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Florida State Football Practice Report: September 20th

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Jimbo Fisher briefly addressed media for the final time before Florida State's Saturday night game against Clemson after his team's Thursday practice. Fisher sounded optimistic about the week of preparation the 'Noles have put in this week.

"Had a good Thursday practice, I like where we’re at," Fisher said. "I like where our teams at, like where the mentality is at, and they’ll be ready to play on Saturday."

Despite the media circus around Tallahassee this week, Fisher said the focus remained on the field for the players. "I thought they practiced extremely well," he said. "I thought they handled it, thought they kept the distractions down, I liked their focus."

As for the actual game, Fisher noted a need for sound tackling in space from the defense against Clemson’s playmakers. ""Its gonna be critical anytime you play great teams," he said. "When they have great skills guys, they create those one-on-ones so being able to get them in space, that’s big."

Fisher was asked about keeping the ball away from Clemson’s offense by controlling possession through the run game, and said that while it’s something they would like to do, he doesn’t count on that strategy due to the difficulty of running clock off in the college game, which has more stoppages of the clock than pro football.

The only bit of relevant injury news on the day was that Scooter Haggins was held out of practice, but Fisher said he was told that Haggins should be ready to go on Saturday.

Fisher also was asked about Bjoern Werner’s ability to read and react on the field, and heaped more praise on the national sack leader. "You have to put the work in to study the details of things and you have to be able to process it when it happens," Fisher said. "And then there’s things on the field that certain guys.. there’s 20% of the game that coaches don’t coach. Those guys either have that "it" factor or they don’t, and he kind of does all three of those things."

One final topic addressed was the recruiting angle of Saturday’s game, which Florida State is expected to host a number of top recruits for. "They get the atmosphere, environment, what its like to play here," Fisher said. "That’s why you want to come to college, to play in those big games. So I mean, it does not hurt, I promise you."