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    Thursday, November 30, 2006

    FSU Low On The Rung In ACC Field Goal Percentage

    1.VT Brandon Pace-94.4
    2.MD Dan Ennis-82.6
    3.WF Sam Swank-75.0
    CU Jad Dean-75.0
    ST John Deraney-75.0
    6.GT Travis Bell-66.7
    7.FS Gary Cismesia-64.7
    8.BC Ryan Ohliger-63.6
    9.UM Jon Peattie-63.2
    10.VA Chris Gould-57.9

    My View: Humility A Great Virtue

    I have finished watching the Bobby Bowden Show and as usual, I am amazed at the attitude of Bobby Bowden. When fans call in and dare to criticize the "great one" they are belittled or a snide remark is made in regard to their question. Isn't it time we had a coach with a little more class?

    The utter arrogance shown by Bobby Bowden is shameful. I shouldn't be surprised but I always hope that some kind of humility will be forthcoming from a coach that has had such horrible seasons recently. A glimpse of that utter disdain for fans was shown in a recent comment by Ann Bowden when she said that we the fans needed Bobby Bowden more than he needed us.

    I am hopeful that in the not too distant future we will have a head coach that not only can speak the King's English but also can be civil and possess humility in both victory as well as in defeat.

    Q & A: Gary Cavalli, Executive Director, Emerald Bowl

    Gary Cavalli of the Emerald Bowl was kind enough to answer a few questions about the bowl. I have expressed my reservations about whether we should have accepted the bowl bid but that is done. For those of you that may be thinking about going to the bowl, you could not ask for a better city than San Francisco. I have lived there and for those of you that have never visited, you must see the city. This would be a great opportunity.

    Q: What makes this stadium venue a great place to play a college football bowl game?

    AT&T Park is a six-year old, state-of-the-art facility nestled on the water's edge right in downtown San Francisco. It is recognized as one of the premier sports venues in the country, with all the modern amenities fans have come to expect.The ballpark is very intimate for football. The fans are really close to the action, much closer than thay usually are for a football game. Most of the seats are chair-backed, but the bleachers in the end zone and on the sideline behind the team benches offer fantastic views right on top of the field. For the players, it's an opportunity for something a little out-of-the-ordinary, in that it's a baseball park converted for football. In the early days of the NFL, almost every team played in a baseball park, so in a sense, we hark back to another day but have the bells and whistles of today's modern facilities.

    Q: Having lived in San Francisco, I know how great a place it is. Tell my bloggers one thing you just have to see in San Francisco if they come to the game.

    Wow, there are so many. You have to ride a cable car, see the Golden Gate Bridge, and visit Fisherman's Wharf. There's also shopping in Union Square, a trip to Alcatraz, and dining in some of the greatest restaurants in the world. Well, I held it to 6 things. (And if you have time, make it up to the wine country--only an hour north of San Francisco--for some of the most beautiful scenery and best wine in the world.)

    Q: What is your best guess for the temperature at game time?
    I'd say 55 degrees.

    If you are going to the game, Gary asked me to include the Emerald Bowl site which has travel packages and preferred hotels.

    Davis Named to AFCA All-America Team

    FSU linebacker Buster Davis was named to the 2006 AFCA Coaches’ All-America Team announced today by the American Football Coaches Association. Davis finished the regular season with 102 tackles for the Noles.

    The award is the second of the week for Davis, coming on the heels of a First-Team All-ACC award from the Associated Press. Davis is the first Seminole to earn All-America honors from the AFCA since St. Louis Ram's first round pick Alex Barron in 2004, the first FSU defensive player since 2000 selection Jamal Reynolds at defensive end and is the first Seminole linebacker since Sam Cowart in 1997. Davis' award is the 29th won by a Florida State player and the 19th on defense.

    UCLA Kicker Has The Foot

    Justin Medlock, the UCLA place kicker and field goal kicker will be a crucial part of the game when UCLA plays FSU in the Emerald Bowl.

    His numbers: 24-28 (85.7% )PAT- 100%

    Calvin Johnson Named ACC Player of the Year

    Calvin Johnson of Georgia Tech was named the ACC Player of the Year receiving 66 of 80 votes from members of the Atlantic Coast Sports Media Association in results released Wednesday.

    This year Johnson has 59 catches for 899 yards while ranking third in the country with a school-record 13 touchdowns. Johnson ranks third in school history with 2,624 yards receiving and fifth with 161 receptions. He already holds school records with 26 career TD catches and 11 100-yard receiving games.


    Clemson defensvie end Gaines Adams is the clear winner of the Atlantic Coast Conference's defensive player of the year for 2006 by The Associated Press. Adams received 55 of the 80 votes from members of the ACC Sports Media Association. Vince Hall of Virginia Tech came in second with eight votes.

    The senior has 56 tackles, with 15½ tackles for loss and 10½ sacks this season. Adams has 26 sacks in his career with the Tigers, trailing only William and Michael Dean Perry.

    Chow Interested In ASU Position

    Norm Chow who has been mentioned as the possible offensive coordinator at FSU has indicated that he is interested in the Arizona State head coaching position. This is according to ESPN News.

    It is interesting that T.K. Wetherell several weeks ago said that FSU couldn't afford Chow. This before FSU and the Boosters paid off Jeff Bowden to the tune of $537,000.

