Florida State head coach Mike Norvell met with the media on Monday to discuss last Saturday’s blowout win over the Syracuse Orange and to look ahead to Louisiana this inside Doak Campbell Stadium this Saturday at 12:00 p.m.
The Seminoles moved up three spots in the college football rankings to take the No. 20 spot and look to finish the season strong with a win this weekend before taking on the Florida Gators the following Friday.
It was announced Monday morning that a tragic shooting at the University of Virginia left three students dead. Coach Norvell started his press conference off by expressing condolences from himself and the entire FSU program.
“Just want to start off today with the news that happened up at the University of Virginia; just our thoughts and prayers are with that whole community and coach Elliot, the football program. It’s all the lives and families that have been tragically affected by the terrible event that has occurred, and I just want to express our remorse for the families and the whole community there at Virginia. “
Talking about the win over Syracuse and, more specifically, the defensive performance, only allowing three points, he said the defensive fronts were doing a remarkable job and praised their ability to respond.
“Our defensive fronts are doing a remarkable job. Some guys that are beginning to show up in the stat book, you know, Jared Verse, Patrick Payton, Derrick McLendon, those guys are really seeing some great numbers being put up, and you really see some guys that maybe aren't having great numbers show up to you as much in the stat line they're still making a great impact. Fabien Lovett, Robert Cooper; I know Josh Farmer had a couple of tackles there and really did a nice job.”
The Noles finished ACC play over .500 for the first time since 2016 and second in the conference overall after Saturday. Norvell said that the improvement is showing, but it is still not where he wants his team to be.
“To finish ACC play, we talked about wanting to make a statement and how we finished, and we secured at least a second place in the Atlantic Division. You know it’s not where we want to be, but it definitely shows growth; it shows steps of progress... They’re growing in confidence through the experience that we’ve had, but they're also seeing what’s worked and trying to continue to improve on that.”
“It’s a choice that has to be made, but when you see the beneifits of a heightened level of the way you're getting yourself ready to get out there and execute...I think our guys have built confidence in the experiences they’ve had.”
Being able to get younger players repetitions in games and the possibility of getting them some experience before redshirting them for the season. Norvel said that they are happy to get the chance to give younger guys experience and that they have to be smart about how much game time they actually see.
“It’s great when you get to have younger guys or guys that are in the depth to be able to get meaningful reps. Obviously, Jordan played an exceptional game. He prepared on such an exceptional level to put himself in that position. I was glad for Tate to get out there and get work, and I thought there were some really good things and some things that he could grow and improve...We held AJ in the game the other night; we thought about it, AJ has two more games left, and with three games out there, we just want to make sure we're being smart with any potential situation where you would be forced to play because we’d like to be able to keep those four games for him.”
“There are some guys that have one game left. We didn’t play Rodney hill the other day; that’s intentional. We’ve had those conversations with him about the process of what we’re doing and just trying to make sure we’re maximizing those guys and their opportunities.”
Norvell goes more in-depth on the offensive and defensive performances and looks ahead to Lousiana in his full interview below: