April 21, 2003
Spring 2003 OverviewThe PooP
Two years ago, the Sports Journal correctly anticipated what was then unthinkable: the return to mortality of a program that had a ridiculous 14 straight top-four finishes nationally. FSU reclaimed the conference title in 2002, but back-to-back finishes of 8-4 and 9-5 have fans concerned that the Seminoles are beginning to look a lot like everyone else. That's not really the case this program remains the ACC's gold standard but it's true that the team's talent level no longer is good enough to render irrelevant its serious depth problems and off-the-field distractions.
Probable 2003 Starters
* returning starter
+ injured/missed spring drills
Coming On Strong
After losing their top three wideouts, the Seminoles uncovered a potential star (converted CB Dominic Robinson) and remain loaded and perhaps more consistent in the receiving corps. If embattled QB Chris Rix can follow up his best spring (by far) with his best fall, watch out. Rock-solid returning starters: PK Xavier Beitia, LB Michael Boulware, DT Darnell Dockett, RB Greg Jones, LB Kendyll Pope. Also looking good: RB Lorenzo Booker, OC David Castillo, DE Chauncey Davis, WR Chris Davis, LB A.J. Nicholson, QB Wyatt Sexton, WR Craphonso Thorpe, RB Leon Washington, DE Kamerion Wimbley.
Cause For Concern?
Perhaps more than ever, the Seminoles lack even a single proven, experienced superstar in the trenches. The offensive line lost four starters and, despite progress by the first unit in the spring, still has serious depth questions. The defensive line lost its best player (DE Alonzo Jackson), saw its top two tackles encounter major legal problems and also has significant depth concerns. Also: cover corners, punter.
On The Sidelines
The following players missed all or most of spring drills: LB Michael Boulware (shoulder), WR Chris Davis (knee), DT Darnell Dockett (suspended), DT Travis Johnson (shoulder/
suspended), RB Greg Jones (knee), DB Claudius Osei (ankle), LB Kendyll Pope (shoulder), DT Brian Ross (broken leg), DB Stanford Samuels (shoulder), FS B.J. Ward, FB Torrance Washington (knee), OL Ray Willis (shoulder), DT Jeff Womble. Thorpe split time between football and track.
The following scholarship athletes left the program in the past 12-18 months with eligibility remaining: WR Anquan Boldin (early NFL entry), FB James Buchanan (medical), DB Yohance Buchanan (dismissed), RB Thomas Clayton (transfer/Michigan), LB Cornelius Collier (transfer/Florida Atlantic), DT Travis Johnson (suspended/may return), QB Adrian McPherson (dismissed), RB Lemar Parrish (transfer/Western Illinois/before 2002 season), OL Blake Williams (medical).