Did Florida State players not drink enough water ahead of Saturday’s game against Boise State? Willie Taggart certainly thinks it’s possible.
The Seminoles lost 36-31 to the Broncos after jumping out to a 31-13 lead. Boise State ran 108 plays against a Florida State defense that looked worn down at the end of the game. Did a lack of hydration mean Florida State’s players fatigued quicker? It’s not something that would normally be questioned. After all, Boise State ran 108 plays.
But Taggart made it a valid question on his radio show Monday night. From the Tallahassee Democrat:
"I think after going through last weekend and seeing our guys going down and cramping, one thing we talked about with our medical staff is our guys got to hydrate," Taggart said on his weekly call-in show.
"That can't be on Friday, that can't be on Thursday, they need to start hydrating early in the week and take care of their bodies. We can't leave it up to our players just to do it. We've got to force them to hydrate and take care of themselves.
"I don't know if we did a good job of that last weekend. One of those situations where you live and learn, and we'll make sure that we help our guys when it comes to that."
If Florida State’s players weren’t properly hydrated, just what exactly was the program doing in the leadup to the Boise State game? Yeah, it was hot in Tallahassee on Saturday. But it would have been hot in Jacksonville, the original site for the game. It was moved to FSU’s campus ahead of Hurricane Dorian.
And Florida State is one of the most prominent programs in the country. Getting players physically prepped for games should be rote at this point. The possibility that players didn’t drink enough ahead of the game is inexcusable.
Players getting rhabdomyolysis from offseason workouts is inexcusable too. But that’s what happened when Taggart and current Florida State strength coach Irele Oderinde were at Oregon. Three Ducks players got rhabdomyolysis after conditioning workouts in January of 2017.
Two of those players filed suits regarding their cases, alleging that water was not provided to them during the first day of those workouts. And Taggart said in the week after the workouts that he and his staff would make sure to do a better job of getting their players properly hydrated.
It appears that there could have been a lapse in those hydration efforts ahead of the Boise State game.
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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.
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