Category Archives: Florida State University

FSU Golfer Ellis Ties for Fifth at Jerry Pate Intercollegiate

Veteran FSU golfer Harry Ellis posts his best tournament yet while the 17th-ranked Seminoles finish 10th in Alabama

Credit: Florida State University Sports Information  

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (Seminoles.com) – After two good rounds on Monday, redshirt junior Harry Ellis followed with a 1-over 71 in his final round on Tuesday to tie for fifth (-2 overall) at the Jerry Pate Intercollegiate held at Old Overton Golf Club in Birmingham, Ala.

The fifth-place finish is a career best for Ellis, eclipsing his previous best finish of 16th at the 2014 Seminole Intercollegiate. The Southampton, England, native’s three-day score of 208 (68-69-71) was seven strokes better than his former career low of 215.

Ellis’ ability to put himself in good position off the tee allowed him for easier shots on several holes. Known as one of FSU’s longest drivers, he played the course well in all three rounds on Monday and Tuesday.

“The golf course allowed me to play to my strengths, that being distance off the tee and iron play,” Ellis said following his fifth-place finish. “I only hit one driver this whole tournament around a course that measures 7,200 yards, par 70. Putting myself in good position off the tee always allowed me to play aggressive with my iron play.”

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UNC Snaps Doak Campbell Win Streak

Nicholas Pierce, Correspondent

TALLAHASSEE, FLA. (franchisesportsonline.net)  UNC kicker Nick Weiler kicked a 54-yard field goal as time expired, leading the Tar Heels to a 37-35 victory over FSU. The loss snapped a 22 home winning streak for the Seminoles, which was the largest in the country.

FSU had a sluggish start to the first half. The Seminoles offense struggled to finish drives, Ricky Aguayo missed three field goals, and UNC amassed 138 rushing yards in the half alone, which is more than they average in an entire game.

On the Tar Heels first drive, running back Elijah Hood led the way. In that possession, the Junior rushed for 28 yards on 4 carries. The ground game gave way to the pass, as UNC quarterback Mitch Trubisky was able to make completions to Austin Proehl and Bug Howard for a few big plays. Then, on second down at the Seminole 18, Trubisky was able to evade pressure brought on by a Seminole blitz. He threw a check-down pass to a wide open TJ Logan, who waltzed into the end zone for the opening touchdown.

After Aguayo’s third missed field goal of the half, the Tar Heel Ground game got going even more. TJ Logan rushed for 45 yards on that drive, including a 13-yard touchdown with 14:04 to play in the half.

“If we don’t know by now to start fast, we won’t ever know,” said FSU running back Dalvin Cook. “We can’t keep learning lessons. We can’t let everyone know that we’re going to come out flat because they’ll just jump on our back.”

FSU (3-2, 0-2 ACC) finally got their offense in gear on their final drive of the half. Francois connected with Bobo Wilson twice for 47 yards. Three plays later, Cook scored a 9-yard touchdown on a misdirection, putting FSU on the board.

The Seminoles avoided disaster to close out the half, as Jacob Pugh recovered a Hood fumble inside the FSU 10-yard line. The halftime score was 21-7, UNC.

“We have to execute better,” said FSU coach Jimbo Fisher. “I have to coach better so that the players can play better. There was a lot of good in the game today. Our guys showed heart and soul today, but we’ve got to be better in all three phases of the game.”

FSU drove 66 yards in six plays on their opening drive of the second half. Jacques Patrick broke free for a 19-yard touchdown run to cut the Tar Heel deficit to 7.

UNC (4-1, 2-0 ACC) was quick to respond. On 3rd and nine from the 15, Trubisky threw a dime to Mack Hollins for a touchdown, bringing the Tar Heels lead back to 14. Trubisky threw for 405 yards and three touchdowns on the afternoon.

“Mitch was again incredible today,” said UNC coach Larry Fedora. “He took care of the football and moved the chains. We had to be able to run the ball efficiently and hit the things underneath and he did that all day.”

After a holding call and a sack by Malik Carney, FSU was backed up to their own 2-yard line on their next possession. With the help of a roughing the punter call on Corey Bell, Jr. the Seminoles were able to embark on a 98-yard scoring drive. Francois connected with tight end Marvin Saunders to set up FSU in the red zone. Cook plunged into the end zone a few plays later on a one-yard carry, keeping the Seminoles in the game. The Heisman hopeful finished the game with 249 total yards and three rushing touchdowns.

The Seminole defense came up huge again on UNC’s ensuing possession, forcing the Tar Heels to a three and out. This set up a 12 play, 75-yard drive that was capped off by another Cook rushing touchdown. FSU had finally drawn level.

