Florida State Players ACC Media Day Q and A

Two of the stars on Florida State’s talent-laden roster — defensive back Jalen Ramsey and kicker Roberto Aguayo — spoke with reporters Monday at the ACC Media Days in Pinehurst, North Carolina. Check out some of what they said below.

 

Q. Last year’s bad taste going into this season, what can you say the team has gotten done through the spring to go forward and get a little bit further this year?

JALEN RAMSEY: You know, we just have to refocus ourselves. We can’t be content and satisfied with just getting by, being a second-half team. The Oregon game definitely humbled us. Has us back even hungrier to play this year, start out, and it’s right around the corner.

Q. Everyone is getting used to seeing how confident you are as a player. Where do you get your confidence from? What really motivates you?

JALEN RAMSEY: I just never want to let my family down. That’s honestly it. I don’t never want to let my family down, my teammates down. So I know I’m doing everything in my power, working hard, doing everything in my power to be the best. That’s all.

Q. Last couple years, Florida State had national title expectations, was kind of a given that you would win the conference. This year you may not be the favorite to even win the conference and nobody is giving you much chance at the national championship. How does it feel to come at it from that perspective because it’s different from what it has been?

JALEN RAMSEY: That’s fine with us. Internally, Florida State as a program, as a team, we don’t go out there and play for the opinions of others. We go out there and play for our love of the game, for our love of each other, to go out there as a brotherhood and play the game that we all love. So, you know, that’s fine if people want to say that we won’t win the conference, won’t be in the picture, things like that, that’s completely fine. When things like that do happen, it will shock them. It will just feel better for us.

Q. What have been your initial impressions of Everett Golson?

JALEN RAMSEY: A competitor. He’s a competitor. He’s a natural leader. He’s fit right in. He’s a great person on and off the field. He fits right in to what we’re about at Florida State.

Q. Is it true you picked off his first pass?

JALEN RAMSEY: It wasn’t his first pass. He didn’t throw my way on the first pass. The first pass he threw my way, I did pick it off. I didn’t say anything to him. I just gave him a little smile. Some of the other guys on the team said something to him, though.

Q. There’s been a lot going on in the off-season at Florida State. How has the team sort of responded to that? Are there any restrictions on where players can go, what y’all can do in light of what’s happened there?

JALEN RAMSEY: You know, we just have to focus back up. We have to focus up as a team. We’ve always done things, the coaches have had speakers come and educate us. We’ve always been learning about different aspects of just life in general, becoming men on and off the field, doing the right things. As far as we can’t go certain places, that’s not true. Just as a team, we try to keep ourselves in the right places so we don’t make bad choices, or nothing bad happens. That’s all that is.

Q. The ACC had 10 defenses ranked among the nation’s top 46 in total defense. Florida State was not among them. Do you see this as a year when yards are harder to get or will you continue to let people drive the ball and make big plays when you need to?

JALEN RAMSEY: Definitely our goal is just to be the best that we can be. We’re going to be happy with ourselves if we’re going out there truly doing the best we can, preparing ourselves throughout the week, week in, week out, doing everything we have to do. We’re definitely going to get the job done.

Q. Talking about having to focus up, who are some of those guys through the spring that stepped up leadership-wise to try and corral the team on and off the field?

JALEN RAMSEY: There’s a few guys in every position group. There’s a few guys who people look up to in that position group who they’ll follow. They have certain influence on certain guys on the team. I don’t think it’s just one specific leader, I don’t think it’s two or three. We have multiple leaders on the team. There’s different types of leaders. That’s just something that, you know, players will become more comfortable with when the season goes on a little bit more, and definitely when camp starts in a few weeks.

Q. How do you know that your successful at practice? How do you win the day? How do you win the week?

JALEN RAMSEY: When you’re doing everything in your power to be the best, to control what you can control, when you’re giving it your all, your best, you can be happy with yourself at the end of the day. You can only be yourself. You can’t try to go out there and try to do something out of the ordinary, something that’s not you, something that you can’t do. I feel like, you know, you’re going out there and giving it your best, you’re going to be happy about it. Nine times out of ten times at Florida State you’ll be successful because we have the talent. We go out there and work hard and develop those into skills.

Q. A lot of returning quarterbacks have big numbers. Is this going to be maybe an offensive year? Do you feel like the defenses are going to have more work to do with the high-powered players coming back on the offenses?

