November 20, 2008 - by
Florida State Completes Its On Field Preparations For No. 22 Maryland

Nov. 20, 2008

TALLAHASSEE, Fla.  – The race for a berth in the ACC Championship Game has never been as competitive as it is this year. Every game this week could have an effect on how the race to Tampa Bay shakes out. It begins tonight with Miami at Georgia Tech and will continue all day Saturday ending with FSU and Maryland on ESPN Saturday night. The Seminoles are one of nine teams still in the running for a championship game appearance.



Head Coach Bobby Bowden:

On Andrew Datko:

“Datko practiced today. It looks like he will be ok. I think he had him of first team. I think he was working first unit.”


On practice this week:

“It was a good practice. They have done well in that regard. We did have a pretty good practice.”


On whether the focus of this week’s game is for the ACC Championship:

“We don’t even think about that. The thinking for this game is we didn’t play as good last week as we wanted to and want to try to improve. We want to prepare ourselves better.”


On Maryland coming along as a team:

“They might have been the first team to win the championship other than us.  We had won it quite a few years but then Maryland broke that chain. They have done a good job up there. They play good at home. They play good at the right time.”


Offensive Coordinator Jimbo Fisher

On the intensity at practice

“We work them hard everyday whether we win or lose we’re still going to work them hard.  We’re not going to change what we do or how we do it, we just have to do it better.”


On finishing drives

“We scored 17 points.  We drove down and threw an interception…we drive down to the 28 again at the end and we didn’t execute a play.  We missed a field goal that we usually make from the 33 and then went for it on fourth and five, your talking about 34 points.  Things are never as good as they seem or never as bad, we have to finish our drives and get our swagger back and keep doing the same things.”


On how the team has responded

“We’ve practiced well for the majority of the time, but there has been a few weeks where we’ve slacked and mentally gotten tired at times and we’ve tried to drag them through it, but they’ve responded well.  It’s going to be a huge challenge going up there, [Maryland] hasn’t lost a game in that stadium and it’s going to be interesting to see if our kids go up there and compete.”


On the cold weather

“I always liked throwing [the ball] better in cold weather because you didn’t have to deal with the sweat and all of the things going on with the ball.  If you kept your fingers moist you could get control of the ball better.”


Quarterback Christian Ponder:

On practice this week:

“It was good. I think we had our minds set. At the beginning of the week you could tell people were still disappointed and had their heads down, but today people came out and had fun. We are getting back to where we were before. The week went pretty well.”


What it takes to bounce back:

“To forget about last week. We need to come out, execute and play how we can play. We need to do as well as we can and we will be fine.”


On playing at Maryland:

“It is a pretty tough environment. It is going to be cold, but it’s going to be like any other game. We can’t worry about everything else and focus on playing. I don’t think the rankings show how good they are. They are a lot like Boston College. They execute well and are very disciplined and physical. It is going to be a tough challenge for us, but if we come out and execute like we can, we will be fine. ”


On Maryland’s zone coverage:

“It is going to be good. Virginia Tech and Georgia Tech were zone teams so we have played against it before. We can have success. It is about execution and as long as we can focus on that we can do well.”


The mood among the team:

“I think we can bounce back. I think earlier in the week we were down and a couple of our guys were still focused on the lost, but come Tuesday most guys were focused. We worked hard all week. I thought we had one of our best practices.”


LB Dekoda Watson

On the ACC race

“It’s been up and down for the whole ACC and it’s going to come down to these last two games and we just have to take it one game at a time.”


On Maryland’s struggles

“It’s the same thing with us.  I don’t know if it’s because we get complacent or overconfident, I don’t know what it is, but we’re not going to sit around and worry about what Maryland’s doing we’re going to worry about what we’re doing.”


On the team’s extra energy

“We have to go out and play and that’s what it all boils down to, who wants it the most.  It’s going to be seen on T.V., who wants it the most. Hopefully we can pull it out.”


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