And the good news following Florida State's 78-62 loss to the Hurricanes is? Leonard Hamilton has built a squad that is worthy of an opponent rushing the floor after defeating the Seminoles.
After that ..... not much else.
It was a game that even Hamilton was not pleased with, commenting that the team seemingly could do nothing right. In particular on defense (big surprise that he would specifically mention defense). And that comment about his defense came BEFORE the 'Noles allowed Miami to shoot 61% in the second half against a short-handed Hurricane team.
As it turned out, the benching of center Reggie Johnson turned out to be in the favor of Miami. It forced UM to go small, where the taller Seminoles had difficulty staying with the penetrating guards.
It also gave a player like Kenny Kadji the opportunity to shine. The 6-11 forward has the ability to play out on the perimeter or put it on the floor. It is a weakness of FSU when faced with having a big man go out and guard a player like that at the perimeter. If Kadji didn't make the three, he drove past the defender for the layup basket or drew the foul leading to 15 points.
Then there was the offense or lack thereof.
So what do you do in the second half when your perimeter shooting is off and the big man for Miami is on the bench? Well, if you are Florida State you jack up half of your thirty three shot attempts from the three point line. At least FSU made five of them. Of course they missed 11 but who's counting.
The times Miami threw the zone defense at the 'Noles had a little to do with that. It was a good move by Coach Larranaga. It's no secret Florida State is not a good jump shooting team. And we seem to fall into that trap of putting up the long ball, being pushed easily into getting away from, our strength.
The bottom line for FSU is in a game they needed to win to maintain any chance of winning the ACC regular season's top seed heading into the conference tournament, they laid an egg. They simply did not play well at all.
Which is baffling considering what was at stake.
You can kiss that goodbye. FSU is now playing for maintaining the third seed. And that is not a lock.
What is troubling is we have seen the Seminoles play these last few games more like the team that lost by 20 to Clemson and struggled to score against the likes of Harvard and Princeton. Well, maybe not quite as bad as that.
But while you can win scoring just 62 points in a game,. you can't play poorly on defense at the same time, or make those costly self inflicted turnovers at the wrong time.
What has become clear this season is that three things will beat FSU more often than not. Playing a zone defense, playing a deliberate run-the-shot-clock-down type offense, and going small negating FSU's length.
Florida State just got beaten by utilizing two off those three and now travels to Virginia to face a team that will slow the tempo waaaaaaaaaaaay down. That style nearly paid off for the Cavs on Saturday when it came down to the very end of the game, but still ended in a 57-54 loss to North Carolina.
No one wanted that 20th win for FSU (19-9, 10-4) to come down to that final game of the season. But it is quite possible that when the Seminoles meet Clemson next Sunday afternoon that may just be scenario the 'Noles will be facing.