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ACC Kickoff Preview: Florida State

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2020 Record: 3-6

All-time series: 11-2 Florida State

Last Meeting: 10/26/19, 35-17 Florida State

What to Know About the Seminoles:

A classic quarterback battle is brewing in Tallahassee. McKenzie Milton has entered as a redshirt senior hoping to make an impact after a leg injury knocked him out of college football back in 2018. Jordan Travis who wasn’t especially outstanding for the ‘Noles will try to keep his starting spot. Regardless of who wins, the bigger question mark comes at wide receiver. Mike Norvell still needs to figure out who’ll catch their passes. Ontario Wilson is back for his 4th season with the team. Wilson led the team in receiving yards last season with just a measly 382 yards. This FSU offense will need to figure out its aerial attack before it makes any kind of leap.

Head Coach – Mike Norvell, 2nd year, 3-6 at FSU

On his first year at FSU being in a pandemic: “Unique would be an understatement to the year we just experienced, but I’m grateful for this year. People can easily point to the challenges of what we experienced and the things that we had to go through, but I’m grateful to have been a part of it with this team…There’s been a lot of change at Florida State over the last few years, to be with my players and our coaches, it provided an opportunity through each challenge to be an example of how you respond.”

On the two quarterbacks, FSU possesses: “They’re two incredible players but also incredible young men. As for who they are on the field; they’re playmakers, and I think you’ve seen that throughout the course of their careers. Jordan this past season did some remarkable things for us, and has been through some extreme challenges, dealing with injuries and missed time, but continuing to grow and respond throughout that year. With McKenzie and his story, he’s somebody I have great familiarity with having to compete against him but know getting a chance to coach him day in and day out. They are two young men that bring it every day.”

Jermaine Johnson II – Redshirt Senior, DE

2020 (Georgia): 16 Tot tackles, 5.0 TFL, 5.0 sacks

On what he brings to the defense: “My technique. I like to value myself as a technician. The first thing I learned getting on this level is a lot of guys will match your skillset and your talent level so the thing that sets you apart is your technique….I think I bring a technician aspect, an experience aspect, and this is a leadership role overall.”

On why he chose FSU after transferring from Georgia: “That guy right there, Coach Norvell. He called me and everything he said just made sense. He believed in who I was as a man, he believed in who I was as a player and who I could be.”

McKenzie Milton – Redshirt Senior, Quarterback

2018 (Last Season Played): 25 TDs, 2663, yds, 59.2%

On his NIL involvement with D’eriq King: “D’eriq and I, we’re older heads in this college football game. Being a part of Dreamfield [Sports] has really given us the opportunity to think about life after football, and at the same time help educate these college athletes on filing taxes, setting their market rate for what they think their value is, and getting in contact with local businesses whether its an autograph signing, to get connected to fans, or to get some free food. The little things that we weren’t able to capitalize on before….I’m excited to see what these college athletes do with it, whether it’s making podcasts, YouTube videos, YouTube channels, their own merchandise, whatever it is, it’s something pretty cool.”

Jordan Travis – Redshirt Sophomore, Quarterback

2020: 6 TDs, 1056 yds, 55%

On how McKenzie Milton will add to the team: “That boy, he works hard every day. He’s been through a lot…seeing where he’s come from, I’m blessed to have him here. I’m ready to get to work with him if I’m next to him, if I’m behind him, I’m thankful for every opportunity I have.”

On switching from Willie Taggart’s system to Mike Norvell’s: “The transformation wasn’t tough….my brother has always taught me to be ready for change and change is good sometimes. I’m thankful I have my coaches here now, they’ve helped me a ton. A year ago today I didn’t know if I wanted to play football anymore. These coaches came in and now I can’t wait to get back on the field.”

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The Fizz is owned, edited and operated by Damon Amendolara. D.A. is an ’01 Syracuse graduate from the Newhouse School with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.

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