One of Florida State’s most brilliant defenders, James “J.T.” Thomas began his Seminole career with a sensational performance and ended as an All-American. FSU’s first black football player, Thomas blocked two field goals in his first game in 1970. His second preserved a 9-7 victory over Louisville. That same year, the Macon, GA, native tied the FSU record for single game interceptions with three. He was a brilliant open field tackler, great playmaker in the secondary and brought FSU fans to their feet with exciting rushes at punts and field goals. Thomas, who began as a cornerback and ended as a safety, was a first team All-American pick by Pro Football Weekly and Time Magazine as a senior in 1972. He went on to a great professional career with the Pittsburgh Steelers winning four Super Bowl rings as a member of the famed “steel curtain” defense.