RALEIGH, NC — Florida State coach Mike Norvell, perturbed with officiating and upset with his team’s performance, spoke about the Seminoles’ 19-17 loss at NC State on Saturday evening. The coach’s interview after the game can be viewed below.
Alright, first off, congratulations to NC State. They did a really good job there, and especially in the second half, coming back and being able to make the plays that were necessary to win the game. That is a locker room, staff, football team that’s hurting. To come out and the work and the investment that was put in. Throughout the game there were so many swings – swings of emotion, swings of momentum. It was a college football game that, it was tough, I mean it was a physical game. Ultimately, we made a lot of mistakes there in the second half that we’ve got to be able to overcome and it’s everybody. You know, I just told the team that the outcome is 100% on me. For us to come out in the second half and we just had missed opportunities. They did a great job of changing up a few things, creating some pressures, they made tackles when they needed to make them, they were able to defend the pass, they were able to get some positive gains there in the run game, had a couple of explosives that showed up, a couple of penalties that assisted drives moving down the field. It was just everything that could go wrong really in that second half really showed up. Ultimately to come up short like that was just incredibly disappointing and you’ve got to give credit to them and for what they did and how they executed, but it’s a football team and staff that that I just hurt for them and hurt with them, but just disappointing that we came up short in that one.
On the last interception
Had a one-on-one coverage. The guy jumped outside and re-routed Mycah, Mycah then slipped inside as Jordan was letting go of the ball. The guy fell off and went and made the interception. So it was something that was a timing throw and guy plays catch-coverage. Kind of forced Mycah inside and the ball went outside. Same exact thing that we scored a touchdown on in the first half. Guy caught Mycah and as the ball left Jordan’s hand, he saw the result.
On what NC State did to disrupt the offense in the second half
We missed some opportunities. They were doing a good job in varying what they were doing. I mean they were changing a few things in the running game with their fits and obviously how they were presented. We missed some opportunities. Trying to keep a balance of being able to attack in the run game and we weren’t having the positives in the run game there against a couple different looks. Weren’t very good on third downs, being able to sustain drives to ever really get into a rhythm. They did a good job balancing, I mean from max pressures, zero blitzes, to rolling coverages. We knew it’s a good defense. We know it is a good team and a well-coached team. But obviously we didn’t, we weren’t able to get anything established and any rhythm there in the second half, which makes it challenging.
How much did he go back-and-forth on settling for a FG versus going for a TD late
I mean, you’ve got man-to-man coverage, and that’s where we went. We had five different options on the play, depending on the look of what it’s going to be, so I was good with really anything that came within the different options in that play. We went and took the one-on-one, their defensive back jumped to the outside, caught Mycah, and disrupted it. It’s one of those things that, you know, it’s a guy that made a good play.
On Alex Mastromanno’s miscue with the punt beyond the line of scrimmage
No. It was – I think he, you know, they were bringing, they brought an extra hat off one side. I think it just flashed in front of him and he started to go. I appreciate our defense, they really, really rose up in that moment and did a great job of forcing them back in and the guy made whatever it was a 56 yard field goal to go up there. Our guys responded really well in the situation and they made a play to get three points off of it. But, you know, I just think that was something that happened where Alex got smart and started to run, and then, you know, just kind of probably lost bearings of where he was.
On the second straight week that an opposing offense marched down the field to open the second half with relative ease
You don’t ever want to give up a drive, a scoring drive. They went in, made a few adjustments, and were able to run the ball. They hit a couple plays, and, you know, that was their touchdown drive. When it comes to a close game, every play, every point matters. I mean we’ve got to, obviously we have to do a better job of coming out. They did a good job of making a few adjustments and ultimately were able to go down a score.
On the last interception, did the DB do something that he generally wouldn’t do?
He played catch-coverage. Did a good job. I’ve got to watch it. I just know I looked at Mycah, you know, he’s the guy, jumped and grabbed him in the part of his route. That’s part of the game and certain things just present challenges.