    FSU Recruit Prospect: Noel Devine

    The most electrifying back across the state, if not the nation in North Fort Myers RB Noel Devine. Obviously speed has always been big around the Sunshine State but "the Devine one" takes that to a new level with his quick acceleration once he has the ball in his hands.

    "You probably won't see a talent of his kind come through the state in quite some time," said North Fort Myers head coach James Iandoli.

    Devine is coming off a junior campaign where he rushed for 1,936 yards and 24 touchdowns. The senior also is the all-time leading rusher in Lee County after breaking that mark earlier this year. This five star prospect is the ultimate homerun hitter and while his size was a concern last year, that doesn't appear to be the case this year with just about every school across the country trying to sign the top back in Florida. He has offers from Nebraska, USC, and FSU.

    In reading about this superstar, I found that he has close ties to former Seminole great Deion Sanders. He also has had some problems off the field that may raise concerns but apparently hasn't dampened the enthusiasm for this phenom.

    Analysis:Devine is the 2007 version of 2006 class recruit C.J. Spiller, only faster and even more explosive. Devine is a human blur who possesses rare explosiveness, vision and stop/start ability. Devine is drastically undersized. Needs to add considerable bulk and lower body strength to remain durable at the college level if he is to stay on the field as much as coaches would like. His overall skills will get him on the field soon because he possesses game-changing ability and improved size and strength will come with a college weight program.

    Devine is ranked number one in the country at his position.

    Nole Devine Sunshine Preps Video

    FSU Cowgirls

    Ok, call me whatever you want. Who can ignore a nice pic of two coeds who love FSU? Jenn (the one on the right) has turned her appearances at FSU games into a S.I. weekly piece as well as photo spreads in Maxim and other publications. The great American dream.

    FSU In Hunt For McCray

    D'Angelo McCray out of Andrew Jackson High in Jacksonville at one time was a solid Florida commit before re-opening his recruitment. The Gators had remained among his favorites, but now with McCray nearing a decision, it seems Florida is falling out of the picture.Illinois still remains a strong contender for the TE/DE, but Florida State is making a late push.

    He was in Tallahassee this past weekend for the FSU-Florida game and will take an official on 12/8. It looks like McCray who ranks number 3 at his position in the country will decide between Illinois and FSU. He is set to announce on 12/14 on ESPNU.

    Wednesday, November 29, 2006

    FSU Player Focus: Buster Davis

    An All-America candidate at linebacker who ends his senior season as the team's top returning tackler and unquestionable leader of the defense. Buster was given the defense's Leadership Award by the coaching staff at the conclusion of the 2006 spring practice after being the only senior to fully participate on defense. He ended the regular season as the team's leading tackler with 102. He also wore FSU great Ron Simmons number 50 in his last game in Tallahassee.

    Junior Year (2005): Set career-highs for tackles, tackles for loss and sacks as a member of one of the most feared linebacking corps in the nation...tied for seventh in the ACC and finished second on the team with 91 total tackles...placed fourth on the defense with 38 solo 10.5 tackles for loss were tops among linebackers and were good for third-best on the team behind defensive end Kamerion Wimbley (11) and All-American noseguard Brodrick Bunkley (25)...had at least one tackle for loss in nine games...recorded double-digit tackles in six different games including four of the last five...led the defense in tackles in the final four games of the season (Clemson, Florida, Virginia Tech, Penn State) 13 stops came against NC State...had sacks in back-to-back games in wins over Boston College and Syracuse.

    FSU Coaches Visiting Homes This Week

    FSU coaches are hot on the recruiting trail as they make in home visits this week. Since in home visits are now allowed within the NCAA's recruiting guidelines, there is a flurry of activity within all the major college football programs.

    Luther Davis,a 6-foot-3, 254-pound four-star defensive tackle out of West Monroe, La. welcomed both FSU Head Coach Bobby Bowden and LSU Head Coach Les Miles into his house Monday night for in-home visits.

    Michael McNeil, a top safety out of Mobile, Alabama was set to get a visit from FSU defensive coordinator Mickey Andrews this week.

    UCLA's Hickman Finalist for Hendricks Award

    UCLA senior Justin Hickman is one of six finalists for the 2006 Ted Hendricks Award, presented annually to the nation's top defensive end.

    He is second nationally with 1.14 sacks per game (12.5 total) and fifth (tied) in tackles for loss (1.68 - 18.5 total). He ranks first in the Pac-10 in both sacks and tackles for losses. Twice this season, he has recorded three solo sacks in a game (Notre Dame, Rice). On the year, he has made 37 total tackles (27 solos) and leads the Bruins in sacks (12.5) and tackles for loss (18.5).

    Hickman ranks third (tied) on UCLA's single-season sack list (the record is 16.5 by Dave Ball in 2003) and sixth on the single-season tackles for loss list. He is ninth on the career sack list and 17th on the career tackles for loss list.

    The other finalists are Gaines Adams of Clemson, Mkristo Bruce of Washington State, Tim Crowder of Texas, Anthony Spencer of Purdue and LaMarr Woodley of Michigan.

    Championship Weekend Buys and Sells

    UCLA Is Good Matchup In Bowl Game: I think this is as good a matchup as you can get considering FSU is 6-6. UCLA almost beat Notre Dame at Notre Dame and has some quality players. I am buying.

    Ga. Tech Will Win ACC Championship Game: Two words. Calvin Johnson. This great receiver for Ga. Tech is awesome. Wake is a good team but I am buying the Yellow Jackets.