The tie didn’t last long. Trubisky led the Tar Heels on another touchdown drive. Walvenski Aime was able to block the extra point for the Seminoles, so UNC was only able to retain a six-point lead.

FSU got the ball back with 2:31 left to play in the game. Francois connected with Dalvin Cook on 3rd and 9 deep within FSU territory. The Heisman candidate was able to cut up field and extend the play. Cook was finally brought down at the UNC 26. Six plays later, on second and goal from the 2, Francois found the pocket collapsing around him. The redshirt Freshman was able to escape the pressure, scampering into the end zone to tie the game. Aguayo’s extra point attempt was good, giving FSU a 35-34 lead.

The Tar Heels got the ball pack with only 17 seconds left on the clock. Trubisky threw a 23-yard strike to Hollins and FSU was flagged for pass interference two plays later, allowing for UNC to get to field goal range in only 13 seconds. Weiler then nailed the 54-yard attempt, silencing Doak Campbell Stadium.

Dalvin Cook and Jimbo Fisher Locker Room Speech Following Win at USF

Dalvin Cook and Jimbo Fisher vent their frustrations in the locker room following Florida State’s 55-35 victory at South Florida. Cook, who rushed for a career high 267 yards and two touchdowns, played until the very end of the game even after FSU was guaranteed the win.

In this clip released by Showtime from their series “A Season With Florida State Football”, Cook calls on his teammates to not settle for the win. Head coach Jimbo Fisher chimes in telling his team that they let up. It is a message that could be valuable in the weeks to come as the Seminoles hosts UNC, who are ranked 23rd in the Coaches’ Poll, then travel down to No. 14 Miami the following week.

The Showtime series airs Tuesday nights at 10pm.

5 Takeaways From Louisville

Derwin’s Loss Larger Than Expected

After the 63-20 loss to Louisville, the impact of Derwin James’s knee injury is massive. It was obviously a huge loss, but Nate Andrews return from injury was supposed to soften the blow. It certainly did not.

The Seminoles missed the type of player James is– a ball-hawking, hard-hitting, assured presence. Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson ran wild on Saturday and no one on the Noles defense could match his speed and agility. James, whose 91 tackles were second most on the team a year ago, might have matched Jackson’s athleticism.

DeMarcus Walker burst into 2016 with 4.5 sacks against Ole Miss, but has zero since. Josh Sweat has only three tackles through three games and only one for a loss. James will be out indefinitely as the cartilage in his knee heals, and if the secondary is going to hold up in the mean time, the defensive line needs to get to the quarterback.


Louisville Is A Lot Better Than Anticipated

Yes, Louisville came in as the No. 10 team in the country, but routing the likes of Charlotte and Syracuse didn’t build a lot of credit with the Seminoles. They were “untested.” Florida State had already survived its “test” against Ole Miss and assumed the No. 2 ranking in the country.

Louisville wouldn’t be able to do the Seminoles what they did in their first two games. Not against an elite defense. They did.

Louisville put up 63 points against FSU accumulating 530 yards of total offense. Lamar Jackson was by far the best player on the field running 17 times for 146 yards and four touchdowns, while throwing for another 216 yards. Jackson upped his rushing total to 464 yards through three games, second most in the country.

Their defense was physical and punishing. The Cardinals sacked FSU QB Deondre Francois five times and held the Seminoles to only 284 yards of offense.


Offensive Line Needs To Get Better

Only seven teams have given up more sacks than Florida State (11) to begin the year. That is a staggering statistic.

This was a unit that should have gotten better in the last year. They returned everyone but Chad Mavety and somehow they seemed to have regressed. Granted they have been a little banged up to start the season, but that shouldn’t be an excuse for perhaps the deepest unit for Florida State. They carry 19 offensive linemen on scholarship.

They have also struggled to open holes for the running game. Dalvin Cook has no room to operate, gaining just 228 yards on the ground thus far. The line needs to win their individuals battles and start to push the defensive line backwards.


Where Is The Competitive Fire?

Florida State has trailed by double digits at halftime in three of their last four games dating back to last year’s 38-24 loss to Houston in the Peach Bowl.

Halftime deficit in those three games:

3-21 vs Houston

13-28 vs Ole Miss

10-35 vs Louisville

Ole Miss turned the ball over in consecutive possessions to start the second half, allowing FSU to climb back into the game, but the other games went in the opposite direction.

