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Florida State 60 minutes from school record
2014-11-28

The light at the end of the tunnel is nearing with all of Florida State's goals there for the taking.

''I think right now we're at the point where it's the big push, we've just got to stick to the process and stay consistent to what got us here,'' FSU guard Josue Matias said. ''We just can't slack now.

''Sometimes you do think about it, but you've got to stay focused. You can't lose. The main thing now is to not lose track to what we're trying to do.''

Standing in the way Saturday is a rival Florida team with plenty of motivation. The Gators would like to send fired coach Will Muschamp out on a win and Florida was the last team to beat Florida State before it began its 27-game win streak.

''Yeah, it makes us want to end it,'' Florida safety Keanu Neal said. ''Every team that faces it wants to end that streak. But it's another game, we're just going to go out and play like they should.
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Florida State 60 minutes from school record
Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston, left, congratulates Nick O'Leary on a touchdown during

''I mean, every team is beatable. No team is unbeatable.''

The Seminoles have faced heavy criticism in 2014 for not being as dominant as the 2013 title team and their late-game victories, but coach Jimbo Fisher has focused on the bottom line - wins. He understands the team is on the precipice of another school record, but won't let players think about being a part of history.
''It's funny, when you're doing it, you don't even think about it,'' Fisher said. ''That's not the concern. The concern is the next game and how you prepare.

''We always talk about, hey, that was a goal we had, now we've got to take the next step. It's like climbing a mountain. Got to keep that going one step at a time. ... We don't ever say undefeated. Ultimately (the goal) is National Championship. That's always our goal here, and then we build them down, layer them down after that.''

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Some things to watch Saturday when No. 1 Florida State hosts Florida:

QUOTABLE: These are the things said during Florida-Florida State week. ''I've always hated Florida,'' FSU linebacker Reggie Northrup said. ''They recruited me a little bit. They didn't offer me and I wasn't interested. I didn't like Florida from the get-go, so it didn't make a difference. I just don't like Florida. Like their colors, just everything.''

NO PROBLEM: Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston has shined when his team has needed him most. The reigning Heisman winner has completed 65 percent of his passes for 1,275 yards and nine touchdowns while trailing. His quarterback rating is 194.26 when behind by 15-plus points this season. ''He's really good when he knows what he's getting, whether it's pressure or coverage, middle field or split safety,'' Muschamp said. ''I think you've just got to continue to change up and have creative looks that you are playing multiple things out of.''

MUSCHAMP'S FINALE: There's no doubt the Gators love Muschamp and will try to send their fired coach out on a high note in Tallahassee. It went that way in 2004, when former Florida coach Ron Zook won his finale at FSU and got carried off the field. Muschamp scoffed at questions about how things could unfold in Tallahassee, but left tackle D.J. Humphries said players already have talked about the possibility of hoisting Muschamp on their shoulders for a victory lap. ''He wouldn't have no choice. We're too strong for him,'' Humphries said.

NOTHING SPECIAL: Don't look for the underdog Gators to try anything out of the ordinary against their in-state rivals. While Florida has nothing to lose in a mostly miserable season, Muschamp believes his team is capable of pulling off the upset by sticking to the game plan and having some success. So the Gators are likely to try to run, run, run, hoping to keep Winston & Co. on the sideline, play solid defense and win a close game. ''Doing something different, that's how things kind of fall down,'' Humphries said. ''We'll play like we've been coached all season. That's how we've been winning the games that we have won, so we're going to keep doing that.''




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CFB: Chick-Fil-A Bowl - Virginia Tech vs. Tennessee (7:30E ESPN)
2009-12-31

The highlight game on the day's schedule is the Chick-Fil-A bowl matchup between Virginia Tech and Tennessee. This bowl game is known for ringing in the New Year, and for the last four years, it has been done with upsets by the SEC team. Can the Volunteers make it five in a row as 5.5-point underdogs, or will the Hokies put the win back in the ledger of the ACC? According to 92% of bettors at Sportsbook.com, Tennessee has a good chance of winning against the spread and on the money line.

The Volunteers and Hokies will send off 2009 in the last college football game of the calendar year. Virginia Tech (7-5 ATS) is favored after finishing 9-3, winning its last four games both SU and ATS, conceding just 8.8 PPG. The Hokies haven't been the best bowl team of late, going just 3-5 SU and ATS since 2001. Tennessee (7-5 SU & ATS) shares that same bowl record in its eight games and has gone Under the total in five straight bowl battles, including twice in the old Peach Bowl. The Vols are looking to extend a streak of four straight upset wins by SEC teams in this bowl series.

Why watch and wager - For each of these teams, the goal is the same it's just the method in which they get there is the difference. New coach Lane Kiffin was able to harness Jonathan Crompton from a mistake-prone quarterback into one that make better decisions and cut down interceptions. This was helped by Montario Hardesty who used his senior season to blossom and Crompton had deception on his side with a running game. In spite of alarming defensive injuries, the Vols held together under DC Monte Kiffin and are is 20-8 ATS away from Knoxville playing a team with 75 percent or better win percentage. This is important game for the stature of the ACC and Virginia Tech. The conference has started 1-3 SU as a bowler and Virginia Tech is in search of fifth straight 10-win season. Did you know Virginia Tech's Ryan Williams actually gained more yards rushing and had more touchdowns the Heisman winner Mark Ingram? Neither did anyone else and if he can break the century mark against the Vols, the Hokies should be good. The biggest concern Frank Beamer is lack if pass rush, exposing mediocre secondary. The Hokies are 32-14 ATS as a favorite of 3.5 to 10 points.

The StatFox Power Line shows Virginia Tech by 6. Expect a good game either way.


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