    USC Will Beat UCLA: Well. only if it snows in Los Angeles on Saturday does UCLA have a chance. I am buying USC.

    Arkansas Will Handle Gators: Arkansas has a great team and will be able to compete with the Gators. I like the Razorbacks. I am buying.

    Bobby Bowden Will Thank Fans On His Last Call In Show:I am not holding my breath. After all, we fans are told that we need him more than he needs us. I am selling.

    UCLA Players Garner PAC-10 Honors

    DL Justin Hickman, Sr., UCLA DL and PK Justin Medlock, Sr., UCLA PK were named to the PAC-10 First Team.

    PAC-10 Freshmen of the year was UCLA freshmen Alterraun Verner, a true freshman from Carson, Calif.. He played extensively in UCLA's nickel and dime packages. He picked off two passes, both returned for touchdowns of 89 and 34 yards, and ranks fifth on the Bruin defense with 44 tackles. He shared this honor with two other PAC-10 players.

    O.C. Prospect: Frank Cignetti

    As I said a few nights ago, fired coaches from UNC, Alabama, and NC State may be targets for the offensive coordinator position. A local sports radio show yesterday mentioned the name of Frank Cignetti at UNC under now dismissed head coach John Bunting. Cignetti could be a prospect given his background.

    Cignetti led Fresno State to back-to-back top 10 national rankings in scoring offense, as its offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. The Bulldogs ranked fifth in the country in scoring offense in 2004 and seventh in 2005.

    Cignetti who is 40 served four seasons as the Bulldogs' offensive coordinator where he helped guide Fresno State to four consecutive bowl games, including a win over No. 18 Virginia in the 2004 MPC Computers Bowl. Fresno was 3-1 in bowl games with Cignetti.

    In 2004, Fresno averaged 52.8 points over the last six games and became just the sixth team in NCAA history to score 50 or more points in four consecutive contests. Fresno finished that season 9-3, led the Western Athletic Conference in average yards per carry (5.4) and scored 65 touchdowns. The Bulldogs were outstanding in the red zone, scoring touchdowns on 42-of-53 attempts (.792).

    Cignetti was instrumental in the development of Fresno's four-year starting quarterback Paul Pinegar, who was the 2002 WAC Freshman of the Year and led the nation's freshmen in passing efficiency, passing yards and touchdowns. In 2005, Pinegar ranked 18th in the country in pass efficiency.

    Cignetti has been a part of successful programs at all levels. In the NFL, he won a division championship and a playoff game with the New Orleans Saints in 2000. He was part of three bowl victories at Fresno State, and on the Division II level - at Indiana University of Pennsylvania - he reached the national championship game twice and the semifinals four times. He also has been a member of the coaching staff in the Senior Bowl and East-West Shrine all-star games.

    Before joining the Fresno State program, Cignetti served as the New Orleans Saints quarterbacks coach during the 2000 and 2001 seasons. In 2000, he helped the Saints earn the NFC West title and the franchise's first playoff win. The Saints' offense ranked 10th in the NFL in both 2000 and 2001. In 2000, he guided quarterback Jeff Blake to a career-high 82.7 rating before Blake suffered a season ending injury. The following season, quarterback Aaron Brooks was an alternate for the Pro Bowl. In New Orleans, he also coached current Carolina Panthers QB Jake Delhomme, current Rams QB Marc Bulger and the now retired Billy Joe Tolliver.

    He joined the Saints after coaching one season as an offensive assistant and quality control coach with the Kansas City Chiefs in 1999. He was responsible for game analysis and opponent information. In 1999, Kansas City finished 9-7, second in the AFC West and the offense ranked 12th in the NFL.

    From 1990-98, Cignetti was an assistant at Indiana University of Pennsylvania where he coached receivers (1990-92), the secondary (1993-94) and quarterbacks (1995-98). In his last two years at IUP, he served as the offensive coordinator.

    Cignetti started his coaching career as a graduate assistant at the University of Pittsburgh for Mike Gottfried in 1989. The Panthers went 9-3 and defeated Texas A&M in the Sun Bowl.

    He has coached for 17 years, working with NFL offensive coordinators such as Mike McCarthy (New Orleans Saints) and Tom Rossley (Green Bay Packers) and Jimmy Raye (Oakland Raiders).

    Cignetti was an all-conference safety at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, from where he graduated in 1987. He played in the school's first ever appearance in a national playoff game in 1987 against Central Florida.

    FSU On West Coast

    The last time the Seminoles played on the West Coast was 1997 when they beat Southern California 14-7.

    FSU Prospect: Ahmad Paige

    Ahmad Paige of Sterlington,La. has been named a 2007 U.S. Army All-American. He is the second athlete from the state of Louisiana to be selected to the WEST Squad. Ahmad Paige and Luther Davis (West Monroe) will join a group of extraordinary student-athletes selected to play in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl on Saturday, January 6, 2007 at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas.

    This classic East vs. West match-up will be televised live on NBC at 12:00 Noon (CST) and will feature the nation’s top 80 high school football athletes.

    Ahmad Paige is a standout wide receiver at Sterlington High School and was one of 400 players nominated nationally and then ultimately selected by the U.S. Army All-American Bowl Selection Committee. The committee consists of, Tom Lemming, and SportsLink. Paige is a five-star prospect, rated as the number four wide receiver in the country, and is a member of the National 100 team.

