Florida State Seminoles: By the Numbers

By the Numbers: EJ's inconsistency

January, 11, 2013
1/11/13
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With the 2012 season officially in the books, we took a look through the stats to determine some of the most significant improvements and problems Florida State endured this year, with five stats that defined 2012.

The numbers don't always tell the whole story, but these numbers shed some light on some of the biggest reasons Florida State won 12 games and its first ACC title in seven years, and also why those other two games got away.

We started with a look at the ground game on Monday.

We looked at some curious playcalling by Jimbo Fisher on Tuesday.

We looked at the impressive work by FSU's secondary on Wednesday.

We looked at the depth on the Seminoles' defensive line on Thursday.

[+] EnlargeEJ Manuel
Jeremy Brevard/USA TODAY SportsQB EJ Manuel had a career year, but the numbers suggest that he wasn't necessarily getting better as the season went along.
And finally: 156.03.

That was EJ Manuel's passer rating this season, which ranked second in the ACC and 15th nationally, just a tick behind Heisman finalist Collin Klein.

That rating was an improvement over 2011, as were virtually all of his other stats -- passing yards (3,392), touchdowns (23), completion percentage (68.0) and yards per attempt (8.8). And yet, it's hard to call Manuel's season a complete success.

Big picture, Manuel took a step forward in his fifth year in the program and his second as the full-time starter, but he was maddeningly inconsistent at times, with the loss to Florida -- in which he accounted for five turnovers -- as the low point.

And while the season as a whole represented progress for Manuel, the numbers suggest he might have regressed as the year went along.

 


In FSU's final five games of the season, the offense mustered fewer than 400 yards four times -- it had topped that total in every other game in 2012 -- and Manuel threw for fewer than 200 yards three times.

The battle to become the next starting quarterback at FSU will be the biggest story of the spring, and while replacing Manuel won't be easy, there are reasons a sizable contingent of fans are excited about the alternatives.

By the Numbers: Depth on the line

January, 10, 2013
1/10/13
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With the 2012 season officially in the books, we took a look through the stats to determine some of the most significant improvements and problems Florida State endured this year, with five stats that defined 2012.

The numbers don't always tell the whole story, but these numbers shed some light on some of the biggest reasons Florida State won 12 games and its first ACC title in seven years, and also why those other two games got away.

[+] EnlargeCornellius Carradine
Kim Klement/US PresswireCornellius Carradine (31) stepped in and had a monster senior season after Brandon Jenkins went down.
We started with a look at the ground game Monday. We looked at some curious play calling by Jimbo Fisher on Tuesday. We looked at the impressive work by FSU's secondary Wednesday.

Next up: 26.5.

That's the number of sacks recorded by Florida State's defensive ends this season, just one of which was made by Brandon Jenkins.

Jenkins thrilled Florida State fans when he decided last offseason to return for his senior year, but that enthusiasm lasted all of one quarter before he went down with a foot injury that ended his season. The loss could have been devastating, but as it turned out, Jenkins was hardly missed.

(Read full post)

By the Numbers: Lockdown DBs

January, 9, 2013
1/09/13
9:00
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With the 2012 season officially in the books, we took a look through the stats to determine some of the most significant improvements and problems Florida State endured this year with five stats that defined 2012.

The numbers don't always tell the whole story, but these numbers shed some light on some of the biggest reasons Florida State won 12 games and its first ACC title in seven years, and also why those other two games got away.

We started with a look at the ground game on Monday.

We looked at some curious playcalling by Jimbo Fisher on Tuesday.

Next up: 161.9.

That's the average number of yards Florida State's defense allowed through the air in 2012, more than 30 yards per game fewer than it allowed a year earlier.

That's something of an astonishing feat considering how many questions there were in the secondary when the season began. Xavier Rhodes was still recovering from a knee injury. Greg Reid had been dismissed from the program. Youngsters Nick Waisome and Ronald Darby were thrown into the fire. Terrence Brooks (safety) and Tyler Hunter (nickel) were in their first seasons as starters. It was a turbulent preseason.

