Thursday, October 11, 2012

Guest Blogger: Chant Rant

When you are losing the grass always seems greener. But in this week both fanbases are questioning their direction. To get a better feel for FSU's mindset and what to expect this game, I asked Rich from Chant Rant a few questions. His answers are below.

1. I was surprised to see Florida State struggle to score against NC State. Then afterword there seemed to be some speculation that Fisher doesn't trust Manuel to fully run the offense. Was Saturday a one-time setback or a sign of bigger problems to come offensively?

Chant Rant: The loss to N.C. State was a huge disappointment and an even bigger wake-up call: It signals that the Seminole program which we all thought was on the verge of being nationally relevant again, is still plagued by inconsistency and question marks. Jimbo Fisher had us all believing that 2012 would be the culmination of the strong momentum underway since he took over from Bobby Bowden. The guy has recruited as well as anyone in the country, while installing a top to bottom process patterned after the one his former boss, Nick Saban, created.

But two things in particular have Nole fans scratching their noggins. Despite beating both of FSU's hated in-state rivals, the gators and Hurricanes, two years running, Fisher seems doomed to lose a couple games per year to teams he should beat nine times out of ten. And HOW he loses them is a growing sore spot. Jimbo, who continues to call every play though he has an offensive coordinator, goes conservative when a close game is on the line. It backfired big time against N.C. State. Ahead 16-0 at the half, the Noles offense couldn't hold off the Pack at the end. It didn't help that QB EJ Manuel had a lousy night, missing open receivers and losing yardage on option plays (partly due to his supporting cast, of course).

So to finally answer your question: Fisher had BETTER trust Manuel. He discovered, recruited and has groomed the fifth year senior, confident EJ would be the key to the Seminoles' resurgence. At this point I believe Jimbo is too stubborn to play backup Clint Trickett, even for a few series (fans are divided on which one should start). Unless Manuel is carried off the field, Fisher will live and die with his talented but inconsistent signal caller.

2. The media seems obsessed with Florida State being back. At this point do the average Nole fans care? How do FSU fans measure if things are really "back"?

Chant Rant: Nole fans care intensely, probably to a fault. Which is why the loss to N.C. State is such a bummer -- a huge step backwards on the road to being back. Back to what? Back to national prominence. Being a yearly favorite to win the ACC Championship. Finishing in the top ten. And being in the mix for a national title at least a few times in every decade.

If that sounds like fans who might be a bit spoiled -- yeah, you're probably right. But once you've tasted success like the long run of top five finishes under Bowden, it just becomes a craving that nothing else will satisfy.

3. We may be in position to hire a new head coach. One of the names that has floated in the past is Mark Stoops. What is your opinion of Stoops as a potential Head Coach and what sort of recruiter is he?

Chant Rant: A fiery coach on the sidelines, Stoops is pretty quiet off the field. That's true in part because under Jimbo, assistant coaches have very little media access. I'd bet it's also because Mark is the youngest of the Stoops coaching brothers, and probably, uh, shall we say, deferred to Bob and Mike when he was a kid. I don't hear much about his involvement with recruiting, but he apparently holds his own on a staff full of strong recruiters.

I guess the answer is, nobody really knows how he would do as a head coach. But one thing is for sure: Mark would have a unique value-added advantage. What other coach could call upon two unpaid consultants -- that just happen to be family members and respected coaches in their own right -- whenever he needs them?

4. What is your prediction for the game?

Chant Rant: Based upon what we're hearing from correspondents and other insiders, the team is shaking off its hangover from Saturday night and doing a good job of refocusing on the remainder of the season. Don't know what Vegas is predicting, but my guess is FSU by 14 to 17 points. Whatever the final score, it oughta be a fun game -- warm and dry, no rain in the forecast -- with the football in the air throughout. Unless, that is, Fisher decides to go into his conservative shell again. If that happens, all bets are off.


JBQ said...

Burt Reynolds and the bois will drive that flaming lance through the hearts of the BC faithful. That sprackled pony will stomp all over the BC defense. They will put up 60 on the board.

mod34b said...

It is going to be ugly.

If we can't stop Army, well never mind, we all know .....

FSU will gain 500-700 yards.

Claver2010 said...

This game is going to get really ugly.

Thank God I'll be watching a real coach instead as hockey starts Saturday night. Wonder if Jerry will throw any players under the bus after a loss this season?

At least Bates is attending Saturday night so he can see the massacre in person.

mod10aeagle said...

Bates should be on the sideline so he can feel the vibe up close and personally. How players and coaches are interacting in these circumstances could tell him a lot about how quickly he needs to make a move.

Big Jack Krack said...

I guess what I would like our new Athletic Director to know is that I have really lost interest in this football program because of the overall attitude of Head Coach Frank Spaziani.

I will continue to support our team, but this guy has killed all enthusiasm.

That's a big deal, because I have loved Boston College Football since before I was ever a student there.

I have been a season ticket holder since the early 70's, after fulfilling my military service.

Although I now live in SC, I maintain my football season tickets and donate to the Flynn Fund.

We are a 28 point underdog tomorrow, and I am going to Atlanta next week to watch another potential debacle.

I will be there for the ND and VT games to cheer on our players.

We can't move forward until we remove this pebble from our shoe. I hope Mr. Bates can work out an agreement with Mr. Spaziani reducing anything we owe him for the 2-year extension fraudulently awarded by Gene DeFilippo.

Go BC. I'm with you in spirit, and maybe by not watching tomorrow, you will play better than what is expected to be a 40 point blowout.

I really do not think I can watch this game. Thanks Frank. I have never missed a game that I had the opportunity to watch or attend in 45 years - including 1978.

Big Ern said...

BJK, I couldn't agree with you more about killing my enthusiasm. I love BC and love college football. One of the first things I did when I moved back to Boston 3 years ago was order my BC season tickets and parking pass. This year I could not bring myself to renew. I still go to all the games, but this coaching staff has stomped all excitement whatsoever out of me.

I used to live and die with BC and knew that the last remnants of fiery enthusiasm had been extinguished when I was neither suprised or upset with the loss at Army. I was disappointed for sure, but it certainly didn't cast me in the funk that I endured after losses in previous years.

Mr Bates, please bring us a coach who let it be fun again. Ever to Excel!