Category Archives: FSU Basketball

Florida State Blows Out Rival Clemson At Home

Jordan Pandy, Correspondent (@JordanPandyFS)

Tallahassee, FLA. ( – Florida State returns home after a disappointing road trip to beat the Clemson Tigers 109-61 for their 20th win of the season.

The Noles hung over 100 points on an ACC opponent for the first time this season – and the first time in over 15 years. Dwayne Bacon put on a show, tying his career high in points in this commanding win.

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Bacon set the tone for the game early, scoring 18 of his 29 points in the first half of the game. He was also extremely efficient shooting; he shot an amazing 71% on the court. The team finished with 26 assists and it seemed like the team was funneling the ball to Bacon.

“I thought his teammates were very aggressive looking for him,” said head coach Leonard Hamilton. “They realized he had the hot hand and they were passing up shots themselves and moving the ball and making the extra pass and trying to take advantage of what they thought was one of those nights where he was hitting on all cylinders.”

Coach Hamilton also spoke on Bacon’s improved jump shooting and shot selection.

“He has been working extremely hard on his perimeter shooting and he’s gotten much better,” said Hamilton. “His shot selection has been really good all year; he very seldom ever forces a shot.”

Florida State (20-4, 8-3) shot lights out from all over the court, but especially from behind the arc. The team shot 66% from the field and made 17 of 30 three pointers.

“I guess once I started hitting them everyone else was just like, ‘OK I’m going to take threes then,’” said Bacon. “Guys were just hot tonight – feeling it. We’ve been working on our shots all year, everybody, and guys were just hitting them.”

The bench for Florida State totaled 55 points and shot the ball well. The substitutes made 10 of 16 three pointers in the game. Three of those shots came from Braian Angola-Rodas who scored 12 points and didn’t miss a shot the entire game.

“Coach always tells me ‘just be ready, be patient. Your playing will come,’” said Angola-Rodas. “I always stay ready, that’s how it works.”

The Seminoles slightly stumbled on their most recent road trip winning just one of three games. In the first two games Florida State started slow and had to dig themselves out of a hole. Today however, the Seminoles came out hot, starting the game on a 20-8 run and ending the first half on a 14-2 run.

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“We got our identity back,” said Terance Mann. “Before Georgia Tech we were doing all the little things and then when we got to Georgia Tech – those away games kind of shocked us.”

Coach Hamilton has been trying to focus the team one game at a time. He believed that the team started to look ahead on the road trip and became distracted.

“We’ve been working very hard trying to keep this team in the movement so we don’t have one of those setbacks which I thought we had for a couple of games,” said Hamilton.

Florida State, still undefeated at home, gets another much needed home game where they will play North Carolina State this Wednesday.

Florida State Caps Their Tough Six-Game Stretch With Another Win

Jordan Pandy, Correspondent (@JordanPandyFS)

Tallahassee, FLA. ( – No. 10 Florida State gets another big win over a ranked opponent beating No. 12 Louisville 73-68. Freshman phenom Jonathan Isaac recorded his third straight double-double – he finished with 16 points and 10 rebounds.

Isaac’s 10th rebound was a timely one, as he grabbed it after Louisville (16-4, 4-3) guard Tony Hicks missed a layup that would have brought the Cardinals within one point of the Seminoles (18-2, 6-1) with less than 30 seconds to play. Isaac had a very efficient game taking just seven shots and going 7-for-7 at the line, including a pair of clutch free throws down the stretch.

The game got a lot closer than those who watched the first couple of minutes might have guessed; the Seminoles started the game on a 14-0 run in the first three minutes of the game. Slowly but surely the Cardinals clawed their way back into the game, but were fought off by Isaac and the rest of the starters towards the end.

“Jonathan has the ability to play the game the right way,” Florida State head coach Leonard Hamilton said.

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“I mean, he only took seven shots. You would think that a guy of his caliber would be a lot more aggressive hunting shots, but with his ability to make shots he never forces the shot.”

One of the more surprising stats of the day was the Florida State bench being outscored – and by a lot. The Louisville bench scored 40 points to the Noles’ 11.

One of the main stories of this Seminoles season has been the success of their bench the “Boom Squad,” as they like to be called, but in this game the starters had to get it done.