And while there was ample reason to dismiss Florida State's schedule this season, it's not as if the ACC lacked viable passing attacks. Clemson, Virginia Tech and NC State all featured quarterbacks projected as NFL prospects. And yet, no team in the nation allowed fewer passing yards per game than Florida State.

Here's a comparison of 2011 vs. 2012 for FSU's pass defense:

Stat 2012 2011
Yards/Game 161.9 192.3
Opp. TD/INT 13/11 16/16
15+ Yard Plays 41 58
Opp. Comp% 48.8% 59.1%


It's a tribute, in part, to the work done up front, where QBs rarely had much time to throw, and to the work of former coordinator Mark Stoops. But more than anything, it's a tribute to the players in the secondary who stepped up. For the season, Florida State allowed just 41 passing plays of 15 yards or more -- tied for the fewest in the nation.

The only potential concern is that the interceptions were down a bit, but that also comes from the fact that there were so many three-and-outs. FSU allowed the fewest passing first downs per game of any team in the country.

Now with Lamarcus Joyner coming back for 2013 and Waisome, Darby and Karlos Williams playing with experience under their belts, it's possible this could be the best set of defensive backs in the nation next season.
With the 2012 season officially in the books, we took a look through the stats to determine some of the most significant improvements and problems Florida State endured this year with five stats that defined 2012.

The numbers don't always tell the whole story, but these numbers shed some light on some of the biggest reasons Florida State won 12 games and its first ACC title in seven years, and also why those other two games got away.

We started with a look at the ground game on Monday.

Next up: 3.

That's the number of completions for EJ Manuel on throws of 10 yards or more against NIU in the Orange Bowl. He attempted just nine throws of 10 yards or more in the game.

What makes that number significant is that it was such a surprising departure from the norm, and in a game in which Florida State relied so heavily on its passing game and had a distinct advantage physically, both at the line of scrimmage and on the perimeter, it was hard to figure the game plan. And as a hefty contingent of FSU fans bemoaned throughout the 2012 season, explaining Jimbo Fisher's play calling was always a bit frustrating.

Here's a look at Manuel's passing charts for the season:


Prior to the Orange Bowl, 37 percent of Manuel's throws were beyond 10 yards, and those throws accounted for a whopping 52 percent of his passing yards. Against NIU, however, just 24 percent of Manuel's throws went beyond 10 yards, and those accounted for a paltry 21 percent of his passing yards. Against a better team, that might have made sense. Against an overmatched NIU, it played a big factor in why FSU struggled to pull away.

Florida State fans can look back to similarly strange play calling against NC State and Virginia Tech and find more frustration, which is why the question of when Fisher will hand over the keys to his offense to a play-calling coordinator remains front and center going into 2013.

By the numbers: FSU's ground game

January, 7, 2013
1/07/13
9:00
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With the 2012 season officially in the books, we took a look through the stats to determine some of the most significant improvements and problems Florida State endured this year with five stats that defined 2012.

The numbers don't always tell the whole story, but these numbers shed some light on some of the biggest reasons Florida State won 12 games and its first ACC title in seven years, and also why those other two games got away.

First up: 40.

That's the number of rushing touchdowns by Florida State this season -- double its total from a year ago.

Florida State's offense might have lacked some consistency, but this year's unit was markedly improved, and that started with the ground game. Only four other teams in the country boasted a bigger increase in rushing touchdowns from 2011 to 2012 than Florida State, and even with the loss of starter Chris Thompson in Week 8, the Seminoles still finished with the third highest yards per carry of any team in the nation (5.62).

It's hard to quantify the impact the improved ground game had on FSU's offense this year, but across the board the differences were staggering.

Essentially with just three additional running plays per game, FSU doubled its ground gains in 2012.

Perhaps as impressive as the overall running game was the depth. Take away the yardage lost to sacks, and Florida State had five runners -- Lonnie Pryor (8.0), Thompson (7.5), EJ Manuel (6.4), Devonta Freeman (6.0) and James Wilder Jr. (5.8) -- rack up at least 45 carries and average at least 5.5 yards per rush.

Of course, plenty of credit goes to the offensive line, with the Orange Bowl providing a prime example. Of the 243 yards FSU gained on the ground against Northern Illinois, 196 of them came before contact was made with a defender (81 percent), and runners went untouched on all three touchdown runs.

