FSU Practice Report: Continued Cross-Training

FSU Practice Report: Continued Cross-Training

Jimbo Fisher was especially complimentary of freshman Trey Marshall in his postgame comments and talked about the importance of training players at multiple formations.

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The reigning national champion Florida State football team practiced in helmets and shorts during a productive session on Wednesday afternoon at the Albert J. Dunlap Athletic Training Facility.

The Seminoles will hold just one more practice on Thursday before the annual Spring Game at 3 p.m. (ESPN) on Saturday at Doak Campbell Stadium.

"A very productive practice," Florida State head coach Jimbo Fisher said. "I liked it even though it was only with helmets and shorts. We did a lot of clock management situations – end of the game, before the half, third down stuff, a lot of blitz stuff. I was very happy with the work we put in today. We got something accomplished and got better in a lot of areas. We made some mistakes but then we corrected them. We got a lot of good teaching in. I'm very happy with the way the day went."

Following practice, Fisher talked about the importance of versatility as several players are learning multiple positions this spring, including defensive ends Mario Edwards, Jr. and Chris Casher.

"Those guys (Edwards and Casher) are being very multiple with what they have to do, inside and outside," Fisher said. "They are doing a very nice job. Those guys can create mismatches with pass rushes, getting on a back, getting on a guard, getting on a tackle, how a protection goes. We are just trying to create guys that can create plays on the quarterback."

Edwards was an All-ACC Third Team selection last fall as a sophomore and came up huge on the biggest stage, tallying 3.0 tackles for loss in the BCS National Championship Game versus Auburn.

Casher appeared in 13 games last season as a redshirt freshman and totaled 25 tackles and 5.0 TFLs.

Overall, Fisher and his staff are excited about Saturday's spring game because the atmosphere of a live crowd is something the Seminoles can't duplicate in regular practice or scrimmage.

"The spring game is important to me," Fisher said. "You get a live scoreboard. You get 30, 40, 50 thousand people – however many come to the game – and you get out there and get nervous. You can't simulate that. I don't care how many times. You are walking into that stadium with live things happening that count in front of a TV that is in front of fans. Just how they respond at all positions. I think it is very critical. That is why I try and emphasize a big crowd. It is as close as you can to simulating a game."


Jimbo Fisher Post-Practice Quotes – April 9, 2014

Interview audio available via the Unconquered Podcast here.

Opening Statement:

"A very productive practice. I liked it even though it was only with helmets and shorts. We did a lot of clock management situations – end of the game, before the half, third down stuff, a lot of blitz stuff. I was very happy with the work we put in today. We got something accomplished and got better in a lot of areas. We made some mistakes but then we corrected them. We got a lot of good teaching in. I'm very happy with the way the day went."

On what there is to gain when practicing without pads:

"Situational football, consistently. How to do things consistently and then how to go out and hustle hard. Clock management. You have go to be able to understand red zone, tight zone, third down, third and short, third and long, two minutes before the half, two minutes before the game, you have three timeouts, you have two timeouts, you have no timeouts, you need a field goal, you need a touchdown. Many of those things you can do over and over and pound it in their head to understand situational football. When it comes down to good teams that is what it is going to come down to and who can manage those situations. That is what we are constantly trying to do right now."

On defensive end Mario Edwards learning all the positions on the defensive line:

"He and [Chris] Casher both. Mario is doing a lot and Casher is doing a lot. Those guys are being very multiple with what they have to do, inside and outside. They are doing a very nice job. Those guys can create mismatches with pass rushes, getting on a back, getting on a guard, getting on a tackle, how a protection goes. We are just trying to create guys that can create plays on the quarterback."

On how linebacker Matthew Thomas has been looking this spring:

"He looks really well. He is really learning inside. He is getting off blocks better. He is so instinctive and flashes and gets to a point. He can tackle. He is a great space player. He is 228 pounds. He is running well, playing well. He is a really good player."

On how players handle coaching:

"It's not personal. When it gets in between these white lines they know. When I go off this field I am for these kids one-thousand percent. When you get in between these white lines there is a standard in which you can't go below and there is an expectation on our part as coaches and their part as players. It is our job to make you the player you can be not the one you are. You have to understand it is not a personal thing. We are not attacking you personally. You have to take coaching."

On left tackle Cameron Erving playing center:

"If he has to be. We are pleased with [Austin] Barron. We just keep developing centers. You can't have enough and he is very athletic in there. Barron is playing very well and doing a nice job, but he [Erving] is a very good center also. He has big time capabilities. Sometimes you get bigger bodies at different positions and you can move him in there. He is very intelligent. It is very critical."

On quarterback Jameis Winston playing both baseball and football:

"He likes baseball and he likes football. Whatever he has to do for his teams to play just like he did last year. That is part of being a two-sport guy. You have to balance that and do that. Very few are capable and he is one of them."

On early enrollee defensive back Trey Marshall:

"Trey Marshall is a real player. Trey Marshall is (the real deal) now. He is going to be a good player here for a long time. He can do a lot of things. He can play safety, he can play corner, he can play nickel and he can play dime. He is a smart guy. Smart guys win."

On the importance of a spring game:

"I think knowledge and how they compete is critical. Going out there in front of a live crowd. The spring game is important to me. You get a live scoreboard. You get 30-, 40-, 50,000 people however many come to the game and you get out there and get nervous. You can't simulate that. I don't care how many times. You are walking into that stadium with live things happening that count in front of a TV that is in front of fans. Just how they respond at all positions. I think it is very critical. That is why I try and emphasize a big crowd. It is as close as you can to simulating a game."

Audio of a post-practice interview with redshirt freshman nose tackle Keith Bryant is available here.

Audio of a post-practice interview with sophomore wide receiver Jesus Wilson is available here.

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