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College Gameday: Florida State Seminoles in Tampa edition

Florida State is 8-1 in Tampa but hasn't played in the city since 1979, when it beat Arizona State 31-3 before 33,484 fans on a rainy day at Tampa Stadium. The Seminoles' only loss was 53-21 to Houston in 1970. The Seminoles have a long history with the area. Here are some highlights:

Tampa Bay's best Seminoles

Here are some of the top Florida State players who came from Tampa Bay area high schools:

Xavier Beitia, K, 2001-04, Jesuit: He was third-team freshman All-American by Sporting News in 2001. He ended his FSU career with 67 field goals made in 92 attempts as a four-year starter.

Brodrick Bunkley, DT, 2002-05, Chamberlain: He had 129 tackles for FSU, 37 for loss, which ranks fifth in school history. He was an NFL first-round pick of the Eagles in 2006. Currently plays for the Saints.

Bill Cappleman, QB, 1966-69, Dunedin: He threw for 5,135 yards and 42 touchdowns at FSU. His single-season records included 25 touchdown passes, 2,467 passing yards, 2,342 yards total offense, 344 passes and 183 completions. He was inducted into the FSU Hall of Fame in 1984.

Chris Davis, WR, 2003-06, St. Petersburg Catholic: He ranks seventh on FSU's all-time career receptions list with 137 catches in his four-year career. He was drafted in the fourth round of the 2007 draft by the Titans.

William Floyd, FB, 1991-93, Lakewood

A member of the 1993 national championship team, he had 20 touchdowns and 640 rushing yards in three years as the starting fullback. A first-round pick in 1994, he played for the 49ers and Panthers, and is now a color commentator on FSU football radio broadcasts.

Dan Footman, DE, 1991-93, Hillsborough: He arrived at FSU in 1991 after a season at Northwest Mississippi Junior College. He suffered a season-ending knee injury that season but returned in 1992-93 and was part of FSU's first national championship. He spent six seasons in the NFL with Cleveland, Baltimore and Indianapolis.

Eric Hayes, DL, 1986-89, King: He had 235 career tackles and was a Sporting News honorable mention All-American. He played sparingly in the NFL with Seattle, the Los Angeles Rams and even two games for the Bucs in 1993.

Gary Huff, QB, 1970-72, Leto: He started for FSU in 1971-72 and led the nation in touchdown passes both seasons. He was inducted into the FSU Hall of Fame in 1983. Huff played in the NFL with Chicago, Tampa Bay (1977-78) and San Francisco. He was the quarterback in the Bucs' first-ever win at New Orleans in 1977.

Joey Ionata, OT, 1984-88, Dunedin: Started at tackle and was named an Associated Press honorable mention All-American in 1988.

John Ionata, OT, 1982-85, Dunedin: Anchored the line during his four years. As a senior, he was named an Associated Press and Football News honorable mention All-American.

Hassan Jones, WR, 1982-85, Clearwater: The former Tornado had 98 catches for 1,764 yards and 17 touchdowns at FSU. He was drafted in the third round in 1986 by the Vikings and spent eight seasons in the NFL.

Larry Key, RB, 1974-77, Citrus

He was the first player in FSU history to rush for more than 1,000 yards when he gained 1,117 as a senior in 1977. He finished with 2,953 rushing yards in his career and was inducted into the FSU Hall of Fame in 1984.

Sean Liss, P, 1993-96, Boca Ciega: Averaged 42.9 yards per punt for his career and was an Associated Press and United Press International honorable mention All-American.

Kevin Mancini, OT, 1988-91, Brandon: Part of the resurgence before the 1993 national championship, Mancini was a United Press International honorable mention All-American.

Roger Overby, 1974-77, WR, Robinson: His claim to fame is scoring three touchdowns against Florida in his senior year to give coach Bobby Bowden his first win over the Gators.

Todd Stroud, NG, 1983-85, Lakewood: He was defensive captain of the 1985 team that played in the Gator Bowl. He later returned to FSU as the strength and speed coach.

Al Ulmer, OG, 1957-59, Clearwater: He was an undersized, overachiever who earned honorable mention All-America honors as a junior and senior.

Peter Warrick, WR, 1996-99, Bradenton Southeast: While technically not in our coverage area, Warrick did play just south of St. Petersburg. He is second all time on the FSU career receptions list with 207. He was pivotal in the national championship win over Virginia Tech.

Rodney Page, Times staff writer

Cigar Bowl

Long before the Outback Bowl came to Tampa, the city hosted the Cigar Bowl for nine years, beginning in 1946 at Phillips Field near downtown about where Tampa Prep's campus now sits.

It was the first bowl game Florida State ever played in, Jan. 2, 1950, at the end of the program's third season.

FSU upset Wofford 19-6, breaking the Terriers' 23-game unbeaten streak with then-South Carolina Gov. Strom Thurmond in attendance.

"It was the hard plunging of fullback Buddy Strauss, the elusive running of Wyatt (Red) Parrish and the pass snagging of Clearwater's Norman Eubanks that turned the trick for the Seminoles," wrote Jack Slayton in the St. Petersburg Times.

Parrish scored on runs of 4 and 3 yards, and Strauss, who rushed for 132 yards, had the Seminoles' other touchdown on a 3-yard run.

Seminoles vs. Spartans

One of Florida State's first regular opponents was the University of Tampa. The Seminoles had a 9-2 record against the Spartans:


1948at FSUFSU won 33-12

1949at TampaFSU won 34-7

1950at FSUFSU won 35-19

1951at FSUUT won 14-6

1952at FSUUT won 39-6

1953at TampaFSU won 41-6

1954at TampaFSU won 13-0

1955at TampaFSU won 26-7

1956Did not play

1957at TampaFSU won 21-7

1958at FSUFSU won 43-0

1959at TampaFSU won 33-0

Faces in the crowd

Some former Seminoles the school's booster club expects to be in attendance at Saturday's game:

Peter Boulware, LB, 1994-96: Led the nation and set an FSU single-season record with 19 sacks as a junior in 1996.

Dexter Jackson, S, 1995-98: Made 194 tackles and intercepted seven passes at FSU. MVP of the Super Bowl in 2003 won by Bucs.

Barry Smith, WR, 1970-72: Finished his college career with 2,535 yards on 127 receptions and 27 touchdowns. Also a former Buc.

Chris Weinke, QB, 1997-2000: Led FSU to the 1999 national title and won the 2000 Heisman Trophy.

Others: Xavier Beitia, Walter Carter, Henri Crockett, William Floyd, Danny Greene, Marcus Outzen, Roger Overby, Jamal Reynolds, Ron Sellers, Billy Sexton, Corey Simon, Peter Warrick, Drew Weatherford, Casey Weldon, Reinard Wilson

Information from Times files, and the Florida State football media guide was used in this report.

Drew Weatherford, QB, 2005-08, Land O'Lakes

Not the most prolific quarterback in school history, but he threw for 7,567 yards in his career, third in FSU history.

Drew Weatherford, QB, 2005-08, Land O'Lakes

Not the most prolific quarterback in school history, but he threw for 7,567 yards in his career, third in FSU history.

College Gameday: Florida State Seminoles in Tampa edition 09/28/12 [Last modified: Friday, September 28, 2012 9:52pm]
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