“Anyone can step up,” said Terance Mann, who finished with 15 points after going scoreless in the previous game. “Today the starters stepped up and took that role of, ‘we’re going to be the boom squad.’ We’re going to have to do that if they’re not doing it – and if we’re not doing it, then they’re going to have to do it.”

After the victory, the whole team looked both elated and relieved as their gauntlet of six straight ranked opponents was finally over. Through the tough stretch of six games, the Seminoles won five – which is more than some people expected.

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“It definitely excites us just because nobody thought we would do the stretch [of games] how we did it,” said Dwayne Bacon who also poured in a game-high 16 points. “I know a couple of guys probably thought we’d be 2-4, or not win any of the games just because of what we did last year. We believe in us and our coaches believe in us.”

Even though the tremendously rough patch of the schedule is over, there are still plenty of worthy opponents that lie ahead. The next three games are on the road, all to teams who have at least two conference wins and are very capable teams.

“In the ACC every night it feels like you’re playing a ranked team so we can’t let up now,” Mann said.

Florida State travels to Georgia Tech in their next game this Wednesday at 7pm.

Noles Withstand A Crazy Shooting Display To Beat No. 15 Notre Dame

Jordan Giorgio, Correspondent (@JordanGiorgioFS)

Tallahassee, FLA. ( – No. 10 Florida State made it out alive Wednesday night against No. 15 Notre Dame, defeating the Irish 83-30 and giving them their first loss in the ACC. This game gave the Noles their fifth straight win over a ranked opponent, although it certainly wasn’t an easy one.

Freshman forward Jonathan Isaac had quite the game, despite starting the night off with four turnovers in the first five minutes. He finished the night with 23 points, 10 rebounds, and 7 blocks.

Not only was the entire arena impressed and shocked, Notre Dame (16-3, 5-1) head coach Mike Brey had a few words to share at the post game press conference on the young star.

“The two threes that he hit in the second half across from their bench were back breaking threes,” said Brey. “Those are big-time pressure shots. I have a lot of respect for that guy. A lot of guys can’t make them. They can make them in the first half, but can they make them when it’s crunch time.”

As for the Irish, their three-point shooting kept them in the game. Ironic enough, they only took their first lead on a layup made late in the second half. Notre Dame ended the night 15 of 21 from 3-point range, shooting 71%.

“I’ve never seen that before,” said Florida State head coach Leonard Hamilton. “It’s hard to shoot 71 percent even if you’re in the gym and shooting alone and no one blocking you.”

FSU (17-2, 5-1) makes it to 17-2 and 5-1 in the ACC and faces their next ranked opponent No. 11 Louisville at home against this Saturday at 2 p.m.


Game Preview: No.7/6 Florida State Seminoles vs. Syracuse Orange

Alec Chessari, Correspondent  (@AlecChessariFS on Twitter)

TALLAHASSEE, FLA., ( – The Florida State Seminoles women’s basketball team (17-2, 5-1 ACC) will play Syracuse (13-6, 4-2 ACC) on Thursday night at 7 p.m. at the Donald L. Tucker Center.

The Seminoles are coming off an 86-27 victory over Clemson on this past Sunday.

Last season, Syracuse defeated the Lady ‘Noles on their way to playing for a national title.

Florida State is currently on a four-game winning streak heading into their conference matchup. They are looking to make it five straight with a win over the Orange.  Syracuse is coming off a loss to Georgia Tech, and are looking for better results against the Seminoles. 

The Orange will be led by Alexis Peterson who is averaging 24-points a game, seven assists and three steals. Along with Brittney Sykes, who is averaging 18 points and eight rebounds a game.

The Seminoles on the other hand will also be led by Leticia Romero averaging 16-points a game and five assists. Along with Shakayla Thomas averaging 16 points and seven rebounds a game. 

A win over Syracuse would tie the program mark for best 20-game start in history at 18-2/

Preview: No.10 Florida State Set To Battle No.15 Notre Dame

Robert Blackburn, Correspondent (@BlackburnrFS on Twitter)

Tallahassee, Fla., ( – The Florida State Seminoles (16-2, 4-1 ACC) are looking to avenge their first conference loss on Wednesday when No.15 Notre Dame (16-2, 5-0 ACC) arrives in Tallahassee for a top 15-matchup.

Florida State is 4-1 over a six game stretch against ranked opponents. The Irish are riding seven straight wins and are led by Bonzie Colson and Steve Vasturia, who are both averaging 15-points a contest.

