home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


August 30, 2017

Jimbo Fisher

Greensboro, North Carolina

JIMBO FISHER: Finally game week is here. Very excited about that. Very excited for our players to play a different opponent. Had a very long camp, which meant everybody did. Like the responses to a lot of things we have. We're seeing where our strengths and weaknesses are. I feel very good about camp in that regard. We'll move from there.

But we've got a great opponent the first game. We know right off the bat Alabama's going to be a very well-coached football team that's going to dot the Is and cross the Ts. Also, they're going to play hard. They're going to play hard, and they're very talented. So we have our hands full in every respect of the way.

It's also a great challenge when you come to Florida State to play these kind of games. So, looking forward to that challenge. It will be a huge challenge. At the same time, I think our players are up to it, and we're anxious to play another team and get this season started.

Q. I wanted to see if you could tell us about your days with Nick Saban. I know you've talked about it a lot, but what I wanted to know was what was something specific you got from him that you use as a head coach now?
JIMBO FISHER: I mean, there's a few things. The thing about he and I that we always thought, and I think he said it or someone told me it was interesting that he had said, we think philosophically very similar. We have very similar ideas.

The thing about the way he -- his all-encompassing program about how to develop players and how offense plays the defense and the defense plays the offense, and you don't separate yourself, that's one of the great things that Nick does, is build that team concept. People say, well, sometimes he says he wants to be a conservative. That's not it at all. Nick wants to do what he has to do to win the game. That's the first and foremost thing. He kept that in the forefront, whether it was game planning or scheming, whether it was offense, defense, special teams and how the game had to be played. It was over-encompassing development of players. He's obviously a tremendous football mind.

Q. I was wondering if Matthew Thomas returned to practice and if he'll be playing on Saturday.
JIMBO FISHER: He did not return to practice yet, but thought he would have by now. We thought he would have been there. But we'll see. The if he's ready to play, he'll play as far as eligibility. He runs on his own, stays in conditioning from everything I hear. So as far as that, he knows our scheme inside and out. He practiced the first week, so he's been doing it for a long time.

Q. Are you concerned you might not have him on Saturday?
JIMBO FISHER: I don't know. I mean, until he gets there, you're always concerned.

Q. You mentioned in your opening statement that it was a long preseason. Was it too long? Are there any adjustments you'd like to see in the preseason length?
JIMBO FISHER: No, for the first time it was long, but it was really good. It allowed you to spread things out, make adjustments as a coach. It wasn't all crammed into a certain area. It wasn't as bad as the new schedule. I kind of liked it, seriously.

Q. I don't know what hoops to be necessary to jump through for the NCAA to approve this, but would you ever be in favor in a couple of days or a week and going someplace and practicing against another team?
JIMBO FISHER: Me personally, no.

Q. Why not?
JIMBO FISHER: That's just what I believe. (Indiscernible) the risk of injuries and everything else would be greatly amped up.

Q. Last year the ACC by general consensus was considered the best conference in the country. Do you think something like this is sustainable when you look at the resources programs have? Do you think it's sustainable for the ACC to continue to be on the level with the SEC moving forward?
JIMBO FISHER: I do. I think if our financial package continues to increase, our net worth and all those things are extremely critical in doing that in the future.

But, yes, I do. Without a doubt. Like I said, whoever -- here's the thing. Whoever you say is the best, it's all an opinion anyway. I just know I coached a long time. I played in all the other leagues. We're as good as anybody. To say we're the best, I think we're right there. I think the top teams in every league are great.

At the same time, we play as good of football as anybody. For the rest of it, it's an opinion, it keeps you all something to write about and talk about on the talk shows. But I think our caliber of ball in the conference and the game we play is a very tough gauntlet just like those other leagues.

Q. As a follow-up to that, you and Clemson both play two SEC opponents this year, and there certainly will be more opportunities for conference teams in the bowl games. Do you feel like these games -- well, if you can win these games early on, it adds to the perception that the ACC is really one of those top-level conferences, especially when you consider Miami ten years in the league and they still haven't even played an ACC title game?
JIMBO FISHER: Well, I think this. We're a top league. We're top in this league no matter what happens. Our conference is as good as anybody's. We play well against those teams, I definitely do, I think we've already proven this hasn't been a one-year thing. It's been the last four to five years. So we're all right there, 1A, 1B, 1C, however you want to look at it. These games definitely mean that. They help that entourage. But I think our caliber of ball, that's been proven over the last five years. I don't think one year is going to make any difference.

Q. How has this summer been different because of who you're opening with, as opposed to opening against an unheralded, unranked opponent?
JIMBO FISHER: Not any different because last year was Ole Miss for us. It was No. 11. Alabama. It hasn't been any different. The only thing, just like last year, you have to have great attention to detail and great urgency to do things and motivate you every day because, you know, listen, I don't have time to -- when I work out today, I have to work out 1,000 percent. I can't give it 90% or 95%. But at the same time you have to be in shape, conditioned. They may have watched more film, things like that, but our actual summer itself, our whole procedure and operation never changes.

Q. Do you prefer to open up with somebody like that because of everything you just said?
JIMBO FISHER: Sometimes it is. Sometimes you don't. I think it all matters on your team. Certain years it's really good to do it, others it ain't. It depends on the personality of your team and what you have back. But the problem is you book those teams so far ahead. It definitely does, but at the same time it can be challenging. Six of one way, half dozen of the other. It's great for college football. But we'll be interested to see how these games are rewarded when we look at the national attention and all the things that go with it.

Q. I forget the exact number, seven or eight listed on the two deep. What do you like about the group of newcomers that's allowed you to get confidence that they can contribute as early as this first game?
JIMBO FISHER: Well, I think their maturity and poise. A lot of those guys have shown that and they've shown it in practice or they wouldn't be there. The intelligence level. The ability to learn and pick things up and adapt very well. A lot of them have been here. So I think in that regard it makes it a lot easier to play those guys. Like I said, you've got to play them sometime and get those guys ready. I think the development of young players is critical to your season's success.

Q. Do you have a feel for -- as you like to say, you don't know until you know and you get to see it. Do you have a feeling for how they're going to handle the spotlight on Saturday?
JIMBO FISHER: Heck no. Heck no. I wish I did. I wish I did. You just never know until they go out there. There may be a couple tough moments just like their young guys playing. Whoever. That's just part of growing up and playing. You've got to just coach them through it and move through it.

Q. Talking to Nick Saban earlier in the week, talking about playing basketball and how he would always pick you. I was wondering if (indiscernible).
JIMBO FISHER: You were breaking up. I'm sorry. I heard you say something about picking me in basketball and rules about Coach Saban. You broke up when you asked the question. Could you please repeat it, please?

Q. (Indiscernible question regarding Coach Saban and basketball.)
JIMBO FISHER: We did. He was a very good player. Obviously thought I was a good player. We played together and kind of complemented each other. We think alike, play alike, so we're always competitive.

I always say this about players, and it's kind about players, too, let your team pick your spring game, you'll see a lot about them. But go to the park, there are certain guys you want on your team, guys that are competitive and you think have good games.

Maybe that was it. But we keep track of each other and we play very well. He's a very good player and he thought we could help. So we always had a good team. He always got the first pick, so he was commissioner of the league.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

ASAP sports

tech 129
About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297