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Halftime: Florida State 14 Northern Illinois 3

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We're through a half at Sun Life Stadium and Florida State's defense has definitely come to play. The Seminoles won the opening coin toss and deferred so they could introduce themselves to Jordan Lynch. It didn't take long either, despite the NIU offense going three-and-out on their opening possession Florida State still managed to lay a good lick on him and Florida State linebacker Vince Williams wasted little time getting in Lynch's face.

Since then FSU has absolutely abused the Huskies' quarterback. He's currently 4/15 for 52 yards. He's run 12 times for 24 yards. And FSU is teeing off on him.

The Florida State offense on the other hand has yet to find a consistent rhythm. There are moments when the offense shows a glimmer of its potential, but aside from a touchdown on their second possession and right before the half, they found ways to squander most of their possessions despite moving the ball pretty well.

In the Seminoles' game against Miami here at Sun Life Stadium in October, Nick O'Leary fumbled trying to do too much on the opening drive. He did the same thing on Florida State's opening possession in the Orange Bowl too. After a good playfake that caught the NIU defense flat-footed, O'Leary caught a ball in the flat, got the first down and then put his shoulder down to challenge an NIU DB. He ended up fumbling the ball forward and the Huskies recovered. 

The Seminoles would score on their second drive when Lonnie Pryor broke a 60-yard touchdown run, but followed that score up with a punt on their third possession and then a missed 50-yard field goal on their fourth. They would drive to mid-field and punt on their fifth drive as well. The same thing happened on the Seminoles' sixth drive too. Herald reporter Manny Navarro used the term "constipated offense."

That would probably the most appropriate description. 

The Seminoles did finally manage to get things going again on their final drive of the first half when they marched 81 yards and scored their second touchdown of the game to go up 14-3. But frankly, this game looks like a typical Florida State road game. When they're away from the friendly confines of Doak Campbell stadium, things just don't run quite the same.

It's not an issue of moving the ball for Florida State- they racked up over 300 yards of offense in the first half- it's whether they can score. They were held scoreless in the second half against NC State and lost. Georgia Tech almost knocked them off after a flat second half last month during the ACC Championship game in Charlotte.

They should run away with this in the second half when depth becomes an issue. But who knows with Florida State.

 

Keep checking back here at the Herald FSU blog and follow me on Twitter for running updates, news and rapid reactions from tonight's Orange Bowl...

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