The Seminoles will lean heavily on sophomore Dwayne Bacon who is averaging almost 20-points an outing, and Freshmen Jonathan Isaac, who is coming off a double-double against North Carolina to lead them back to their winning ways.

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Matchup: No. 10 Florida State vs No. 15 Notre Dame
Where: Donald L. Tucker Center.
When: Wednesday, January 18th at 7 P.M.


Florida State vs Duke Recap

Max Fay (@Max_Fay)

Tallahassee, FLA. ( – No. 9 Florida State defeated No. 7 Duke 88-72 in front of a hostile crowd at the Donald L. Tucker Center.

Xavier Rathan-Mayes led the Seminoles, scoring 18 of his 21 points in the second half. FSU is now 16-1 on the year- tied for the best start in school history- have won a school record 12 straight, and are 4-0 in the ACC for the first time ever.

The Seminoles fans did not forget Duke guard Grayson Allen tripping their own guard Rathan-Mayes a season ago. They gave Allen grief throughout the game, chanting expletives and booing him every time he touched the ball.

Allen, who played his first road game since his one-game suspension, was taken out of his game by the combination of the FSU crowd and Rathan-Mayes’ defense. He finished with just nine points.

The Noles began a six-game stretch against ranked opponents with wins over Virginia, Virginia Tech and now Duke. They’re on the road at North Carolina this Saturday. Then back home against Notre Dame and Louisville next week.

Seminoles Prove Themselves Worthy In A Top 10 Matchup

Jordan Pandy, Correspondent (@JordanPandyFS)

Tallahassee, FLA. ( – No. 9 Florida State gets a signature win against the No. 7 Duke Blue Devils 88-72 in Tallahassee for their 12th straight win. The Noles continue their tear in the ACC by beating the fourth best team in the conference.

The best player on the floor tonight was not was not in a blue uniform; tonight it was Xavier Rathan-Mayes. XRM started out slow – scoring only three points in the first half – but started to put the ball in the basket in the second half, scoring 18 second half points.

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The veteran point guard, who had merely four points in the previous game against Virginia Tech, is liable to get hot any game and his teammates know that.

“That was no surprise to me because X is a player that can get hot at anytime,” said Terance Mann who finished with 13 points and six rebounds. “When he did we were just like, ‘keep the ball in his hands, he’ll get it done.’”

In case anybody forgot, Duke (14-3, 2-2) star point guard Grayson Allen has had a few incidents intentionally tripping players during games. One trip that took place last year came against Florida State (6-1, 4-0); the player tripped Rathan-Mayes, and he did not forget.

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“This one was personal for me,” said Rathan-Mayes. “Ever since he did that I’ve been waiting a long time to see him again – and it was good to finally see him again.”

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XRM won the offensive matchup, but he also shut down the Blue Devils’ third leading scorer, holding Allen to just nine total points on 2-6 shooting. Rathan-Mayes has improved defensively this season and now is looking for the tough guard.

“One time I was in front of Grayson and he was like, ‘No, move over – I got it,’” said Mann. “He did a great job.”

Duke tried to make a run nearly midway through the second half, cutting the Seminole lead to just four, and then the Noles went on a 6-0 run and never looked back. Florida State dominated a majority of the game, leading 33 of the 40 minutes played.

This, a sold out game, was a very big win for the program. Even when not considered underdogs, beating Duke is always a big deal.

Terance Mann was asked where this game ranks all-time in his basketball career.

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“Probably number one,” said Mann. “Beating Duke at home that atmosphere, you dream about it when you’re young – and it happened.”

Florida State is looking just about unbeatable, but travels to face North Carolina this Saturday in Chapel Hill.

Florida State Wins 11th Straight Game After Beating Ranked Virginia Tech

Jordan Pandy, Correspondent (@JordanPandyFS)

Tallahassee, FLA. ( – The Florida State Seminoles men’s basketball team finally had a crowd to play in front of, and they did not disappoint, beating #21 Virginia Tech 93-78. The Seminoles lost two matchups against Tech last season, but this time the Seminoles came out on top.

This was the second game in a tough six-game stretch for the Seminoles (15-1 ,3-0); six straight ranked teams and three of them on the road. After beating ranked University of Virginia in Charlottesville, the Florida State came back to Tallahassee with a load of confidence.