On the call against Joshua Farmer for roughing the passer
It was. I know what was said, but I think it was awful. I mean, they said it was that he was – I disagreed with it, so.
On the wide receiver drops on the day being contagious
There’s times when you feel, as I always say to the team, momentum affects the teams that allow it to affect them. When you start feeling that pressure and we talked a little bit about it last week, and, you know, when you need a play, or you’ve got to have that spark, and just in those moments, you’ve got to trust and rely on your fundamentals, you’ve got to go out there and execute and be who you are and capitalize on those opportunities. We had some missed ones today. Whenever you’re facing things that, when that adversity does show up, and you’re facing those moments, I mean, that’s where we’ve got to – we need to rise up and make those plays, which we’ve made a lot of them this year. I wouldn’t say it’s necessarily contagious, because I’ve seen those guys respond in tough situations before, but today it was definitely a factor, especially some of those real critical situations to be able to extend a drive that we didn’t have .
On penalties, especially those that came after plays due to frustration
I mean because it all matters. I mean we have third down and one that gets turned into a third and freaking 16. That’s a game-changing play. All the right intentions, but we cannot do things that extend drives, we cannot do things that put us behind the chains on drives. That’s what the second half was. These guys work extremely hard. We talk about the focus, we talk about the details, we talk about the overall execution that’s going to be necessary when you’re playing a good team. And, you know, these last two weeks we played good teams. That’s a good football team. For us, you can’t do the things that stack you behind whether it’s missed opportunities, whether it’s a lack of communication, whether it’s a penalty that goes against you. When those things show up, I mean, it matters in a one score game and a tight game where 15 yards, pretty big difference, in tonight’s outcome. We just have to be better when it comes to that.
On the defense being on the field a lot in the second half, giving them chances to win it in the end by not allowing touchdowns.
Our defense was on the field way too much in the second half because we didn’t establish or sustain drives there offensively. It’s one of those things that we got a bunch of guys banged up tonight and that’s been a part of this season so far. It’s all just random things that have happened. They showed great heart and toughness, and they battled and fought. I thought after the penalty where they had the ball inside, whatever it was the 20 yard line, to be able to move them back to whatever was a fourth and 40 or something like that. The guy makes a 56-yard field goal. I mean it’s a job well done by them, but you see our defense. They’re competitors. They’re tough. This is a football team of competitors. Nobody wanted to experience coming up short in that game. I can dang sure tell you that it’s not from a lack of work or want-to, you know, just we had some critical, critical mistakes that showed up. And it’s everybody involved. Like I told you, I mean, I have to be better for this football team. It’s disappointing to see us come up short, because I know as a coaching staff, everything that we’re doing, and we are, we’re pouring it in to take that step right there in that moment. We’ve seen a lot of good. We’ve seen a lot of things that have grown and gotten better within this team, but ultimately, there’s a lot of plays, especially there in that second half, that kept us from what we could have accomplished tonight.
How would he like to see his team respond at the midway point of the season after this loss
Just want to see them continue to fight, continue to believe, and go showcase your identity. It is what I told them there. You go through life and everybody wants it to go pretty smooth. I absolutely was 100% confident we were going to come in here, and we were going to find a way to win that game. And that didn’t happen. But I believe in this team. I believe in the work that we do. I believe in the young men I get to coach. I believe in the staff I get to work with. We will respond in a way that’s going to showcase the identity of this team, of this group. Right? We represent an incredible university. I know there’s a lot of people disappointed with the outcome that we’ve seen here the last two weeks, but there’s nobody more disappointed than us. And you know, ultimately, we have an incredible opportunity to be able to rise up, to go push forward, to go get better, and put on display the DNA, the culture, and values of this football team. I’ve got great confidence in how these guys are going to respond to it. We’re going to continue to work to be our best in everything that we do.