By the Numbers: FSU 21, Ga. Tech 15

December, 2, 2012
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Some of Saturday's numbers were ugly -- namely the second-half shutout for the Seminoles' offense. Some were impressive, like Karlos Williams' 11 tackles in emergency duty at linebacker. They all added up to Florida State's first ACC title in seven years.

Digging a bit deeper, here are five key stats that told the story of FSU's 21-15 win over Georgia Tech in Saturday's ACC championship game.

7. That's the number of turnovers coughed up by EJ Manuel in his past three games, including two in the second half against Georgia Tech. Manuel had been exceptional at protecting the football through the first 10 games of the season, even if he wasn't always particularly aggressive downfield. In the past three weeks, however, Manuel has made few big throws and has been prone to mistakes. In those three games, Manuel is a combined 51-for-77 (66 percent). He has just two completions of 25 yards or more and has averaged just 153 passing yards per game while tossing four INTs and just three touchdowns. On Saturday, he threw for just 134 yards against a Georgia Tech defense that had been allowing 248 yards per game through the air, and his longest completion of the day was a 21-yarder to fullback Lonnie Pryor, with the bulk of that yardage being picked up on the ground.

117. That was FSU's total second half offensive output. The Seminoles averaged a woeful 4.03 yards per play in the half and, for the second time this year, failed to score during a full half of football. Florida State had six second-half possessions Saturday, three of which ended in turnovers, two in punts, and the final came when the Seminoles ran out the clock to end the game. While Manuel did little to jump start the offense in the second half, the bigger problem was the running game, which averaged just 2.8 yards per carry after a strong first half in which it racked up 147 yards on 20 touches.

183. Georgia Tech's rushing yardage total was its second-worst performance of the season, with more than 150 yards fewer than its per-game average for the year. Tech ran 52 times, but mustered just 3.5 yards per carry as the Florida State defense was strong up front even without star defensive end Cornellius Carradine, and the linebackers turned in an exceptional performance. Karlos Williams, Telvin Smith, Vince Williams and Christian Jones combined for 37 tackles, including three for a loss, and a game-clinching interception. Tech entered the game second in the nation with 38 runs of 20 yards or more. It had just one Saturday -- by QB Tevin Washington for exactly 20.

3. That was the total number of catches by all of Florida State's wide receivers other than Rashad Greene, who set a season high with nine grabs. The remainder of FSU's receiving corps struggled to get open, and the three grabs it managed accounted for 16 yards, while Kelvin Benjamin's lone catch ended with a fumble. In the Seminoles' first 12 games of the season, the fewest catches by receivers other than Greene was six.

3. That's the number of times Manuel was sacked, on just 24 passing attempts. If there's a common thread in Manuel's recent struggles, it might be the pass protection. In FSU's past four games, Manuel has been sacked 14 times -- once every 9.6 passing plays. In the Seminoles' first nine games, Manuel was sacked just 13 times, or once every 17.7 passing plays. Of course, part of Saturday's troubles stemmed from Menelik Watson's ankle injury which forced Bobby Hart into action in the second half. Concurrently, FSU's offense withered.

By the Numbers: Florida 37, FSU 26

November, 25, 2012
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When it was over, Jimbo Fisher couldn't help but recount all the opportunities Florida State had let slip by. From the turnovers to the run defense to the special teams blunders, every unit contributed to the 37-26 Florida win, he said.

The numbers tell the story of an FSU team that hardly resembled the dominant group that had won 10 of its first 11 games. Here are five that made the biggest impact in Saturday's defeat at the hands of the Gators.

244. That's the number of rushing yards Florida State allowed Saturday, the most for an FSU defense since a loss to Florida in 2009 when the Gators tallied 311 yards on the ground. Florida's Mike Gillislee finished with 140 yards and two touchdowns on 24 carries, the most yards by an individual back against FSU since Clemson's Jamie Harper ran for 143 in 2010. Florida's three rushing touchdowns were the most against FSU since NC State had three in 2010, and the Gators racked up four different runs of at least 20 yards in game, matching the total number FSU had allowed all season.

