Blog Entry

Daily Surf Report: FSU's disappointing start

Posted on: September 26, 2011 11:00 am
Edited on: September 26, 2011 1:28 pm
The Oklahoma loss was painful, but FSU's loss at Clemson is potentially and excruciatingly devastating, writes Mike Bianchi.

This heart-wrenching, nail-biting 35-30 defeat to Clemson hurts so badly because it puts a Florida State season of such promise and potential on life support. The national title is gone. The conference title is in jeopardy. "We were our own worst enemy," Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher said after his team committed 11 game-changing penalties for 124 momentum-sapping yards.

It's now official: Florida State is not back. Not even close. Can we agree upon that now?

I got loads of hate mail from FSU fans last week when I had the audacity to chastise the ridiculous concept that the Seminoles should be satisfied by keeping it close and "only" losing by 10 points to No. 1-ranked Oklahoma. I said it then and I'll say it again: Moral victories are for directional schools, not big-time college football programs.

I was on the Noles bandwagon coming into this season. I didn't think they'd win the BCS title, but I thought they'd be a top-five team. They still might be able to get there this year, but it does not look good right now. They're just 113th in rushing, 105th in sacks allowed and 87th in turnover margin despite opening against two woeful opponents. The biggest issues for them emerged in Death Valley on defense, where they really lost focus and committed back-breaking penalties and some assignment busts. They just couldn't get off the field on third downs as Tajh Boyd, a guy who had only a handful of starts, playing in a new system, carved them up.  On top of that, Greg Reid, their top CB, has had the kind of off-field problems you wouldn't expect from a junior trying to show he's a leader.

I know the Noles are killing it recruiting. Of course, they always seem to be killing it in recruiting. It's the focus on the field, which Jimbo Fisher said all off-season he was confident was getting there, that has been lacking. Up next for them is five straight games against teams they should pound before they host a Miami team that looks pretty shaky too. I'm not sure they can prove to anyone outside of FSU diehards that they are even close to back until the final week of the regular season when they visit the Swamp.

*One of Miami's top commits, Miami Norland High School LB Keith Brown visited Clemson over the weekend and "loved" it and told CaneSport that while he would still consider himself a very soft Hurricane commitment, he also says "most likely I won't be going to Miami."

Because Brown wants to know what NCAA sanctions UM faces before he graduates in December. He doesn't want to wind up on campus in January and find out about any punishment afterward. What would it take from the NCAA to keep him on board with Miami? "Probably no bowl games and no TV time and taking scholarships away," Brown said. "One year is no problem. Probably two or three (would cause him to go elsewhere)."

Thing is, Miami almost certainly will NOT know its fate with the NCAA by Signing Day, much less in December when mid-year signees would need to know.
*Mike Locksley was fired over the weekend. The move comes as no surprise. His time at New Mexico was a complete debacle. In fact, it was a tour de force for coaching ineptitude. He was 2-26 and, it wasn't like they were close. The Lobos were getting drilled by teams, not close to turning the corner. Worse still, he himself had all sorts of embarrassing issues off the field on top of that. I was stunned he got a third season. 

*The Randy Edsall Era at Maryland has begun with a thud and John Feinstein isn't buying that the former UCONN coach was brought in to rebuild a wreck of a program.

“This is a process we are in,” Edsall said after the Terrapins’ humiliating 38-7 loss to Temple on Saturday. “It was not going to get changed overnight no matter how much I want it to.”

Saturday was not a good day for Edsall on any level and, while he was candid in admitting that his team wasn’t ready to play (no kidding) it was a cop-out for him to fall back on the “this is a process” cliche. Al Golden, who took over at Temple in 2006 when the Owls had been kicked out of the Big East and had gone 38-151 under three coaches in 17 seasons, had a real process to go through.

Edsall needs to spend less time making announcements about uniforms and more time getting them ready to play in those uniforms.

Finestein makes a good point. Edsall inherited a team with the best QB in the ACC. Danny O'Brien is the kind of building block few others have. The Terps also have some pretty good talent on defense. There are some holes, but going into this season, this looked like an eight-win team. Now, after a dismal 1-2 start with a hefty ACC stretch coming in early October, you wonder if this team will even make it to a bowl game.
*After getting blown out in the fourth quarter at ASU, the USC offense merits a D+ grade, writes Michael Lev.
QB Matt Barkley missed Woods for a touchdown, threw two interceptions (one returned for a touchdown) and lost a fumble on a sack. … The offense converted only 1 of 9 third-down attempts and scored touchdowns on just 2 of 6 trips into the red zone.
Heading into the weekend, I'd received some Tweets from some Trojan fans grousing about why Barkley wasn't being included in more Heisman talk. My feeling was that despite some impressive stats, the jury was still out on whether Barkley should be in the discussion with other Heisman contenders. He has struggled late in games and in crunch time. He and this USC team also haven't shined in many big spots against tough competition. Those are the kinds of things you must do to be seriously in the Heisman mix in the end.

The way they fell apart Saturday night has become shockingly common with this USC program in the past few years now. They also seemingly have too much talent at their skill positions to be only 79th in offense. We'll see if they can get it sorted out. The Trojans have a very interesting October coming up with games at Cal, at Notre Dame and then against Stanford. Those are games that people will keep an eye on. Not against Syracuse and Minnesota.


Category: NCAAF

Since: Jul 1, 2008
Posted on: October 6, 2011 12:36 am

Daily Surf Report: FSU's disappointing start

5-7 and no bowl game! FSU wins by at least 14 in Hogtown!

Since: Nov 12, 2007
Posted on: September 26, 2011 6:19 pm

Daily Surf Report: FSU's disappointing start

Nailed this one. Two teams have been constantly overrated the past few years; Florida State and South Carolina. Unlike FSU, South Carolina can't hide their flaws once they get into the SEC where they might be ranked in the top ten at the start of conference play, but end up with 3-4 losses when it is all over. FSU will most likely finished 9-3 based on their weak conference foes. And we'll sit and watch them be ranked in the top 15 at the start of the next season till they do the same thing again.

Since: Sep 26, 2011
Posted on: September 26, 2011 2:54 pm

Daily Surf Report: FSU's disappointing start

Fla state has been in the top recruiting classes in the last ten years - what does that say? It says that both the coaching and the recruiting services are poor performers

Since: Feb 27, 2011
Posted on: September 26, 2011 2:21 pm

Daily Surf Report: FSU's disappointing start

How about this... Instead of writing about Florida State not living up to the hype, how about they were beat by a good Clemson team? A Team that has put 1100+ yards of offense on twwo ranked teams in back to back weeks. Try that idiot... Florida State didn't lose.. they were beat!

Since: May 21, 2009
Posted on: September 26, 2011 2:09 pm

Daily Surf Report: FSU's disappointing start

FSU was never back , that was just a media who is right maybe 30% of the time saying they were after a 4 loss season....4 losses in a avg at best conference doesnt make you "back" what, FSU beat UF, UF sucked last year.....way to go...1 win in 7 years, wow!!!! FSU is still an average team and just bc the media syas yiur recruiting well doesnt translate into a top 5 many 5 star recruits did Meyer recuit?  8-5 last season....that matters nothing and fsu needs to win something bf their ignorant obnoxious fans start yapping their gums.....FSU is average and will be no better than a 4 loss team AGAIN....and you arent beating UF.....UF is going to embarrass the crap out of you and maybe well let your fans put of Gainesville with a lil more class than FSU fans allowed us out last year.....classless bunch of overrated losers

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