Florida State Seminoles football, after six days out on the practice field, took to Doak Campbell Stadium today to participate in its first scrimmage of the spring.
Following Mike Norvell’s media availability, FSU’s three coordinators (offensive coordinator Alex Atkins, defensive coordinator Adam Fuller, and special teams coordinator John Papuchis) spoke on the progress and performance of their individual units, while Atkins and Papuchis also offered insight into their position groups (offensive line and defensive ends, respectively).
Here are some excerpts from the interviews, with the full videos available below.
Offensive coordinator, offensive line coach Alex Atkins
On the offense responding to the defense
“A lot of times the offense is out and getting hyped up your nerves are going. At the need of the day you have to focus on what the call was. So after you calm yourself the anxiety goes down you get more into execution mode - you start to see more rhythm and flow. I gotta do a better job making sure they’re calm and relaxed so they can focus on the execution. We need to start faster.
On Trey Benson
“He’s a competitor. If we tried to limit him he probably run through the coaching box to try to get out on the field - he wants it. So we’re never gonna hinder a kid that wants to get better. We will monitor him but he’s ready to go. He’s running hard. He is picking up the plays, we’re not babying him at all. He is focused and I love his approach to going in and competing with a pretty established room. I am liking the progression I am seeing.”
On the newcomers along the offensive line
“Two of the guys with Daughtry (Richardson) and Kanaya (Charlton) should be taking English 4 and looking for prom suits. So for them to go out in the scrimmage in the spring and get some live action I put them in some challenging situations. I put them in with the twos, I put them in two-minute. I want them to get some good work and competition. I like how they’re responding and handling adversity. I cannot wait to watch them grow and develop. With Bless (Harris) I threw him in some real tough situations. Just seeing him compete at a high level with the first group so just trying to see if he can handle himself. Kayden is just a steady eddy; he just needs to work on body control.”
On Jordan Travis’s performance and spring so far
“What I liked about Jordan was that he trusts the pocket, sitting in there and making throws. He’s keeping those guys confident. When Jordan gets in the huddle you can tell he’s in there because our guys kind of light up a little bit. They’re like ‘alright I know 13 is back here.’ His relationship with those guys has gone more than anyone could imagine. So when he is in there operating his knowledge of the offense he wants to get out there. We kind of limited him a little bit as far as how much offense we wanna run because he could run it all if he wanted to.”
On the newcomers at WR and how they are pushing the room
“We got some old vets in there who are bringing those guys along too. A lot of those guys have played a lot. So to get these reps in and raise the competition - the room was just raising the standard in the room. That is just the baseline. But all of those guys I have pleased with. Everyone is always talking about catching the ball but getting lined up quick, blocking , understanding different assignments, being able to play multiple positions. I like how that room has been so we can move guys and have more positional flexibility.”
Defensive coordinator Adam Fuller
On defensive end Jared Verse
“He’s one of the fastest defensive linemen I’ve ever coached — he’s exactly who we thought we were getting...great teammate, loves football.”
On big plays from the offense
“Some of the 1 on 1 plays that were won today, that’s good for Florida State — we brought in some legitimate playmakers at wideout. [Alll throughout spring,] there have been some unbelievable throws and catches.”
On Tatum Bethune
“He belongs at this level — point blank. He’s smart enough, he’s physical enough, he loves the process of getting better. He has high expectations — whenever you go up to a player and say, “that was a really good play” and he says, “it isn’t good enough,” you know you got the right guy.”
Special teams coordinator, defensive ends coach John Papuchis
“For that first scrimmage, I was pleased with the way that they approached today.”
On Jared Verse
“His ability to take correction and apply it has been impressive so far... he doesn’t make a mistake twice. He’s a very conscientious player, and when you pair that with his skill set,” it gives him the chance to do some really big things
On return specialists
“One thing we wanted was somebody we could trust to catch the ball every time, and [Mycah Pittman] has done a great job. [As far as reps] Keyshawn Helton, we have had Sam McCall back there, Azareyeh.”