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    FSU vs. NC State: First-half 'Noles game notes

    Florida State vs. NC State

    Saturday, October 6, 2012

    First Half Game Notes

    Smith At 31

    It didn't take long for senior wideout Rodney Smith to extend his consecutive games with a catch streak. On the second offensive play of the game for FSU, Smith raised his streak to 31 straight games with a reception when he hauled in a 16-yard pass from senior QB EJ Manuel.

    Tough At First

    There has been talk of the nation's third-ranked defense getting off to slow starts but in six games the Seminoles have allowed just 17 first quarter points and 14 of those points came in the opening quarter of the Clemson game. Tonight marks the fourth time this year an FSU opponent has failed to score in the first quarter. 

    Converting Into Points

    Florida State's offense put itself in a hole on more than one occasion in the first quarter but on the Seminole offense's third possession of the game they didn't let being behind the down-and-distance marker stop them. FSU converted a 2nd-and-12 and a 3rd-and-17 on that drive. Considering FSU was 4-of-14 on 3rd-and-10 or longer coming into the game, those were big plays by the Noles offense in a drive that led to the Seminoles taking a 10-0 lead.

    TE Into The EZ Again

    Florida State took a 10-0 lead on sophomore Nick O'Leary's four-yard catch from EJ Manuel to open the second quarter. It was the second TD of O'Leary's career and his first of the season. This is the second week an FSU TE got into the end zone after Kevin Haplea scored versus USF on the road last week.

    The Long Of It

    Senior running back Chris Thompson helped FSU get on the board first with a 21-yard run in the first quarter that set up a field goal. The rush was the sixth of over 20 yards this season for Thompson. Later in the second he added a 36-yard run to set up more FSU points. Thompson has also caught three passes for 20 yards or more (including one tonight) as well. That totals 10 plays of 20 yards or more in just six games.

    CT...Another Half, Another Hundred

    For the second time in three ACC contests this year, senior running back Chris Thompson has had a huge half on the ground. Thompson rushed for 197 yards in the first half versus Wake Forest and never saw the field again in the second half. Once again tonight he has broken the century mark in the first half versus an ACC opponent. Thompson has 115 yards and an average of 8.2 yards per rush tonight. There is a good chance Thompson won't be taking the second half off tonight after posting the sixth 100-yard rushing game of his career.

    Pick By The Brooks

    With the Seminoles up 10-0 and the Wolfpack driving to get on the board, junior DB Terrence Brooks picked off a Mike Glennon pass killing the NC State scoring threat. It was the second pick of his career and his first of the season. Brooks' last interception came versus Notre Dame in the Champs Sports Bowl gives him two in the last seven games. Overall, it was the fourth pick of the year for the FSU defense, which now has 11 interceptions in the last eight games. That is above the total from the previous 11 games where the defense had nine picks. 

    Going Backwards

    The Seminole defense came into tonight's game among the top schools in the nation in tackles for loss and they showed why in the first half versus the Wolfpack. Florida State recorded four tackles behind the line for a total of 20 yards lost. NC State gained a total of 25 yards rushing in the first half.

    D-Hop Back On Track

    After going through a tough stretch (by his standards) where he missed three straight field goals, senior Dustin Hopkins seems to have relocated his groove. The Lou Groza candidate has accounted for 10 points tonight on an extra point and three field goals, including a season-long 49-yarder.He has now connected on six consecutive FG attempts and he is back on his climb to the top of the FSU and ACC career kicking charts. He is now just seven points away from breaking the all-time career scoring record for FSU and the ACC.

    Glauser Called In To Duty

    Senior Daniel Glauser earned his second start of the season filling in for junior Menelik Watson at right tackle. Watson is available to play but listed as under the weather at the start of tonight's game. Glauser filled in at RT for Watson in the Wake Forest game as well. 

    FSU Captains Tonight

    The captains for the Seminoles tonight are senior WR Rodney Smith, senior DT Anthony "Amp" McCloud and senior LB Nick Moody.

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