“Culture” has become a major buzzword in most industries with college football being no exception. A positive culture serves as the driving force behind most successful entities. It’s the attitude that leadership creates and employees reflect; a company cannot move forward with a toxic culture.
This is true for a Fortune 500 business and equally as true for a sports team.
A toxic culture cannot weather the highs and lows that will inherently occur over the course of a season. This is why you must not only dictate culture from top down, but promote those who embody what you want your culture to look like. Top teams have leaders who embody the behaviors necessary to achieve a winning culture.
FSU has to put guys in place who have that fight as it moves forward into the thick of one of the hardest schedules in the ACC.
Buy-in seems to me to be the biggest struggle apparent on this team. Everything is being done differently now and some players are not adjusting quickly enough to the changes. The talent on this roster exists to win games – a lot of them – and the FSU fan base is holding the coaches accountable based upon that.
The best way to change the culture at FSU is to play those who have bought in.
Last week against NIU, FSU made strides. You could see a spark at times. The spark came from playing younger players who Willie Taggart recruited. It may be time for a full-scale youth movement to be put in place. Mistakes are more acceptable when coming from players who are putting in 100% effort. These young guys seem to give the effort that is more becoming of Seminoles on both sides of the ball.
The younger players have more excitement to play and fewer off-field concerns to worry about. They are only worried about playing and the joy of it. This freshman class, as well as some of the players from the last class, seemingly sell out with their bodies more than the upperclassmen.
Pulling playing time from your older players can also refocus them.
Defensively AJ Lytton, Asante Samuels Jr. and Jaiden Woodbey are giving effort you’d expect from older players. Cory Durden also made plays last game. They weren’t without mistakes, but mixing them in with guys like Stanford Samuels III and you’ve got players who are showing the effort that it takes.
Offensively, Tamorrion Terry, Tre’Shaun Harrison and sophomore Tre McKitty should have more targets in the passing game. They’ve got the ability to help the vertical passing game.
At times, our offensive line hasn’t been able to even graze a defensive lineman’s jersey as he passes by on his way to the quarterback. This is with players who’ve been in the program for five years. Maybe it’s time to put the freshman linemen out there.
FSU must put out the best 11 on each side who physically, mentally, and through their effort want to go out and execute the plays dictated by the coaching staff. It might be time to narrow down the focus of who is going to receive snaps to those who you know will be here beyond this season and the next. This might help refocus the team towards a collective goal.
Freshman play early everywhere, this isn’t a new thing. If the product has been subpar with upperclassmen, and it has, maybe it’s time to infuse the lineup with more youth. That’s a way to shock the team into the culture that you want it to display.
Article Originally Appeared on Gridiron Now: http://gridironnow.com/could-youth-movement-fix-seminoles-apparently-broken-culture