March 7, 2008
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. –
Florida State, which has won three of its last four games, plays host to Miami on Senior Day as the program honors four of its favorite players – seniors Ralph Mims, Jason Rich and Isaiah Swann and graduate student Matt Zitani. The Seminoles game against the Hurricanes is scheduled for Saturday, March 8 at 12 Noon at the Donald L. Tucker Center. The Seminoles have won three consecutive and four of the last five senior day games. The Seminoles have won both of their last two home games with victories over Clemson (Feb. 19; 64-55) and Boston College (Feb. 23; 66-63) and enters Saturday’s game against the Hurricanes looking to even their home record in ACC play at 4-4 for the season. Saturday’s game against Miami marks the third consecutive season the Seminoles and Hurricanes will play their respective final conference games of the season against one another – Florida State has won both of the last two games to close out the 2006-07 and 2007-08 seasons. Florida State begins play in the ACC Tournament on Thursday at the Charlotte Bobcats Arena in Charlotte, N.C. The Seminoles’ first round opponent will not be decided until the final conference games of the season are played.
ALL-ACC CANDIDATE Toney Douglas CHASING ACC STEALS TITLE
Junior All-ACC candidate Toney Douglas – the ACC’s Chief Thief – enters Saturday’s game against Miami as one of the most consistent all-around players in the ACC this season. He is ranked first in the ACC in steals (83) and steals per game (2.77) while ranking ninth in scoring (15.8 ppg), eighth in field goal percentage (.450), 10th in free throw percentage (.816), tied for ninth in 3-point field goals made (56) and third in minutes played (35.02 mpg). Douglas has scored in double figures in each of the Seminoles’ 30 games this season and in 32 consecutive dating back to last season and is looking to become the fourth Seminole in ACC history to lead the league in steals.
RICH IN THE ACC’S TOP-20 IN SCORING
Senior All-ACC candidate Jason Rich, who tied his career-high and established his ACC career-high with 27 points against No. 1 North Carolina on Tuesday night, enters Saturday’s game against Miami ranked 16th in the ACC in scoring with a 14.1 points per game average. He has an even higher scoring average in ACC play as he ranks 10th in the league play with a 16.2 points per game average.
LOOK FOR FLORIDA STATE TO…
…Defeat Miami and win its fifth consecutive game against the Hurricanes. The Seminoles have won three road games and their last home game – all consecutively – against the Hurricanes;
…Defeat Miami and win its seventh ACC game of the season to finish its conference season with a 7-9 record. It would mark the third consecutive season the Seminoles have won at least seven ACC games for the first time in school history. Florida State finished the season with a 9-7 record (fifth place) during the 2005-06 season and was 7-9 in league play (tied for eight place) during the 2006-07 season;
…Defeat Miami and earn a regular season two-game series sweep of the Hurricanes for the second consecutive season. The Seminoles defeated the Hurricanes earlier this season (Feb. 6; 62-55) in Coral Gables.
FLORIDA STATE PERFECT FROM THE FREE THROW LINE
Florida State, which leads the ACC and is ranked fifth in the nation in free throw shooting percentage, tied the school record for perfection from the free throw line in a single game with at least 10 attempts against Maryland on Feb. 16. The Seminoles were a perfect 10-of-10 from the free throw line against the Terps to mark the third time in school history a Florida State team has made all of at least 10 shots from the free throw lines.
SEMINOLES WITH SINGLE-DIGIT TURNOVERS IN THE LAST TWO GAMES
Florida State is averaging a scant 7.0 turnovers per game in its last two games – both played on Tobacco Road in the state of North Carolina. The Seminoles committed a season-low six turnovers in their victory over NC State (72-62; Feb. 27) and turned the ball over only eight times in at North Carolina on Tuesday night (77-90; March 4). Florida State’s 14 turnovers in the last two games are fewer than they have committed in 17 different games this season.
