By Tim Linafelt
Seminoles.com Senior Writer
@Tim_Linafelt on Twitter
TALLAHASSEE, FLA. – The Florida State football team is back at practice, but for now at least, Oregon can wait.
After a week off to complete their end-of-semester finals, rest and relax, the Seminoles on Sunday held the first of three practice sessions dedicated to basics and fundamentals.
“It was good to give the guys a week off mentally and physically. They needed it after a long season it.” FSU coach Jimbo Fisher said. “It will take us a couple days to get back in that groove. That’s too many days off in a row, but we knew that.
“The guys came out and they did a nice job.”
The Seminoles will practice every day until Dec. 22, then take off three days for Christmas.
They’ll then head to Los Angeles for a week leading up to the Rose Bowl on New Year’s Day.
Fisher said that initial practices will be reminiscent of fall camp – lots of conditioning and individual drills.
Which, in a way, can serve as good prep for the Ducks.
With Oregon’s hurry-up, no-huddle offense on the horizon, speed and conditioning could play a key role for FSU’s defense.
“We had to go back and get conditioning because we know Oregon is going to be a fast-paced team,” sophomore safety Nate Andrews said. “They have a lot of talent, but their tempo is very fast.”
Otherwise, Fisher encouraged his team to take a week away from the daily grind of the season and finish the semester on a high note.
A reporter asked junior linebacker Reggie Northrup which is tougher – preparing for a football game or preparing for a final exam.
“Well… I don’t know man,” he said with a laugh. “It’s all stressful.”
But school is over now, meaning that the Seminoles can finally begin looking at the Oregon cut-ups the FSU staff prepared for them.
Fisher placed a ban on that for the week.
He said Sunday that, after the rigors of a season in which FSU feels it received every opponent’s best possible shot, some time away from the field is not just a luxury, but a necessity.
“The pressures of winning and being a champion and doing all those things, sometimes you’ve just got to get away from them,” he said. “You’ve got to walk away and clean your mind and get a fresh mind.
“A fresh mind, that goes a long way.”
Fisher said that the handful of players to miss practice Monday were held out as a precaution and that, if the Seminoles had a game on Saturday, they’d be at full strength.
That includes defensive tackle Eddie Goldman (ankle) and cornerback Ronald Darby (arm), both of who missed significant portions of the ACC Championship Game.
“I’m making sure they’re healed fully before we get them on the field so that it isn’t a nagging thing,” Fisher said. “…They’re all fine.”