Discount FSU Football Question and Answer: UMass Minutemen
We are very fortunate to have the SB Nation network of team locations to work with during game weeks. However, UMass’ SBNation blog was discontinued in 2012. So this week we’re talking with Kevin Little aka Xs and nOles, one of our residents Triple option Individuals. Kevin spent some time watching the UMass movie and happily answered a few questions for us.
TN: Well, let’s get out of the way – UMass won its first game of the season under coach Walt Bell last week, with a victory Okon 27-13. FSU of course lost to FCS Jacksonville State earlier this year, so it can’t condone any opponent. Should Seminoles, Florida Are football fans worried about losing this match?
Xs & nOles aka Kevin Little: While anything can happen on any Saturday in college football, this shouldn’t be one of those matches. UMass is not a good soccer team. They don’t have a quarterback at the start which was a four-star transfer from high school. They do not appear well coordinated or trained. FSU has a definite advantage on both sides of the line of scrimmage and FSU has already played around and got burned by a lesser opponent. This shouldn’t be a close match but if there are much bigger problems on campus than we previously thought.
TN: There have been some rumors that former coach Willie Taggart may or may not have interfered with the attack that Walt Bell wanted to run when he was the Seminoles offensive coordinator back in 2018. Now that Bell is the captain of his own ship, what kind of that is that? UMass scheme working on a crime? Will they be able to move the ball against the FSUs’ defense?
Kuala Lumpur: The word “intervention” indicates that the object being interfered with had a destination to which it was heading in the first place. What happened in Taggart’s reign with Walt Bell was akin to a childhood race where you have to tie your shoelaces to another kid but in that circumstance, it looked like both kids were blindfolded.
UMass crime has very little identity. It’s a typical spread offense that does a decent job of changing their formation but I don’t feel like it plays into their team’s strengths. As for the attack, they have a few skilled players who have some talent but their offensive line is so weak that it is difficult to get the ball. You will see them running a fair amount of fast/tunnel screens to get the ball out of the center hand but teams are able to get out of that. Much like his time at FSU, Bale appears ignorant of an intermediate passing game and asks the quarterback to stand in the pocket trying to deliver the ball down. This of course means that there is extra time for its QB to get to know the seven opposing front. The running game is pretty much the same. They like to run a fair amount of power and reply which includes pulling the line guys but I don’t think they are fast enough to make that effective at this level of football.
TN: I will ask you the same question about Minutemen Defense – what is the identity of this unit and do they have enough talent to curb a hasty FSU attack?
Kuala Lumpur: Just like their attack, they go to either 0 or 100. They count on 3-4 and alternate between bringing home and bringing only 3. them this weekend. However, even with the numbers up, it’s rare that they can stay on the front lines. In matches, I’ve seen that the lead has just overtaken me which makes it difficult to play in defense. If FSU plays their cards right, they should have a big game on the floor.
TN: UMass held its first football season in 1879, making it the fourth oldest FBS program. Another big FBS show started that year – can you guess who?
Kuala Lumpur: So I imagine football was mostly in the Northeast at this time and usually in top level schools. Also with your wording, I can’t tell if you’re making fun of your saying “big” FBS. Technically, all of the Ivy league schools are FCS so I guess that brings me to the Rutgers.
TN: It’s Michigan! If FSU ends with 5 wins, which means Jacksonville State’s loss keeps FSU out of the pot, does that hurt Mike Norville? Or does the improvement after starting from 0-4 remove the pain?
Kuala Lumpur: I mean equally as Louisville, Wake and Notre Dame kept FSU out of the pot if that was the case; However, people tend to remember what you did recently. I’m sure some out there are going to turn it around looking bad, but finishing 5 wins with a start off FSU is no small feat.
However, at the end of the day, nothing matters like kids who sign their names to come to FSU for the 2022 season. If we don’t win another game (after UMass) but keep the class, it will probably be worth it for the future of the program.
TN: UMass is located in Amherst, where they say “only h is silent”. Do you think they’ll carry the L out loud, or will FSU give another awkward performance? (FSU opened as a 37-point favorite.) Give us your score prediction.
Kuala Lumpur: I think FSU has found a little identity. It took longer than most people had hoped, but after UNC they seem to be progressing a bit. I also think this team wants to send a message this week. I would be very surprised if UMass can make it interesting at any point in the second half, but FSU has surprised me before.
Thank you so much Kevin for taking the time to chat!