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Tallahassee Democrat from Tallahassee, Florida • Page 58
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Tallahassee Democrat from Tallahassee, Florida • Page 58

Tallahassee, Florida
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i I I mnj Tallahassee Sept. 8, 1985 6F STATE 17, NEBRASKA 13 IT LORIDA ir BillMcGrotha Straight from the ice box to a Nebraska frying pan LINCOLN, Neb. It was early. Players were still asleep. Bobby Bowden sat, sipped coffee and talked of the possible effects Nebraska extraordinary heat might have on the game.

"I would think," said the Florida State coach, if we had not had all that ram from Hurricane Elena, we would have had a tremendous advantage in weather like this. "Only way we could have an advantage now is if Nebraska has not been working out in weather AV WK AAA in a A I A AO: A'' A like this. I understand they have been. After rain and indoor workouts, the heat came to the FSU practice field during the week. Tuesday saw a particularly demanding workout in the heat.

"The kids were dragging around like a bunch of starving cattle in the desert," said Bowden. "We needed that heat. "We had played that first game at Tulane in that air-conditioned dome in that refrigerator, Mark Wallheiser Democrat Stan Shiver (37) and his Florida State teammates converge to make a hit on a Nebraska runner during Saturday's Seminole victory FSU From 1F where 1 wore my jacket And it had been simply imperative we work out in the heat. "We got the heat during this week, and it may have been the biggest break we have had in a long time." Frank DeBord, the equipment manager, had ready the two huge, specially-constructed fans; other measures to help combat the heat were planned. But no one could have anticipated it being 132 degrees on the surface of Memorial Stadium's artificial turf two hours before the kickoff.

Shorting the circuits: IT WAS A GAME of history for Florida State, the Seminoles' 400th of modern time The record now: 225-160-15. NO FOOTBALL TEAM in the land has received more recent television exposure than Florida State. Saturday's ABC airing was the Seminoles' fifth national telecast in the last six games, and Turner Broadcasting's commitment for the next game Memphis State in Tallahassee on Sept. 21 will make it six out of seven. SHORTLY BEFORE the kickoff, FSU's chapter of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes presented a plaque to Tom Osborne, in appreciation of the Nebraska coach's strong efforts with the organization.

Making the presentation were players Eric Thomas, Keith Carter, Sammie Smith and Terry Warren, along with chaplain Ken Smith. OSBORNE HAS an autobiography titled Than Winning" coming out this month. "Success as far as I'm concerned cannot be measured in terms of wins," says the Nebraska coach. "Those of us in coaching too often make the mistake of defining a good season as winning a certain number of games or a championship. I measure success in terms of how closely a team has come to realizing its potential." AUBURN'S PAT DYE, curiously, was attempting recently to make a similar point.

"From a personal standpoint," said Dye, "I feel a lot better about 1981, when we won five games, than I did about 1984, when we won nine. We came a lot closer to playing to our full potential in 1981 than in 1984." GEORGIA ADJUSTING future schedules. Beginning in 1988, the Bulldogs no longer will play Clemson and South Carolina every year. Instead, they'll alternate the two one this year, the other the next, but never again both in the same year. Vince Dooley takes great care with his scheduling.

Long ago, after Florida State beat Georgia four times running, he concluded he had little to gain, much to lose by playing the Seminoles and when FSU played Georgia in the Citrus Bowl last year it was the -first time since 1965. ODDEST GAME of this season comes Dec. 6 when Wyoming and Texas-El Paso play in the "Australian Bowl" at Melbourne. Travel agencies are offering 10-dav nackasre tours in All FSU led 10-7 in the early moments of the second quarter, settling for Derek Schmidt's 20-yard field goal after driving 67 yards to the 3. On its next possession, Nebraska went 64 yards and took a 13-10 lead when Doug DuBose went wide with a fourth-down pitchout after the defense had held three times within the 3.

But the snap on the point kick was mishandled by the holder, providing no chance for an extra point. The winning points came with 3:27 in the half. A bad snap forced punter Dan Wingard to try to run, and Florida State got the ball at the Nebraska 7. Another break in the form of a penalty against the Huskers for having 12 men on the field as Cletis Jones dug to the 4 helped the Seminoles to the 2. Jones scored the touchdown from there.

