Wednesday's Premium Football Notebook

Ernie Sims had the best game of his career when the Seminoles last met Virginia. He's says he's healthy and ready for a repeat performance.

Sims caught the attention of the nation by tallying nine tackles, two sacks and a blocked punt as FSU rolled the Cavs 36-3. According to defensive coordinator Mickey Andrews, Sims earned more tomahawk points for that performance than any other FSU player in the storied history of the program.

"I was dominating," Sims said. "Out on the field everyone was doing their job and plays were just coming my way. It showed in the film room and on the field that I could be one of the top linebackers in the nation."

Sims had to exit last week against Wake Forest but said he'll be ready to go by Saturday night. Trainers fitted him with a special brace – the fourth different one he has donned in his career – that Sims said was comfortable.

His attentions this week have been focused less on himself and more on the task at hand.

"Virginia, they love the run the ball. The main thing that they are going to do is try to run it down our throats and were going to shut that down real quick."

COLZIE TALKS SECONDARY

Graduate assistant defensive backs coach and former Florida State standout cornerback James Colzie has seen Florida State's corners grow up before his very eyes, a process that has been pleasing to say the least.

Gerard Ross, the lone veteran, is playing at least as good if not better than most people expected (or didn't expect). Tony Carter, Trevor Ford, J.R. Bryant and Michael Ray Garvin have also been a pleasant surprise for a unit that many people were counting out before the season even began.

"They have all been pretty impressive," Colzie said. "We are not giving up as many big plays as everybody thought that we would and we're not giving up a lot of yards. Tony Carter and (Gerard) Ross, they've both given up the same amount of yards and a lot of people probably wouldn't believe that but they have both given up the same amount of yards.

"We've got a lot more highs than lows which is obvious because we are undefeated. We are definitely doing as well as I thought that we would but there is always room for improvement."

In addition to the starting tandem of Carter and Ross, Colzie has been pleased with the progression of the two back-ups in Bryant and Ford. Ford was injured before last Saturday's game against Wake Forest and the void left, according to Colzie, was noticeable.

"J.R. (Bryant) and Trevor (Ford) are coming along nicely and it really hurt not having Trevor this past Saturday," he said. "Overall, the unit is young and we are improving every week and that's all that we can ask for.

In relief for the injured Miami native, the Tribe called upon first year man, Garvin, to step in for the first significant minutes of his career.

"Garvin played a lot Saturday because of Trevor and I always try to use four to five guys in the rotation," Colzie said. "With Trevor going down, Michael Ray got himself in there and he's worked his butt off to get to that point but he also knows that there are a lot of things that he needs to improve on. That's something that we try to do everyday is make all of these young guys get better and better."

While the status of Ford has yet to be ruled definitively for this weekend's tilt in Virginia, Colzie did mention that he could be out for up to four weeks. Ford sustained nerve damage in his neck during a pregame tackling drill on Saturday. "Randy (Oravetz) was saying that Ford might be gone for about three or four weeks but you never know," he said. "You can only use guys that can be there on Saturday and when he does come back it's going to be an added boost. We just have to make sure that the guys healthy are physically and mentally ready to go."

THAXTON PLAYING IT SAFE

At the conclusion of practice, coach Bobby Bowden announced that sophomore linebacker Jae Thaxton will likely miss the next two ballgames as he is still showing some affects from a concussion earlier this year.

Thaxton was at practice running with his teammates but was in just shirt and shorts rather than shells as the other players were.

"It's still concussion stuff, just taking precautions," Thaxton said. "It's just to be on the safe side of everything for right now. I've got to see a neurologist sometime. I'm just playing it safe."

"We had to shut him down again because of post-concussion issues," Oravetz said.

OTHER INJURY NEWS

- Defensive end Anthony Kelly won't make the trip this weekend because he is still battling a strained hamstring and nagging groin problem. Thoughts of a redshirt season have surfaced again.

"I don't think anyone has made a decision about Anthony Kelly," FSU coach Bobby Bowden said. "We have to wait and see how he responds the injury he's got. If it's still hurting him, you might has well not play him.

- Matt Meinrod underwent successful surgery and was released from the hospital around 10 p.m. Tuesday night. Oravetz said that the Tampa native is out for the year. Meinrod had expressed a desire to play in the bowl game and a post season all-star game but that is unlikely due to further damage that could result.

"It's a shame because you know how hard he has worked," Oravetz said.

- Darrell Burston (shoulder) says he's ready to go, Bobby Bowden says he's not. Burston has been running and participating in non-contact drills and will be a gametime decision.


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