FLORIDA STATE’S BLOCK PARTY
Florida State earned two blocked shots against North Carolina (one by Julian Vaughn and one by Jordan Demercy) and has now blocked 116 shots as a team this season. The Seminoles have blocked as many shots in 30 games this season (116) as they did in 35 games during the 2006-07 season (116). Florida State’s 116 blocked shots this season is as many as last season and ranks as the most blocked shots in a single-season by the Seminoles since the 2002-03 season when they blocked a total of 130 shots. The school record for blocked shots in a single-season is 210 during the 1992-93 season. Florida State’s 116 blocked shots is tied for the 12th best single-season total in school history
SOME NUMBERS TO THINK ABOUT…
…In its six victories in ACC play the Seminoles are holding their opponents to an average of 61.0 points per game. Florida State held two teams – Miami (21.1 points below its season average) and Clemson (24.9 points below its season average) to 55 points in two of its six ACC wins;
…Florida State is 9-0 when it holds its opponents under 40 percent shooting from the field. The Seminoles held both Miami (.309) and Clemson (.308) to close to 30 percent shooting from the field. Miami enters Saturday’s game at Florida State shooting .446 from the field;
…In Florida State’s victory over Miami on Feb. 6, in Coral Gables the Seminoles had only two of their shots blocked and surrendered only four steals to the Hurricanes’ defense. The Hurricanes are averaging nearly five blocked shots (4.8) and more than six steals (6.1) for their 29 games entering Saturday’s game in Tallahassee.
…Florida State has outrebounded its opponent in each of its six ACC wins. The Seminoles outrebounded NC State by 10 rebounds and Clemson by nine rebounds in their recent victories. Florida State finished with seven rebounds more than Miami in its victory over the Hurricanes.
PROBABLE STARTERS FOR FLORIDA STATE F #41 Uche Echefu (10.4 ppg, 7.1 rpg; 13 pts and 3 rebs vs. Miami, Jan. 20, 2007) F #42 Ryan Reid (4.8 ppg, 4.8 rpg; 4 pts and 2 stls vs. Miami, Jan. 20, 2007) G #10 Ralph Mims (11.0 ppg, 1.5 apg; 9 pts and 1 ast vs. Miami, March 3, 2007) G #23 Toney Douglas (15.8 ppg, 2.7 spg; 28 pts and 3 stls vs. Miami, Feb. 6, 2008) G #25 Jason Rich (14.1 ppg, 4.3 rpg; 16 pts and 4 rebs vs. Miami, Jan. 20, 2007) ...AND TOP RESERVES F #2 Jordan Demercy (1.4 ppg, 1.3 rpg; 0 pts and 2 rebs vs. Miami, Feb. 6, 2008) F #21 Julian Vaughn (2.9 ppg, 2.6 rpg; 0 pts and 4 rebs vs. Miami, Feb. 6, 2008) F #33 Matt Zitani (1.5 ppg, 1.1 rpg; 0 pts and 2 rebs vs. Miami, Feb. 6, 2008)
PROBABLE STARTERS FOR MIAMI F #21 Dwayne Collins (9.6 ppg, 6.5 rpg; 8 pts and 5 rebs vs. Florida State, Jan. 29, 2006) C #50 Anthony King (7.2 ppg, 7.4 rpg; 12 pts and 4 rebs vs. Florida State, Jan. 20, 2007) G #1 Lance Hurdle (8.1 ppg, 2.4 apg; 11 pts and 5 asts vs. Florida State, Feb. 6, 2008) G #23 James Dewes (10.5 ppg, 2.7 rpg; 8 pts and 6 rebs vs. Florida State, Feb. 6, 2008) G #33 Jack McLinton (17.2 ppg, 2.4 rpg; 31 pts and 5 asts vs. Florida State, March 3, 2007)
FLORIDA STATE VS. MIAMI - A SERIES HISTORY The Series: Florida State leads the series, 32-27 Last Game: Feb. 6, 2008; Florida State 62, at Miami 55 Last Florida State Win: Feb. 6, 2008; Florida State 62, at Miami 55 Last Miami Win: Jan. 29, 2006; Miami 84, at Florida State 79 (ot) Last Florida State Win in Tallahassee: Jan. 20, 2007; at Florida State 82, Miami 73 Last Miami win in Tallahassee: Jan. 29, 2006; Miami 84, at Florida State 79 (ot) Current Streak: Florida State has won 4 Leonard Hamilton vs. Miami: 6-3 (all at Florida State)
FLORIDA STATE VS. MIAMI – THE LAST MEETING
Toney Douglas scored 28 points to lead Florida State past Miami 62-55, the Seminoles’ fourth straight win in the series. Jason Rich added 14 points and Uche Echefu scored 10 for the Seminoles which used an 11-0 second-half run to take the lead for good. Jack McClinton scored 16 points for Miami. Douglas gave Florida State the spark it needed. He scored 11 points in the final 4:51 of the first half, including his third 3-pointer with one second remaining to give Florida State a 30-25 edge heading into intermission. And Douglas keyed the second-half spurt by the Seminoles, who trailed 37-34 before the 11-0 run that was capped by his fifth 3-pointer with 9:44 remaining. Lance Hurdle’s 3-pointer with 34.1 seconds left got Miami within 58-55, but the Hurricanes – who shot 31 percent – got no closer.