Feb. 8, 2006
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. –
Florida State, which plays four of its next five games at home in the Donald L. Tucker Center, plays host to Georgia Tech on Thursday. Feb. 9 at 7 p.m. in the only regular season meeting between the two teams. The Seminoles’ game against the Yellow Jackets marks one of five ACC opponents which they will play only once during the regular season (Boston College, Georgia Tech, Maryland, North Carolina and Wake Forest). Of the Seminoles’ one-time ACC opponents during the 2005-06 season, only Maryland, which will come to Tallahassee on Feb. 22, will be the only ACC team which the Seminoles have yet to play this season at the conclusion of Thursday night’s game. Florida State has won two of its four home games this season with victories over Virginia Tech (Jan. 7, 74-68) and Clemson (Feb. 1, 69-59). Florida State is 8-2 at home this season and has won three of its last five ACC homes games in the last two seasons. Following Thursday’s game against Georgia Tech, the Seminoles’ close out their regular season non-conference schedule as they play host to UMass on Sunday with game time set for 5:30. The game will be televised nationally as part of the Fox Sports’ ACC Sunday Night Hoops package. Florida State resumes its ACC schedule as its plays at NC State Feb. 15 at 7 p.m.
THORNTON NAMED ACC PLAYER OF THE WEEK FOR SECOND TIME
Junior All-ACC candidate Al Thornton, who tied his career-high with 37 points and pulled down his career-high of 15 rebounds against Duke in Cameron Indoor Stadium on Saturday, was named the ACC Co-Basketball Player of the Week this week. Thornton averaged 26.0 points and 9.5 rebounds as Florida State split two conference games last week to up its record to 13-6 overall and 4-5 in the ACC. Thornton’s 37 points against Duke tied the school record for most points scored by a Seminole player in an ACC game – he tied himself (against Boston College on Jan. 14, 2006) and Ran Hale against Wake Forest on Jan. 14, 2000. Thornton shared the award with Jared Dudley of Boston College. It marked the second time this season and second time during his career that Thornton has earned the award. He earned the award following his first career 37-point performance against Boston College in January. In a career-high 42 minutes against Duke, Thornton scored 37 points, pulled down 15 rebounds, was credited with a career-high five assists and tied his career-high with three assists.
LOOK FOR FLORIDA STATE TO…
…Defeat Georgia Tech and win its 14th game of the season. The Seminoles have already won more games this season (13) than they did during the 2004-05 season (12);
…Defeat Georgia Tech and win its fifth ACC game of the season. The Seminoles won four ACC games during the 2004-05 season and a victory over the Yellow Jackets would surpass their ACC victory total from a season ago;
…Defeat Georgia Tech and gain a victory over the Yellow Jackets for the third time in the last four years in the Donald L. Tucker Center. The Seminoles won in both 2003 and 2004 at home before falling by one point in 2005;
…Defeat Georgia Tech and even its ACC record at 5-5. The last time the Seminoles had a .500 or better record after 10 conference games was during the 1998-99 when they had a 5-5 record after 10 of 16 ACC games.
SEMINOLES RECEIVE VOTES IN BOTH ESPN/USA TODAY AND AP POLLS
Florida State earned votes in both the ESPN/USA Today Coaches’ poll and the Associated Press Media poll this week. It marked the fourth poll this season the Seminoles had received votes in the coaches poll and the first time this season they had earned at least one vote in the media poll.
SEMINOLES CLIMBING THE ACC STATISTICS
Florida State’s rise in the ACC standings and national rankings is well documented. Along with its increased number of overall and conference wins, the Seminoles have returned to prominence within the ACC team and individual statistics. Junior All-ACC candidate Al Thornton enters Thursday’s game against Georgia Tech ranked in the top 10 in four different statistical categories (after not ranking individually in any categories during his freshman season). Thornton is joined in the individual rankings by senior Todd Galloway (top 10 in two categories) and sophomore Isaiah Swann (top 10 in A:TO ratio). In addition, the Seminoles are ranked in the top three of five different statistical categories including scoring offense and scoring margin after ranking in the top five in only two categories during the 2004-05 season. The Seminoles led the ACC in offensive rebounds and ranked fourth in field goal percentage last season.
SEMINOLES DRAW CLOSER TO 70 PERCENT SHOOTING FROM FREE THROW LINE
Florida State enters Thursday’s game against Georgia Tech ranked sixth in the ACC with a .698 team free throw shooting percentage. The Seminoles shot their ACC season-high of .909 against Duke (10-of-11) and shot .829 in their victory over Clemson (29-35, .829). Florida State has shot 80 percent or better in three ACC games this season (also 28-35, .800 against Virginia Tech). Florida State has shot 80 percent or better in three of nine ACC games this season as compared to two of 16 ACC games during the 2004-05 season in shooting .665 from the free throw line for the season. The Seminoles have made more free throws than their opponents have attempted in four of their last five games.
SEMINOLES GO TO THE GLASS AGAINST DUKE
Florida State won the rebounding battle against Duke on Saturday as it outrebounded the Blue Devils by a 49-36 margin. It marked the Seminoles’ largest rebounding advantage in an ACC game this season and its largest margin since outrebounding Maryland by +12 (56-44) on Dec. 19, 2004. Florida State’s 49 rebounds against the Blue Devils is tied for the fifth highest rebound total in an ACC game in school history.
