“I saw that before the game a little bit, just not focused like I thought we would be, I’m being picky, I’m being really picky, I really am, but that’s the standard we want to be held up to,” said Jimbo Fisher after Saturday's 80-14 demolition of Idaho.
Fisher had just been asked about how well he felt his team had played, whether their focus was as strong this week -- especially considering what they've been attempting block out -- than in weeks past.
“I don’t say that out of disrepect, I don’t mean that as disrespect, I saw little things as a coach, just little concentration issues, little details of a route or little details of a block or little details of a read that you know as a coach when you’re really on your game [it’s done right].”
FSU still hung 80 points yesterday afternoon -- the most in a single game in school history -- they racked up over 600 yards of offense for the third time this season, Jameis Winston threw for four touchdowns, two different backs had 100 yards, the defense held Idaho to just 59 yards on the ground and scored as many touchdowns (2) as the Vandals did.
But you would be remiss to ignore some of the uncharacteristic mistakes that were made at times on Saturday. None of them were particularly damaging -- especially against such an overmatched team -- but they're noteworthy because until this point in the season they were mistakes that either appeared to have been corrected or hadn't been made commonly by the Seminoles.
There were several blown protections on Saturday that resulted in sacks and a fumble. The Florida State offensive line has been superb this year. Every line makes mistakes and gives up pressure, but FSU's line has kept those kinds of issues to a minimum this year. On Saturday the line looked a little off.
The same goes for the defense. Telvin Smith admitted he blew a coverage on the game's opening play. He was not the only defender to make that error. Tackling was also an issue at times too.
“We did not wrap [up], we didn’t hit on the rise and step on the toes and wrap up -- which we had done all year," said Fisher. “You have to remember they’re kids, they’re still 18-22, growing up so you’ve got to remind them there every day."
So far this season Fisher and his staff have done an excellent job of keeping their team's heads in the right place. But it's got to be getting harder as the weeks go on. Not just because of the turmoil caused by the Jameis Winston situation, but also because FSU is approaching their goal. There's just three games left. These are the 'championship rounds' as Fisher likes to call them.
Fisher admits he's being picky about these things, but he needs to be.
Lamarcus Joyner's Senior Day wasn't particularly eye-popping on the stat sheet -- he finished with four tackles -- but lost in the box score are effort plays like the one he made in the first quarter on Saturday. Joyner blitzed and was unable to get to the quarterback, the pass was then completed to Dezmon Epps and Joyner ran 78 yards -- getting blocked and falling in the process -- to catch Epps from behind at the FSU 20.
Watch the replay here, Joyner blitzes from the left side of the Vandal offensive line, chases the quarterback and then runs down Epps at the 20.
That play saved a touchdown, not just on that play but on the drive, a few snaps later Telvin Smith intercepted a pass over the middle and ran it back for a touchdown.
"That doesn't surprise me one bit," said Fisher after the game. "That guy, to me that exemplifies who he is as a football player. 'Whatever it takes, whatever energy I've got to put out, whatever I've got to do for us to make a play.' That's Lamarcus."
On Saturday Roberto Aguayo set a new record for consecutive extra points without a miss. The old record was 77, Aguayo -- after kicking 11 extra points on Satruday -- now has 80. For the season Aguayo has only missed a single kick, he is 15/16 on field goals and 95/96 on the year. To date he has 124 points. He is 16 shy of the ACC record set by Dustin Hopkins last season.
Jameis Winston continues to climb the Florida State record books with his TD’s and passing yardage. On Saturday afternoon Winston went 14/25 for 225 yards and four touchdowns.
Winston’s third quarter touchdown pass to Kelvin Benjamin marked his 32nd touchdown pass of the season -- tying him with Danny Kanell for second all-time at Florida State. Chris Weinke holds the Seminole record after throwing 33 in 2000.
Winston also climbed into the top five all-time for yardage in a season. The redshirt freshman passed Peter Tom Willis’ 1989 yardage mark, he now has 3,163 yards on the season. The Florida State record is held by Weinke who threw for 4,167 in 2000.
More Thoughts From the Morning After:
##- If this was DT Tim Jernigan's final home game he made the most of it. Jernigan -- who many believe could be selected in the first couple rounds of the NFL draft next Spring -- had a career high 2.5 sacks on Saturday and blew up the middle of the Idaho offensive line all game.
##- Florida State has more players with interceptions than receptions this season. There are 15 different Seminoles who have caught a pass and 16 different Seminoles who have picked one off. FSU leads the country with 23 picks.
##- Florida State has now compiled over 500 yards of total offense in eight of their 11 game so far this season. They have gone over 600 total yards of offense three times.
##- When Devonta Freeman took a first quarter handoff 60 yards for a touchdown it marked the seventh consecutive game that the junior running back has scored. Freeman finished with 129 yards and became just the 14th player in Florida State history to eclipse 2,000 career rushing yards early in the second half. Asked by another reporter if he'd considered turning pro after the season yet, Freeman declined to answer but said he was focused on earning his degree.
Photo courtesy of Travis Register.
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