October 27, 2012 - by
Florida State-Duke Notes

Oct. 27, 2012

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Freeman Finds the Endzone

Devonta Freeman scored a pair of touchdowns for the second consecutive game – on a nine-yard scamper in the second quarter and on a 14-yard run in the third period. He now has five rushing touchdowns this season and 13 for his career.

Freeman’s Third Career 100-Yard Game, Second Versus Duke
Devonta Freeman rushed for 104 yards on 12 carries against the Blue Devils, marking his third career 100-yard game and second against Duke. He went over 100 yards twice in 2011 – against Duke (109) and Maryland (102).

Third Time In School History Noles Have Had Four Single-Game 100-Yard Rushers in a Season

Devonta Freeman’s 104-yard performance marked the fourth Seminole this season who has rushed for 100 yards in a game joining Chris Thompson, EJ Manuel and James Wilder, Jr. It’s the third time in school history a team has accomplished the feat – 1984 (Jessie Hester, Greg Allen, Roosevelt Snipes, and Cletis Jones) and 1992 (Charlie Ward, Clyde Allen, Tiger McMillon and Sean Jackson)

Seminoles Closing In On Single-Season Rushing Touchdown Mark

Sophomore running backs Devonta Freeman and James Wilder, Jr., combined for three rushing touchdowns to give the Seminoles 29 touchdowns on the ground this season, and putting them just six scores away from tying the all-time FSU record for rushing TDs in a season of 35 set in 1995.

Werner Moving Up

Junior defensive end Bjoern Werner added to his ACC-leading TFL total with one versus the Blue Devils, giving him 12.5 on the season. Werner now ranks 16th in TFLs in the FSU single-season record book. His 29.5 career TFLs ties for 15th in the FSU career record books.

Smith Nabs Season-Best In Receiving Yards

Senior wide receiver Rodney Smith tallied a season-best 112 yards receiving on three receptions, marking the second time this season he has gone over 100 yards and the fourth time in his career (Clemson (121)- 2010; Clemson (118) – 2011; Boston College (108) – 2012).

Manuel Movin’ Up the FSU Record Books

Senior quarterback EJ Manuel went 8-of-16 for 282 yards and two touchdowns against the Blue Devils. He moved into fifth-place all-time in FSU history in career passing yards (6,659), vaulting ahead of Gary Huff (6,378), who played from 1970-72. He also moved past Drew Weatherford (2006 – 2,154) into 20th all-time in single-season passing yardage, with 2,315 for the season. His career completion percentage remains the highest-ever in ACC history at 67.3 percent (498-of-740)

Career-Long Field Goal For Hopkins Is Also The ACC Record

Senior kicker Dustin Hopkins’ 56-yard field goal in the fourth quarter was a career-best and also set a new ACC record for career field goals with 81, breaking former Maryland kicker Nick Novak’s mark of 80 set from 2001-04. It also moves him into fourth all-time in NCAA history in field goals made, just six behind former Georgia kicker Billy Bennett’s record of 87 set from 2000-03. The 56-yard field goal also tied for the second-longest in FSU history with Sebastian Janikowski, who made a 56-yarder against Wake Forest in 1997. The FSU record is 60 yards set by Gary Cismesia against Florida in 2007.

More on Hopkins

Dustin Hopkins’ 12 points tonight now gives him 429 career points, moving him into third place on the NCAA FBS kicker scoring list. He is just 11 points away from becoming the NCAA career leader, which is currently held by former Boise State kicker Kyle Brotzman (2007-10).

Shutting Down the Blue Devil Receivers

Heading into today’s game Duke’s Connor Vernon ranked third in the ACC in receiving yards (93.6 per game) and Jamison Crowder ranked sixth (79.6). The duo also ranked third in receptions per game (6.4), while fellow Blue Devil Desmond Scott ranked fifth (5.4). Vernon finished with a season-low three catches for a season-low 12 yards, Crowder had a season-low two catches for a season-low 16 yards and Scott had two catches for 16 yards. Vernon came in needing 94 yards to break former Seminole great Peter Warrick’s ACC record for career receiving yardage (3,517) and leaves Tallahassee still needing 82.

