Mike Norvell’s motto is “Work.” And on Thursday morning, the work day began well before sunrise.
Florida State players gathered at the indoor practice facility before 6 a.m. to begin offseason conditioning drills, which Norvell has called “Tour of Duty.”
FSU opened up its offseason conditioning drills to the media. The workouts resembled FSU’s old-school mat drills under coach Bobby Bowden. Norvell even remarked after the workouts that the concept was rooted in Todd Graham’s visit to Tallahassee about 15 years ago. Graham and Norvell coached together at Pittsburgh in 2011 and Arizona State 2012-15.
“The core of it started here with one of the greatest programs in the country,” Norvell said. “That’s where we got it from. It’s pretty special to bring it back.”
The Seminoles have been working out once a week in the early morning hours. Players went through various stations, using resistance bands at one and taking part in cone drills, change of direction drills and a mat drill.
Norvell said he is still looking for leaders to emerge.
“Right now for leadership to emerge we have to have consistent actions,” Norvell said. “I think leadership will show over time. Nobody yet. In reality because we’re not consistent enough to have the leadership that’s necessary. Right now we need our coaches to lead. I need to lead. …
“We’ve seen progress. No doubt. It’s an understanding of what the expectation is and then having to match that expectation. It should get harder every day.”
Among the notable injured players on Thursday who worked out on the side:
Hamsah Nasirildeen and Joshua Kaindoh participated without braces. Jaiden Lars-Woodbey and Keyshawn Helton worked out with a knee brace. Cory Durden had his right arm in a sling due to offseason surgery.
FSU opens spring practice on March 7. The team will hold a few practices, take time off for spring break and then return to the field. FSU will hold the spring game on April 18.
Video from Norvell is below as well as video of a mat drill and some photos:
Here are some FSU players taking part in a mat drill: