Aug. 29, 2009
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Quarterback Christian Ponder completed six of 11 passes for 65 yards and one touchdown in the Seminoles' final scrimmage of the pre-season Saturday at Doak Campbell Stadium. The second-year starter completed five of his last seven passes including a 12-yard scoring strike to wide receiver Richard Goodman. He completed his longest pass of the morning (a 22-yard pass) to wide receiver Jarmon Fortson.
The scrimmage came only nine days before the Seminoles open the 2009 season against Miami on Labor Day night at home in a nationally televised game on ESPN. The game is set to kick-off at 8:00 p.m.
"We had a rehearsal today; we didn't tackle," said head coach Bobby Bowden. "It's hard to evaluate ... because the (running) back will get hit and he'll keep running which is what we want him to do."
Running back Jermaine Thomas ran the ball well as he accumulated 41 yards on five carries for an 8.2 yards per carry effort. In addition, Ty Jones gained 11 yards on two carries and Tavares Pressley gained 11 yards on four carries. Freshman Lonnie Pryor had two catches for 52 yards including a scrimmage-high 49-yard reception from quarterback Will Secord.
"My first criticism would be too many yellow flags; penalty after penalty after penalty," said Bowden. "But that's why we practice. That's why we do things like this. We tried to work on seeing if our field goal team could get on the field, seeing if our punt team could get on the field and seeing if our kickoff team could get on the field and be out there with 11 (players) instead of ten. Yeah, it was a rehearsal. The hitting wasn't bad."
Florida State's defense played well with safety Jamie Robinson leading the team with four tackles. Linebacker Dekoda Watson, safety Korey Mangum and cornerback Dionte Allen recorded three tackles each. Mangum also recorded a pass break-up. Junior safety Chad Colley recorded the only interception of the day for the defense.
Freshman kicker Dustin Hopkins impressed the coaching staff as he was a perfect four-of-four on field goal attempts. He made field goal attempts from 44, 43, 34 and 26 yards and made his only extra point attempt of the scrimmage.
"I didn't see him miss one," said Bowden. "I don't think he missed anything. A few field goals and got his extra points. We'll decide (on the starting kicker) but he hit his today."
Secord, a true freshman, completed seven of nine passes for 80 yards. His morning of work included his long pass (49 yards) to Pryor. He also completed an 11-yard pass to Pressley.
The Seminoles will take tomorrow off before beginning Miami week and returning to the practice fields on Monday night.