    "Paige is a playmaker with exceptional speed, speed and concentration skills," said Jeremy Patterson, Southwest recruiting analyst for "He is a strong competitor over-the-middle and can turn short plays into long gains due to his eye-popping acceleration."

    "Ahmad Paige might be the most explosive wide receiver in the entire nation," said Garrett Shea, Director of the U.S. Army All-American Bowl. "With his tremendous athleticism, he is able to out-jump and outrun any defender. In addition, he runs routes well and shows great ability to get open. With a decent quarterback, he should be able to get great production, and excel at the next level. Ahmad Paige is a great all-around athlete and the Bowl is proud to have him join the U.S. Army All-American class of 2007."

    Paige made a commitment to Florida State in September but has vists scheduled to Tennessee, USC, Florida, and Georgia.

    But since his decision back in the summer things have changed. Things have changed for Paige and things have certainly changed for FSU.

    "It's a down year at Florida State. Jeff Bowden stepped down. That obviously worries me because he is their Offensive Coordinator and Wide Receiver Coach. There will be more changes."

    As stated, Paige is ranked as the Number 4 WR in country. Although he has committed to FSU, his commit is considered soft. LSU is also in the mix.

    A First For FSU

    Florida State and UCLA have never played each other in football.

    Tuesday, November 28, 2006

    "100 Percent FSU"

    Dionte Allen made an official visit to FSU this past Saturday for the FSU-Florida game.He talked to Coaches John Lilly, Mickey Andrews, and Odell Haggins. Allens stated "I'm 100 percent FSU."

    Coach Lilly will make a trip to St. Mary's High School in Michigan on Wednesday to visit Allen personally. The remainder of the Seminole coaching staff is scheduled to visit Orchard Lake, Michigan in the next week or two.

    Although he says that he is a solid FSU committment, Allen still plans to visit both Ohio State and Michigan for official visits.

    Is Little Terry Being The Puppet Master?

    Terry Bowden, the short guy with a Napoleon complex, may be trying to influence the FSU program in its hiring of an offensive coordinator.

    The short one denied on Tuesday speculation that he is helping his father in the process. The former Auburn coach is working in the media in both radio and television.

    "I have no capacity in this other than a son giving his two cents worth," the former Auburn coach said. "I don't know where that got started -- I guess because I was at his home all last week.

    "Dad is going to choose his own guy."

    My View: Hope that the liitle one and all the other Bowdens stay away from the FSU program. Hopefully, there are others at FSU that are consulting with Bobby Bowden regarding the next offensive coordinator.

    New Poll

    There is a new poll question: Which game do you think waa the biggest loss for the Noles in 2006?

    Poll Results

    Poll results for the question: FSU will accept the Emerald Bowl bid. Do you think we should accept the bid given a 6-6 record? was No, we should not accept the bid by 63.8%.

    UCLA (6-5) Has One Game Left With USC

    Entering Saturday's game with crosstown rival USC, the Bruins own a 6-5 record that includes impressive November victories over Sun Bowl-bound Oregon State and bowl-eligible Arizona State. UCLA also took Notre Dame to the wire in South Bend before losing 20-17 in the game's final minute. The Bruins became bowl-eligible themselves with a 24-12 win at ASU November 18.

    A wide receiver at UCLA in the 1980s, Head Coach Karl Dorrell knows bowl success firsthand.

    In five seasons at UCLA [including a medical redshirt year], Dorrell was a member of five bowl-winning teams, including three Rose Bowl [1982, 1983, 1985] squads. Dorrell was the Bruins' leading receiver in '85, his senior season. His head coaching record currently stands at 28-20.

    Dorrell has directed the Bruins to a bowl appearance in each of his four seasons. Among Pac-10 teams, only USC and California can make the same claim.

    "This matchup will be a great opportunity for our football program. Bobby Bowden has won more football games than anyone in Division I-A history and he has been especially successful in bowl games," Dorrell said.

    "Florida State has had great success over the last three decades. It has a tradition of dominating defenses and explosive offenses. I know that the young men in our program will be very excited to play the Seminoles in a great setting in San Francisco."

    It's Official:FSU vs. UCLA In The Emerald Bowl

    In one of the marquee match-ups of the 2006 Bowl season, UCLA will oppose Florida State in this year's Emerald Bowl game.

    Emerald Bowl Executive Director Gary Cavalli, UCLA Director of Athletics Dan Guerrero and Florida State Director of Athletics Dave Hart, Jr. made the joint announcement Tuesday.

    Emerald Bowl V will be played Wednesday, December 27 at AT&T Park in downtown San Francisco. ESPN will televise the game nationally with kickoff at 5 p.m. [PST], 8 p.m. [EST].

    UCLA becomes the first Pacific-10 Conference team to play in the Emerald Bowl.

    Longest Played Game

    The Florida-Florida State was the longest played among college football teams last Saturday at 3:35.

    Who Else Will Go: Billy Sexton?

    Billy Sexton is the FSU Running Backs and Assistant Head coach and has been with FSU for thirty years.

