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    Monday, November 06, 2006

    Monday Practice Report: Xavier Lee To Start At QB

    The Florida State football team practiced for 10 periods in shorts on the FSU Football Practice Fields as it began its preparations for Saturday's game against Wake Forest. The Seminoles play host to the Demon Deacons in a game nationally televised by ABC Sports and scheduled to begin at 8:00 p.m.

    * The Seminoles practiced for 10 periods in shorts on the Florida State Football Practice Fields.
    * The practice session began as Bobby Bowden, the winningest coach in major college football history, read the lengthy honor roll from this past week's 33-0 victory over Virginia.
    * Quarterback Xavier Lee has accounted for 570 yards of total offense and three touchdown passes in the first two starts of his career.
    * Linebacker Buster Davis leads the ACC with 81 tackles. He is looking to become the first Seminole to lead the ACC in tackles.


    Head Coach Bobby Bowden

    "Geno Hayes worked a little bit today. De'Cody Fagg worked a little bit. I guess we'll just keep evaluating them during the week and see if they're able to play. (Darius) McClure didn't. (Rodney) Gallon, I didn't see him out there. He might have been out there and I might have missed him. We'll try to pick it up tomorrow and see how it goes tomorrow. We sure need some of these guys back."

    (on the quarterbacks)
    "We are going to start the same way we did last week (with Xavier Lee as the starter). No sense keeping it a secret and waiting. I talked to the staff and we are going to go back like we were. We are going to take it a little bit slower with (Weatherford) to be sure that he's completely healthy. It (Weatherford's ankle) seems to be okay."

    (on Wake Forest)
    "You know who they remind me of a lot - Penn State. By that, I mean Penn State was a fifth-year senior team. If you look at every one of them, they've got R, R-sophomore, R-junior, R-senior. Their maturity level is way up. That overcomes a lot right there. Veteran guys. They had 18 starters coming back and they've lost a couple. They are a mature football team."

    (on Myron Rolle not making freshman mistakes)
    "That's probably correct. I sure he makes some; I look at his grades every week and he'll have an MA (missed assignment) or two but nothing glaring. You can't afford to make them there. I'm not surprised at him because of his intelligence. He's handled it mighty good. You don't get many like that."

    Offensive Coordinator Jeff Bowden

    (on the offensive line not allowing a sack)
    "I have felt like their strength has been their pass protection this year. When I weight their run blocking with their pass protection I think that has been their strength. It has been very good to good depending on the quality of the rush we have seen. We felt like we could pass protect against Virginia. They really were a different type of front in that there is a lot of reading going on and not just an attack front. It allowed for better protection. I thought they did a good job with it Saturday, surely enough, they protected well enough."

    (on Wake Forest's pass defense)
    "If you looked at our game film last year they were very high blitz and you ended up with a lot of one-on-ones on the edge. They still sprinkled in some two-deep zone and some three-deep zone but they blitzed a lot and Drew took a lot of hits last year. He had to stand in there and make some throws with people bearing down on them fixing to kill them and they did but he was able to get the ball out enough times to where we were able to hurt them at times. They are doing the same thing to me this year. They did the same thing to Boston College. They got after them pretty good and Boston College wasn't able to hurt them enough in the game. They will also play their shell. I don't want to anticipate them not mixing but to me they are a lot different than Boston College was."

    (on turnovers)
    "You cannot turn the ball over. The last game is the best example. You don't turn the ball over and you are not putting momentum on that other sideline. It just changes when you are comfortable and not turning the ball over, I don't know what else to tell you."

    Defensive Coordinator Mickey Andrews

    (on injuries to Fluellen, Gallon and McClure)
    "It's kind of remarkable to think about the number of guys that are not in there that have started games for us. The backups have come in, and they have gotten hurt. We got some kids who are third team and walk-on that are starting now for us. Rodney, McClure and Fluellen all get hurt, and Kevin (Steele) is over on the sideline trying to coach up a sam linebacker to play will linebacker in between series. This doesn't sound possible in division one football at a program like Florida State but it's exactly what has happened. At halftime, we couldn't even finish our coaches meeting before Coach Steele had to go out and teach (Toddrick) Verdell how to play will linebacker some more. Even with that we had to change some of our calls because Coach Steele would say, "Coach, we can't do that, he doesn't know how to play that." Teaching someone something on the board is a lot different than going out and practicing it for a week."

    (on the Wake Forest offense)
    "They are a fast starting offense. In the first quarter they have scored something like 66 or 67 points to 27. I remember going up there a few years ago going up there and being down 14 points before we even had a chance to sit down. The thing that they do is that they aren't a three yard and a cloud of dust type team, you may stop them, you may stop them, but then you give up a big play. They are more talented than you would be led to believe. They keep winning, only one team has beaten them, they are eight and one. Clemson beat them 27-17 or something like that with a ten point swing on a field goal that got blocked and returned for a touchdown. They are a team that is capable of big plays. We need to be diligent and not give up big plays. They misdirect you, create angle blocks, get you in space, make someone miss a tackle, and big plays happen."

    Freshman Tight End Brandon Warren

    (on the play calling)
    "As long as they are calling plays for me, I'm going to try to produce, but I'd like to get the ball more, and in situations I will be able to get the ball more. I just need to take care of my business and get more catches."

    (on the play of Xavier Lee)
    "Xavier did a terrific job of checking off of plays. He seemed to be more comfortable on what check offs to call and when to call them. I think he was more comfortable against Maryland. He got off to a rocky start against Virginia but in the second half, he played better."

    (on the closeness of the freshman class)
    "I'm close to all of my classmates. We all stay at Burt Reynolds, so we are running in and out of each others rooms all the time. With us playing a bunch of young guys, that is one of the reasons we lost some of the tight games that we should have won. It takes time to understand how the other guys are going to play around you."

    Sophomore Quarterback Xavier Lee

    on wearing gloves)
    "When it is cool, my hands get really dry and the ball slips out of my hand. So I wear gloves to eliminate that all together. It wasn't cold, but it was cool and I wasn't sweating very much. If it's hot, I'm taking those things off."

    (on the importance of beating Wake Forest)
    "It matters on the bowls; we can possibly get a bowl game out of this. It's also about pride, we're on our home field, and we need to finish up with some wins."

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