TALLAHASSEE, FL - SEPTEMBER 17: EJ Manuel #3 of the Florida State Seminoles warms up before a game against the Oklahoma Sooners at Doak Campbell Stadium on September 17, 2011 in Tallahassee, Florida. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
JIMBO FISHER following August 28 practice: "We had a good Tuesday practice. I thought we got better. ...We've got a really good plan as far as what we've got in so far. The kids have executed a lot better. I liked today's practice a lot better than yesterday. That first day of school [Monday] seems to get you every time."
On how he feels now that game week is at hand: "We've got to be detailed-oriented and not get caught up - everybody's wanting to play the game right now. Remember to prepare for the game. We've got to be very detailed as coaches and very demanding and make them get it right all the time and not create a bad habit between now and game time."
On how beneficial is it to get the team back into the routine of school and practice: "That's what you've got to get into. It seems like for 25 years, it doesn't matter, the first day of school practice is never that good. You've got to get them in that routine and get them going. Today I think they adjusted very well and got back going. I was very happy with it."
On dodging the bad weather: "It's been amazing. It blew around us. ... Today is good and we're blessed. I'm not complaining, I promise."
On the benefit of practicing through a short, heavy shower at the end of practice Tuesday: "We had to finish team (drills) right there. We threw some wet balls, caught some wet balls and snapped them. The more of that you get, you just never know when that comes about (in a game)."
On how he feels about depth at tight end position: "I think (Kevin) Haplea and Christo (Kourtzidis) are doing a really nice job. They've learned well, they're blocking well. They do a lot of little things. ... They are really smart guys; good football players with good instincts."
On what kind role is envisioned for WR Kelvin Benjamin: "He's growing in his role. He's learning to practice much better; becoming much more consistent. He will have a role and he will play. That will depend on how much he grasps, picks up and how he does when the games come. We have not been disappointed with him. He's made very good progress."
Senior DT Anthony McCloud (pectoral muscle) will not play this week but Fisher expects him to be ready for Savannah State next week. Analysis: No reason to play him. Not sure he's a go against Savannah State next week, either.
Redshirt junior TE Dan Hicks is out for the season after undergoing microfracture knee surgery. Analysis: Terrible news. Hicks is a great kid and teammate, moved positions to help with depth at tight end, and does not have a redshirt available because he used his as a freshman (he won't get a 6th year because his previous redshirt was not due to injury).
Veteran offensive lineman senior Jacob Fahrenkrug (ankle sprain) and redshirt junior Garrett Faircloth (hip) both returned to practice and will be available Saturday barring any setbacks.
Senior quarterback EJ Manuel was featured as one of the top players to watch for the Senior Bowl. View the profile here: http://www.seniorbowl.com/
Maryland Has Officially Angered the Football Injury Gods: Monroe Out for Year, Tate Hurts Knee - Testudo Times
More bad luck and bad news on the way for Maryland football.
Defense Looks Sharp in Second Scrimmage - Wake Forest Official Athletic Site
The Demon Deacon defense held the offense scoreless during the first 13 possessions before the offense broke through and put seven points on the board in each of its final two drives of the day.
I don’t think BC will be as terrible as some are predicting. I’ve heard as low as 3-9 to 4-8 this year, which I think is too low. I see BC winning six games in 2012. At the moment, I’m on the 5-7 / 6-6 fence, with the season opener against Miami being the swing game. For sake of argument, BC notches wins over Miami, Maine, @ Army, Maryland, @ Wake Forest and Notre Dame. Losses to the rest, a few in non-competitive fashion. The Notre Dame game will be the one upset victory this season.
That puts Boston College at 6-6 (3-5 ACC). In a normal year, we are talking Military Bowl territory. But with North Carolina banned from the postseason and Miami’s status still up in the air, BC could slot into Shreveport or Nashville this year. Add a loss to one of the SEC’s newest members in the bowl game for good measure. That comes out to a 6-7 season, which probably keeps Spaz employed for another season.
ACC Preview (8/20) The Solid Verbal
Ty and Dan talk with Jim Young from ACCSports.com about the pressure on EJ Manuel, the outlook for Maryland, the progression of Logan Thomas, expectations for North Carolina, and the risks of betting on Clemson. Plus, a hearty debate over
9. FLORIDA STATE
You can't knock Jimbo Fisher's strategy to return Florida State to the top of the ACC. Here it is, succinctly: Step one: Amass more talent than nearly everyone else in the league. Step two: Profit.