The Hokies (12-3, 1-2) were missing senior guard Seth Allen who averages 10 points off the bench, and they really missed him. Virginia Tech only scored six bench points in the entire game. Don’t let Allen’s absence fool you; the Seminole defense did a great job slowing down the Hokies.

Florida State forced sixteen turnovers and scored 25 points off of those turnovers. The Noles were harassing the opposing guards and had active hands stripping the ball in the paint. They recorded 11 steals in the game.

Dwayne Bacon, of course, got his points, scoring 17, but the leading scorer today was Terance Mann who continues to improve his game this season. The sophomore grabbed nine rebounds and finished with a career high 22 points. Mann was 2-2 from behind the three-point line. He hadn’t made a three this season – mainly because he rarely shoots them.

“They [teammates] sat me down and said ‘all right you really need to start shooting the ball,” because in practice I shoot all the time – and make them,” said Mann. “In games I don’t shoot. They gave me a lot of confidence, so right now I’m just running off of them.”

Four players for Florida State scored in double figures: Dwayne Bacon, Terance Mann, PJ Savoy, and Jarquez Smith. The depth of Seminoles, so far, has been the story of the season. Coach Hamilton played 13 players to the Hokies’ eight. The Hokies had four players hovering near 40 minutes while the Noles only had one player, Bacon, play 30 minutes.

“It wears them down,” said Mann. “Later on in the game they start getting tired. We realize that and we use that to our advantage.”

The Seminoles are currently 3-0 in the ACC, but Florida State coach Hamilton is trying to keep his team levelheaded.

“Obviously, I’m trying to keep things in perspective,” said Hamilton. “In order for these three games to mean something you have to continue to keep going. No one has gone to the NCAA tournament only winning three conference games.”

The Seminoles have done a really good job of taking one game at a time and not looking ahead in the season – which is hard to do in the ACC. The next challenge will be against Duke at home this Tuesday.

Florida State Beats Rival Gators for the Third Straight Time

Jordan Pandy, Correspondent (@JordanPandyFS)

Tallahassee, FLA. ( – The Florida State Seminoles handle their first real challenge at home beating no. 21 ranked University of Florida 83-78. Terrance Mann stepped up getting his first double-double of the season scoring 16 points and grabbing 10 rebounds.

Terrance Mann continues to improve each game this season; the 16 points and 10 rebounds were both season highs for him. He came up huge in the final minutes of the game, securing some big rebounds and hitting a few clutch free throws near the end of the game. Even though Mann is only a sophomore he is emerging as one of the leaders of this young team.

“Terrance is kind of turning out to be the leader on our team,” said Florida State head coach Leonard Hamilton. “He never takes a possession off. I said early on last year he’s a stat-stuffer. He does all the little things – that takes away the mental game. He’s a winner, a leader, and all the tough, hard-nosed plays that have to be made, he always seems to come up with them.”

Mann has always been reliable on the defensive end, but now he can be one of the few go-to guys to put the ball in the basket when the team needs it.

“I think if I’m aggressive then everybody will be aggressive,” said Mann. “Sometimes I have a tendency to not be as aggressive and if they see me being aggressive they all get aggressive.”

Florida State (10-1) played aggressively the entire game but struggled a bit on defense the second half. Gator senior Kasey Hill shot 66% from the field, making 10 baskets, and scored 21 points in the game. KeVaughn Allen was also efficient, scoring 16 points in 20 minutes. The Noles led by as many as 13 points but again squandered a lead late.

“You’re never safe when you play against a team as dangerous as the University of Florida,” said Hamilton. “Obviously we had a hard time with Hill, and Allen is one of those types of guys that is very capable of scoring points – we call those microwaves.”

Another player who stepped up to combat the high-scoring Florida (7-3) guards was Dwayne Bacon who scored a game-high 24 points. After scoring only eight points in the first half, Bacon came out firing – attempting 18 shots in the game – and helped his team stay ahead.

Florida head coach Mike White spoke about the turning point for when Bacon started to heat up.

“When he walked on the court for warm-ups,” said White. “He’s really really talented. I thought he broke down our defense again. Early second half he probably gained a little bit of confidence off the dribble – just making plays.”

Florida a, now, three-loss team is better than their record shows and has given every opponent they’ve faced, including the Seminoles, everything they’ve had.