    Among the greats that Sexton coached is Warrick Dunn, who became Florida State's all-time leading rusher in 1996 and finished his career with 3,989 yards. Sexton has seen 13 of his pupils taken in the draft since 1988, including first rounders Dunn, William Floyd (San Francisco 49ers, 1994), Dexter Carter (San Francisco 49ers, 1990) and Sammie Smith (Miami Dolphins, 1989). Also among Sexton's former pupils are All-American Greg Allen, who broke 26 school records during his FSU career, and Edgar Bennett. Travis Minor was a four-year starter at tailback and was selected by the Miami Dolphins in 2001. Greg Jones added his name to the FSU alums in the NFL with his selection by the Jacksonville Jaguars in the second round in 2004.

    It seems to me that in recent years our backs such as Minor, Booker, and others have not been developed to their full potential. It may be time for someone with a new vision and energy to put life into the running game.

    "That Nepotism Thing"

    "It was kind of like when you hired him, he didn't have a chance. He didn't have a chance. Right off the bat that nepotism thing jumped up there, then you lose a couple of ballgames and everybody reverts back to that."
    Bobby Bowden referring to his son Jeff Bowden

    My View:Gee,coach,the nerve of people that want to obey the law. How dare they refer to that "nepotism thing".

    FSU Has Nine Committments for 2007

    These are the current recruits that have committed to FSU for 2007 signing day. Dionte Allen and Ahmad Paige are wavering in their committment to FSU.

    Dionte Allen- CB 6-0 175 Orchard Lake, MI

    Ahmad Paige -WR 6-3 175 Monroe, LA

    Will Furlong- OT 6-5 275 De Land, FL OT

    Bernard Brinson- S 5-10 185 Greenville, FL

    Kendall Smith- RB 6-1 200 Bushnell, FL

    Cameron Wade -WR 6-4 180 Cairo, GA

    Zach Hillery- OL-6-4 315 Chatham,Va

    Dan Foster- ILB 6-1 225 Blakely, GA Butler County Community College

    Brian Coulter- DE 6-5 255 Poplarville, MS Pearl River Community College

    FSU Prospect: Dionte Allen

    Allen earned All-Metro honors as a senior. In nine games, he had 47 tackles and two interceptions. and as a receiver he had 22 receptions for 314 yards and one touchdown.

    Dionte Allen is one of the top defensive back prospects in the nation. Allen has been on the varsity since his fresman year. He was named First Team All-State in 2005.

    2005 STATS: (10 Games) - Allen recorded 51 tackles and five interceptions. On offense, he caught 17 receptions for 299 yards and two touchdowns. He ran for 54 yards on eight carries, and also returned eight kicks for 228 yards.

    Coach's Comments - "Dionte is a prospect that's being recruited by all the major programs around the country. He has great hips, he's extremely quick in and out of his breaks and most importantly, Dionte is a great leader." -- George Porritt

    Dionte Allen is ranked as the #5 Cornerback recruit in the country by rating services. He has committed to FSU but it is considered a "soft" committment.

    Noles to Play UCLA In Emerald Bowl?

    ESPN News is reporting that FSU will play UCLA in the Emerald Bowl. The Seminoles have never played the Pac-10 team, and UCLA would be a boost for ticket sales and West Coast interest in the game

    Bobby Bowden Sunday Media Q & A: Part 2

    This is Part 2 of the media press conference with Bobby Bowden on Sunday.

    You know what a national-championship team looks like. You've coached one or two. Is Florida that kind of team?

    BOWDEN: Yeah, I think so. I think they can compete. Now, Ohio State and Southern Cal, they might be in a class of their own, I don't know. But Florida could compete. It'd be a good game with any of them.

    Drew Weatherford said he was looking forward to taking a little time off and not thinking about football for a little bit. What's the schedule going to be before you begin preparing for the bowl?

    BOWDEN: We'll be off this week. We'll meet with them (Monday) and give them our schedule. But I'm not sure exactly what it is. . . . We'll probably be off, then practice, then be off for finals, and then practice all the way through Christmas. We've got to go out there before Christmas. We could always go out the day after Christmas, but the game will be over on the 27th. Our free time will have to come after that.

    How important are those two weeks of practice since you have the bulk of this team coming back? How much do those extra practices that come with a bowl invitation help you in the future?

    BOWDEN: The same thing we've always gotten out of it. We're going to practice the same amount of days. For all of the bowls we play in, we practice . . . Let me say this: It will be the same amount of practices. We have a set practice (schedule) we've used for 20-some years. We'll do the same thing. Now, we'll probably have to adjust it. We'll probably have to go two-a-days one of those days just to make up for the time we've got to put in. Other than getting a couple more weeks of practice, I don't know how important it is.

    But for this team, at 6-6 and with all of the players who are coming back, will these two weeks of practice be more important than say it was five years ago for that team?

    BOWDEN: It's all according to how good you are . . . Probably comparable. To say it is better now than it was then or better then than it is now, no. It's comparable.

    You say with an offensive coordinator you are searching for what you have been lacking. What do you think you've been lacking?

    BOWDEN: I'm looking for somebody that whatever we've been missing will have it. And no, I'm not going to tell you what that is.

    You know in your head what you think it is?

    BOWDEN: Oh, yeah.

    Drew and several players mentioned that for some reason something has been missing from the offense.

    BOWDEN: The only thing missing is we need to score more points than we do. They got three long (scoring plays) out of there yesterday and we got two long ones (referring to Lorenzo Booker's 34-yard run to the 1-yard line).

    When you look at Florida, do you feel like there is a disparity in playmakers, that Florida just had more of them than you?

