Still Improving

After starting the season by having to work their way through a barrage of injuries, Florida State's offensive line has a new challenge. They'll have to step it up over the next few games to protect the Seminoles new signal caller, <b>Wyatt Sexton.</b> But as <b>David Castillo </b>says, they're always ready to conquer a challenge.

The Florida State Seminoles -- namely the offensive line -- doesn't feel any added pressure now that Wyatt Sexton is starting at quarterback.

So says veteran center David Castillo, who pointed out the goal of the offensive line has always been to strive for perfection, regardless of who's taking snaps.

"When we go out there our goal is to do everything perfectly," Castillo said following Tuesday's practice.

"Having veterans on the line, we sat down and talked about it, getting the running game going and taking some pressure off of Wyatt (Sexton). Give him that extra second because he's not as mobile as Chris (Rix)."

But things will be different with Sexton in the backfield. He doesn't have the same mobility as Rix, or the experience. Castillo says that Sexton needs to work on calling his defenses quicker, and louder.

"I've had to go up to Wyatt a few times and talk to him about being more vocal out there in calling his defenses," Castillo said.

"We're playing at home and we're having a little bit of trouble hearing him with the band going and the fans cheering, when we go play in places that are really loud it's going to be hard to hear him."

Castillo and Sexton have also been trying to find a rhythm, one of the things that Castillo says the two will have to work on since they haven't taken many snaps together in games.

He added, "I have to talk to him to make sure we're on the same page because we haven't worked with him as much."

Coach Bobby Bowden is optimistic about the potential of the line, and the job they'll do for Sexton, after watching them struggle against the Hurricanes, rebounding with a promising performance against UAB and Clemson.

"I think they are making improvements and we got a couple of them back that have been out," Bowden said. "We're making strides and I think that showed the other night, especially with the running game."

They might be taking a few steps back, as well.

Backup center John Frady left the practice field early, Tuesday. His elbow was wrapped after aggravating it on one of the day's final drills.

"Thank goodness it was his left elbow because he snaps with his right," said Bowden, who didn't have any further info on Frady's injury to report yet.

Unfortunately, injuries are nothing new for Castillo and his crew.

The journey for the offensive line, so far this season, has had it's share of bumps and bruises. Both Castillo and G Bobby Meeks went down during the preseason and are just now getting to full strength. After the season opener against Miami, the line lost starting G Matt Meinrod for the season with a torn ACL.

"I think we are a little behind where we want to be. We've been unfortunate with injuries, losing Meinrod," Castillo said.

Castillo says he's getting back to normal after seeing extensive time against Clemson. His goal over the next week of practice is to work out some of the rust that's developed while he's been recuperating from his injuries.

"When you're injured most people would think conditioning because you're not able to run or change direction, but you can still get in the pool and swim, or do the arm bike," Castillo said.

"But with technique you can start playing really rusty, you can start playing really high, not get your knees bent or not driving your legs when you make contact with people. And it's even when you don't get injured. When you take a long break from football. I didn't play in the spring and I'm still trying to shake off some of the rust."


Nole Digest Top Stories