Hunter Finds End Zone

On just his third punt return ever, sophomore Tyler Hunter returned it 75 yards for a touchdown. It’s the longest punt return of the season and the longest punt return since Greg Reid’s 83-yard return against Miami in 2011. Hunter’s punt return score gives FSU three punt return scores in a season for the first time since 2005 when Willie Reid had three punt returns scores, as Rashad Greene already had two punt return scores in 2012.

First Time Two Different Noles Have Scored on “True” Punt Returns in a Season

When Tyler Hunter joined Rashad Greene as Seminoles to return a punt for a touchdown this season it marked the first time more than one player had a “true” punt return (wasn’t returned on a blocked punt) in a season in FSU history.

Greene Goes Long

Rashad Greene’s 71-yard touchdown catch from EJ Manuel was the longest reception of his career. His previous career-best was a 69-yard catch against Charleston Southern in 2011. It was the second longest scoring pass of the season for Manuel behind Kenny Shaw’s 77-yard touchdown reception against Boston College. It’s also the second longest pass of Manuel’s career and his third 60-yard touchdown pass of the season.

Rodney Smith Extends Catch Streak to 34 Straight Games

With his 25-yard reception in the first quarter, senior wide receiver Rodney Smith extended his reception streak to 34 games. The streak started on Sept. 18, 2010 against BYU. E.G. Green (94-97) has the school record for most consecutive games with a reception at 38.

Monster First Quarter For Christian Jones

Junior linebacker Christian Jones had eight tackles, including three tackles for loss in the first quarter alone. His TFL total set a new career high and matched his season total coming into the game. His previous career-best was two TFLs twice, last done against Savannah State earlier this season. Jones finished the game with a team-high 11 tackles.

Wilder Reaches 10 Touchdowns

Sophomore running back James Wilder, Jr. scored his 10th touchdown of the season on a 1-yard plunge in the second quarter. He became the first Seminole to score 10 touchdowns in a season since Jermaine Thomas accomplished the feat with 10 total TDs in 2009 (nine rushing and one receiving). Wilder now has eight rushing touchdowns this season, tying for 15th all-time in FSU history in single-season rushing scores.

Tank’s In A Hurry

Coming into today’s game, Cornellius “Tank” Carradine had four quarterback hurries. He matched that total with four hurries in the first half against Duke today. He finished the game with four hurries and five tackles.

Fourth Time For 31

Florida State scored at least 31 points in the first half for the fourth time this season – Savannah State (48), Wake Forest (38) and Boston College (31).

Longest Drive Seminoles Have Allowed This Season

Duke’s 14-play, 90-yard drive that ended with a three-yard Jela Duncan score was the longest drive allowed by the Seminoles this season. The previous best by an opponent was a 12-play, 87-yard drive by Boston College.

FSU Continues To Be Nation’s Best Defense On Third Down

Florida State, which entered today’s game leading the NCAA in opponent third down percentage (23.2%), held the Blue Devils to 22 percent (4-of-18) in the game, including seven three-and-outs. FSU also leads the nation in three-and-outs by a defense with 59 total.

Impressive Through Nine

Florida State’s 8-1 overall record is the best through nine games since the 2003 squad held the same record.

Still Undefeated Versus Duke

Florida State’s victory over Duke gives it an 18-0 record against the Blue Devils. The 18-game win streak is the second longest between conference opponents in the ACC, only eclipsed by Clemson’s 29-game win streak over Virginia.

No Sacks For Noles

Although the stat is a bit misleading, Florida State’s defense was held without a sack today for the first time all season. The Seminoles did have five quarterback hurries and forced pressure on Duke’s stable of quarterbacks all afternoon.

Fifth-Highest Total Offense

Florida State’s production of 560 yards of total offense is the fifth-highest amount this season, proving just how well the team has done at moving the ball. Florida State’s season high is 667 vs. Clemson, followed by 649 (BC), 612 (Wake Forest) and 606 (Murray State).

Today’s Captains:

Today’s captains for Florida State are senior running back Lonnie Pryor, senior kicker Dustin Hopkins and senior linebacker Vince Williams.

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