Florida State racked up 290 yards, most of it in the first half, including 176 passing as McManus connected on 15 of 27 for 172. DuBose gained 129 yards on 21 carries, and Rath- A noil man got 113 on 12 as Nebraska totalled 412 yards, including 372 rushing. The Huskers are not much with the forward pass, and seldom have been. Sammie Smith, the freshmen, got in some damag ing late runs, totaling 73 yards on 12 carries. Tonv Smith also ran and caught effectively.

Holloman again led the receiving with eight catches 63 yards. Smith lost a yard on a pitchout, a Smith run up the middle got 3, and a pass to Holloman was well de-' fended. On fourth down, Schmidt's 20-yard field goal put Florida State up by three. But the Cornhuskers came back with a 69-yard touchdown drive. Again, the Cornhuskers got good' position on a kickoff return as Von Sheppard, on a reverse, ran for 31 to the 31.

On fourth down about a yard, Nebraska gambled with a DuBose sweep that picked up 9 to the 50. Soon McCathorn Clayton, the alternate quarter- -back from Orlando, spun clear on a keeper, and Deion Sanders ran him down at the 3 following a 43-yard gain. It came to fourth down, inches to go. A good fake to the fullback, and a pitchout to DuBose got an easy touchdown as he swept wide untouched. But the point kick was bobbled by the holder, and it stayed 13-10.

The Seminoles then moved to the Cornhusker 43, and Berry punted out of bounds at the 7. Four plays later, a bad snap on a punt attempt forced Wingard to run, and he was downed at the seven, setting up Jones' 2-yard touchdown run. On a keeper, Nebraska's Clayton got loose again, for 18 to his 41. But on the next play, Dana Brinson of Valdosta fumbled on a reverse, Scott recovering for FSU at the 39. A sack of McManus killed that threat.

On the last play of the half, DuBose popped from the Nebraska 25 to 50 before FSU tacklers and the clock caught him. At halftime, Nebraska had 224 yards, with 214 of it running as DuBose got 82 on 13 carries. Of the Semi- noles' 195 yards, McManus had passed for 137 on 10 completions of 17 attempts. Three runs from the 20 got FSU just seven after the second-half kickoff, and again Nebraska had good "-position at its 40 following a punt. DuBose promptly got 12.

But that was it. When Wingard punted, he got off a poor one 8 yards to FSU's 37. Tony Smith got 10 out of a pass. McManus was getting more intense pressure, however, and soon Ber-1-ry punted. He angled a 42-yarder out on the 4.

Hurt by an illegal proceedure penalty and swarm- -ing defense, Nebraska got no farther than its 9. Win-" gard punted up to his 47. Hobbled a bit by an offside penalty, FSU again could not move. Berry's punt this time was dead at the 12. DuBose, on a pitchout, sped for 7, but an offensive pass-interference call set Nebraska back to the 10.

Wingard's rolling 54-yard punt backed FSU to its 30. Holloman caught a first-down pass at the 42. Sam- mie Smith broke for 13. It came to fourth and one at tie 36. Jones hit the A middle and was short.

Nebraska took over with 2:08 left in the quarter. On third and 10, Clayton got 11 on a rollout keeper. On the last play of the quarter, Sheppard took a pitchout and sailed 31 yards down the sidelines before stepping out of bounds at the 14 on the final play of the quarter. lackle Stanley Scott, seemingly big in the defen sive picture, stopped one Nebraska movement just before halftime when he claimed a fumble at the Husker 39. On the first play of the final Quarter.

Democrat files Punter Louis Berry had a big game Nebraska was knocking at the FSU 31 when Rathman fumbled after a good gain and safety Stan Shiver. another conspicious defender, claimed it at the 8. A bit later Nebraska's Dale Klein missed a 31-vard try for a field goal that would have narrowed it to 17- 16. But the biggest play of the game was perhaps Paul cluding five days in Fiji, but sponsoring Australians say if they attract as many as 500 followers of each school they'll be delighted. The game will be played in a stadium, and they are hopeful of drawing 40,000 locally curious.

McGowan's interception after Nebraska had moved quickly from its 20 to midfield. After that, the Huskers had just one more chance. And the defense called a halt at midfield, handing the JOHNNY MAJORS is sold on Tony "The best quarterback I've ever been ball back to the offense with 1:03 to play. On Nebraska's last play, a pass bounced harmlessly off the head of center Bill Lewis, and fell to the ground. Coker continued to do his protective thing, three around," says the Tennessee coach of the Tallahassee Leon grad.

