Dec. 19, 2008
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The Seminole football team opened practices for the 2008 season inside the FSU Basketball Training Facility on August 7. Almost five months later the team participated in its final practice in Tallahassee for the season. The team spent 18 periods continuing to prepare for the Wisconsin Badgers before breaking for the weekend. The next time the team sees each other it will be in Orlando for a Monday afternoon practice.
· Florida State practiced for 18 periods in uppers and spent a majority of the practice versus Wisconsin scout teams.
· The last six periods took place inside the stadium.
· In 1-on-1 Christian Ponder completed two passes to Greg Carr, Corey Surrency and Jarmon Fortson. He completed a pass to Richard Goodman, Rod Owens, Bert Reed and Cameron Wade as well. Drew Weatherford hit Fortson, Louis Givens, Carr, Goodman and Wade. Ochuko Jenije had two pass break-ups and A.J. Alexander broke up a pass as well.
· In pass rush Andrew Datko and Rodney Hudson won multiple rounds. David Spurlock, Joe Tonga, Rhonne Sanderson, Ryan McMahon and Zebrie Sanders had wins as well. Everette Brown, Paul Griffin and Moses McCray got two sacks a piece. Everett Dawkins, Benjamin Lampkin and Kevin McNeil also got sacks.
· In 7-on-7 Christian Ponder and Bert Reed once again were in sync as the two hooked up for a couple completions. Ponder also found Carr three times. Weatherford had single completions to Wade, Owens, Avis Commack and Goodman. D’Vontrey Richardson completed a pass to Jarmon Fortson. Michael Ray Garvin had two break-ups.
· In 11-on-11 the ends were a nightmare for the Seminole offense. Brown recorded two sacks and Markus White had a pressure. Justin Mincey also had a QB pressure working from the inside. Ponder and Reed connected for a couple completions and Weatherford hit Jermaine Thomas twice.
· The defense, especially the ends, had another great drill in 1:00. Brown had two pressures as did White. Kevin McNeil had a sack and Kendrick Stewart’s pressure led to a Toddrick Verdell interception but the play was wiped out due to a penalty. Verdell also had a QB pressure. Ponder had a nice completion to Commack and also hit Carr.
Head coach Bobby Bowden
“I can’t ever remember with as many bowls as we have been to, a time when it has been so pleasant. The weather has been so dag gum good. I can remember sitting up on that tower just freezing to death this time of year. Boy, we have been able to get all of our practices in and like I said it’s been pleasant. We have done about everything that we have set out to do. Now, the boys will have a couple days off and we will meet them down there (Orlando) and start working out on the 22nd (Monday) that afternoon. We will go through the regular routine until the ball game.”
On dealing with fewer practices leading up to the bowl game:
“Our plan, since we were limited in days because of final exams and Santa Claus, we had a couple two-a-days planned which we do not like to do. We went through two-a-days on Monday and then had planned to do it again on Tuesday or Thursday. But then after going through it on that first day, we felt like we would actually accomplish more by being able to look at film and study film and see what you did wrong. When you go two-a-days, you feel like you are hard pressed, you have a hard time doing anything. Coaches have a hard time preparing for the next practice. Normally we work 14 days for a ball game and have 14 practices. This time if we get all of our things in next week it will be 13 practices. We feel like we are getting the same results. I don’t think it is (a concern); you can only do so much. We got in everything that we wanted to get in and so now it’s a matter of going out there and executing.”
On what he would like to see from his team in this year’s bowl game:
“You would like to see some good performances by some guys. You would like to see the seniors go out with a plus and the young guys getting good experience and show what they got. I think that would be the big thing.”
On how much more he has watched Wisconsin:
“Well, I looked at a lot of them last week before we started practice. They are a very good, tough, aggressive, physical football team. They play mighty good, they are like us, they could have won a very more games…they are very physical; they are very good, they come after you. ”
QB Christian Ponder:
On how practice has been this week:
“Good, I think this whole week has been pretty good. I think everyone came off that two weeks that we had off and just have been coming to practice well and hard so I thought this week has gone pretty well.”
On having the weekend off before reporting on Monday in Orlando:
“I think it’s good to get away for a little weekend but come Monday I’m gonna be pretty excited for this bowl week and we’re gonna have to come back and practice hard again.”
On the importance of the bowl game:
“It’s very important for me to end on a positive note, you know the season has been full of ups and downs and it will be good to end it on the right way and send out the seniors on the right foot. Kind of have a spring board going to off season. We have a lot of things to fix this off season and with a win it will make things even easier.”
On his thoughts about Wisconsin:
“They’re definitely big, they got some big guys from up north, that’s how all those northern teams are. So we’re gonna have to use our speed and some different things to our advantage. They’re a little like Boston College so we’ll have to push them around, it’s gonna be hard.”
On the team’s determination for the final game of the year:
“I think a lot of guys are determined to get nine wins this season, and that’s one of our big goals right now and that’s what we’re working hard for. A lot of guys are determined to come out on the right way and end the season right. So I think a lot of guys will be playing hard.”
LB Kenny Ingram:
On this being his last game in his hometown:
“This is an exciting time for me right now. I started playing football there, my first game was in that bowl so now I’m gonna go there.”
On his first game at the Citrus Bowl:
“This was a Pop Warner game, one of my first games was ever in there so it’s gonna feel good to end in there. I was entering high school so 14. It was my first time ever playing, I was scared. I was nervous, I was real nervous, I ain’t gonna lie.”
On his career at Florida State:
“I would say it was a hard journey for me. Had to stay focused on it and I know what I really wanted to do was play football. So when I first got here it was all about football, football, football and I put my academics behind. So I went ahead and got my mind right in my books and went ahead and did what I had to do.”