SEMINOLES DOUBLING UP
Led by Al Thornton’s six double-doubles this season, the Seminoles have recorded more than twice as many double-doubles this season in 19 games (12) as they had during the 2004-05 season in 31 games (five).
SEMINOLES SCORING PUNCH FROM THE STARTING LINEUP
Florida State’s starting five (Al Thornton, Alexander Johnson, Isaiah Swann, Todd Galloway and Jason Rich) enter Thursday’s game against Georgia Tech having scored nearly 69 percent (1,055 of 1,530) of the Seminoles’ total points this season. Thornton (16.8 ppg), Johnson (11.9 ppg) and Rich (10.9 ppg) are all averaging in double figure scoring through the first 19 games of the season. Only one Seminole – Von Wafer – who averaged 12.5 points was a double figure scorer for Florida State in 2004-05.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU
Junior Alexander Johnson celebrated his 23rd birthday on Feb. 8; Sophomore Isaiah Swann will celebrate his 21st birthday on Feb. 10 and freshman Uche Echefu will celebrate his 20th birthday on Feb. 11.
PROBABLE STARTERS FOR FLORIDA STATE…
F #12 Al Thornton (16.8 ppg, 7.4 rpg; 20 pts and 7 rebs vs. Georgia Tech, 2/20/05)
F #32 Alexander Johnson (11.9 ppg, 6.4 rpg; 10 pts and 4 rebs vs. Georgia Tech, 3/6/04)
G #3 Isaiah Swann (8.8 ppg, 3.1 apg; 3 pts and 2 rebs vs. Georgia Tech, 2/20/05)
G #4 Todd Galloway (7.6 ppg, 3.5 apg; 13 pts and 1 ast vs. Georgia Tech, 2/25/05)
G #21 Jason Rich (10.9 ppg, 3.3 rpg; 6 pts and 3 asts vs. Georgia Tech, 2/2/05)
…AND TOP RESERVES
G #20 Andrew Wilson (6.4 ppg, 1.9 rpg; 4 pts and 2 rebs vs. Georgia Tech, 2/2/0/05)
F #25 Diego Romero (5.0 ppg, 2.8 rpg; 10 pts and 1 asts vs. Georgia Tech, 2/2/05)
G #10 Ralph Mims (3.9 ppg, 1.4 rpg; 2 pts and 1 reb vs. Georgia Tech, 2/20/05)
G #11 Jerel Allen (4.2 ppg, 1.4 rpg; First career game against Georgia Tech)
F #15 Casaan Breeden (3.8 ppg, 1.7 rpg; First career game against Georgia Tech)
F #41 Uche Echefu (2.4 ppg, 1.8 rpg; First career game against Georgia Tech)
PROBABLE STARTERS FOR GEORGIA TECH F #4 Ra'Sean Dickey (12.0 ppg, 6.8 rpg; 4 pts and 4 rebs vs. Florida State, 2/2/05) F #44 Theodis Tarver (3.7 ppg, 3.0 rpg; 0 pts and 1 reb vs. Florida State, 2/2/05) G #23 Anthony Morrow (16.8 pg, 4.5 rpg; 7 pts and 3 rebs vs. Florida State, 2/20/05) G #33 Lewis Clinch (7.3 ppg, 2.5 rpg; First career game vs. Florida State) G #35 Zam Frederick (9.4 ppg, 3.4 apg; 3 pts and 0 rebs vs. Florida State, 2/2/05)FLORIDA STATE VS. GEORGIA TECH-- A SERIES HISTORY The Series: Florida State leads, 28-25 Last Game: Feb. 20, 2005; Georgia Tech 76, Florida State 75 Last Florida State Win: Feb. 3, 2004; Florida State 71, Georgia Tech 74 Last Georgia Tech Win: Feb. 20, 2005; Georgia Tech 76, Florida State 75 Last Florida State Win In Tallahassee: Feb. 3, 2004; Florida State 71, Georgia Tech 74 Last Georgia Tech Win In Tallahassee: Feb. 20, 2005; Georgia Tech 76, Florida State 75 Florida State vs. Georgia Tech, Current Streak: Georgia Tech has won 3 Leonard Hamilton vs. Georgia Tech: 2-5
FLORIDA STATE VS. GEORGIA TECH – THE LAST GAME
B.J. Elder’s two free throws with 0.4 seconds remaining lifted Georgia Tech to a 76-75 win over Florida State on Feb. 20, 2005 at the Donald L. Tucker Center in Tallahassee. Elder, who finished with a game-high 22 points, was fouled under the basket by Florida State’s Andrew Wilson and coolly made both shots, sending the Seminoles to their eighth loss by three points or fewer this season. Florida State rallied from a 69-56 deficit with 8:49 remaining and took its only second-half lead with 9.7 seconds left. Al Thornton’s turnaround jumper over Georgia Tech’s 7-foot-4 center Luke Schenscher put the Seminoles up 75-74, but they couldn’t hold on. Schenscher had 14 points and six rebounds for Georgia Tech, while Jarrett Jack had 10 points and a game-high six assists for the Yellow Jackets – who won despite not having any field goals in the final 3:43. Thornton, who was seven-for-eight from the field and six-for-eight from the foul line, had 20 points and a game-high seven rebounds for Florida State. Von Wafer had 14 points and Todd Galloway 13 for the Seminoles. Georgia Tech won for the first time in its last three trips to Tallahassee.