Florida State football coach Mike Norvell passionately defended his program after an 0-4 start, saying he would not compromise the standards he is laying out for his players or his vision for the future.
The Seminoles are off to their worst start since 1974 in Year 2 under Norvell. Responding to a question about his message to recruits, Norvell spoke for more than three minutes not only about what he is looking for with incoming players, but what he has seen inside his locker room.
"I'm pissed off that we're 0-4, and we can bring up how many years it's been," Norvell said. "I can't control that. I can control this team at this moment and right now with the opportunity. So we're going to work our butts off to go get better, and we're going to do it the right way. And we're going to have a standard how we operate, the same standard of everything that we do. I'm going to hold myself to it because I've got to be the example. Does that mean I'm not gonna make a mistake? I'll probably make a mistake. Might make one today, might make one tomorrow, but I will respond to that. That's the team I want, because I've seen it work.
"I've been a part of teams when they've been on a losing streak. They didn't get caught up with all the crap that was on the outside and everybody telling you what you can't do and, oh, this is the issue. It's easy to point at that. But who wants to be a part of the solution? Those are the guys we're going after."
Florida State has lost three of its games by one score, including a 31-23 loss to Louisville this past weekend at home. But Norvell pointed to the way his team battled back from a 31-7 halftime deficit to give itself a chance to win.
"If I was a fan, I'd be pissed off, 31-7," Norvell said. "Some of them stayed. Some of them didn't. The ones that did got to see a team that came back and responded, and played their butts off until the end. Were we successful? No, it was a failure. We did not win that game. I felt confident in it, I felt we were going to put ourselves in a great position. We came up short, but they did not stop. They continue to believe.
"Yes, we are 0-4, but we have today. Then, Lord willing, wake up tomorrow; we'll have tomorrow. And what we do with that, man I've got a lot of confidence in."
Florida State hosts Syracuse on Saturday.