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FSU News: The Monday Chop

Latest news on everything FSU

FSU holds junior day:  FSU is in the middle of two big recruiting weekends.  Jimbo got a commitment from Kamryn Pettway, who is a 220 pound junior running back.  It is clear Jimbo is trying to find the next Lonnie Pryor.  Pryor played an enormous role in Jimbo’s offense, even as a “fullback” so I don’t think it’s a hard job to sell.  Jimbo is also pursuing QB JJ Cosentino pretty hard.  JJ tore his ACL in his sophomore year, so he might be a little underrated.  He comes from the same school as Dan Marino and… Sal Suneri.  Sal’s impact on the coaching staff, just from a recruiting standpoint, has been immense.  On the other side of the ball, all he pretty much has to say is that he coached Julius Peppers.

Looking forward to spring:  There will be many position battles this spring–the most important being at quarterback.  The candidates are Clint Trickett (an undersized coach’s son who knows the playbook in-and-out), Jacob Coker (an underrated QB out of high school with all of the physical tools), and Jameis Winston (a two-sport star who was the top dual threat QB in 2012).  One thing I’m worried about is the fact that Jameis Winston is playing baseball and does a good deal of pitching.  Pitchers get all sorts of elbow and shoulder injuries.  Wear and tear aside, the effect this can have on his throwing motion is unknown.  Folks have cited to the fact that Deion Sanders and Bo Jackson both played, at a high level, football and baseball.  Yes, but neither Sanders nor Jackson played QB.  This will be a story line to watch going forward and count me in the Coker camp.  Less wear and tear, one more year in the system than Winston, and a sole focus on football.

The lack of news on FSU’s new offensive coordinator:  The last public bit of knowledge about FSU’s offensive coordinator position was that Jimbo would be interviewing candidates.  Last week, we heard of two candidates, the former UCLA OC Mike Johnson and the current USC WR coach Tee Martin.  No other candidates have surfaced.  This could mean a few things–Jimbo liked one of them and is working on a contract or Jimbo was upset that information was leaking and is trying to do things more covertly.  My preference is still Chris Weinke to come in and be the QB coach.  It’s a bit delusional to think Jimbo would defer coaching QBs to Weinke, but it would be in the best interest of the program.  It is one thing to bring in recruits and show them sealed lockers of FSU greats.  It is another thing to actually have one of those greats on the sideline and recruiting.  Chant Rant was the first to float this idea, so I will give them due credit, but this just seems like a no-brainer move.

In other news:  Mario Cristobal, the former FIU head coach and current (well, no longer current) UM offensive line coach, has accepted a position with Nick Saban as their offensive line coach.  A lateral move in title, sure, but a tremendous opportunity for Cristobal.  Cristobal was on the UM staff for all of two months.  He even helped court former FSU OC James Coley to UM.  This won’t likely have any real long-term effect on UM, but for FSU fans, it’s a bit of a consolation prize to see Cristobal up and leave.  Also, and quietly, UM has lost a considerable amount of coaches this off-season.

Speaking of coaching changes:  FSU almost lost another assistant.  This time around it was Lawrence Dawsey.  Noles247 reported that NFL teams have called Lawrence Dawsey.  I really can’t speak to Dawsey’s coaching prowess–to be honest, I have expected more out of some of the FSU WRs like Rodney Smith and Kelvin Benjamin.  Those two receivers have the ability to control a game just with their size.  We just never seem to utilize them the way they should be and maybe that’s just more of a reflection of Jimbo’s offense than Dawsey’s ability to coach them up.  I will say this, however:  Dawsey is a loyal Seminole.  It’s clear he wants to be at FSU and so I hope they repay him in kind.

FSU’s ACC Championship Game woes getting attention:  A few outlets have been picking up the FSU story about the half-a-million-dollars-in-debt that it incurred just for appearing in the ACC Championship game.  One outlet, NBC Sports, opines that the only loss in this setting should be on the field–not in the pocket book.  If you want examples of how the ACC is not helping football schools, this may be one of them.  The current formula is not working.  Sure, Swofford has said that they are working to ensure that no school suffers a financial loss because of its appearance in the game, but the ACC Championship games haven’t been relevant or exciting in a long time.  That indicates to me something has to change… granted, they’ve tinkered with the venue a few times, but is Charlotte really the best place?  I think it is too difficult to try and predict who will be in the championship game, so it’s not worth placing it in Charlotte or Jacksonville.  The right place should be at the stadium of the team with the better record, or a tie-breaker of some sort.  They can work out a 60/40 split and it may even be an added incentive for teams to push harder down the stretch.  The fact that FSU lost half a million dollars playing in this game is not going to help the ACC’s cause in trying to stick together.