    BOWDEN: My biggest concern with their offense was not them taking the ball and running it down our throat. That didn't scare me. But I've seen (Andre) Caldwell . . . I saw Caldwell against Alabama, I think, take a slot pass of about 3 yards and did what he did to us yesterday, got around the outside and down the sideline on a play that shouldn't have made more than 4 yards. I was scared of that more than anything, him, that freshman (Percy Harvin) and that (Dallas) Baker. I was wondering how are we going to contain those guys all day. You can only hold them so long, but they are going to get away some.
    Then ours would get away some, too. But you could say they are in pretty good shape there.

    It hasn't been very often that you have been a little short of playmakers for whatever reason. How much do you attribute to scheme and what you try to do on offense and how much do you attribute it to maybe you've got some pieces missing and you are not playing with the same cards?

    BOWDEN: It's according to how much stock you put into blocking. None? Is it all X's and O's? The X's and O's are the same. It's blocking.
    Blocking and somebody making great plays, that's what they did yesterday. They made great plays and they blocked well ... We just didn't get it done.

    Drew said that one of the things that needed to get done was to find a way to get Greg Carr the ball more.

    BOWDEN: It just doesn't always work that way. How about that great receiver at Georgia Tech who didn't get a single pass thrown to him two games ago? Who's going to let that guy run around free? Most of the time you are going to have a guy inside and outside, or underneath and over . . . Sometimes you are wasting your time throwing to them unless they can make a fantastic catch. But, that's why you've got to keep going to them because they might make a fantastic catch. But I remember games where we didn't get the ball to Pete (Warrick). Remember the Fiesta Bowl with Tennessee? Pete was running around open and we couldn't get him the ball ... We were playing our second-team quarterback.

    As small as this recruiting class is going to be, how important is it for you to find a few play-makers or guys that can help you make a difference?

    BOWDEN: Well, you've got all your receivers back except (Chris Davis). You lose (Lorenzo) Booker but the other runner (Antone Smith) is back ... You'd always like to have another great one. We'll always try to recruit a great one. A great runner, a great receiver, we wouldn't turn one down.

    . . . Antone Smith is not bad. You know he'd just moved up to first team, and lasted two plays (before dislocating a shoulder against Western Michigan). Who knows what he might could have contributed. But we need others.

    With the limited numbers you can recruit, where is the greater need?

    BOWDEN: No. 1, this is one of those years where you'd just like to get the best players you can get no matter what position they play. But I know we need more help on the offensive line.

    You've always said it is easier to climb than it is to maintain. It seemed like it was easy for you to maintain as well for all those years.

    BOWDEN: We did maintain. That's the amazing thing. It's kind of like this year. You are so close, so doggone close. We couldn't do it. To me, it's different if ... 'All right, Coach Bowden, you're talking about Florida being a top-three football team and deserving to play for a national championship. How close are you to them?' Uh, well the game came down to the last minute. Are we that far off? Are we that far off with Clemson? Are we that far off from those people that beat us? But we lost, and there's no way I can justify that because we lost. But we're probably saying here, 'Coach, get one more great this, and we can do it. Get one more great this, and you can do it.' Whether that is a linebacker, a defensive tackle, a runner, or whether that is a receiver. But you are probably that darn close.

    Is it frustrating to you that you did maintain all those years and then you go through a rough season and it seems like so many people are turning on you?

    BOWDEN: Yeah, people are going to do that. All I do is fall in the category of fifty percent to the other coaches that lost yesterday. (He laughs) . . . I got to join that bracket this year. I don't like it. Again, can we next year take this football team Ð and we don't have to bring in another freshman now - we've got everybody back nearly . . . Can I take this team and make them a minute better. If we can, those one-minute losses become one-minute wins, now you're back.

    Now we need some help from the injury thing. You never know what would have happened this year if we hadn't lost the guys that we lost. But that's football. That is football. Everybody else loses people, too.

    Could you have blocked one more punt if you hadn't have lost Marcus Ball. Could you have returned a punt for a touchdown if you hadn't lost so and so? Could you have stopped that kickoff return if instead of playing those walk-ons you had been playing the two guys who are getting their knee operated on? There are so many dadgum variables like that involved in this doggone thing that next year maybe it could change.

    You've always said when asked about retirement that the only thing that would drive you out is losing.

    BOWDEN: That's exactly right. I'm sure glad I don't ever lose because I'd hate to quit.
    . . . Yeah, I know that. I made that statement. The question I'd ask y'all, if you were me, where I am right now, would you quit? You've got to figure out what I'm talking about.
    . . . Am I in position to quit? When you sign these players they all ask you, are you going to stay? I hate to tell them I'm staying and then I'm leaving. I'd rather they fire me than me leave, really . . . The one thing that would make me get out, since it keeps coming up, is if my players didn't want me, I wouldn't stay. I have no desire to get out right now.

    Is there a certain fear about stopping?

    BOWDEN: No, the easiest thing in the world for me would be to retire. That'd be so easy. I'd just leave. Then I'd go to Panama City and walk up and down the beach a few times, and look for another job.
    How many times can you walk up and down the beach before you're looking for another job?

    You also said last week that the thing you need to win is a fighting spirit and a great quarterback. Your quarterback situation has been up for grabs?

    BOWDEN: I think it's fixing to be there. You were playing a senior quarterback at Florida. We were playing a red-shirt sophomore. Our boy will be a red-shirt junior next year. His back up will be a red-shirt junior. And we've got two freshmen who I think are going to be pretty doggone good. So I think next year ... . Our successful years we always had a red-shirt junior quarterback. So I really think these guys are going to have their stuff. You've got to learn the ropes.

