Cirminiello Orange Thought: FSU Just Too Good
Posted Jan 2, 2013

Rich Cirminiello's Thoughts on Florida State's 2013 Orange Bowl win over Northern Illinois.

Richard Cirminiello

Way too physical. Way too fast. Northern Illinois did well just to make this a one-score game in the third quarter, but it never really had a shot against the far superior Lynch mob that was the Florida State D.

Lonnie Pryor has a great future at the next level. Sure, his touches come infrequently, but the fullback showed his versatility and athleticism by ripping off two long touchdown runs in the comfortable win. He's going to do a lot of things well for whatever NFL franchise selects him in April.

Do not underestimate the importance of this win for Florida State and head coach Jimbo Fisher just because a MAC team was on the other side of the field. The ‘Noles will have to take this process in steps. Winning the ACC was the first one. Taking the Orange Bowl—regardless of the opponent—was another one. As Fisher continues to stockpile a war chest of talent from across the region, FSU will keep getting closer to national championship contention.

If this is the kind of coach that Rod Carey will be in DeKalb, he's going to be both popular and successful. He took some chances and showed plenty of big-game moxie with a few of his calls, which gave the Huskies hope for a time.

Not exactly sure what to make of the amateur career of EJ Manuel now that it's ended. No, he didn't quite hit his mark as a can't-miss blue-chipper coming out of Virginia Beach. But he was an integral part of the rebuilding of Florida State back into an ACC heavyweight. And winning the Orange Bowl was a positive end to an up-and-down career.

Heisman voters ought to keep this evening in mind when evaluating the candidacy of Jordan Lynch next fall. Exciting and talented player, but shredding MAC defenses naturally doesn't compare to what major conference programs must endure on a weekly basis. You're not a candidate for national awards until you've proven you can beat the best at least a couple of times in a season. Lynch was not that guy in Miami.