JALEN RAMSEY: I’m not really sure, to be honest. Only time will tell. Like I said, I mean, for us, Florida State, we got to do the right things day in, day out on and off the field, be the best that we can be.

Q. You say there are things that you can control and can’t control. To win the day, you do the best you can do. Are there things right now you feel like you can’t do or are there things today you feel you do really well?

JALEN RAMSEY: Me personally?

Q. You personally.

JALEN RAMSEY: I feel like there’s nothing that I can’t do as a defensive back. I play every spot in the secondary since I’ve been in college. I know the whole defense. I feel like I can do it all. That’s just me personally. That’s the confidence I have in myself.

THE MODERATOR: Jalen, thank you. We’re joined by Roberto Aguayo. Questions for Roberto.

Q. You’ve done a lot. What more is there that you can do?

ROBERTO AGUAYO: Just keep on doing what I’ve been doing. Obviously win another Groza, that would be nice. Only two-time winner. The goals and expectations are the same every year for me personally. Do what I got to do, set myself up every week to be the best I can be on Saturday, just progress, play to the best of my ability.

Q. You’ve made like 92% of your field goals. You missed four. Talk about the misses and how important it is to not dwell on the misses. Can you tell me about the misses?

ROBERTO AGUAYO: Oh, yeah.

Q. Or have you blocked them out that you don’t recall them?

ROBERTO AGUAYO: There’s only four, so I remember my misses. It’s unfortunate, but like I said, they don’t happen that often. When they do happen, I process and move on. I analyze what I did wrong, if I could have done better, if I could have prepared better for that day, and just move on and get better from it. They’re going to happen. People are going to miss. I’m going to miss. It’s always just reducing the chances of you missing with preparation and just getting better at your craft.

Q. You try to make yourself better each day. What do you do to challenge yourself in practice, keep things from getting monotonous?

ROBERTO AGUAYO: Like I said, like you said, I wake up and try to get better each and every day, whether it’s on the field or off the field. Coach Fisher once told me the great demise of good players is they get bored. With what I’ve done, I could easily fall, just because I get bored, just because I do it every day. I don’t look at it every day. Personally everyone out there thinks I’m the best, but I have flaws that any of y’all might not know. I wake up every day to fix those things and just to be perfect. I hold myself to a high standard and I always want to get the job done right.

Q. Because you’re so successful and there is a national spotlight on you, what keeps you locked in, what keeps you focused on the road, at home? What makes you, in your opinion, one of the best?

ROBERTO AGUAYO: Just the drive to be the best. You know, growing up, my father, every day that I woke up, called me Champ. After hearing it so many times you become part of that lifestyle. He always held us to high standards, high expectations. Sometimes I’d be like, Dad, I’m sorry, I didn’t do this right, I didn’t do that right. He’s like, I’m not going to let you slip by, let you do these things. That’s when you become average. My dad always wanted me to be great, me and my brother to be great. I feel like I’ve carried that into college, into high school and into college. Like I said, just to be the best at what I do. Arguably most of you all consider me the best in the country. I just got to keep that going, keep getting better, keep getting better in every facet of the game.

Q. You’re one of the special teams representatives here. What does it mean to have your kickers come back? If you’re a returning kicker, what does that mean to a team?

ROBERTO AGUAYO: Just the sense of having you there as experience. I guess you’ve done it already once a year, doing it again. Coming in for my third year of being on the field, I’m looked upon as a veteran on the team. Just the special teams part at Florida State I think is at good hands. I take care of my job whether it be field goals or kickoffs. I know whatever Coach Fisher wants, it will be done. I hold Cason and the rest of my squad to high standards. Knowing when it comes to special teams, Florida State won’t be average.

Q. What’s your range?

ROBERTO AGUAYO: Depending on weather conditions there is during a game, it can be anywhere from 54 to 62, so…

Q. You mentioned earlier your brother Ricky. Who at this point in your careers, is he better than you were or…

ROBERTO AGUAYO: He’s better in a different facet than I was. I was mainly mostly physically better than he is now. But I feel he’s more mentally prepared from what I’ve taught him, from the knowledge I’ve learned kicking through college already, that I’ve given to him. I wish I had an older brother that could have told me the things that I know now. Maybe I could have been even better than what I am now. I think in that facet, he’s better. I always think mental overrides physical anytime. If you can’t perform on the field ’cause you’re nervous or you’re a head case, then you can’t get the job done.