    Talking about retirement, are you also more determined to come back after a 6-6 season to fix it than if you were 11-1?

    BOWDEN: If the university hinted that they didn't want me back, I would listen to them. Again, I don't know. I'm like those old fighters, I guess. You still think you've got another win in you. I still think Florida State can win another national championship. I know they can. Can I do it? Can I bring them back? . . . We'll find out.

    When did the thought that you wanted to coach as long as you can strike you? Steve Spurrier looked at you and said he wasn't going to coach that long and now he's said he wants to coach five or six more years, so he'd be pushing toward 70. When did you get to that point in your life where you thought this is pretty good?

    BOWDEN: (Laughs) That's one I nearly can't afford to answer. . . . When you are recruiting, if kids think you are leaving, your opponents are going to eat you alive with that. Notice how Joe (Paterno) keeps signing a five-year contract. I keep signing a five-year contract. When I do, I am honest. My hopes and desires are that I can fulfill it.

    A week from Tuesday you are inducted into the hall of fame. Any thoughts now on what that ceremony will be like for you?

    BOWDEN: (Laughs) What will that be like for me? It will be nice. I'll appreciate it.

    Anything special about going in with Charlie Ward?

    BOWDEN: Yeah, that's special too. Sure is. Charlie was with us with our first national championship. He's such a hero here. It's a pleasure going in with him. . . . There are probably about 10 others that ought to go in, too. They got me there.

    Have you talked to Larry Coker at all, or will you?

    BOWDEN: I've written him a note when he lost that player (Bryan Pata). We've kind of communicated through other people.

    How tough has this year been on you personally?

    BOWDEN: It's been very tough. Tough on me and my wife both. Losses are just dadgum tough, you know. You've got coaches all over the country who feel the same way, but the losses are the toughest part to me.

    Any more comments on Jeff stepping down as offensive coordinator?

    BOWDEN: No. 1, I hate to see him get out of it. But he can sit back now and take his time. . . . I'm sure he's going to get back into coaching. But I hated it turned out that way. It was kind of like when you hired him, he didn't have a chance. He didn't have a chance. Right off the bat that nepotism thing jumped up there, then you lose a couple of ballgames and everybody reverts back to that.

    Dionte Allen Having Second Thoughts

    Orchard Lake (Mich.) St. Mary’s cornerback Dionte Allen committed to Florida State very early in the recruiting process. He is one of the top rated recruits in the country and has offers from such schools as Michigan,Ohio State, USC, and Notre Dame.

    One team that is pursuing him hard is Ohio State. After visiting Ohio State, he’s thinking hard about what he saw.

    “It was exciting down there," Allen said. "Playing for a national championship and the big rivalry, it was exciting. The fans, wow. They were excited. They really take football seriously. It was an incredible atmosphere. The whole time I was down there was amazing. You can’t help but get caught up in the excitement."

    Allen is second guessing his decision because of the Noles troubles on the field. "It’s starting to look like some of the better players might go somewhere else because of the season," Allen said.

    Monday, November 27, 2006

    Latest Firings May Create New Names for O.C.

    Today was axe day as a number of college head coaches got it. This may open up more names for the offensive coordinator position at FSU. FSU may look to dismissed coaches at University of North Carolina,NC State,and Alabama for the offensive coordinator position.

    As an aside,I visited the NC State web site tonight and found that Chuck Amato and his coaches had already been deleted.

    Buster Davis On ACC First Team

    Balance was the key word this season in the Atlantic Coast Conference, so it's fitting that four schools shared the spotlight on the all-conference team.

    Georgia Tech, Clemson and Virginia Tech each landed seven players on The Associated Press All-ACC team for 2006. Worst-to-first Wake Forest, which will play Georgia Tech on Saturday in the ACC championship game, had six players make the team announced Monday.

    The only FSU player on the ACC first team was linebacker Buster Davis.

    Jeff Bowden Departure Leaves Possible Receivers Coach Opening

    It's also important to note that Jeff Bowden's departure means that two positions - offensive coordinator and receivers coach - must be replaced. If the new coordinator doesn't also coach receivers, it would take another departure on the FSU staff to fill the receivers spot. One possible candidate to coach FSU receivers fulltime would be former Seminole Lawrence Dawsey, now a well-respected coach at South Florida.

    From his debut at USF in 2004, this former All-America receiver at Florida State has done a remarkable job with a youth-oriented receiving corps. Hopes are high in 2006 with the return of three starting receivers plus several fast-rising sophomores, including LSU transfer Amp Hill.

    Like Hill, Dawsey joined USF from LSU, where he was a graduate assistant during the Tigers’ 2003 National Championship season. His rookie season with USF in 2004 marked his first full time collegiate coaching role.

    In addition to his outstanding playing career at Florida State, Dawsey enjoyed a solid NFL career, mostly with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who drafted him in the third round of the 1991 NFL Draft. He went on to be named Sports Illustrated Rookie of the Year and was also named to the Pro Football Weekly All-Rookie Team. He led the Buccaneers in receiving that year with 55 catches for 818 yards (a Buccaneer rookie record) and three touchdowns. He led the team for a second straight season in 1992 with 60 catches for 776 yards and one touchdown.

