Dec. 27, 2003
Miami, FL –
The Seminoles returned to Barry University Saturday morning as they continued to prepare for the 2004 Orange Bowl versus 10th-ranked Miami. The Tribe practiced for 20 periods in pads and the session featured extensive work versus the scout teams. Florida State wrapped the day up with pass skeleton and goal line.
“It was a good practice today,” said head coach Bobby Bowden. “They got some spirited work in today and we are getting in everything we can in the time we have allotted.”
The defense and particularly Rufus Brown starred once the team moved into 1-on-1, pass skeleton and 11-on-11. In 1-on-1, Brown recorded two interceptions in the end zone, one came on a diving catch in the corner. Stanford Samuels was impressive as well with two pass break ups and Leroy Smith also broke up a pass in the end zone. When the team moved into pass skeleton, Brown recorded his third INT before quarterback Chris Rix and Chauncey Stovall hooked up on a pass to the goal line. It was the second deep connection of the day between the two.
As tough as it was for the offense in practice Saturday, the Seminoles will be seriously tested by a Hurricane defense that limited FSU to 296 total yards in their first meeting, which is just 12 yards more than the Tribe averaged through the air per game in 2003. It is also 123 yards less than FSU’s total yards per game average.
Florida State averaged over 430 yards per game in its final two contests of the year against Florida and NC State and in FSU’s last five wins since the last meeting with the Hurricanes, the Tribe has posted at least 390 yards in each game including three games with more than 425 yards.
“I think we (the offense) are a lot better now. We are playing more together as a team,” said center David Castillo. “We made a lot of mistakes during the season and I think we have corrected those mistakes. We have guys at some key positions that have stepped up to the challenge. Hopefully when we see Miami we will be able to show them we are a lot better team than we were in October.”
The Tribe will return to Barry University Sunday, December 28 as they continue preparations for the Orange Bowl. For all the latest news on the 2004 OB or Seminole football please log on to the official athletic site for the Florida State University Department of Athletics at www.seminoles.com.