23. That's the number of turnovers Florida State has this season -- four more than the Seminoles finished with a year ago. In seven games this season, FSU had turned the ball over at least twice, but it managed to win all of them. On Saturday, however, the luck ran out. The Seminoles coughed up the football five times -- the most in any game since last season's loss to Wake Forest. EJ Manuel threw three ugly interceptions and gave up a fumble, while Karlos Williams fumbled away a kick return. Two of the turnovers occurred deep in Florida territory -- taking likely points off the board for FSU -- while the Gators turned two turnovers into 14 points in a game that ended up decided by just 11.

36:20. That's Florida's time of possession in Saturday's win, but it may not even tell the whole story. Thanks to FSU's early offensive miscues, the Gators dominated the time of possession in the first half, slowly wearing down the Seminoles' D. By the time Manuel coughed up a fumble with 11:09 remaining in the fourth quarter, Florida had a nearly 18-minute edge in time of possession and had run 62 offensive plays to FSU's 34. Not surprisingly, FSU's D had nothing left, and Gillislee ran for a 37-yard score one play later.

3. That's the number of times Florida State punted Saturday, and freshman Cason Beatty averaged just 42 yards on those kicks. That still marked his fourth-best average on the season, but despite the seemingly big advantage Florida had in that area, it wasn't Beatty's leg that proved to be the difference on special teams. His longest punt of the day was a 54-yarder, but FSU couldn't cover it and Marcus Roberson returned it 50 yards to the Seminoles' 32-yard line, setting up a touchdown that effectively sealed the game.

6. That's the number of tackles for Bjoern Werner in the game, including 3.5 sacks. Werner was dominant through three quarters, consistently pressuring Florida QB Jeff Driskel and almost singlehandedly changing the momentum in the third quarter, culminating with a huge fumble recovery that set up a touchdown run. But after Manuel coughed up the fumble in the fourth quarter, there were no more heroics left for Werner, who had simply run out of gas. He finished without a tackle in the final quarter, and Florida responded with 24 unanswered points.

By The Numbers: FSU 41, Maryland 14

November, 18, 2012
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Florida State cruised past another ACC foe, closing out the division title and picking up its 10th win of the season -- the second time in three years that Jimbo Fisher's squad has won 10 games and made an ACC championship appearance.

While the game wasn't particularly close, there were some numbers that stood out. Here are five that told the story of FSU's 41-14 win over the Terrapins.

237. That's the rushing total for Florida State's ground game on Saturday, a vast improvement from the struggles against Virginia Tech a week earlier. Devonta Freeman led the way, averaging 9.3 yards per carry en route to a career-high 148 yards and two scores. The 237 yards represents a season high for FSU on the road -- its four previous road games had been its four worst rushing performances -- and no designed runs were stuffed in the backfield.

16. That's the number of sacks Florida State has allowed on the road this season, after EJ Manuel was dumped in the backfield three times by Maryland. That represents 76 percent of the Seminoles' season total. Fisher chalked up the struggles on the road to playing better defenses away from home, but FSU will get its chance to test that theory against Florida's stellar defense at Doak Campbell Stadium this week.

7. That's the number of passing plays of 25 yards or longer Florida State has allowed in the past two weeks. In the first nine games of the season, the Seminoles allowed just eight plays of 25 yards. While the big plays have been more common the past two weeks, opponents haven't found much overall success in the passing game. Virginia Tech and Maryland completed just 53 percent of their passes against FSU.

3. That’s the number of receptions for tight end Nick O'Leary on Saturday, including 10-yard touchdown grab in the first quarter. The three catches matches O'Leary's total from the past five games combined. After starting the season with 10 catches in his first four games, O'Leary had largely disappeared from the offense, but Saturday he was a focal point early. For the season, O'Leary has 13 catches for 206 yards -- topping his season total of 164 yards from 2011.

26. That’s the number of tackles for loss this year by Bjoern Werner and Cornellius Carradine, who were both dominant against the Terrapins. Werner and Carradine combined for nine tackles, three sacks, 3.5 TFLs, a fumble recovery and a pass breakup. The 20 combined sacks Carradine and Werner share this season is the most by any pair of teammates in the country.