    After missing most of the 1993 season, Dawsey again led the Bucs in 1994 with 46 catches for 673 yards and one touchdown. In 1995, his final season with the Bucs, he had 30 catches for 372 yards and no touchdowns. His 206 career receptions are 10th most on the Bucs all-time list, while his 2,842 yards stand eighth. He had four 100-yard receiving games, including a best of 116 on seven receptions at Washington, December 18, 1994.

    Dawsey would go on to play for the New York Giants in 1996, the Miami Dolphins in 1997 and the New Orleans Saints in 1999.

    At Florida State, Dawsey earned All-America honors in his 1990 senior season when he led the Seminoles with 65 receptions for 999 yards and seven touchdowns. He had also led the team as a junior with 38 catches for 683 yards and four touchdowns and he had 128 career receptions for 2,129 yards, including nine 100-yard games.

    His career highs in receptions (13) and yards (172) came against Florida State’s top rivals Miami and Florida, respectively, each in his senior season. He had a career-long 93-yard touchdown reception in his 1988 sophomore season against Southern Mississippi.

    Dawsey began a coaching career prior to signing with the Saints in 1999 after a year away from the NFL His first taste of coaching came at Tampa Catholic High School in 1998, where he supervised the receivers. He has most recently been the graduate assistant at LSU in 2003, when the Tigers won the National Championship. He has also coached at Tampa’s Blake High School in 2002, and he was a training camp assistant with the St. Louis Rams in 2001.

    FSU Prospect: Justin Footman

    Lincoln High School safety Justin Footman is still committed to Marshall, but they aren't his No. 1 team. After a visit to the Florida State-Florida game on Saturday, the sleeper defensive back from Tallahassee has a new leader.

    Although he has committed to Marshall,Footman says that " FSU is my top school". It's in Tallahassee and it's one of the top programs with the winningest coach.

    "It's a big dream of mine. Not too many people in Tallahassee can say they got a scholarship from Florida State."

    The 6-foot, 180-pound safety has three visits scheduled before national signing day. A December 16th trip to Illinois, a January 12th visit to Tennessee, and the final visit, a trip down the street to FSU on January 26th.

    Jeff Bowden Will Coach In Emerald Bowl

    Florida State Assistant Athletic Director Rob Wilson confirmed Monday that Jeff Bowden will remain as offensive coordinator through Florida State's bowl game.

    The original resignation date that followed the Florida game was designated by Bowden,(and the Booster agreement) and head coach Bobby Bowden has extended that through the bowl game.

    FSU Retro Look Back: Warrick Dunn

    Warrick Dunn is as great an individual as he is a football player. And that is saying a lot.In 1993, Warrick Dunn was a teenager living in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The eldest of six children, he was a football star in high school.

    Football powerhouses such as Florida State and LSU recruited Dunn, even though at 5' 8", 180 pounds he was considered too small to be a college runningback. He grew up never knowing his father, and was a father figure to his five siblings. His mother had to juggle several jobs and double shifts as a police officer, so Dunn cooked the meals, cleaned the house, and took care of the children.

    Then, just two days after celebrating his eighteenth birthday, Dunn's maturity and survival skills faced the ultimate challenge. His mother was escorting a grocery-store manager to a bank to make a deposit when two gunmen appeared and fired. She was dead before she could react, and Warrick Dunn and his siblings were left without a parent.

    At FSU, Dunn made a name for himself. He provided fans with some of the most memorable moments in FSU football, but he never wanted attention. It was his job to be in college because he had to help his family. After four years(1994-1997), he graduated with a degree in information studies, but his work on the football field was incredible. He finished as the all-time rushing leader in FSU history with 3,959 yards, and scored 47 touchdowns, another school record.

    Warrick Dunn's four-year career at Florida State established him as one of the most popular players in all of college football and the finest running back in the 50 year history of Florida State football. Dunn is the only Seminole to ever rush for over 1,000 yards in three consecutive seasons.

    His 3,959 career rushing yards broke Greg Allen's school record set in 1984. Dunn also broke Allen's single season rushing record when he ran for 1,242 yards as a junior in 1995. Dunn has the record for most touchdowns scored in a career with 49 over four seasons and rushed for over 100 yards more times (21) than any player at FSU. He was a three-time All-ACC selection as well as a member of the ACC all-academic team. He was selected to the first team Football Writer's All-America squad as a senior and second team Associated Press honors that same year.

    Pro scouts said Dunn was too small to play in the NFL, but again he proved he had a big heart. He was drafted in the first round by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, which meant he had accomplished his goal, and could comfortably support his family with his multimillion-dollar contract. Dunn starred in the NFL in his first season, and was chosen Offensive Rookie of the Year.

    Dunn also makes a tremendous mark off the field. Since 1997, Dunn has run a program called Homes for the Holidays. Every Thanksgiving and Christmas, he pays the down payments on houses and completely furnishes them with everything from sofas to toothpaste. Dunn does this out of the generosity of his heart in memory of his mother. To date he has helped more than 25 mothers and 100 children into their own homes. He doesn't do this for publicity, but to see the joy on the women's faces. He wants children to grow up in their own home, so he provides this remarkable gift.

    He was inducted into the FSU Football Hall of Fame in 2002. Dunn's jersey is the first to be retired by Florida State. His number (#28) may be worn in the future by FSU players, but his jersey will always be displayed in the Moore Athletic Center along with the five previously retired numbers