March 11, 2008
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. –
Florida State, which won four of its last five regular season games, enters the 55th Annual Atlantic Coast Conference as the ninth seed and will face eighth-seeded Wake Forest in the first game of the tournament on Thursday, March 13, 2008 at 12 Noon in the Charlotte Bobcats Arena in Charlotte, N.C. The Seminoles won their final game of the regular season with a 75-72 overtime victory over Miami in a game played at the Donald L. Tucker Center in Tallahassee. The victory for the Seminoles concluded a regular season which saw them finish their conference schedule with a 7-9 record to mark the third consecutive season they had won at least seven conference games. It marks the first time in school history that Florida State has won at least seven ACC games in three consecutive years since joining the ACC for the 1991-92 season. Florida State has a cumulative record of 23-25 in conference play in the last three seasons (9-7 in 2005-06; 7-9 in 2006-07 and 7-9 in 2007-08) and has won more conference games in the last three seasons under Head Coach Leonard Hamilton then they did during the 2001-02 through 2004-05 seasons (22-58). The winner of the Florida State vs. Wake Forest game will face top seeded North Carolina on Friday at 12 Noon in the quarterfinal round of the ACC Tournament. The semifinals of the event will be played at 1:30 and 3:30 p.m. on Saturday with the ACC championship game set for 1:00 p.m. on Sunday.
DOUGLAS EARNS ALL-ACC THIRD-TEAM HONORS
Junior guard Toney Douglas — who leads the ACC in steals (career-high 2.77 spg) and ranks eighth in the league in scoring (15.8 ppg) earned All-ACC Third-Team Honors — and All-ACC Defensive team honors as announced by the Atlantic Coast Sports Media Association. It marks the second time Douglas has earned all-conference honors during his career after he was named to the All-SEC Third Team as a freshman during the 2004-05 season. Douglas’ selection to the All-ACC Third-Team marks the third consecutive season that a Florida State player has been named to the All-ACC first, second or third team. All-American Al Thornton was an All-ACC First-Team selection and the ACC Player of the Year runner-up in 2008 and an All-ACC Second-Team selection in 2007.
SEMINOLES IN THE ACC TOURNAMENT
Florida State has an all-time record of 6-16 in 16 previous appearances in the ACC Tournament. The Seminoles defeated NC State, 93-80, on March 13, 1992 in their first ever tournament game. Florida State is 5-5 in first rounds games and will face Wake Forest in a first round game on March 13, 2008 at the Charlotte Bobcats Arena. The Seminoles have advanced to the quarterfinals 10 times with their most recent appearance in that round coming in 2007. The Seminoles were the No. 2 seed in the 1992 and 1993 tournaments.
HAMILTON TO COACH 600TH CAREER GAME AGAINST WAKE FOREST
Seminole head coach Leonard Hamilton will coach his 600th career game against Wake Forest in the first round of the 2008 ACC Tournament. Hamilton, who has built his reputation as a master program-builder, won his 300th career game against Virginia on Jan. 23.
LOOK FOR FLORIDA STATE TO…
…Defeat Wake Forest and win its first round game in the ACC Tournament for the second consecutive season. The Seminoles defeated Clemson, 67-66, to begin the 2007 ACC Tournament. It would mark the first time since the 2002 and 2003 ACC Tournaments that the Seminoles have won at least one game in consecutive ACC Tournaments;
…Defeat Wake Forest and gain their first win of the season against the Demon Deacons. The Seminoles fell twice to the Deacons during the 2007-08 regular season;
…Defeat Wake Forest and gain its first ever win over Wake Forest in the ACC Tournament. The Seminoles lost to the Demon Deacons during the 1997 (March 7, 1997; 65-66), 2003 (March 14, 2003; 61-69) and 2006 (March 9, 2006; 66-78) ACC Tournaments;
…Defeat Wake Forest and win its 19th game of the season and improve its record to 19-13. It would mark the third consecutive season the Seminoles would reach the 19-win plateau and would mark the first time since the 1990-91 (21-11, Metro Conference Tournament Champions), 1991-92 (22-10, NCAA Tournament Sweet 16) and 1992-93 seasons (25-10, NCAA Tournament Elite 8).
OOKING INTO THE SEMINOLES RECORD
Florida State finished its regular season with an overall record of 18-13 and an ACC record of 7-9. It marks the fourth time in the last five seasons that the Seminoles have won at least 18 games and the third consecutive season they have won at least seven ACC games. The Seminoles have won at least 18 games in four of the first six seasons of the Leonard Hamilton era at Florida State. The Seminoles finished with a 13-4 record at home and a winning percentage of .764. It marked the third consecutive season the Seminoles have won at least 75 percent of their home games after recording a 14-3 record at home during the 2006-07 season for a winning percentage of .823 – the third best home winning percentage in school history. The Seminoles finished with a 4-4 record in home conference games marking the third consecutive season the Seminoles have won at least four conference games at home in the Donald L. Tucker Center.
FLORIDA STATE UNDER Leonard Hamilton
Florida State enters the 2008 ACC Tournament with an 18-13 record. The Seminoles have a 105-84 record (.556 winning percentage) under sixth-year Head Coach Leonard Hamilton and average 17.5 victories during the first six years of the Hamilton era in Tallahassee. Florida State has won at least 18 games in four of the last five seasons and average 18.2 wins per season since winning 19 games and advancing to the second round of the NIT during the 2004 season.