By the Numbers: FSU 28, VT 22

November, 9, 2012
11/09/12
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It would have been easy to dismiss Virginia Tech's chances in Thursday night's game, particularly given how badly the Hokies had played just a week earlier against Miami. And it would've been easy to assume Florida State would cruise to an easy win.

So the fact that the Seminoles needed a desperate final drive and a big interception by Tyler Hunter in the game's final seconds to secure a win was something of a surprise. The funny thing, however, is that there were plenty of numbers before the game that gave cause for concern, and most of them showed up in a big way Thursday night.

Kyshoen Jarrett, Tyrel Wilson
AP Photo/Steve HelberEJ Manuel was under attack from Virginia Tech on Thursday, something that's been a theme in FSU road games.
Here are five key stats that defined Florida State's dramatic 28-22 victory.

5. That's the number of times EJ Manuel was sacked by the Virginia Tech defense Thursday, a season high. Four of the Hokies' sacks came on third down, when Bud Foster's defense was exceptionally aggressive, blitzing Manuel routinely. The line had no answer in a performance eerily similar to the struggles at NC State last month. Manuel was sacked four times in that game, meaning that half of FSU's 18 sacks allowed this season came in the two games played outside the state of Florida. Overall, 13 of the 18 have come on the road.

-15. That's Florida State's rushing total for the game, the fourth-worst output on the ground in school history. To be fair, 44 yards were lost to sacks, but the Seminoles' 20 designed runs still amounted to just 29 yards total -- more than 200 yards less than what FSU had been averaging for the season. In Florida State's second game without Chris Thompson, things got extremely ugly, and the tailback tandem of James Wilder Jr. and Devonta Freeman ended up getting just two carries in the second half.

(Read full post)

Florida State had the weekend off, but that didn't stop Jimbo Fisher or his Seminoles from looking ahead.

With three games remaining before an anticipated ACC championship game appearance, FSU has tallied some impressive numbers -- leading the ACC in virtually every significant statistical category. But dig deeper, and there are a few other key stats worth noting as the Seminoles make their final push.

4.4: That's how many passing yards Florida State's defense is allowing per attempt this season, by far the best mark in the country. Only two teams (Clemson and Miami) have averaged less than than 5.0 yards per attempt against the Seminoles' secondary this season, and those numbers could certainly improve going forward. Virginia Tech and Maryland rank ninth and 10th, respectively, in passing in the ACC, and the Terps are down to their fifth quarterback of the season -- a converted linebacker. Florida State also ends its season with Florida, which is last in the SEC in passing.

179.8: That's the difference in yards per game at home for Florida State vs. what the Seminoles are averaging on the road -- the sixth-largest disparity in the country. FSU has outscored its five home opponents by an average score of 54-9 this season. On the road, however, it's a much closer 26-18 margin. Given that two of the next three are away from home, Fisher needs to find a way to ensure the dominance FSU enjoys at Doak Campbell can carry over to the road, too.

23.08: That's the percentage of third downs Florida State's opponents have converted this season, the best percentage in the country and the best rate by any team in at least eight years. Meanwhile, the Seminoles' offense has converted 45.5 percent of its third-down chances, which ranks second among ACC teams this season.

6.57: That's the average yards per rush for Florida State's ground game this season, factoring out yardage lost to sacks. Oregon is the only team in the nation has averaged more yards per rush, and it's been a group effort for FSU. Injured starting tailback Chris Thompson led the way with 7.5 yards per carry, but Devonta Freeman (7.4), Lonnie Pryor (6.5), EJ Manuel (6.4) and James Wilder Jr. (5.9) are all among the ACC leaders.

0: That's the number of times Florida State has held a three-game winning streak against both Miami and Florida concurrently. That could change with a win over the Gators this year, and it would push Fisher to a perfect 7-0 against in-state rivals (including a win over USF). A victory over Florida would also provide FSU a marquee win, helping earn some national respect in a down ACC.

By the Numbers: FSU 48, Duke 7 

October, 28, 2012
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On paper, the scenario simply doesn't add up. Florida State lost the turnover battle 4-0. Its star quarterback completed just eight passes. It was without its starting running back, and it was playing a division leader.

