Sept. 19, 2011
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Florida State held its football press conference Monday afternoon and there was one person noticeably missing from the weekly affair: EJ Manuel.
FSU’s starting quarterback normally speaks with the media after head coach Jimbo Fisher but he wasn’t in attendance today because of a doctor’s appointment. Manuel was getting checked out after being knocked out in the third quarter of the close loss to No. 1 Oklahoma last weekend.
Seminoles.com Senior Writer
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“We are waiting to find out,” Fisher said when asked about Manuel’s status for this Saturday’s 3:30 p.m. game at Clemson. “He is seeing a doctor today. It was an AC, a sprain, separation, or whatever you call it. They are just evaluating it now to make sure how bad it is or if there is anything in there and we had an MRI just to make sure. I don’t want to say anything to it, but I think it’s just a slight sprain, separation, however you look at it, medium-grade thing and will be a pain tolerance thing and where he goes and where it is we’ll see.
“Be able to judge here in a couple of days when the MRI comes back.”
If Manuel is deemed to be not healthy enough to play at Clemson, redshirt freshman Clint Trickett would get the first start of his career.
In addition to Manuel, the Seminoles have a few more noteworthy offensive injuries to monitor in the coming days.
Haulstead has not played this season while still suffering the lingering effects of the concussion he sustained late in fall camp. It was thought that Reed would play against Oklahoma after having his ankle rolled in the win over Charleston Southern but the senior wide receiver never checked into the game Saturday night.
“He still had too much soreness and pain in the ankle with that pushing and accelerating and doing the things he needs to do,” Fisher said about Reed.
As for Shaw, he took a now-infamous hit on the goal line against OU and had to be carted off the field and taken for x-rays at a local hospital before ultimately returning to the sidelines.
“He was much, much better than we anticipated,” Fisher said about Shaw. “Some guys can bounce back like that. We’ll have to be on the safe side. I won’t say I am optimistic but I feel very good. You were sure that would be a long-term deal but he was coherent and very up-to-date on everything right after the ballgame, which was great. That was a big thing with his safety.”
Shaw’s good health after such a scary moment is good news. The truly bad news from Monday, however, is related to another wide receiver that hasn’t been mentioned yet: Jarred Haggins.
Fisher said that Haggins, who is currently second on the team in total receptions, broke his hand against the Sooners and will definitely miss the game against Clemson.
It was clear against Oklahoma that FSU has the firepower to compete against the best of the best in the college football world. If not for a few plays, the Seminoles could have emerged from the showdown victorious, Fisher said.
“I told our kids in the beginning of that game, ‘Passion, excitement, all that’s going to be great. End of the day it’s going to come back to one word: execution. Can you execute in those key situations?’ Fisher said. “Early, we let a couple of those situations go that I think could have changed the game.”
“Looking at some of the opportunities that we should have capitalized on and had a chance to take advantage of … really disappointed,” Fisher also said. “Did some good things in the game but had some great opportunities in that game that we should have seized some opportunities on both sides of the ball and in the special teams — all three phases — that we could have taken advantage of and we didn’t.”
ACC PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
Shortly after Fisher’s press conference concluded, the ACC announced its weekly players of the week and there are two Seminoles on the list.
Here’s the breakdown of what Werner did to earn the accolade from the ACC’s press release: “Werner was a pivotal performer from his left end position as the Seminoles held the Sooners to 310 total yards; their lowest output since the 2009 season. A first-year starter, Werner posted a career-high six tackles (5 solos, 1 assist), which included two tackles for loss and a sack of OU quarterback Landry Jones. He was also credited with one quarterback hurry. Werner leads FSU with 3.5 tackles for loss and two sacks this season.”
Here’s why Hopkins earned his recognition according to the ACC: “Hopkins extended his streak of consecutive field goal conversions to 13, connecting from 53 and 46 yards against Oklahoma. Hopkins’ 53-yarder was the second-longest of his career. He also helped keep the Sooners bottled off by continuing his kickoff prowess. Hopkins kicked off four times and registered two touchbacks. Oklahoma’s longest return was 18 yards and they never began a series following a kickoff beyond its own 20-yard line. Hopkins is 6-of-6 on field goal attempts this season and has converted all 13 of his PAT attempts. In addition to his streak of 13 consecutive successful field goals, Hopkins has now converted 99 consecutive PATs and is just nine shy of tying the Florida State record held by Derek Schmidt since 1986.”
FISHER’S QUOTE OF THE DAY
“Moral victories are not what we are here for.”