Nov. 21, 2011
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Two days after a tough one-point loss to Virginia, Florida State football coach Jimbo Fisher talked Monday about turning attention to the annual FSU-UF showdown.
But before commenting on the impending matchup with the Gators in Gainesville, Fisher addressed what he thought was the driving force behind the Seminoles’ 14-13 loss to the Cavaliers this past Saturday.
The ‘Noles’ second-year coach said it all came down to “attention to detail.”
Seminoles.com Senior Writer
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“After evaluating the film from the last game it’s very disappointing,” Fisher said. “There were some really good things in there. We moved the ball well; when you look at it what it comes down to is the lack of attention to detail. We had plenty of opportunities to do things we had to do. We had too many penalties. We had some motion penalties, one guy had three, we jumped just anxious, trying to be there too quick. We had two holdings and one was very critical. Had a turnover and some missed assignments on some blocking.”
“It had nothing to do with effort, toughness or wanting to do the right things, just lack of attention to detail and some missed cuts by some backs on some critical runs,” Fisher added. “We took turns across the board, then defensively, we needed a big stop and we didn’t get it.”
For as young as FSU is as a team overall, mistakes are expected but Fisher’s frustration stems from the fact that his team is 11 games into the season.
As he said late Saturday night in his post-game press conference, players aren’t freshmen, sophomores and juniors anymore; they are older than their eligibility states this late in the year and the inexperienced excuse only carries so much weight at this point in the season.
“We’ve got to continue to grow with this youth and get over these humps,” Fisher said. “We’ll get better at it and the key is going to be attention to detail. This is one game where we didn’t do that. We’ll have a very tough football game this week, Florida is a very tough defensive team; Florida’s defense is 17th in the country they have a very good front.”
While the attention now shifts from analyzing the loss to fixing the mistakes and moving past the setback in time for Saturday’s 7 p.m. showdown in the Swamp, preparing for Florida and its talented defense has the added twist that Fisher is quite familiar with Gators first-year coach Will Muschamp.
Fisher was the quarterbacks coach at Auburn while Muschamp was a defensive graduate assistant. The two then faced each other every day at practice while Fisher was the offensive coordinator at LSU and Muschamp was the defensive coordinator.
Of course, the now-played-out news tidbit that the two co-own a North Florida beach house will be a storyline this week, as well. But the game this weekend ultimately revolves around the knowledge that each has of each other on the grass … not in the sand.
“Maybe. You do that to guys you play in the league,” Fisher said, when asked Monday if he has kept notes on Muschamp’s defensive tendencies. “That’s why I keep a running notebook on every situation; we write it up after every game. When you play the certain people over a long period of time, it’s the same way. It works the other way too.”
Fisher knows that preparation and correcting mistakes is the most important task this week from a team standpoint but quarterback EJ Manuel must play better as an individual too.
In what was perhaps his worst game as the Seminoles’ full-time starter, Manuel acknowledged Monday that he understands he could have played better against the Cavs and the game’s outcome likely would have been different.
“There are some things that I could have done as a quarterback to erase a lot of the mistakes we made,” Manuel said. “It happens. [The film] was tough to watch, though. I’m not going to lie.”
Stick with Seminoles.com the rest of the week as we gear up for ‘Noles’ versus Gators at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium where FSU will go for its second consecutive state championship.