At this stage, the Seminoles are vastly more talented than everyone in the ACC except for Clemson and Virginia Tech. Fisher, now in his third year as Bobby Bowden's successor, has built his program in the manner befitting eventual national champions in this (and many other) eras --- with a deep and ferocious defensive line as the cornerstone to high-level success.
So what's the hold-up in anointing the Seminoles an obvious national title contender again? Well, they do have to contend with Clemson in what figures to be an early-season shootout. And a Thursday night trek to Virginia Tech will be difficult.
But let's not forget something else: Fisher is still going through his learning curve as a head coach. The Seminoles lost at home as a double-digit favorite to North Carolina in 2010. They surprisingly fell to Wake Forest and Virginia last year. Most would agree those were games that, on paper, Florida State should have won.
But that's the sort of thing maturity as a coach can fix. Well, that, and the sort of substantial talent divide the Seminoles enjoyed during their first decade in the ACC. If both of those develop this year, watch out; Florida State will have a shot of playing in the season's final game.
I totally agree with Patrick's point, but the biggest difference between 2010 and 2011, in my mind at least, was that despite being better on the field, the 2011 team's offense was the most injured unit in the entire country and it did not get the good bounce luck of 2010.
ACC Season Preview - Blogger So Dear
Very surprising predictions!
Across the country, expectations are being heaped on Florida State as well. As a team that has for the most part failed to come close to preseason praise the past few years, the Seminoles are hoping the offensive line gels quickly to keep quarterback E.J. Manuel upright and bring in a nasty defense to close things out. We've seen highly ranked teams before but this year seems different as Jimbo Fisher and FSU will have to deal with being picked to win the whole thing by several pundits. When the pressure was turned up in the past, it seemed like the team never could find enough consistency to pull through. This team has been known to lose to some mediocre teams -- the Wake Forest jokes really write themselves -- so keeping a level head may be as big as dealing with schemes, injuries and the games themselves.
Success is very, very hard to define for Muschamp and his Gators right now. Major national success isn't exactly that far in the rearview, but neither are seven losses by double digits in two seasons. The Football Outsiders Almanac 2012 likes the Gators quite a bit (projected rank: 10th) because of the recruiting success and the high quality of three and four years ago; it says they have a 49 percent chance of finishing 9-3 or better and the second-best odds of finishing 7-1 or better in conference (they have a 14 percent chance, while Georgia is at 38 percent). Conservatively, though, I'll say that an 8-4 record with improvement back into the top 20 in F/+ would represent serious, exciting improvement.
I admit that I sometimes get sucked into what teams look like on paper. I have for teams like Texas A&M this year, and I most certainly did with Florida last year. But while I'm not going to make any "I wouldn't be surprised if this team competes for the national title" proclamations this time around, I have to say it wouldn't surprise me if the Gators were to compete for the East title. They get South Carolina, LSU and Missouri at home, and the best SEC team they play on the road is either Texas A&M or Tennessee. (They play Georgia in Jacksonville, obviously.) That's manageable, even if only some of the former blue-chippers on the roster begin to fulfill potential.
Florida is in an interesting place right now, however. Nobody is intimidated by the Dynasty aura that the Gators perhaps put off a few years ago. Fans of both Texas A&M and Tennessee are probably looking at September visits from Florida as potential wins, and really, the burden of proof is on Florida to once again force teams (and fan bases) to fear them. The expectations are lower this time around, but another 7-6 season in Gainesville would probably place Muschamp on a pretty warm seat heading into 2013. He inherited a bit of a mess, but he's only going to get so long to fix it.Defining Success
Examining Randy Edsall's Job Security - Testudo Times: Can Maryland afford to fire him? If they do, it basically means the AD is done, too.
The Early Read: Michael Snaer's Decision to Return for his Senior Season, Relationship with Coach Hamilton | Seminoles Chant: One guy I legitimately thought would turn pro after last season was Michael Snaer. The former McDonald's All-American turned heads nationally as he was awarded ACC Tournament MVP honors and the Seminoles topped UNC for their first conference title. His stock was high, NBA shows were beginning to mention him...