Three days separate No. 12 Florida State from its matchup with No. 3 Clemson so Florida State head coach Jimbo Fisher returned to his weekly call-in show on Wednesday, fielding questions on all things Clemson. Here were the pertinent takeaways:
Derwin James decision
Fisher confirmed when a caller asked about the health of the team that sophomore safety Derwin James will be “definitely out” when the Seminoles battle the Tigers on Saturday. However, Fisher did say that he is continuing to recover and that he likes his chances to return at some point this season.
One caller pointed to Penn State’s upset victory over Ohio State last week as an example of a game where a fanbase really had a part in the outcome of the game before asking Fisher how important he believes that fans can be in creating hostile environments. Fisher replied first by saying that it cannot be overstated how important having an active crowd can be in a game like this one. Not only does it aid the home team with cheers which can provide late-game energy when the team needs it most, it can hinder the communication, cohesion, and concentration of the opposing team’s offense. Fisher wrapped it up by saying that he fully expects a rowdy, packed crowd for Saturday’s primetime matchup.
On multiple occasions throughout the show, Fisher cited one major position battle as perhaps the most important in setting up a potential victory: winning the line of scrimmage. Fisher said that he wants to see physicality from his offensive line in going up against an extraordinarily talented Clemson team and he wants to see his dominant defensive line make an impact in the backfield, pressuring Clemson QB Deshaun Watson and hopefully force him into some mistakes.
For a full rundown of this week’s show, check the updates in the comments section at the bottom of the page.