6. FLORIDA STATE

August 24, 1997

There's something old-fashioned about this Seminoles team, and
it's not a coach who says goldarnit. In an era when the NFL has
made the fifth-year senior All-America as much of a campus relic
as the typewriter (kids, ask your parents), Florida State has
several candidates: linebackers Daryl Bush and Sam Cowart,
defensive end Andre Wadsworth, wide receiver E.G. Green and
quarterback Thad Busby. They are among the 10 remaining players
from the Seminoles' recruiting class of 1993, which has already
sent Warrick Dunn and Peter Boulware to the NFL. These veterans
can pass along the legend of Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback
Charlie Ward. They can show the underclassmen--especially coach
Bobby Bowden's crop of aspiring freshmen--their championship
rings.

"In '93 we played 11 freshmen, and that was very out of line for
us," Bowden says. "Of course, that was the year we won the
national championship."

The trip down memory lane is relevant this fall because Florida
State lacks experience, especially in the backfield, where Dunn
took care of his academics (he graduated) and academics took
care of his backup, junior Rock Preston (he's ineligible and not
enrolled at Florida State). "I don't think we have to have 11
freshmen," says Bowden. "If four or five help, that ought to do
it."

If Dunn-sized (5'9", 182 pounds) junior tailback Dee Feaster
doesn't make the job his, don't be surprised to see true
freshman Travis Minor. Like Dunn, Minor came out of Baton Rouge
Catholic, where he rushed for 2,649 yards and 33 touchdowns last
season while wearing number 28 to honor Dunn. To get away from
the considerable shadow of Dunn, who scored 10 touchdowns as a
Seminoles freshman in 1993, Minor (6'1", 190 pounds) will wear
number 23 at Florida State.

Minor isn't the only one who has changed his number. Cowart, who
was the Seminoles' leading tackler in 1995 but sat out last
season after undergoing reconstructive knee surgery, has
switched from number 56 to number 1. "My goal is to be the
Number 1 linebacker in the country, the Number 1 player in the
country and hopefully on the Number 1 team in the nation," he
says.

Florida State faces an uphill climb in its quest to earn another
national title. Fifth-year senior Kevin Long returns at center,
where he will be the dean of a line that will likely include two
redshirt freshmen. This summer Long, an elementary-education
major, arranged for the line to work as a unit on its blocking
technique and discovered that tutoring freshmen can be
remarkably similar to teaching grammar school. "You learn to
have patience," he says. "With young kids, you have to repeat
something over and over. Eventually, with the young linemen,
they'll remember: Stay low. Stay low. You want them to get so
used to it they get out of bed low."

All of Florida State got out of bed low for a while after
January's Sugar Bowl loss to Florida. And Bowden's
disappointment only grew when several players couldn't stay out
of trouble with the law. The coach dismissed senior safety
Robert Hammond and junior linebacker Hank Grant from the team
earlier this month. If he keeps that up, the Seminoles may need
11 freshmen after all. --I. M.

COLOR PHOTO: PETER READ MILLER FANCY FOOTWORK HELPED PETER WARRICK TO A TEAM-HIGH 21.2 YARDS PER CATCH LAST SEASON [Peter Warrick in game]

TELLING STAT

59.0 Average rushing yards per game the Seminoles gave up last
season, fewest in the nation.

TWO GAMES TO WATCH

OCT. 4 VS. MIAMI Florida State takes the first of two steps
needed to claim Sunshine State supremacy.

NOV. 22 AT FLORIDA Bobby Bowden loves to beat Steve Spurrier,
but the Seminoles have lost two of the last three in Gainesville.

RETURNING LEADERS

Passing Thad Busby Sr. 134 comp., 243 att.,
1,866 yds., 16 TDs
Rushing Dee Feaster Jr. 60 yds., 0 TDs
Receiving E.G. Green Sr. 34 catches, 662 yds., 7 TDs
Tackles LB Daryl Bush Sr. 101
Interceptions SS Shevin Smith Sr. 3

HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)