CARE program has continued to mentor and support these students throughout their years at FSU. In the absence of this program, many of these students likely would not have the opportunity to attend a major research institution such as Florida State University - and certainly would not have been as successful here."

Twenty-one residential counselors, including upper-division and graduate students and recent FSU alumni, will serve as live-in guides and mentors through the summer session that ends Aug. 4.

Here's a lot more:


FSU Summer Football Camps & Recruiting


Youngsters get a full dose of coaching at Bobby Bowden Football Camp | | Tallahassee Democrat
DeLong, a 1991 FSU grad, knew the coaches would be on hand, but he didn't know how involved they would actually be in the drills. He — and the campers — found out that answer real quick. "They're running them. And hollering at them," DeLong said with a laugh. "I saw (offensive line coach Rick) Trickett making a kid do push-ups because he didn't line up right after he told him. So it's been good. They've really been coaching them."

There were a bunch of prospects in town this weekend, including (just kids you might know):

  • 2010 DB LaMarcus Joyner, who had a great time by all accounts and will stay in town until Wednesday, before heading home for a day or two, and then returning for Seminole Showtime!  He also attended Ernie Sims' VIP Party at Chubby's nightclub, which is awesome.
  • Blake Bortles, a QB from Oviedo.  Keep him on your radar in case he blows up.  Very raw.
  • Christian Green (but he didn't workout)
  • DT Damien Jacobs (Louisnana, will be here this week) 
  • DT Elliott Porter (Louisiana, stayed for the weekend)
  • 2011 DE Ray Drew, who our coaches absolutely love.  6'5", 235, huge feet, quick as a cat, likely 5*, and he preaches for his church.  Very quality kid.

I'll have a big list of Showtime Visitors (Saturday, the 18th!!! Be There!!)  later in this week, but I had a long talk with DE Corey Miller last night.  Seems like a really good kid and a leader type.  He'll be at Showtime and will be in Town Friday Night!

Andrew Carter

Here it is.  Excellent piece by our friend Andrew.  That SEC contract is a BIG deal.  Here's John Taylor's response.


Do Offensive Lines Still Matter?

Gobbler Country goes to town on a weak piece by an Oklahoma Writer.


Go Noles!!

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