Between the season kickoff with the Canes and a rough road trip to BYU, FSU will try not to overlook Jacksonville State. How much of a fuss will the Gamecocks kick up? For an early look at JSU's '09 team, we spoke to Mike Parris, Jax State's play-by-play announcer and Assistant A.D.
"Well, we've got Ryan Perrilloux coming back. We went 8 - 3 last year and just missed the 1-AA playoffs. We lost a wide receiver; that'll hurt us. In fact we lost three of our top playmakers, counting another WR and a running back. We've got those holes to fill. Going into spring practice we've got to find a tailback. Defensively, though, we'll have more experience returning than last year.
We open up again with Georgia Tech and then you guys, so we'll be outmatched the first two games. Our number one guys will be okay, but FSU and Tech will obviously have more depth. Last year at Tech, physically we matched up. We just had some fumbles they took advantage of. But along the line of scrimmage, we played with 'em up front."
What sort of attack does Coach Crowe run?
"He likes to line up in an I and run it, although we're gonna throw it quite a bit, as well, especially with Perrilloux. Last year we didn't have a true fullback, so we tried to spread it a little bit, too, and ran from the shotgun using Perrilloux's scrambling talents."
How many of Perrilloux's runs are designed versus scrambling on a pass play?
"Honestly, we didn't have a lot of designed runs for him. What running he did the first part of the season was just scrambling. We ran some options the first half of the season, but not as much the second half."
We've seen a few internet posts questioning Perrilloux's grades and conduct. Any problems there?
"Everything is fine. I guess a guy who, when you go back to what happened at LSU -- and I don't know the whole story there -- enters your program, there's always going to be stories or rumors. But he's had no problems. Everything's been great."
After opening with Georgia Tech, will Jax State players be over the jitters of playing a D-1 team?
"Well, Georgia Tech's stadium doesn't hold that many people. So if Doak Campbell is full or close to full, it'll be the largest crowd we've played in front of."
So there's a buzz among Jax State fans about playing FSU and coming to Tallahassee?
"We had a large contingency go to the game at Tech last year, though that's only a two hour drive. But our fans will be excited, especially as we get into spring practice. And going to FSU will be the most hostile environment we've played in since moving to Div. 1-AA in 1995."