Most of the time, that adds up to a bad loss. On Saturday against Duke, it was a formula for a blowout win.

But while the 48-7 final score hardly tells the story of all that happened, these five numbers do.

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By the Numbers: FSU 33, Miami 20 

October, 21, 2012
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Like Florida State's first two road trips, Saturday's game was hardly the prettiest performance. The 33-20 win over Miami was hard-fought, physical and filled with mistakes -- including five fumbles and 12 penalties.

In the end, the ugly plays only helped to provide Miami with a glimmer of hope, but by the time Devonta Freeman fought his way across the goal line for a 3-yard score early in the fourth quarter, the game was all but over.

While the penalties and fumbles will likely remain the talk as FSU looks for ways to improve on the performance this week, here are five other key stats that told the story of Saturday's win over Miami.

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By the Numbers: FSU 51, BC 7

October, 14, 2012
10/14/12
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From EJ Manuel's 400-yard passing game to Rodney Smith's career day receiving to Dustin Hopkins' record-setting kick, there were plenty of Seminoles putting up big numbers against Boston College. Here are five stats that made the difference in FSU's 51-7 victory.

[+] EnlargeRodney Smith
Melina Vastola/US PresswireRodney Smith had a career-high nine receptions against Boston College.
9. That's the number of passing plays called by Jimbo Fisher to start the game. Fisher insists he wasn't out to send a message following a week's worth of criticism surrounding his more conservative approach against NC State, but it was certainly noteworthy given that Boston College ranks among the worst run defenses in the nation. FSU also opened its first drive pinned inside the 1-yard line, but Manuel looked deep on four of his first six throws, finally connecting on a 77-yard bomb to Kenny Shaw for a touchdown to wrap up the first drive.

1,632. That's the number of rushing yards Florida State has racked up this season after finishing Saturday's game with 201 yards on the ground. That total through seven games is a whopping 174 more rushing yards than the Seminoles mustered in all of 2011. The 233.1 yards per game FSU is averaging on the ground is more than double last year's average, and Chris Thompson's 68 yards Saturday gives him 640 for the season, 61 more than Devonta Freeman's team-leading total from last season. Thompson needs to average just 60 yards per game (51.4 if FSU plays in the ACC championship) to become the school's first 1,000-yard rusher since 1996.

2. That's the number of Florida State's plays Saturday that went for a loss -- a 6-yard sack of Manuel and a 1-yard TFL on a Freeman run. That's not necessarily proof of a big step forward for the offensive line. BC entered the game with just four sacks on the year (second worst in the ACC) and just 12 tackles for a loss (worst in the conference), but it was remarkable what the extra time in the pocket did for Manuel and the FSU offense. In the previous two games, the Seminoles allowed 19 negative plays, and not coincidentally, they turned in their two worst offensive performances of the season.

439. That's the number of passing yards for Manuel, a career high. But that's just the beginning of the huge numbers in the passing game. Manuel said he'd never thrown for 400 yards in a game -- even in high school. For Florida State, it's the first time a quarterback has topped the 400-yard mark since Chris Weinke threw for 521 against Clemson in 2000. Manuel's four touchdown passes and 27 completions also tied his career highs. He completed passes to nine different receivers -- Fisher was shocked to see that Nick O'Leary wasn't one of them -- including nine completions to Smith, also a career high. Smith and Kenny Shaw became the first pair of FSU receivers to top the 100-yard mark in the same game in a year, and Shaw's 77-yard TD catch represented a career high for both he and Manuel. And while Fisher insists airing it out had nothing to do with sending a message after last week's loss, it's also worth noting that Manuel's 439 yards more than doubled his passing yardage total against NC State.

16. That's the number of consecutive second-half kickoffs Florida State had fielded and failed to follow with a touchdown before marching down the field for an eight-play, 75-yard scoring drive to open the second half against BC. FSU had come up empty on four straight opening possessions of the second half this year, but Fisher said the team worked on upping the intensity in practice with eyes on ending the streak, which finally happened on a 3-yard run by Lonnie Pryor.

