Originally created 09/17/99

O'Leary not happy to just play well

George O'Leary wasn't satisfied with just a good showing against No. 1 Florida State last week.

Georgia Tech fell to the Seminoles 41-35 in Tallahassee. The Yellow Jackets coach said a great effort is not enough if his program is to rise to the next level.

"That's what I've tried to instill in our players and fans," O'Leary said. "Playing well and losing is not what we're here for."

O'Leary said FSU won the battle of big plays in the high-scoring affair.

"You have to make them in big games and we didn't make them," O'Leary said. "Close doesn't count."


Florida State coach Bobby Bowden was interviewed by ABC between the first and second quarters in last week's victory over Georgia Tech. The 69-year-old coach has been chastised for agreeing to ABC's mid-game request but deflected any criticism with his trademark sense of humor.

"I love that camera," Bowden said in jest. "Anytime our defense is on the field, I stand there picking my nose so I'd rather be looking at that camera."

Bowden was impressed with Aiken native Jamal Reynolds' performance against the Yellow Jackets. The junior has been touted as the next great defensive end at FSU and Bowden said Reynolds' two-sack performance could be a glimpse of what's to come.

"He had a super spring training," Bowden said. "He stood out like those other great ends we've had. He came back this fall and didn't stand out. Last week he might have started his coming-out party."


With Hurricane Floyd barreling down on the southeastern shoreline, several ACC coaches had to alter their mid-week preparations.

N.C. State coach Mike O'Cain lost practice time on Wednesday and Thursday. With a rematch of Florida State looming on Saturday, O'Cain was concerned more with the safety of his team than the Seminoles.

"We're in a state of turmoil with the weather conditions we have," O'Cain said. "Your mind needs to be on your safety and not necessarily your (game plan)."

North Carolina was the least affected with a bye week but Virginia moved its practices indoors while waiting out Floyd. Clemson coach Tommy Bowden, whose Tigers also have a bye, had planned to practice inside but was prepared to test his passing game in the rain.


Duke senior quarterback Spencer Romine is not expected to play in the Blue Devils' home opener against Northwestern on Saturday. The 6-foot-3, 195-pounder has a separated shoulder and coach Carl Franks did not want to rush his return. ... Wake Forest coach Jim Caldwell abandoned his trademark shirt and tie for a golf shirt in the Demon Deacons' 34-15 victory over Army last week. Caldwell's game-day attire had been patterned after Penn State coach Joe Paterno who he served under as an assistant for seven years. ... N.C. State QB Jamie Barnette has thrown for 525 yards and six touchdowns in the Pack's last two meetings with FSU. ... Georgia Tech QB Joe Hamilton leads the nation in passing efficiency. Hamilton has completed 34 of 42 passes for 526 yards and six touchdowns. ... Virginia owns a 15-game winning streak against Saturday's opponent, Wake Forest.

Reach Jimmy DeButts at (706) 823-3221.


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