FSU looked beat against Louisville in the third quarter. They didn’t play for pride. They didn’t compete. The Cardinals hung another 28 points on them in the second half, including two 60-yard punt returns.


How Does FSU Get Back Into The Title Hunt?

It will be a long road back into playoff contention, but the loss is early enough in the season for Florida State to come back.

Step 1: Run the table

Another loss would surely eliminate Florida State from contention. They need to win out, simple as that.

Step 2: Win the ACC

The Seminoles put themselves in a big hole, but they are not out of contention for the ACC title. However, the three best teams in the conference are in the same division, and only one of them can make it to the ACC championship game.

Louisville now controls the Atlantic Division and plays a relatively easy conference schedule. After their showdown with No. 5 Clemson Oct. 1, they have conference games against Duke, NC State, Virginia, Boston College, and Wake Forrest remaining.

Clemson has yet to play a conference game. Their first test will be this Thursday night on the road against Georgia Tech at 7:30.

Step 3: Get Some Help

Florida State will need some help. First they  need Clemson to beat Louisville to have a chance to win the ACC. It looks like three of the four playoff teams will be the winner of the SEC, Big Ten, and ACC. The fourth may be the winner of the PAC 12 or Big 12.

There is a danger an undefeated Houston could sneak in over a one-loss Florida State. Ironically, FSU may need Louisville’s help. The Cardinals go on the road for a Thursday night matchup against No. 6 Houston Nov. 17.

Step 4: Impress The Committee

The Seminoles still have plenty of opportunities to impress the committee. Unlike past seasons, the Noles’ schedule will play to their advantage.

With games against USF, North Carolina, No. 15 Miami, No. 5 Clemson and No. 19 Florida still to come, Florida State could vault its way back through the rankings.

Florida State vs. Charleston Southern

Jordan Pandy, Correspondent

TALLAHASSEE, FLA. (franchisesportsonline.net) The Florida State Seminoles built on their momentum from last week’s big game beating Charleston Southern convincingly 52-8. Deondre Francois proved his debut against Ole Miss was no fluke by dominating the CSU Buccaneers going 25-32 for 262 yards in just three quarters.

Francois’ biggest target was Travis Rudolph; the two connected for 105 yards on seven throws. Rudolph got started early scoring his two touchdowns in the first half. The junior Rudolph accounted for nearly half of Francois’ passing yards, and these two look like the next great Florida State duo.

“We’re definitely on the same page,” Rudolph said about his freshman quarterback. “We just have so many mental reps in practice and in film – it’s like taking candy from a baby.”

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Florida State Home Opener Preview

Jordan Giorgio, Correspondent

TALLAHASSEE, FLA. (franchisesportsonline.net) – Florida State welcomes Charleston Southern for the 2016 home opener at Doak Campbell Stadium.

FSU is coming off the largest comeback in school history after defeating Ole Miss 35-44 in their first game of the season.

Charleston Southern took 4-time defending FCS champion North Dakota State to overtime before falling 24-17 in their season opener last week.

FSU vs. Ole Miss Preview

Jordan Pandy, Correspondent

TALLAHASSEE, FLA. (franchisesportsonline.net) – Florida State football coach Jimbo Fisher came out optimistic and excited for the new football season in his opening weekly presser – as he should be.

“It’s that time again, isn’t it?” Fisher said. “I’m glad it’s that time. Getting ready to kick off this season. Very excited. Looking forward to playing somebody else, our guys I think are getting tired of playing each other.”

Florida State opens the season ranked fourth in both the AP and Coaches poll. The Seminoles are kicking off their season with one of the bigger openers this year, and in the past few seasons, playing the 11th ranked Ole Miss Rebels in Orlando. The Rebels, who are 4-0 in season openers under their head coach Hugh Freeze, finished 10-3 last season in the SEC, beating LSU, Auburn, and Alabama. Ole Miss lost a lot of players to the draft but is bringing back their most important star, quarterback Chad Kelly.

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Video – FSU Football: Josh Sweat: ‘I almost lost my leg’

TALLAHASSEE, FLA. (franchisesportsonline.net) –Josh Sweat tore the anterior cruciate ligament and dislocated his left knee in September 2014, during his senior year of high school football. He was a consensus five-star defensive end, ranked No.1 in the nation at his position in the 2015 recruiting class.

He was able to come back from a serious injury.

Sweat was able to come to FSU in January 2015, where he began rehabbing which was a program that was designed by the training staff for him.

He played in all 13 games, starting nine and finished with 41 tackles, 5.0 TFL, two sacks, an interception, three pass break-ups. He was named to the Freshman All-America Honorable Mention list.