"He has the height, the strong arm, an excellent touch. He throws it like I've never seen it thrown. He runs when he needs to. option until the second half and kicked off to Nebraska, which drove 82 yards for a 7-0 lead. On Rathman's 60-yard run, he popped up the middle, cut back, got an inadvertent screen block from an official and dashed for a touchdown.

On FSU's first possession, a short run by Hollo-man, on a reverse, and Tony Smith's 5-yard pickup with a shovel pass got FSU from its 21 to 32. On a pass, Holloman got 15, and Smith ran for 10 more, to the Nebraska 47. Three more Smith runs led to a first down at the 26. On third down at the 28, Chuck Wells took a swing pass to the 15. Two plays later, McManus passed over the middle to Holloman for an easy touchdown, and Schmidt tied it 7-7 with his point kick.

Late in the first quarter, the Seminoles began driving toward a field goal and a 10-7 lead. On first down at the FSU 30, McManus overthrew a wide-open Holloman on a bomb that surely would have brought six points had the pass been a little shorter. After a penalty, Smith caught a 20-yard pass to the 43. Holloman grabbed an 11 -yard pass and Wells ran for 5 to the 40 as the quarter ended. Pat Carter snared a first-down pass at the 34.

Next play, Gaylon White pulled in a 29-yarder at the 5. times falling on the ball for losses. Bowden said he thought he might give the game ball to the defense. and handles the mental part of the game. We had only one delay-of-game penalty all last season." If that sounds like a coach toutine one of "No, I think I'll keep it myself," he said, laughing.

"We gave three cheers after the game." Bowden his own for All-America acclaim, then maybe you've got good ears. Tony has a shot. added. "One for the defense. One for Derek Schmidt, and one for Berry's punts." rails hottest previous game was in 1980 when it DONT WORRY about the rWrimpnt nf giving kids all the thines thev want, savs Ole was 90 for the Sept.

20 kickoff with Iowa. Lincoln had not had a day of 100-degree heat since last Saturday, and since then it had had nothing else. Dad, because it is pretty well impossible anyhow. Winning the coin toss, Florida State reserved its Defense From 1F but enough to impress Nebraska. "They were really hard-hitting, and had good pursuit," said DuBose.

"We thought we could run the option against them but they had good pursuit," said Rathman. FSU, which inserted the stack into its defensive package last season, did not employ the formation against last week's opponent, Tulane. "There's nothing revolutionary about (the stack). A lot of teams play it. Nebraska used it today.

The thing that made it hard was we only had a week to work on it for this game," said FSU defensive coordinator Mick Andrews. "This game didn't have anything to do with X's and O's. It had to do with those guys out there (the players). They fought for 60 minutes. I told them last night that if we were even or close in the fourth quarter, we were going to whip (Nebraska).

These players believed it." Perhaps because they were ready to believe. "Seems like every time we're on national TV, the defense messes-up," said outside linebacker Darryl Gray, referring especially to games last season against South Carolina and Florida. "We wanted real bad to prove ourselves in this (nationally televised) game." Despite Andrews' disclaimer, all the defensive players believed that preparation was the key to Saturday's victory. "They (Nebraska) fooled us a couple of times but mostly we were ready for them. And that's because of our coaches.

They had a good game plan," said cornerback Eric Williams, who continued playing after re-bruising a previously injured ankle. "We did what we were told, and it worked." "Nebraska's offense really wasn't as tricky as it seemed in practice last week," added linebacker Felton Hayes. "I thought they'd have more movement, more screens, more tricky plays." As the Seminoles trotted into the lockerroom after the game, one of the veteran team managers shouted: "The 1980 defense is back." And following FSU's second triumph over legendary Nebraska in three tries, it was easy for Seminoles to grow giddy. But the Seminole players and coaches insisted it would be premature to think FSU after several years of inconsistency on defense has now at- tained the same level of defensive competency it enjoyed during the back-to-back Orange Bowl seasons -of 1979 and '80. "You can't base everything onJ one game.

We've got nine more to' go," said Gray. "If you remember last year, we played a great defensive game against Miami (a 38-3' victory), then never got back up to par after that." Still, it was a day to revel in the glow of a fine effort. "Nebraska is a great said Hayes. "But the thing that' won it for us today is that we want-- ed it more. We out-fought them." "I'd line up on the line of scrimmage, then move behind a tackle on the weak side," said Solomon.

"What we tried to do with that was allow the linebackers more lateral movement and avoid some of their blockers. We were trying to string out their plays, so we could maybe contain their great backs." It didn't work that way totally i. if.

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