Noles Wrap Orange Bowl Prep in Tallahassee

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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (FSU) — With just 10 days remaining before the Capital One Orange Bowl on Dec. 30 against No. 6 Michigan, No. 11 Florida State wrapped practices in Tallahassee and will have three days off before flying south to Miami on Dec. 24.

“Last day of camp here before we break,” head coach Jimbo Fisher said after Tuesday’s practice. “Very happy. Had a good day today. Very attentive day today. You always worry about that last day sometimes guys wanting to get home. They put the work in, worked their tails off and had a good practice. Been very pleased for the most part on these last six practices we’ve had right here so we’ll carry it on to the bowl game. Very proud of the kids and again, thought we had good practices with where we’re at.”

With the 2016 Orange Bowl played on Dec. 30, the Seminoles will travel on Christmas Eve to begin a week of bowl preparation in Miami beginning Christmas Day. After practicing that day, the team will meet for a dinner to celebrate the holidays.

“You wish you could do it [in Tallahassee], but the way the game is moved to (December) 30, you get your week of practice and getting down there and get settled,” Fisher said. “We’ll practice a little bit on Christmas Day then we’ll have a dinner that night and everything together like a family and try to spend a lot of time with them. Hopefully they’ll get three and a half good days back with their families here.

“We start school a little bit later than normal (January 9), so they get back a couple extra days for the holidays. It’ll be good to be with them and everybody.”

Among the events leading up to the Orange Bowl (Dec. 30, 8:00 PM, ESPN) during the Noles’ week-long stay in Miami are a charity outing at Dave & Buster’s, a beach party at the team hotel and a team dinner Wednesday night.

In Michigan, the Florida State offense will face one of the nation’s top defenses, with the Wolverines ranking second nationally in scoring and total defense. Along with Heisman Trophy finalist Jabrill Peppers, the Noles will have to contend with fellow All-American cornerback Jourdan Lewis.

“Extremely competitive, very physical, long,” Fisher said of Lewis’ talent in the defensive backfield. “Ball skills, ball judgment, covers well, really athletic - good balance, body control, runs well. Very good. All of them - (cornerback Channing Stribling) is long and big, (cornerback Brandon Watson) comes in, their safeties, they all have really good ball skills, long and big.”

Florida State Head Coach Jimbo Fisher Post-Practice Quotes

Opening Statement:
“Last day of camp here before we break- very happy. Had a good day today. Very attentive day today. You always worry about that last day sometimes guys wanting to get home. They put the work in, worked their tails off and had a good practice. Been very pleased for the most part on these last six practices we’ve had right here so we’ll carry it on to the bowl game. Very proud of the kids and again, thought we had good practices with where we’re at.”

On his contract extension through the 2024 season, announced Monday:
“It was. It just gets it out there to know. I love being here. I want to be here. This is a great place. We’ve really built something really special and I want to continue it for a long time. I think President (John) Thrasher has been awesome with that and seeing the big picture with everything that goes on. He loves it and understands what we do. We understand our importance to this university too and how we represent it and things that go on. It was great to get that done. I’m happy to be here and want to be here.”

On how often he was asked about staying at Florida State:
“Actually, not a lot. Our kids- people know that if it’s something that’s significant, I’m very honest and open with people. The guys that count on my job for their life, I would always be open and honest with that. It really wasn’t as bad as everyone else as far as that goes.”

On players opting out of bowl games in order to prepare for the NFL Draft:
“I don’t know if it’s a trend. I don’t know the circumstances of each situation or why or how or what’s going on, so I don’t have an opinion on that. It’s hard to make that opinion. You want to play, but everybody has a different situation and you have adjust as it goes. I’m not going to make a judgment on them because I don’t have enough information on that whole scenario. You’d love to see them play, but sometimes scenarios take it away. It’s just a changing world, I know that.”

On players spending Christmas day together:
“It is. You wish you could do it, but the way the game is moved to (December) 30, you get your week of practice and getting down there and get settled. We’ll practice a little bit on Christmas day then we’ll have a dinner that night and everything together like a family and try to spend a lot of time with them. Hopefully they’ll get three and half good days back with their families here. The good thing about it, after the game they’ll get eight or nine days. We start school a little bit later than normal, (January 9) so they get back a couple extra days for the holidays. It’ll be good to be with them and everybody.”

On Michigan cornerback Jourdan Lewis:
“Extremely competitive, very physical, long. Ball skills, ball judgment, covers well, really athletic- good balance, body control, runs well. Very good. All of them- (cornerback Channing Stribling) is long and big, (cornerback Brandon Watson) comes in, their safeties, they all have really good ball skills, long and big.”