May 5, 2006 - by
NFL Finds Top Players At FSU And In The ACC

May 5, 2006

             Florida State led the ACC with four players taken in the first round and the ACC led the nation and set an NFL draft record with 12 players taken in the first round of the draft held last weekend.  The league produced the top overall pick when Mario Williams, a defensive end from NC State, signed with the Houston Texans before the draft even started making him the top overall pick.  The first FSU player taken was Tallahassee native Ernie Sims, who was selected by Detroit with their first pick and the ninth overall selection.  Just four picks later Kamerion Wimbley became the Browns’ first round choice and Philadelphia took Brodrick Bunkley with the very next pick.  His selection by the Eagles means the club has used their first round selection to take an FSU player three times since 1998.  Antonio Cromartie, who sat out all last season while recovering from knee surgery, was taken by San Diego with the 19th pick.  Willie Reid was taken by Pittsburgh in the third round, Leon Washington by the Jets in the fourth and Pat Watkins and A.J. Nicholson were fifth round selections by Dallas and Cincinnati, respectively.

            The draft picks were lauded in newspapers that covered the professional teams with a particularly flattering story in the Pittsburgh Post Gazette about Willie Reid.  In the article, a Penn State assistant is quoted as admitting that Joe Parterno started every pre-Orange Bowl staff meeting by asking his coaches if they had a plan for how to handle Reid.  Apparently, the answer should have been no.

            The best line of the draft may have come from Ernie Sims, who was asked by the Detroit media about his less than ideal size…”nobody ever asked me how tall I was after I tackled them” he quipped.

            Here’s more for those who can’t get enough of the draft…


 2006 NFL Draft By The Numbers



            Florida State‘s men’s tennis team received a bid to the NCAA Tournament and will travel to Ole Miss for the regional matches.  FSU had hoped to host a regional based on its No. 17 ranking and most felt the Seminoles would either host or be sent to Gainesville where Florida would host.  The fact that neither FSU nor Florida is hosting (the Gators will travel to Oklahoma State) was a surprise.  But what is not surprising is that the Seminoles are in the NCAA’s.  Head coach Dwayne Hultquist deserves a lot of credit for placing his third team in the last four years into the NCAA Tournament.  Perhaps the best part is that the future looks even brighter.  The Seminoles have signed one of the top recruiting classes in the country, so follow the team’s progress the next few weeks on and watch for good things again next year.



            Baseball fans will get a treat in May when the ACC Baseball Tournament comes to the Baseball Grounds in Jacksonville on May 24-28.  The recently remodeled minor league park is adjacent to Alltel Stadium and is one of the nicest baseball facilities around.  While the Seminoles have a lot of work to do against three teams (Wake Forest, Clemson and NC State) in the Atlantic Division, the eight teams who advance to the ACC Tournament have already emerged.  Like most conferences with 12 or more teams, the ACC decided to advance just the top eight teams to the league championship.  Boston College, Duke, Maryland, and Virginia Tech can not rise high enough in their divisions to make the tournament so it will be a who’s who of college baseball in Jacksonville with Clemson, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Miami, North Carolina, NC State, Virginia and Wake Forest.  By the way, all eight of these schools are currently listed among the Top 20 in RPI.  You can get your tickets right now on



            Ever wonder where Doak S. Campbell Stadium ranks in terms of seating capacity?  A recent survey by the lists the Seminoles’ home field as No. 14 in the nation with a capacity of 82,000.  However, FSU should claim 13th place as actual capacity is officially 82,300 moving us ahead of Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium (82,112) where the Sooners play.  Michigan has the largest stadium at 107, 501, which is just 213 more than Penn State.  Tennessee (104,079) and Ohio State (102,239) round out the four schools with stadiums that seat 100,000 or more.  Just for fun, can you guess which schools play in these stadiums:  Camp Randall Stadium, Lane Stadium, Milan Puskar Stadium, Folsom Field, Michie Stadium and The Glass Bowl?   Answers are at end of the Golf Note right below!



            The women’s golf team heads back to the heart of ACC country to play in the NCAA Regionals in Winston-Salem, NC.  The women’s program has been a model of consistent success with respect to earning NCAA post-season honors as they are making their third trip in the last four years to NCAA Regional play and their 13th over the last 15 years. Twenty-one teams will compete at each regional site with the top eight teams advancing from each regional to the NCAA Championship Tournament.  FSU won the national title in 1981 and women’s coach Debbie Dillman was on that team. 

            The men’s team is also expected to earn a bid to the NCAA Regionals, which will be FSU’s first team appearance since 1996.  FSU will learn on Monday if they have been selected, but it would appear the Seminoles have earned a spot.  The process for advancing to the NCAA Championship Tournament is a bit different for the men as they will play in 24-team regionals with the top 10 advancing from each.

            Perhaps the most encouraging element to this post-season success for both programs is the fact that both teams feature young players who should provide outstanding play for the next several seasons.



            Stadium Answers from Doak S. Campbell note:  Camp Randall Stadium – Wisconsin, Lane Stadium-Virginia Tech, Milan Puskar Stadium-West Virginia, Folsom Field-Colorado, Michie Stadium-Army and Glass Bowl-Toledo.



            For the many Florida State fans who believe that Sports Illustrated has treated FSU unfairly – and I am among that number – the most recent issue provides a small argument against that impression.  In its “Who’s Hot/ Who’s Not” listing, FSU heads the hot column with a photo of Ernie Sims and note about the four Seminoles drafted among the Top 20.  By the way, the top of the “Who’s Not” column was USC with a photo of one of their players who has been arrested.  Give the magazine one in the plus column, but there is sure plenty of room on that side of their ledger.


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