May 1, 2007
No Seminole lit up the spring as brightly as rising junior Antone Smith. The Pahokee, FL native was named the MVP and the Seminoles’ most outstanding player for the offense. New FSU offensive coordinator Jimbo Fisher has said he plans on making Antone the featured back for Florida State this fall. The tailback and All-ACC Academic football team member sat down with Seminoles.com before heading home for the break between semesters.
Q: What are your plans this summer?
A: I am going to go home for three or four days. I am going to run and lift down in Pahokee. I am going to work on running routes and catching balls with some of my friends from Wake Forest who are going to be down there. Anquan (Boldin) should be down there too so we will do a little bit of working out.
Q: What was the biggest surprise for you this spring?
A: The biggest surprise has to be the speed of the linemen right now. Those guys are doing a really good job getting up field to the second level. Our receivers are also doing a great job blocking down field and catching the ball. Those have to be the two biggest areas.
Q: How was this spring been different compared to previous springs?
A: The biggest difference is the tempo. The tempo of everything right now is very high compared to the previous two springs I have been here. This spring was very tiring. The tempo has never been as high as it was this past spring. I think the coaching change has been a big improvement for us.
Q: The fans are very excited about what you did this spring but where do you feel you are going into the summer?
A: I am definitely not where I should be. For the fans, I am appreciative that the felt I had a good spring but me personally, I know I am not where I should be. There are a lot of things I have to improve on as a player and as a person. I want to improve in both of those areas. Hopefully I will be a better player when we open the season at Clemson.
Q: Was there anything that was hard for you to pick-up in the new offense?
A: Having played this game all my life, I think I have a good grasp on what is being asked of me. I did want to learn this offense from the back to the front. I did that this spring. It wasn’t a big deal for me. I wanted to make sure I knew the blocking schemes and I think I did a pretty good job with that.
Q: How excited do you get when you hear coach Fisher say that you will be his featured back?
A: I am very excited. That is what I came here for – to be `that’ guy and I am going to finally get a chance to do it. I am looking forward to it.
Q: What are your expectations for this offense come the fall?
A: I know we are going to be a strong unit. The tempo is different, everybody is approaching everything different and the offensive players are focused. Our linemen are leaner, stronger and have lost a lot of weight. They aren’t going to get tired late in games and they are going to be more dependable for four quarters. Everybody is just excited about this coaching staff. It is a new direction. We lost some great coaches this off-season but it was time for a change and I think everyone is happy about it.
Q: Do you set personal goals?
A: I am the type of person that really doesn’t set personal goals. You never know what can happen in this game. Any play can be your last. I just go out with the mindset that I am going to do my job and play hard. I want to give it everything I have on every play.