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October 17, 2012

Jimbo Fisher

MIKE FINN:  We now welcome Florida State's head coach Jimbo Fisher.  We'll ask for a brief opening statement, then go to questions.
COACH FISHER:  Very excited about the upcoming matchup with Miami.  It's one of the great games that you're able to play at Florida State.  Such great tradition and history, respect for both organizations.  It's a great opportunity for our team on national television.
Very proud of our team last week, Boston College, played a solid football game in all three phases of the game.  99‑yard drive.  Kids got into confidence, played very well, played a very solid football game.
But this week is about Miami.  We have to get back in the groove, keep our confidence level high and keep great preparation for Miami.  Miami is a very athletic team, can run great on offense, athletes that can run on defense, good on special teams, present a lot of problems.  Do a lot of things scheme‑wise and schematically on all sides of the ball.  Very well coached.  Great matchup.  But that's one of the reasons you're at Florida State.
Questions, please.

Q.  Like you just stated, the Florida State/Miami game is a special game.  So is Florida State/Florida.  Talk about the differences and similarities between the two games when it comes to recruiting.
COACH FISHER:  I guess because Miami, the kids in Miami, they love the city.  You have two kinds, in my opinion:  the kids that are truly loyal to Miami, the university, but even the city, they want to stay, or guys that want to get out.
It is a very important game because it does bring justification for a young man to leave Miami and come to Tallahassee and do some of those things.  It is always good.  The people in the state always look at how those games go and always have done.

Q.  The rivalry has been downplayed a little bit nationally, but where do you think it stands from your perspective?
COACH FISHER:  I think it's one of the best ones in the history of the game.  This is one of the reasons you come to Florida State to play.  They're No.1 on their side, we're second on our side.  A lot of implications in the state.  To us, it's one of the major, major games of the year, and a huge game for us.

Q.  You've talked previously about E.J.'s development from his first day on campus to now.  What have you seen this season?
COACH FISHER:  Consistency.  I mean, a guy who understands the ups and downs, wear and tear, playing quarterback for a whole season, how to prepare, not get too high, too low, great leadership, not let the situations of a game affect you.  You just see the maturity really coming out in him.

Q.  Could you talk a little bit about Dustin Hopkins, the all‑time leading scorer in the ACC.  Obviously your offense has put him in position to do a lot of that kicking.  Talk about his durability, longevity.
COACH FISHER:  The thing about Dustin, he's a phenomenal athlete.  He's really big for a kicker.  He's around 6'2".  He's a 4‑5 guy.  He verticals high to mid 30s.  Dunks basketballs, all that good stuff.  He's a really good athlete.  I think that helps his durability, his athleticism, his flexibility, all the things that go with that.
Just a tremendous player as far as the range he has on his kicks, how hard he works.  Like I say all the time, he's a better person off the field.  He's a tremendous student, ambassador for our school, represents what's right about college athletics, people in general.  Doesn't get too high or too low.  Keeps everything in perspective.  He's one of the special guys.

Q.  A lot of the times some of these high scorers are kicking a lot of short field goals.  Talk about his range.
COACH FISHER:  He's probably more long range.  We get aggressive.  He's hit one up to 55 a couple years ago.  He hit one the other day 51 yards into a slight breeze right before half, big momentum swing I thought helped us.  He has a huge effect in a lot of ways.  We're not scared to put him out there at different times in the game.  Having that there, it's a big weapon.
MIKE FINN:  Thanks, coach.
COACH FISHER:  Thank you.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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