“We had a battle, but we came out with the win,” said Bacon. “Those guys are still good – they’re a good team. They’re going to win a lot of games in the SEC. They’re going to shock a lot of people in the SEC. It means a lot to us.”

Florida State is 1-1 against ranked opponents so far this season but will see a lot more as the season progresses. The Seminoles get a long break in between games but will travel to Miami to face the Manhattan Jaspers in the Orange Bowl Classic this Saturday.

FSU All Smiles After Blowout Win

Max Fay (@Max_Fay)

Tallahassee, FLA. ( – Florida State made the game of basketball look easy absolutely smoking Southern Miss 98-49.

The Golden Eagles (3-4) had no chance. Jarquez Smith got the Seminoles (8-1) rolling with a blocked shot and a 3-pointer at the other end to start the game, and FSU led the whole way.

Southern Miss coach Doc Sadler has seen a lot of basketball as head coach of Nebraska and on staff at Kansas and Iowa State. He was blown away by what he saw from Florida State.

“Wow,” Sadler said. “In the three years I’ve been at Southern Miss, this is definitely the best team we’ve played. This team has a chance to be really really good.”

PJ Savoy was the star of the show, draining seven threes and totaling 27 points. It was an offensive performance rarely seen inside the Donald L. Tucker Center where defense has traditionally taken precedence. The crowd roared with applause and teammates embraced Savoy as the buzzer sounded.

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Florida State Gets A Big Win Against Minnesota In The ACC-Big Ten Challenge

Jordan Pandy, Correspondent (@JordanPandyFS)

Tallahassee, FLA. ( – 

After returning from New York, the Seminoles continue their home winning streak defeating the Minnesota Gophers 75-67 in the ACC-Big Ten Challenge. The Seminoles get their first win in the last nine tries in the ACC-Big Ten Challenge. Jonathan Isaac recorded his second double-double of the season scoring 14 points and bringing in 13 rebounds.

The first half was hard to watch as the pace of the game was slowed to almost a halt with the referees calling 28 fouls in the first half alone. Both teams were shooting below 35% at the half, but Florida State came out hot in the second half. In the first seven minutes of the second half, the Seminoles went on a 21-6 run – lead by the Noles defense.

“We tried to dictate the pace with our defense: trapping, rotating, not allowing them to come down and dictate the tempo that was convenient for them,” said Florida State head coach Leonard Hamilton. “We had not worked on that type of defensive scheme very much, so to be able to make that adjustment, as an in-game adjustment, I was very pleased that our guys responded very well.”

Dwayne Bacon led all scorers with 18 and also commented on the change of pace in the game.

“In the first half we kind of played their game,” said Bacon. “We weren’t really moving the ball, we were going down slow, not pushing like we regularly do. In the second half we just adjusted to play faster and get stops and move around and get all over the place. And that’s what we did.”

The young players stepped up once more for Florida State as first-year players averaged close to 16 minutes played. Instead of switching players out here and there, Hamilton was using a platoon method for a lot of the game. At one time he subbed out all the starters and had only freshmen and sophomores in the game.

“I looked out once and I saw how many inexperienced players – first and second year players – on the floor and the thought did go through my mind, ‘wow, these guys are holding their own and they’re doing a pretty good job,” said Hamilton. “So that was encouraging.”

Unlike most of the games this season, Leonard Hamilton did not spread out the minutes as much as he previously has been. Bacon and Isaac both went over 30 minutes played, while Terrance Mann finished with 28. An interesting move was having Xavier Rathan-Mayes sit for most of the first half, he played just six minutes, and later going on to recording 16 second-half minutes. He finished with seven points, but helped set the pace for Florida State in the second half.

“The biggest adjustment is that we’re playing a lot of guys – sometimes if you’re a player, you want to get on the court, you want to contribute,” said Hamilton. “Tonight wasn’t one of those games where we got everybody in as much; it was a different kind of game. Keeping them up and them adjusted, keeping them involved is probably the biggest challenge for all of us because we’re going to need the full sum of all our parts working well for all of us to be successful.

The final score made the game look closer than it actually was. Florida State led by 19 points with just five minutes left but surrendered their large lead. The Noles were trying to just run out the clock and failed to run their offense; they failed to record a field goal in the last four minutes of the game. The road ahead for Florida State is only getting tougher, and they need to learn how to close out games better.

Florida State enjoyed their one game at home, but now travel to face George Washington this Sunday.