Tallahassee, Fla. - FloridaState football returned to practice today as the team continued its preparations for the 22nd-ranked Alabama Crimson Tide (3-1). The Seminoles practiced for 22 periods in full pads after working on special teams. On another note, the ACC announced today that the kickoff time for the October 6th NC State game will be 3:30 p.m. and the game will be broadcast by ABC.
Gary Cismesia, who is a perfect 6-for-6 in games this season, was perfect in practice as well going 3-for-3 on field goals.
While most of the team was running inside drills, the DB's and receivers matched up in 1-on-1. The defense got off to a great start as Jamie Robinson, Patrick Robinson and Dionte Allen all broke up passes. Christian Ponder responded by hitting Fagg deep. Weatherford then came over and connected with Fagg and Goodman. He also went deep to Greg Carr.
11-on-11 was spent mostly in down and distance. There weren't many highlights outside of Myron Rolle breaking up a deep ball to Greg Carr.
Head Coach Bobby Bowden "Wednesday I'll let you know about (Geno) Hayes - I'm not going to talk about it until then.
"It wasn't a bad practice for a Monday. We ran them yesterday and that helps. Instead of coming in without any running they got their running in yesterday. They responded pretty good today."
On Alabama Being A Big, National Game "I think they know that. I think thy know that. Both teams."
Have you spoken to former FloridaState - now Alabama assistant coach Kevin Steele? "I haven't talked to him in quite a while. They've got so many guys up there - Kevin was here, (Kirby) Smart was here, Curt Cignetti - his daddy was my offensive coordinator at West Virginia and he coached with Chuck (Amato) last year. Joe Pendry played for me at West Virginia. So many interlocking things. (Rick) Trickett and Jimbo (Fisher) working with (Nick) Saban - and (Lawrence) Dawsey."
Is There Any Advantage For Either Team? "I don't think there is an advantage. If there is, it balances out."
On Alabama Head Coach Nick Saban "I was closer with his daddy and he was just a little kid hanging around. I remember his dad real well. I have forgotten all what happened. I would sense that we would have tried to hire him as a graduate assistant. He was always pretty close to our program. Terry (Bowden) worked for him, too. Terry was a graduate assistant at West Virginia after I left then Saban came in, I believe. Tommy (Bowden) was playing there. Terry was playing there and Terry became a graduate assistant there."
On Anthony Kelly "Anthony Kelly is back - we are trying to get him in shape. He's got a lot of work to do before he is able to play."
On What It Takes To Follow A Long-Time Head Coach "It's just kind of proven that it's tough. Not just Coach Bryant but when Vince Dooley left Georgia - the same thing. Anytime a coach stays at a place a long time it been tough for a guy to follow."
Have you ever thought twice about not taking the Alabama head coaching job? "Not much. But it gets brought up to me so many times especially when I go home. I never really thought it through at all."
Linebacker Derek Nicholson "We are going out here like every other week. We are going to treat this team like it's a national championship game - that's how you have to look at it. It's the game right in front of us and they are a good ball club. We have to be prepared. They are going to be hungry coming off a loss. This game is a very big game - it's the biggest game of the year. Last week was the biggest game of the year for us - so this week is going to be the biggest game of the year for us. We have to approach it like that week in and week out. It's the biggest so far - we are looking at it like that.
Is there extra pressure on the linebackers this week against Alabama? "We all have our keys and everybody has their assignments individually. If everybody does their job and does their assignments - the 11 players that are out on the field regardless - we will be alright. Everyone has to do they're job and everyone has to do their assignments."
Quarterback Drew Weatherford "It was a great football game (Alabama vs. Georgia). Both teams played really hard. We are going to have our hands full. They are a very good football team coming off a tough loss like that so they are going to be motivated. We have got to match their intensity this week. We know this is going to be a dogfight due to watching their last two games and the kind of coach they have. Coach Saban is a lot like our own coach and he's not going to accept anything less then the guys giving it they're all. We are going to have to go out and match their intensity and be as disciplined as they are."
Did the off week help? "I do. I think our offense got time to relax and just kind of take it easy for a little bit. We had a long first stretch playing on a Monday night and them coming back and playing five days later. I don't think we ever got a chance to catch our wind. We finally have the off week and I think it came at a good moment for us. We came out today and did a lot of good things. We practiced better today than we had in the last week and a half."
On Playing Alabama "It's going to be exciting. Their fans travel great and so do ours. It's going to be a historical night, I think. I'm really looking forward to it like everyone else is."
On How Much The Bye Week Helped Him Personally "I think a lot. I think it not only helped me but it helped our whole team. You just get a chance to relax. We got to evaluate the way we had been playing and why we were not playing consistently. It was a fast start - we had the three games really quick, we had a five-ay week and we were playing against good ball clubs. We had to do a lot in our offense we had to change a lot and do some different things. It was tough for to adapt to at first.