Offense Shows Life

Despite their struggles against the defense during live situations during the first week of practice, Chris Rix and the Florida State Seminole offense showed little rust in Monday's first scrimmage at Daok Campbell Stadium. Both Rix and his coaches were pleased with the first live action effort of the fall.

Florida State's first team offense moved the ball with ease against the defensive second-teamers in the controlled environment, tallying a pair of scores at Doak Campbell Stadium.

The scrimmage was delayed an hour due to passing thunderstorm, but the wait didn't hurt the Seminoles' offense.

Rix found Lorenzo Booker on a screen for a 44-yard touchdown in the first series. Booker broke three tackles before breaking to the outside and diving over the pylon for the score.

Rix also found senior Dominic Robinson for the only other score on the day.

"The first time out, there's always going to that adjustment period were guys get used to the speed of the game again," said Rix, who finished 19 of 27 for 230 yards.

"But I thought we executed well. I'm doing my job if I can get the ball in hands of my playmakers."

And it was how FSU got the ball in its receiver's hands that turned a few heads. As promised, the offensive gameplan involved getting the backs and tight ends involved. Booker led all receivers with four catches for 77 yards while Leon Washington netted 21 yards on a pair of flares and a screen.

"It was the first scrimmage so you saw us do mostly running and short passes," Rix said. "Like I said yesterday, this season I'm concentrating on taking what the defense gives me."

Rix also found his wideouts. Chauncey Stovall (5 rec, 31 yards) had a few nice grabs on stops and drags with defenders draped on him. Craphonso Thorpe had a 33-yard gain on a crossing route on which he outran coverage and turned the corner while third option Willie Reid snared a pair of passes for 21 yards.

"We caught the ball as well as we have in a while today," head coach Bobby Bowden said. "Chris was making good decisions and doing so calmly."

Chris Davis wowed his teammates with his elusiveness before exiting after taking a hit late in the day. Davis caught a pair of balls for 35 yards, making some things happen after getting the ball short. On an end around, Davis turned a sure ten-yard loss into a three-yard gain after escaping from several potential tacklers.

Things didn't go so well for the second-teamers. Wyatt Sexton finished 7-for-16 with 87 yards and an interception. On his first series, he was picked by Pat Watkins after trying to thread the ball into double coverage to Davis. Sexton was also sacked twice by Chauncey Davis, who seemed to be in the backfield all game long.

Freshmen Xavier Lee and Drew Weatherford worked with the reserves, as well. Lee misfired on all three of his passes while Weatherford was one for six, completing a ball to Derek Baker for ten yards. Unfortunately, Baker was stripped and turned the ball over on the play. Weatherford was also hampered by drops. Joslin Shaw dropped a sure touchdown pass while Shaw and Robert Hallback collided on another play.

"He though Weatherford did a good job getting the ball to the receivers," Bowden said. "Lee had more troubles. That's to be expected for freshmen."

Ernie Sims and A.J. Nicholson were held out of the action as a precaution. Nicholson has a stinger in his neck and some soreness while Sims' injury was undisclosed. Both are day to day.

Buster Davis had to multi-task with the thin linebacking corps. Davis worked at Mike on the second D and at Nicholson's outside spot. Davis sacked Sexton for a loss of seven. On a blitz, Davis make the hit of the day on Jamaal Edwards, knocking him flat on his back.

The offense chose the air more often as the day wore on since the top four Seminole tailbacks were held mostly in check. Washington graded 20 yards on four carries while freshmen Edwards (10-20) and Lamar Lewis (10-10) had struggles against the defense.

Booker didn't have a carry but more than made up for it with his catches. His speed and moves were on display on his 44-yard touchdown grab. He had to do battle with four defenders before turning the play into a footrace down the sideline that he barely won, diving at the pylon as the last second.

"Shows you what he can do what you get him the ball in the open field," Bowden said. "He's dangerous."

Said Booker: "It was there. It took awhile but it was there. Everyone had to execute and they did."

Rix 19-27 230 yards 2 TD
Sexton 7-16 87 yards 1 INT
Weatherford 1-6 10 yards
Lee 0-3
Edwards 10-20
Lewis 10-10
Washington 4-20
Dean 1-5
4-77 Booker 1 TD
1-31 Thorpe
3-21 Washington
5-31 Stovall
1-9 Henshaw
2-35 Davis
1-22 Root
3-37 Robinson 1 TD
2-21 Reid
2-21 carter
1-10 Irons
1- -3 Lewis

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