Jan. 24, 2012
By: Brandon Mellor, Seminoles.com Senior Writer
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — If the target wasn’t on their backs before Michael Snaer hit that surreal game-winner against Duke, it is now.
If the Florida State men’s basketball team was the hunter before bouncing back from the Clemson loss by winning at Virginia Tech, dismantling North Carolina, beating Maryland, and then stunning the Blue Devils on their home floor, that newly sewn-on target now makes it the hunted.
The outcome of the last 16 days has led to a complete role reversal for a Seminoles (13-6, 4-1 Atlantic Coast Conference) team that went from wondering how it would avoid falling to the bottom of the ACC after a blowout loss to to the Tigers to one that now wonders how it will stay perched atop the conference standings. Four consecutive wins — and the manner in which those games were won — will do that.
With 11 league games still to play until the ACC Tournament in Atlanta, Ga., including Wednesday’s contest at Wake Forest (11-8, 2-3), FSU players are rallying around and feeding off the idea that they haven’t accomplished anything yet.
“The first thing Coach Ham said after Duke was, ‘Nobody has won the ACC Championship with four wins,'” senior Bernard James said. “So we know we’ve got to keep playing and winning. I think if anything it’s made us more hungry to keep it going. I think we are in a good place right now as far as the spirit of our team and how we’re playing together.
“We are going to do whatever it takes to keep that same focus that we have now.”
Maintaining the same level of strong play that the ‘Noles have exhibited over the four-game winning streak means not taking lightly a Wake Forest team that is 2-3 in the ACC with losses to the same Terrapins and Blue Devils squads that FSU recently defeated.
“They can score points at all four positions … They present some challenges for our defense,” Leonard Hamilton said.
Defensively, “they’ll play as much zone as you allow them to,” Hamilton added.
Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m. and the game will air on the ACC Network and online at ESPN3.com. To see which affiliate will carry the game in your area, click here.
|Stat Comparison||Florida State||Wake Forest|
|FG Percentage Defense||.369||.427|
|3-Pointers Per Game||5.8||5.4|
|Assists Per Game||12.2||11.8|
|Turnovers Per Game||17.7||13.3|
|Blocked Shots Per Game||6.6||4.8|
|Steals Per Game||8.8||6.9|