Ponder Promises Improvement

The process of putting Oklahoma in the rear-view mirror began about an hour after Florida State's humbling 47-17 loss on Saturday. And quarterback Christian Ponder thinks it could be a game that makes the Seminoles a better team.

"Everyone realizes this is a learning experience," Ponder said. "I think 10 games down the road we're going to be a totally different team than what we were on Saturday. Guys were talking on the bus on the way to the airport, they were talking about, ‘We got to forget this. This wasn't us. This obviously wasn't us.' Guys are ready to go redeem themselves. … You have to flush it fast and put it behind us."

FSU players probably wanted to bury the game film and never see it again, but coaches stuck to the usual routine of watching the FSU-Oklahoma film on Sunday and Monday. What Ponder saw was that the Seminoles were just "inches" from turning small plays into big plays.

"We just left a lot of points, a lot of yards out there on the field," Ponder said. "Looking back on the film, we had 5, 6, 7 big plays that we could have had long touchdowns. We were just inches from making it."

Fisher agreed with Ponder. And while he wants to turn his attention to Saturday's 3:30 p.m. game against BYU, he is using the loss to Oklahoma as a lesson.

"I don't want to forget it," Fisher said. "I want to learn from it. We'll learn from our mistakes."

While Ponder said he wanted to flush the loss and move on, he vowed that he was "never going to have a game like this again. It hurts."

Speaking of mistakes: Fisher said that FSU missed 14-16 tackles in the Oklahoma loss. "It was so glaring because some of them were in space so much … they end up being big plays," he said.

BYU's quarterbacks: The Cougars have used two vastly different quarterbacks in their first two games this season. Junior Riley Nelson is a dual threat, completing just 52 percent of his passes but averaging five yards per carry. True freshman Jake Heaps, who was considered the top high school quarterback last year, is more of a traditional, drop-back passer.

"When a (game) plan does come into place we'll probably move away from the every-other series to see it becoming more situational," BYU coach Bronco Mendenhall said about the Cougars' use of two quarterbacks.

FSU coach Jimbo Fisher said the Seminoles tried to recruit Heaps, a native of Washington, but that Heaps told the FSU staff he didn't want to attend college across the country.

Kanell in the booth: Former FSU quarterback Danny Kanell, a native of Fort Lauderdale, will return to Tallahassee as the color analyst for the ESPNU broadcast on Saturday. Kanell passed for 5,738 yards in 1994-95 and holds the FSU single-game record for completions (41 vs. Georgia Tech in '95).


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