Double Trouble

It's a high-percentage pass that Florida State fans have screamed for since <b>Warrick Dunn</b> made it chic for the Seminoles. It's a high-percentage pass that quarterback <b>Chris Rix.</b> for whatever reason, seems to ignore at times. It's a high-percentage pass that worked rather nicely in FSU's win over Wake Forest Saturday and could play a key role at Notre Dame as the fifth-ranked Seminoles (7-1) remain in national championship contention. Say hello again to the swing pass.

"We worked on those scats a lot, the routes out of the backfield because that's something the coaches definitely wanted to get back to since Warrick Dunn was here," said tailback Lorenzo Booker.

"They ran it a lot. Now we have the backs with that same kind of style that are able to make stuff happen in the open field. We went back to it and it looked good. Hopefully we can stick with it."

With the return of Booker and Leon Washington at tailback, combined with the consistent effort from Greg Jones, the Seminoles are once again full strength at tailback. The firepower was evident in Saturday's 48-24 win over the Demon Deacons as the trio contributed in a big way.

Booker and Washington were extremely effective out of the backfield as well as receivers, combining on five receptions for 57 yards. Booker mixed in an exciting, reverse-the-field 15-yard reception.

FSU coach Bobby Bowden admitted it was encouraging to finally have his three tailbacks healthy since season's start.

"That was very good," Bowden said.

"We made most of them off of catching passes, until the game got broken open, I believe. I think most our (rushing) yards came when we had the game in control. It seems like we didn't break anything early. Leon (Washington) might have made a 10-yard run, or something like that."

The trio combined for 123 rushing yards, 89 in the second half, and one score.

"Initially, our game plan was go to in and run the ball," Washington said.

"The first half we weren't really able to run the ball because they have a pretty good defense the way they run things. But that opened up to throw the ball and we actually did it pretty well."

Indeed. And, once again, the swing pass played a key role in the offense.

"Well, we've been kind of hampered there," Bowden admitted.

"We started off the year with a pretty good plan. Then, all of a sudden, you lose Leon in the first quarter of the North Carolina game -- maybe the first five minutes. He's out for four weeks, four games. Then, the next game, you lose (Lorenzo) Booker. So you've kind of lost that part of your offense. We had to kind of change our thinking a little bit. Now, they're all back, and we can do some things we wanted to do earlier."

Of course, FSU is looking for a fantastic finish as well.

The Seminoles have four games remaining - at Notre Dame on Saturday, at Clemson (Nov. 8), North Carolina State (Nov. 15) and at Florida (Nov. 29) -- and are sitting pretty, under the circumstances.

FSU already has clinched a share of the Atlantic Coast Conference title and will be the likely to be the recipient of the league's automatic BCS bowl berth.

But Bowden is more concerned with the bigger picture.

``If your goal is to win the conference championship, that's one thing. If your goal is to win a national championship, now you got to win every doggone game,'' Bowden said.

"We've got to win every game no matter who it is. A loss is a loss. Two losses is `Forget about us.' One loss and maybe things will break as it has in the past, so at least we're staying alive.''


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