Friday Football Notes

Not accustomed to sharing the Friday night lights, the Florida High School Athletic Association has spoken in protest to the rescheduling of Florida State's showdown with Miami to next Friday, Sept. 10.


In a statement issued by FHSAA commissioner Robert W. Hughes, the organization criticized both schools and the Atlantic Coast Conference for choosing the date and for not contacting them for prior approval.

"The FHSAA does not endorse nor support in any way a college football game of this magnitude - or any other college football game - being played in this state on a Friday night in direct competition with high school football programs," Hughes said.

In FSU's general release announcing the postponement of the game, a consultant from the North Carolina High School Athletics Association was cited for his approval of the date change. FSU Director of Athletics Dave Hart said Thursday that he was ‘unaware' if the FHSAA was contacted prior to the change.

According to Hughes, the FHSAA was never contacted.

"This decision demonstrates their complete lack of sensitivity to our high school athletic programs, many of which already are reeling financially due to the effects of Hurricanes Charley and Frances," Hughes said. "Most of our schools depend on the revenue from home football games to fund their entire athletic programs throughout the school year."

ACC Commissioner John Swofford issued a response, saying that the extenuating circumstances forced the conference to make "an exception" to is policy of not scheduling games on Friday nights.

"Everyone involved in this decision has tried to find the best possible solution under these extreme circumstances," he said. "Our conference has been very supportive of high school athletics and that will certainly continue. I would reiterate that this is an exception to our conference policy on scheduling regular season conference football games on Friday nights."

CHANGE IN ROUTINE

The Seminoles practiced in pads Friday afternoon, effectively restarting their game week preparation for the Hurricanes. FSU will practice tomorrow, Monday and Tuesday in pads before a lighter workout on Wednesday.

By the time FSU takes the Orange Bowl field, exactly a month will have passed since preseason camp opened.

"Most of the time in the preseason you have three weeks or about 24 days to get ready and by the 20th day you are so tired of working together you just want to play somebody else," FSU coach Bobby Bowden said. "Then you add five more days to it and it gets a little boring, but that's the way it is."

BIG STOP

The defense dominated short yardage situations Friday. The loudest cheer came when linebacker Ray Piquon stopped B.J. Dean with a crunching hit off left tackle, denying him a trip to the endzone.

"Goal line is always intense," he said. "We have intense coaches on defense and they get something out of nothing and their energy level just increases ten-fold when we start goal line. We just vibe off the coaches' energy."

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