By the Numbers: FSU 30, USF 17

September, 30, 2012
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Saturday's 30-17 win over USF wasn't Florida State at its sharpest, with the defense looking sluggish early, the offense faltering in the red zone, and a special teams mishap providing a spark for the Bulls.

[+] EnlargeDustin Hopkins
Kim Klement/US PresswireFSU had to rely on field goals more times than it would have liked against USF.
But while the game may not have been the most accurate representation of FSU's potential, there were a few numbers worth nothing.

5.34. That's Florida State's yards per carry against USF, less yardage lost on sacks. The average is a bit deceptive, however. The Seminoles' ground game was something of a mixed bag Saturday, with 12 of their 38 rushes going for 1 yard or less, and 10 more going for at least 10 yards. The all-or-nothing performances were highlighted by a 44-yard run by Lonnie Pryor and two long end-arounds by the receivers, which managed to overshadow the negative plays. USF, which didn't have a single tackle-for-loss against Ball State a week ago, dropped an FSU ball carrier in the backfield 10 times Saturday. That's just four fewer TFLs than Florida State had allowed in its first four games combined.

9. That's the number of plays Florida State ran inside the USF 10-yard line, with Kevin Haplea's 1-yard reception on a third-down pass being the only one that went for a touchdown. The goal-line struggles were a touchy subject for Jimbo Fisher afterward, and for good reason. EJ Manuel was 1-of-3 passing on plays inside the 10, missing a wide open Rodney Smith in the end zone on one throw. The ground game was even worse. On six rushes inside the 10, FSU tallied a total of 7 yards.

6. That was the number of receptions made by Florida State's tight ends in Saturday's win, accounting for nearly a third of Manuel's total completions. Manuel has hyped his tight ends dating back to the spring, but Saturday marked the high point for the group in terms of production. Nick O'Leary hauled in a career-high four catches, while Haplea grabbed a 1-yard touchdown.

5. That's the number of completions on eight third-down throws for Manuel in Saturday's win, and they accounted for all but one of FSU's third-down conversions. Overall, FSU moved the chains on just five of 15 third-down tries, but when Manuel threw the ball, the offense looked sharp. Manuel completed passes of 11, 39 and 47 yards on third down, plus the 1-yard throw to Haplea for his lone passing touchdown of the game. Manuel also chipped in with an 11-yard run on third down.

0. That's the number of punt return yards for Florida State on Saturday. In the first four games of the season, Rashad Greene took some risks, which came with some big results (two touchdowns) and some ugly ones (two fumbles). On the whole, though, FSU had been averaging 61.5 punt-return yards per game. On Saturday, it was clear Greene wasn't interested in rolling the dice. Greene had five fair catches on six USF punts, and the sixth was downed by the Bulls deep in FSU territory. It marked the first time the Seminoles didn't have a single punt return in a game since Sept. 24 of last year vs. Clemson. On the upside, Greene did have a 10-yard touchdown run on offense, making him the first FSU player since Peter Warrick in 1999 to score on a reception, a rush and a return all in the same season.

By the Numbers: FSU 49, Clemson 37 

September, 23, 2012
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EJ Manuel keyed an offensive explosion, and the Florida State defense rebounded from a rocky first half to pull off a come-from-behind win over Clemson on Saturday. Here are five stats from the game that tell the story and offer some insight into where FSU goes from here.

11 for 11: That was Manuel's completions and attempts after Clemson scored on its first drive of the second half to open a 14-point lead. Manuel had been solid early, completing 16 of 24 passes for 192 yards in the first half and the first drive of the second, but he was brilliant down the stretch. His 11 straight completions went for 188 yards and two touchdowns. Manuel became the first FSU quarterback to throw for 300 yards and rush for 100 since Charlie Ward in 1992.

1,124: That's Florida State's rushing total through four games this season, after adding 287 more against Clemson on Saturday. That's just 334 yards shy of the Seminoles' total for the entirety of the 2011 season. A healthy Chris Thompson, who rushed for 103 yards and two touchdowns against Clemson, has been a key, but it's the marked improvement from Florida State's offensive line that has allowed the running game to flourish.

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