Florida State Seminoles preparing for rare Friday night home game
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida State has a short week to prepare for Boston College for the second straight season, and Seminoles coach Jimbo Fisher isn’t all that pleased about it.
"I feel like right now I’m a day behind and trying to get everything in," Fisher said. "Also making sure you get enough rest and still get enough practice time."
Last year, playing the Eagles on short week resulted in a hard-fought, ugly Florida State win.
Fisher is hoping to have an easier time on Friday. The Seminoles won 14-0 but needed a late defensive touchdown to get some breathing room.
Boston College, which got lit up by No. 5 Louisville 52-7 last weekend, still comes into the game ranked 15th in the Football Bowl Subdivision in total defense and eighth against the run. Last season it held Dalvin Cook to 54 yards, which was his lowest total against an ACC team last season.
Fisher has had to manage a quick turn earlier in the season. The 20th-ranked Seminoles (6-3, 3-3 ACC, No. 22 CFP) defeated Mississippi on Sept. 5 and had only five days to prepare for their home opener against Charleston Southern.
This also marks only the second Friday night home game in Florida State history; the other was in 1957.
Fisher used Monday to go through two-minute and short-yardage situations and will devote Tuesday and Wednesday to install the game plan for the Eagles (4-5, 1-4).
Cook, who needs 127 yards to break Warrick Dunn’s school career-mark of 3,833 yards, was held to 65 yards in last Saturday’s 24-20 win at North Carolina State. Cook though has nine straight 100-yard games against FBS opponents at home.
"You can’t let him run wild on you," Boston college coach Steve Addazio said of Cook. "Dalvin is a guy that you’ve got to get an extra hat around the ball. You’ve got to be careful trying to give him too many unloaded boxes, but then again, they have the speed out in the perimeter with their receivers."
One thing Fisher is hoping to correct is the Seminoles’ slow starts in conference games. They have trailed at halftime in all but one ACC game and at some point in those games have trailed by double digits. The win over the Wolfpack marked FSU’s third come-from-behind victory this season where it has trailed by 10 or more points and second in conference.
The secondary, which has been beset by injuries, continues to struggle. The Seminoles have allowed 41 passing plays of 20-plus yards this season, which is third-worst among Power 5 schools and allowed four last Saturday.
Safety Tre Marshall, who missed last week’s game due to concussion-like symptoms, remains questionable for Friday. If Marshall remains out, Ermon Lane, a converted receiver, would get the start.
Fellow safety Derwin James, who had surgery for a torn meniscus on Sept. 12, did some running before the North Carolina State game but Fisher said there is no timetable on his return.
Florida State will also be without wide receiver Jesus "Bobo" Wilson, who had season-ending surgery on his right foot on Monday. Wilson suffered the injury during the first half of the Oct. 17 game against Wake Forest. He tried to rehab the past three weeks but the swelling in the foot did not go down.
Wilson was second on the team in receiving with 30 receptions for 390 yards when he was injured. His 89-yard punt return for a touchdown against Charleston Southern on Sept. 10 is the longest in the nation this season.
In Wilson’s absence, Nyqwan Murray has played well. The sophomore has 15 receptions for 249 yards and a touchdown over the past two games, including nine catches for 153 yards against North Carolina State.
Murray is the fourth FSU receiver to have a 100-yard game this year, making it one of seven schools in the Football Bowl Subdivision to have four or more players do that this season.
Even though this is the second straight season Florida State is playing on a Friday, Fisher is hoping that it isn’t a yearly tradition, even if he understands why it is happening.
"It’s the networks. That’s who has your contracts," he said. "I don’t think any coach likes it, really. But that’s just what we’re in and that’s the world we’re in. So everybody’s got the same boat to deal with."
- Dalvin Cook
- Derwin James
- Ermon Lane
- Florida State Seminoles
- FOX Sports Florida
- FOX Sports Florida - Seminoles