TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Four Seminoles were recognized among the best in the country on Wednesday as Athlon Sports released its All-America teams for the upcoming 2016 college football season. FSU placed three players on the First Team – junior running back Dalvin Cook, sophomore defensive back Derwin James and junior offensive lineman Roderick Johnson. Senior defensive lineman DeMarcus Walker was named to the Second Team.
Cook returns to the Seminole backfield after a record-setting 2015 campaign, becoming FSU’s single-season leader in rushing yards (1,691) and all-purpose yards (1,935). The Miami, Fla., native earned the 2015 Jim Brown Award, given to the nation’s top running back by the Touchdown Club of Columbus. Cook ended the regular season leading the nation with 168.2 yards from scrimmage per game, including 194.3 yards per game against FBS teams with a winning record and 1,031 yards and 11 touchdowns against teams with top 50 rushing defenses.
James proved to be one of the best defensive freshman in the country as he finished with 91 tackles, 95 tackles for loss, 4.5 sacks, five pass break-ups, two forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries. James earned All-ACC Third Team honors in 2015 as well as Freshmen All-America honors from the Sporting News and USA Today. The Haines City, Fla., native led the team in tackles five times in 2015, including a season-high 14 stops against Houston in the Chick-Fil-A Bowl.
Johnson started every game at left tackle for FSU in 2015, helping lead the way for Cook’s impressive rushing performances. He was the recipient of the 2015 ACC Jacobs Blocking Trophy – awarded to the league’s best blocker – as well as earning All-ACC First Team honors by both the coaches and the media. The Florissant, Mo., native was part of an offensive line that protected an FSU offense that finished third in the ACC in pass efficiency (142.7) and completion percentage (63.0), as well as fourth in the conference in points per game (31.7) and yards per game (424.0).
Walker returns to the Seminole defensive front for his final collegiate season after an impressive junior year where he established career highs in tackles (58), tackles for loss (15.5), sacks (10.5), pass breakups (5) and forced fumbles (4). The Jacksonville, Fla., native registered his first career interception in the Chick-Fil-A Bowl against Houston and closed out the regular season with the first blocked kick of his career on a fourth quarter field goal attempt by Florida in Gainesville. His 10.5 sacks were the most for a Seminole defender since 2012 and tied for fifth in the ACC last season.