“Very tough challenge going into NC State,” said Florida State Head Coach Jimbo Fisher. “It’s a very tough place to play. Were going to have our hands full.”
By Marcus Joseph, Franchise Sports
TALLAHASSEE, FLA. (www.franchisesportsonline.net) – The No.3 Florida State will hit the road this week for the second straight week to face NC State in an ACC battle. The Seminoles not only look to get their six straight win and third ACC win of the season, but also a second straight victory over the Wolfpack.
Florida State last win over NC State in Raliegh was a 26-17 win in 2008.
After defeating in-state rival University of South Florida 30-17, last weekend, in front of a school-record crowd of 69,383 at Raymond James Stadium. The Seminoles will now focus on NC State, who is coming off an offensive shootout in a 44-37 loss at Miami, last weekend.
“They present a lot of challenges,” said Florida State Head Coach Jimbo Fisher. “Very well coached team.
Stephen Morris passed for a school- and Atlantic Coast Conference-record 566 yards and five touchdowns, the last pass was a 62-yard completion to Phillip Dorsett with 19 seconds left.
Mike Glennon completed 24-of-42 passes for 440 yards and four touchdowns for N.C. State, but his fourth quarter errors seem to have set up the Hurricanes’ for the win.
“Glen is a fabulous player,” said coach Fisher. “He can reach all parts of the field. He has terrific arm strength.”
“He can throw ever throw,” he said. “The short ball, the rhythm throw, the deep ball, the intermediate ball. He is an extremely talented guy in a West Coast system.”
Last year the ‘Noles picked off Glennon twice and limited him to 130 yards on 19-of-34 passing in a 34-0 win.
EJ Manuel completed 73 percent of his passes in the 30-17 win at USF, he is FSU’s all-time leader in completion percentage. Manuel pushed his career total to 67.4 percent, which currently make him the all-time leader on the ACC career completion percentage list.
Communication amongst the offense will be key this week for Florida State. The Seminoles will focus on communication throughout practice this week as they go into one of the loudest games of this season.
“Our QB will not be allowed to talk,” said Fisher. “Everything will be a whisper, which will make guys listen, read lips and see things. We will have crowd nose on the speakers as loud as we can at least two days of the week in practice.”
“It will make them focus,” he said. “They will have to focus.”
“It is a little difference not preparing for your own crowd,” said EJ Manuel about the preparation this week. “Because on offense your crowd is usually a little quieter, so you can operate.”
The Seminole defense will again face another explosive and high-flying offense this weekend. In the Wolfpack’s defeat last weekend they set a school record with 674 yards on offense. The Wolfpack offense has kept the team alive in most games versus the Seminoles when playing in Raleigh, N.C.
In 15 games on NC State’s campus, the most the Seminoles have allowed to NC State is 28 points, which came in Florida State’s last visit on Oct. 28, 2010.
The Seminoles will not only have to deal with the hostile environment, but also redshirt sophomore Bryan Underwood, who tied a school record with his fifth straight game with a receiving TD last weekend when he caught a 4-yard pass in the third quarter. Wide receiver Quintin Payton is also a player on offense that will be on the Seminole radar, he has 19 receptions for a total of 421 yards in five games.
In the last meeting, the Seminole defense shut out NC State, 34-0, in Tallahassee. So far in 2012, only one of five opponents has thrown a passing TD against the FSU defense and that was Clemson, which threw for four.
Bjoern Werner and Tank Carradine are the current leaders on the defense that are making it hard for opposing teams offense, they are currently sixth and eighth respectively in the NCAA in sacks. They also are the No. 1 and No. 2 in the ACC in sacks.
Werner and Carradine are the only teammates in the top 10 for sacks in the FBS.
In five games, FSU defense is ranked third in the nation in total defense, fourth in pass defense, fifth in rushing defense and seventh in scoring defense.
Coach Fisher stated on Monday that it’s not all about the rankings, but about the wins.
Florida State is top ranked is almost every category this season.
“It’s about wins and how you do it,” Fisher said. “If we have to do it to win that’s great. I mean playing great defense and great offense that’s all important, but that’s not our mind set or my mindset. What do you have to do to win the game is my mindset.”
In the ACC, Florida State leads the ACC in almost every defensive category.
- Scoring Defense – 1st
- Total Defense – 1st
- Rushing Defense – 1st
- Pass Defense – 1st
- Pass Effic. Defense – 1st
- Sacks – 1st
- Opp 3rd Down Conv. – 1st
- TFL – 1st
Last season the FSU defense ranked in the top five for rushing defense and total defense and in the Top 10 for sacks and tackles for lost.
Coach Fisher said, “Hopefully, we will match up well against them. We will find out on Saturday.”
The Seminoles and Wolfpack will battle it out for the 33rd time live on ESPN2 at 8 p.m. on Oct. 6.