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Nolecast: Post-spring Florida State football mailbag

Listeners have questions. We have answers.

Bud Elliott and Ingram Smith return with the 21st Nolecast episode of 2018. The Nolecast is the No. 1 Florida State Seminoles podcast.

Listen in the player below this article, or on Apple Podcasts (iTunes), Stitcher, or Google Play Music

Opening drive

  • Exit interviews
  • Jaiden Woodbey progressing at star
  • Willie Taggart on the strength program
  • Retiring Peter Warrick’s jersey

Reader Questions and Buy or Sell

(We do not edit these questions, they are posted how they come to us.)

Many: If Jalen Hurts transfers, would Florida State take him?

Devin: Buy or Sell: FSU scores more than 40 points on a conference opponent more than twice this season? (0 times in 2017 and only 2 in 2016)

Devin: You keep saying that FSU will lose 3-4 games this year, what games do you think those will be? I feel like Clemson, ND, and Miami are the most reasonable. Maybe VT would be the 4th most likely loss. A road trip to Raleigh is always a scary thing too. The rest of the games I feel are very winnable and would disappointed to see a loss.

Vishal: What type of defense will give the Gulf Coast Offense problems? and which teams do we play which will be able to best execute said defense.

Joseph: Buy or sell FSU having a better offense than what Oregon had last year? Oregon in 2017 had: 32nd S&P offense and averaged 36 ppg

Pakkun: For my question: we knew that Jimbo like fat in his steak and wouldn’t trimmed the fat when necessary and we know Saban being the Standard of College football to keep the roster lean. What’s your thoughts on how Willie will fair in the area?

Tripp: Given our lack of talent/depth at linebacker, the loss of so many other defensive players to the pros, and the resulting likely step back for the defense in 2018, should FSU slow down the GCO a bit? We once snapped the ball with 33 seconds on the play clock in the spring game; is that what we should expect come fall, or will snaps with say 20 seconds left be more typical? To be clear, I don’t mean to suggest a return to CJF’s glacial pace, but is the spring game pace sustainable and typical, or will it slow a bit? Maybe more importantly, SHOULD it slow a bit, or would that be harming our best defense which could very well end up being our offense?

Matt: My question is about penalties. A quick look at penalty stats for last year for Oregon and FSU is initially concerning, as Oregon racked up a whopping 122 penalties for -1,148 yards (over 13 games) to FSU’s 78 penalties for -699 yards (over 13 games, incl. Southern Miss). This might be explained away by the differences in tempo, personnel, and/or players, but I’m interested to hear your take on what we might expect to see with regard to penalties with this new staff, strategy, and team; if the differences are or will be significant; and what we should be concerned about, if anything.

David: Writing another question here today for you guys. Sorry for its length.

I was thinking recently that back when I was looking at colleges in FL and chose FSU back in ‘90 was when I really became enamored with the program and Bowden. His success from the late 80’s to the early 2000’s is unprecedented and as a fanbase we became somewhat spoiled with only one or two loss seasons during that stretch. Was he really that good of a coach to be able to sustain that or was FSU simply in the right place/right time recruiting-wise with being a hot program like Clemson is right now?

Fast forward to Jimbo’s era where he was not able to attain that level of consistency. I listen to some of your commentary/articles about pace of play, 4th down %, offense being too complicated to get younger players on the field, and not being ‘with-the-times’ in regards to pro/spread concepts and it seems like FSU was it’s own worst enemy with regards to achieving that consistency and made it look really difficult and at times a non-watchable product.

Fast forward again to the CWT era where he hasn’t won a game yet but win-share predictions are out for the year and it seems maybe a tad low or maybe accurate given the schedule. But at the same time also wonder how much the win share predictions are also based on recent history and diminished overall expectations due to the style of program being run under Jimbo versus what CWT is trying to implement with very high tempo, and playing to the teams strengths, which is that we have more talented depth than 90% of the schools we’ll play.

If CWT can stop recent history of FSU shooting itself in the foot due to scheme/pace, do you guys think we can get back to the former type of consistent success that we as Seminoles became used to.

Chris: We’ve heard a lot about Terry and DJ Matthews but not much about the progress Gavin is making. Can you talk about whether he has made progress and what you might expect from him in the fall? Can we expect him to be a true #1 or is this a guy that doesn’t show his full potential until he gets to the league (i.e. Cromartie/Boldin).

What is the upside, downside, and ceiling you see to this new offense?

By ceiling I mean that I know when lesser talented teams who have been forced to run this have largely struggled when coming up against more physical and talented teams. FSU is one of those more talented teams but I’m still concerned this offense might be too simple, and can’t just win a bunch of jump balls on Bama, Clemson, Ohio St. etc. Which is who you have to beat to reach the ultimate goals. Can you comment?

Ron: Do you think FSU is In the running for top recruits now than in the past decade? Not everyone is a fit for a program but FSU is in the conversation more than before. What do you think?

Maurice: My question centers around past recruiting classes. To me it appears that FSU usually lands premier prospects in the defensive secondary, defensive line and at running back. However, it seems that recruiting at linebacker and offensive line positions have been somewhat lackluster of the past few years with a few exceptions. Do you think there is/was an emphasis on recruiting certain positions versus others?

David: In 2018, FSU signed 5 WR’s, including one that you considered a reach. I understand there is a shortage at the position. This year, however, FSU is being very selective with their WR takes, with the consensus saying they will take 2-3. It seems to me that FSU will end up passing on better WR’s than they took in 2018. Is this a fair statement? What are your thoughts? Is this a case wherein hindsight the staff might consider taking 5 last year a small mistake? Thanks - Dave

Scott: I know you have better statistical references available to you than I do so I kind of quit trying to do the research, but my thought was this...from what I recall those Baylor defenses during the years when the offense was putting up those ridiculous numbers (maybe 2009-2012 or 13...), was horrendous also giving up their fair share of 40, 50 point games...I get that with an up tempo offense the opposing offense will be on the field more, but with FSU’s history of defensive dominance, do you see a decline in the ability to recruit those defensive studs compared to what FSU has been able to attract in the past.

Heard it mentioned several times that 2019’s QB class is Not as strong as last years, what are some of the stronger position groups for 2019? What are some of the weaker ones?