Dec. 12, 2008
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – For the first time this month the Seminole football team did something they had done almost every day since August…practice. Following some time off for final exams, FSU football returned to the practice Friday and began to prepare for the Champs Sports Bowl and the team’s first-ever meeting with Wisconsin.
· Florida State practiced for 12 periods in shorts on the game field.
· The Seminoles got their first look at the Badgers versus the scout team on Friday.
· In 7-on-7 Ponder had a nice drill. The sophomore found Owens and then connected twice with Carr and Bert Reed. Ponder had a deep TD pass to each of those receivers. Drew Weatherford went deep for a TD to Surrency and also hit Fortson and Louis Givens. Richardson found Givens as well and also connected with Reed who turned in a nice, long run after the catch.
Head coach Bobby Bowden
“I think everybody was here tonight. Tomorrow there will be some boys missing because of graduation but we will just have to work around them. It was a pretty good warm-up tonight, a good way to start.”
On how the team has responded mentally from the Florida game:
“We have practiced well all year whether we have won or lost. That’s the one good thing about the bowl game is that it gives you one more game to avenge yourself.”
On Graham Gano winning the Groza Award:
“Yeah, boy that was good. I knew that thing was getting tight. They had some good kickers in there. We are just very happy for him.”
On his tribute during the College Football Award show in Orlando on Thursday night:
“Well that was good. It was unexpected. I knew they were going to present some kind of award but I wasn’t sure what it was. They did a good job of presenting it and I appreciate them having Ann up there with us. You can’t do it without a good wife. The whole evening was very nice; I was very impressed with the whole program. There were a lot of coaches there, a lot of excellent players (in attendance).”
Senior linebacker Derek Nicholson
On the Champs Sports Bowl being his last game at Florida State:
“It went by fast. Wisconsin is a very good football team. We are all excited to play this game.”
On the challenges that Wisconsin brings to the game:
“They are your more traditional I-Back, one-back set. They are big; they have a big running back and they are good running football team.”
On getting back to practice after the completion of final exams:
“It was good to be back out here and get some work in. Being away from it, you miss it (football) a little bit. It was just good to get back out on the field and get some work done.”
Senior place kicker Graham Gano
On winning the Groza Award:
“It was amazing. I really didn’t expect it with all that happened this year, but it was a pretty exciting experience. I thought the other guys had just as good a shot of winning it if not better especially (Louie) Sakoda from Utah. He had a great season and his team is undefeated. I thought out of all of us that he was going to get it.”
On if winning this award has really sunk in:
“I don’t think it has at all. Maybe when I see the trophy, it will all sink in.”