My other hope for change is some divisional realignment.  FSU fans could care less about Pittsburgh–it is Georgia Tech that FSU should be playing every year.  It is one of the easiest things the ACC can do to help Florida State… a trip to Boston is more expensive and less exciting (on the field) than it is to Atlanta.  This is an ACC Blog, so I’m confident my colleagues will have varying opinions, but I like to stoke the fire some.

The only bright spot of the ACC Championship game, and winning it, is this awesome video about FSU going to the Orange Bowl.  Enjoy.

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7 thoughts on “FSU News: The Monday Chop

  1. RE: ACC Championship game – you are right on both counts (IMO).
    1) the game needs to be held at the home of the higher seed
    2) Ga Tech needs to be in the Atlantic division (trade either UL or SU for GT).

    • I’m glad you agree — particularly with some divisional realignment. With the addition of the new schools, I’d advocate for a North/South conference. You need to group the schools geographically. Otherwise, it makes it too difficult to travel. FSU is not going to travel as well to Boston, Pittsburgh, and New York as it would Atlanta or Louisville. In a conference that is living and dying by the dollar, why not save your schools some money in their budgets and realign the conference?

  2. While I too would love for the conference to change up the divisional alignment, I just don’t think it’s going to happen. The schools in the Northern tier WANT to be in the State of Florida every year. That’s part of the appeal of the conference for them. I also wouldn’t want to lose playing GT every year as a Carolina fan. We have a lot of history with them, and I think they’re a great fit for the Coastal. The games between the Jackets and VT have been some of the most exciting and important divisional games since expansion too.

    But at the same time, I want to encourage you guys to write to Commissioner Swofford and conference ADs and presidents and share your ideas with them. It doesn’t take very long, and it’s definitely worth a shot. I’ve done it before and have heard back within a few weeks. At a time when our conference is in such a state of flux, I think it’s important for the fan’s voice to be heard. You’re spot on about the conference championship game and changes DO need to be made. Not full-scale changes where everyone leaves and the ACC’s membership is overhauled, but small changes like this that can go a long way.

  3. I hadn’t heard a thing about Dawsey. I don’t know where to stand, there. The man’s own career is testament to his understanding of the position, but as you’ve pointed out, the WRs just aren’t making the strides you’d reasonably expect. Glad you brought up Rodney Smith, because I consider his results at FSU to be mixed, at best, in relation to his gifts. Benjamin, you can blame on motor/attitude and give LD a pass, but Smith didn’t seem to be a softie, just frustrated at times. Very interesting…I probably would have accepted the loss, realizing LD could have been replaced with a young, eager South Florida coach/recruiter, and giving Jimbo the freedom to do w.t.h. he wanted to do with qb. Let’s be honest, Jimbo has to be feeling the pull to hire some younger blood for Dade/Broward, and although Martin would be a home-run hire, I don’t see him leaving USC with the leap they’ll almost assuredly make in 2013. I just don’t think Jimbo can/will sweeten the deal enough for him, but could be 50-50.

    • Dawsey was apparently contacted by the Bears and Lions. That must mean he knows how to develop pro receivers but, again, which receiver is that? Bert Reed? The last NFL caliber receiver that FSU produced was Anquan Boldin. Remember, though, that Jeff Bowden coached receivers, so I don’t know if you can say FSU “developed” him. He just had that motor. What I will say about Dawsey is that the receivers tend to block well.

      The problem about replacing LD is that I’m not sure how many young SoFla recruiters are out there. I’ve heard two names pop up, Mike Canales at NTU and Jujuan Seider at Marshall. Neither is young but both have tremendous South Florida connections.

      I’m all for Tee Martin. I imagine FSU learned to appreciate Tee Martin’s prowess at USC since we were battling with them for several recruits. Tee was recruiting Florida kids — Matthew Thomas, Leon McQuay, etc– so I don’t think it is a stretch for him to recruit South Florida. The real question is whether he has done enough to be named OC over two guys already on the staff with OC experience (Sanders and Napier).

      • Well, that’s what I was referring to by Jimbo having to “sweeten the deal”…Tee Martin is probably gonna see some nice opportunities, eventually, but even if he’s just OC in name at FSU, it still looks solid on the resume when teamed with QB coaching duties. I just don’t know that Jimbo and Martin will go down this vague road. Still, USC canned their OC and Martin didn’t seem to get much of a look, so it really boils down to him leaving a situation he may be feeling good in. Other than Kiffin ruining it, that is. Personally, I think Martin would dominate in South Florida…can you imagine how many parents saw him win a National Title? And, yeah, I agree the hire doesn’t need to be an actual Floridian, but I do think he needs to have some youth and hustle to his game. Regardless of the next hire, Napier and Sanders are more than capable of assisting Jimbo at OC.

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