Corey Sawyer saw the highlight tapes and heard himself referred to as a "bonehead" and various other things after botching a punt that led to a safety in Florida State's 19-16 loss to Miami on Oct. 3.
So Sawyer felt some satisfaction Saturday after returning a punt 74 yards for a touchdown in FSU's 36-13 victory over North Carolina at Doak Campbell Stadium.
With FSU already leading 6-0, Sawyer took Mike Thomas' punt, backtracked a few yards and then headed for the left sideline where the Tar Heels were barely able to lay a hand on him.
"I kept getting closer and closer," Sawyer said. "I was due for the big one."
Amazingly, the Seminoles were trying to block the punt, so Sawyer had little help. "But even when we have a block on, if we don't get it, they build a wall," Sawyer said.
It was the seventh-longest punt return for a touchdown in FSU history.
Matt Frier, FSU's leading receiver coming into the game, separated his left shoulder on the second play from scrimmage and will be lost for three to six weeks, FSU officials said. Frier dove for a Charlie Ward pass and caught it out of bounds. . . . Former FSU All-American Lawrence Dawsey was honored before the game. Dawsey was the 1991 NFC Offensive Rookie of the Year for the Tampa Bay Bucanneers.
Receivers upset; reasons unclear
Several FSU receivers appeared to be miffed after the game, although their reasons were unclear.
Shannon Baker hinted that he and some of the receivers are upset about not catching enough passes. "I was just upset because I didn't get the ball," said Baker, who had three catches for 33 yards.
Buckley apologizes to Bowden
After Terrell Buckley was quoted in a published report last week saying that "95 percent" of FSU players "hate" coach Bobby Bowden, the former FSU cornerback was not expected in Tallahassee anytime soon. But the Green Bay Packers are off today, so Buckley was in town and on the sideline before the game. He also took time to visit with Bowden in his office before the game.
"I was shocked, I couldn't believe it," Bowden said. "He came in to talk about it and apologize for what he said. I told him I was disappointed, but that he's forgiven.
"It was a case of him being up there (Green Bay) and he thinks I've ripped him _ which I didn't. I told him he should have called me. But I think it took a heck of a man to come here and to talk about it. I said, "Buck, I know you don't hate anybody.'
The Seminoles play at Georgia Tech next Saturday in a 4 p.m. game on ESPN. The Yellow Jackets beat Maryland 28-26 on Saturday.
_ BOB HARIG