SEMINOLES LOOKING TO WRITE THEMSELVES INTO THE ACC RECORD BOOK
Florida State enters the 2008 ACC Tournament with the highest team free throw shooting percentage in school history and the eighth best single-season percentage in ACC history. The Seminoles, who lead the ACC free throw shooting percentages, are looking to lead the conference in free throw shooting percentage for the second consecutive season. Florida State ranked first in the ACC during the 2006-07 season with a .758 mark.
FLORIDA STATE RANKED FIFTH NATIONALLY IN FREE THROW SHOOTING
Florida State continues to prove itself as one of the most accurate free throw shooting teams in the nation as it enters the 2008 ACC Tournament. The Seminoles have made 498 free throws this season and enter the ACC Tournament ranked FIRST IN THE ACC AND FIFTH IN THE NATION IN FREE THROW SHOOTING PERCENTAGE. The Seminoles have shot better than 70 percent from the line in each of the last three seasons and led the ACC with a school record .758 mark from the line during the 2006-07 season.
FLORIDA STATE FROM THE FREE THROW LINE
Florida State enters the 2008 ACC Tournament having made 498 free throws and is looking to surpass the 500 mark for the 14th time in school history. The school record is 707 free throws made in 1955.
PROBABLE STARTERS FOR FLORIDA STATE F #41 Uche Echefu (10.4 ppg, 7.1 rpg; 13 pts and 11 rebs vs. Wake Forest, Jan. 20, 2008) F #42 Ryan Reid (5.0 ppg, 4.8 rpg; 2 pts and 7 rebs vs. Wake Forest, Jan. 20, 2008) G #10 Ralph Mims (11.4 ppg, 1.7 apg; 17 pts and 2 stls vs. Wake Forest, Jan. 20, 2008) G #23 Toney Douglas (15.8 ppg, 2.7 spg; 28 pts and 2 stls vs. Wake Forest, Feb. 14, 2008) G #25 Jason Rich (14.2 ppg, 4.4 rpg; 25 pts and 6 rebs vs. Wake Forest, Feb. 14, 2008) ...AND TOP RESERVES F #2 Jordan Demercy (1.4 ppg, 1.3 rpg; 0 pts and 4 rebs vs. Wake Forest, Feb. 14, 2008) F #21 Julian Vaughn (2.9 ppg, 2.5 rpg; 5 pts and 5 rebs vs. Wake Forest, Feb. 14, 2008) F #33 Matt Zitani (1.6 ppg, 1.3 rpg; 2 pts and 1 stl vs. Wake Forest, Feb. 14, 2008)
PROBABLE STARTERS FOR WAKE FOREST... F # 31 Jamie Skeen (5.8 ppg, 4.1 rpg; 6 pts and 7 rebs vs. Wake Forest, Feb. 14, 2008) C # 13 Chas McFarland (8.6 ppg, 5.8 rpg; 17 pts and 10 rebs vs. Florida State, Feb. 14, 2008) G # 00 Jeff Teague (13.8 ppg, 1.9 spg; 18 pts and 6 asts vs. Florida State, Feb. 14, 2008) G # 10 Ishmael Smith (8.6 ppg, 4.7 apg; 7 pts and 9 asts vs. Florida State, Jan. 27, 2007) G # 42 L.D. Williams (9.0 ppg, 3.9 rpg; 10 pts and 4 rebs vs. Florida State, Feb. 14, 2008)
FLORIDA STATE VS. WAKE FOREST - A SERIES HISTORY The Series: Wake Forest leads, 22-15 Last Game: Feb. 14, 2008; Wake Forest 78, at Florida State 70 Last Florida State Win: Jan. 27, 2007; at Florida State 77, Wake Forest 66 Last Wake Forest Win: Feb. 14, 2008; Wake Forest 78, at Florida State 70 Last Florida State Win in ACC Tournament: None Last Wake Forest Win in ACC Tournament: March 9, 2006; Wake Forest 78, Florida State 66 Current Streak: Wake Forest has won 2 Leonard Hamilton vs. Wake Forest: 4-9
FLORIDA STATE VS. WAKE FOREST – MEETING ONE IN 2008
James Johnson scored 21 of his career-high 26 points in the second half and Wake Forest defeated Florida State, 74-57 on Jan. 20, 2008 at the Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Johnson, a freshman, overcame early foul trouble by dominating the second half. He spearheaded a 13-0 run to put the Demon Deacons ahead to stay, then hit a 3-pointer and had a steal and dunk to put Wake Forest ahead 68-55 with 4:48 left. Jeff Teague added 12 points and Harvey Hale scored 10 for Wake Forest. Ralph Mims had 17 points, Uche Echefu scored all 13 of his points in the first half and Toney Douglas came off the bench to score 10 on 4-of-13 shooting for Florida State. Echefu dominated early, including a 3-pointer that put the Seminoles ahead 23-14. Florida State led 31-28 halftime lead.
FLORIDA STATE VS. WAKE FOREST – MEETING TWO IN 2008
Jeff Teague scored 18 points and Chas McFarland recorded his first career double-double to lead Wake Forest to a 78-70 victory over Florida State on Feb. 14, 2008 at the Donald L. Tucker Center in Tallahassee. McFarland also had three blocked shots. He disrupted Florida State’s inside game as the Seminole front court was limited to only 10 points. Wake Forest hit its first eight 3-pointers and built a 41-20 lead on its way to a 42-26 halftime lead. Florida State rallied to within 50-47 before two McFarland layups and a free throw led a 14-2 run that put the Demon Deacons up 64-49. Toney Douglas scored 28 points and Jason Rich added 25 for Florida State, which shot just 30 percent in the first half.