Mike Norvell and Brent Venables speak ahead of Cheez-It Bowl
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - Florida State Head Coach Mike Norvell and Oklahoma Head Coach Brent Venables both addressed the media Wednesday morning ahead of the Cheez-It Bowl matchup on Thursday. Here are some notable quotes from Wednesday morning’s press conference.
Mike Norvell: “It’s been a great week. Grateful for the Cheez-It Bowl, wonderful hospitality, each event, and just the overall experience. This will be a week that our guys will remember forever. It’s one of the benefits of being in a bowl game is you get one more chance to be together with this team and this group. I’m really proud of our players and the way they’ve prepared, the things they’ve done throughout the course of the season to grow and to get better. I think we’ve brought the right mindset and approach throughout the week even with the wonderful events that we’ve been able to take part in. I thought the event yesterday where both teams got together at Fun Spot--that was special. Two teams with great character, and I thought the interactions were remarkable being able to serve and give back to the youth of this community. It really is a special time. Us being in our home state, there is a lot of excitement. We know it’s going to be a great atmosphere. It’s going to be a great game with two of the best brands in college football being able to match up. Two very explosive teams. I have a lot of respect for Coach Venables and the way that he does things. You see the growth, you see the explosiveness from his group, and we know it’s going to be a heck of a matchup. It’s been a wonderful week for our guys and we’re excited for tomorrow evening.”
Brent Venables: “The matchup is going to be a fantastic matchup. Florida State is playing as well as anybody in college football here in the back half of the season. They’ve had a terrific, outstanding season. They’re an incredibly talented team, they’re long and they’re fast, and incredibly explosive. Coach Norvell and his staff deserve so much praise for the way they’ve built the program the right way the last three years. To see the growth and having intimate familiarity with Florida State having competed against them for well over a decade now, just wonderful job by them building the program. They’re players have tremendous belief in what they’re doing--great chemistry and cohesion. It’s going to be a great, great challenge for the Sooners tomorrow night.”
Mike Norvell on Oklahoma QB Dillon Gabriel: “When you watch film, you see an unbelievable competitor. Dillon is special in so many ways. His playmaking ability, he can make so many throws on the field, he’s athletic, he evades challenging situations, and being able to extend plays--he’s a great playmaker. It’s going to be a great challenge for our defense trying to make him uncomfortable and trying to get him off rhythm, but even in that, some of the best plays that show up is when he’s in those situations. They have a really talented receiving core. This is a very explosive offense and you’ve seen that against a variety of different defenses where they’ve been able to produce and produce at a very high level. Dillon is a wonderful player and it’s going to be a great challenge for us.”
Brent Venables on FSU being hot at the end of the year: “They’ve had great balance all year. Their ability to run the football. They’re incredibly deep at running back. Trey Benson is a fantastic player who runs with speed, power, vision, patience, hard to get on the ground, you see him break a lot of tackles. All their backs break a lot of tackles. You got Jordan Travis running the mesh and it’s the lesser of all evils. Fantastic football player. I’ve watched him grow and mature. I love college football. I’m a fan of Jordan Travis and what he’s about. He’s got guts, he’s got toughness. He’s matured, he’s done it all man. He’s gone through the ups and downs, the highs and the lows, he’s proven and he’s battle tested. I have tremendous respect for him. They’ve got playmakers on the outside. A six foot seven monster in Johnny Wilson. 80 and four who can flat get it. Their tight ends do a great job in attacking the middle of the field. They’re very, very balanced and I think the offensive line is as good as we’ve seen all year.
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