Sept. 13-- Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher says his coaches, players, and their families have safely experienced Hurricane Irma, and are moving forward toward getting back into the swing of the college football season.
While the Seminoles' game Saturday against heated in-state rival Miami has been postponed until Oct. 7, the team returned to practice Tuesday and will practice on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. The team will take Saturday off, then return to its regular practice schedule Monday before hosting NC State on Sept. 23 in Doak Campbell Stadium.
"All our kids and everyone are safe, and everyone's family is safe. That's the most important thing," Fisher said during Wednesday's ACC coaches' conference call.
"Unfortunately, we can't play this week. We'd love to play, but that's where we're at as a state, and we need to adhere to everything, and do as much as we can."
FSU's layoff between games will amount to 20 days between the season-opening defeat to Alabama in Atlanta and its home opener against NC State, but Fisher has a unique experience that could aid the Seminoles.
During 2005 when Fisher served as Les Miles' offensive coordinator at LSU, the Tigers had to adjust their schedule for two games during the season.
Hurricane Katrina forced LSU's home opener against Arizona State to the Sun Devils' home field and the Tigers had to wait until 16 days later to play their first home game of the season against Tennessee. The contest against the Vols was pushed back from a Saturday to a Monday because of Hurricane Rita.
"Not many people get to go through two of them like that," Fisher said of the hurricanes that affected Louisiana in 2005.
"It was a lot more damaging there. We had 20, 30 players lose everything they had and their families were living with them in dorms. It was much more disastrous.
"As far as impact and distraction, it's similar, and I explained that to our team and how we handle things. We'll be able to get through it."
While Florida State fortunately did not experience greater hardships because of Irma, Fisher and the Seminoles can sympathize with the Miami Hurricanes.
The UM football team has not practiced for more than a week, and does not have a definite return date when it could resume practice. The team is scheduled to play its next game against Toledo at home in Hard Rock Stadium on Sept. 23.
Fisher said the long layoff could help a team rally together, but could also hinder their play on the football field. While a team could bond over the adversity it faces, players could be affected by not having their minds and bodies in a football-grind mindset.
"As a team, sometimes they can rally together. But at the same time, the physical parts of it and not being able to do it, it becomes very tough and it's very challenging, there's no doubt," Fisher said of Miami.
"I hate that for them, and the people of Florida we have to go through that. It's going to be challenging, but sometimes it can pull you together. I think the perseverance of the team will really show. Obviously, they have that with Mark [Richt] and they'll do a great job."
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