Brian Sawyer begged to differ Tuesday, saying the Seminoles have confidence in kicker Xavier Beitia and the team's preparation."> Brian Sawyer begged to differ Tuesday, saying the Seminoles have confidence in kicker Xavier Beitia and the team's preparation.">

Chatting With Brian

Miami linebacker <b>Jonathan Vilma </b> has been quoted as saying he likes the Hurricanes' chances Saturday if the game comes down to another field-goal attempt for FSU, as it has four times in the last 12 years. "I don't think there's any chance they'll make it," Vilma said. "They haven't yet. There isn't any reason to doubt history." FSU special teams captain <b>Brian Sawyer </b>begged to differ Tuesday, saying the Seminoles have confidence in kicker Xavier Beitia and the team's preparation.

"Obviously, we're not going to approach this game like it's any other game. It has been an emotional week. Even last week. It's just a lot more serious atmosphere. Everyone is concentrating on doing their assignments and so forth and so on. It has been a pretty serious week.

"Don't get me wrong. We are still having fun with it. We are just trying to have a good time and, at the same time, get the job done. The coaches have done a good job, coach Bowden and other coaches, of just keeping us calm and making sure we have a good practice every day. We know it's a big game but I don't think it will get to us tomorrow (Wednesday) or Thursday. Everybody will start getting a lot more emotional.

Editor's Note: UM linebacker Jonathan Vilma said Monday he likes the Hurricanes' chances if the game comes down to a last-second kick. Vilma said "I don't think there's any chance they'll make it. They haven't yet."

"Miami has always been a team that talks a game up pretty big. We try not to do that. Coach Bowden wants us to maintain a level head and not get ahead of ourselves. But I love it. I am glad they are talking about it because if it does come down to a kick, I am pretty sure No. 47 (Xavier Beitia) will kick it thru.

"Like I said, when we played Colorado, they jumped on the (Seminole) head and that was the worse thing they could have done. And just talking the game up more and more, I guess is feeding fuel to the fire. I love it when teams talk down to us or don't think we can get the job done. That's a great way to get us fired up even more for the game.

"The approach this team is taking this year has been we have a lot to prove. So far the first five games, we've done it. We don't think there's any sense in us saying anything. It will speak for itself after the game. Even after we win the game, and whoever it may be we're playing, we let our actions speak for themselves. We are kind of down-to-earth, more calm team. We do all of our talking on the field.

"Coach Bowden tells us all the time, especially in games like this of this caliber, when you have two teams that are as equally talented as we are, offense and defense better do their jobs. Usually, the big momentum swing, the big difference in the game, is always special teams. If we just execute and do our job like I know we can, then I don't think there will be any doubt that we can pull it out Saturday. We just have to go out there and execute.

"He (FSU kicker Xavier Beitia) is fired up. To tell you the truth, that game has set in his mind all year, like I am sure it would. The whole year, he has been waiting for Saturday. He's ready to go. Even after the Colorado game, when he went four-for-four, he came up to me after the game and looked at me and said, ‘You know what? I am back.' He said, ‘I am ready to go. Let's do it.' That's pretty exciting, especially from a guy who went thru what he did last year. He can't wait to get on the field and just show them he's the real deal.

"We really haven't had any problems at all, nothing that has really needed to be taken care of (by Unity Council). Just little things here and there. I think the biggest discussion has been what uniform are we going to wear on Saturday. Luckily, we've been a pretty good team, staying out of the paper and the media this year. It all comes down to everybody staying focused. We are trying our best on and off the field and it has worked out pretty good for us this year.

"Everybody is… this is the most confident I've seen. … I was here in ‘99 and this is as confident as that team was. Everybody believes in each other. There's no bickering on the team. Everyone is behind each other 100 percent. Everybody believes the guy beside him is going to take care of their job. It's just been a turnaround season for us to have guys who really enjoy being around each other. It seems like everyone is playing so much more together this year. It's a joy on the team to be around these guys and see how they interact with one another."

Nole Digest Top Stories