October 1, 2008 - by
Rodney Hudson: Just A Football Player From Mobile, Alabama

Oct. 1, 2008

The day Hurricane Katrina hit the gulf coast region of the United States in 2005 is a day that sophomore offensive linemen Rodney Hudson will never forget.

Hudson’s hometown of Mobile, Ala., was soaked by so much rain that he and his mom had to
leave their house, the only home he had ever known. To make matters even worse for the Hudson
family, he and his mom Kathleen were split up for the first time as he went to live with his grandmother
and his mom moved in with one of his aunts.

Though Hudson and his mom were still in the same city, they were apart for the better part of
the next six months.

“I realized at that time that I really had to help my mom make it through this challenge in our
lives,” said Hudson. “It was difficult but my mom had taught me to work hard throughout my life
so we were able to overcome the obstacles and everything has worked out for us.”

A junior in high school at the time, Hudson had to take on a job in addition to playing football and
going to school to help support his family. He worked at night, after practice and on the weekends
in order to help his mom make ends meet. Hudson successfully balanced all three aspects of his life
as he continued to do well in school. He earned all-state first-team honors on the football field and
helped repair the family home.

“My mom taught me to work hard,” said Hudson. “She was always on me to do my best in everything
I did. She pushed me to do well as far back as elementary school and I have been able to
carry that through into college. My mom has definitely helped me get to where I am today.”

Where he is today is a second-
year starter on the offensive
line at Florida State. He
earned freshman All-America
and All-ACC second-team
honors in 2007 as a true
freshman. He started 10 of
the Seminoles’ 13 games and
consistently received the highest
marks of all of the teams’
offensive linemen from the
coaching staff.

Hudson received those accolades
during what he expected
to be a redshirt season
in 2007.

“I thought I might be able
to move into the starting lineup
during my sophomore season,”
said Hudson. “It wasn’t
like I thought I could come in
right away and earn as much
playing time as I did.”

For Hudson, his preparation
to be a star at the FBS level began a long time ago.

“In high school I focused on playing hard,” said Hudson. “I wanted to always work hard on my
technique and my footwork but I quickly learned that the techniques I utilized in high school were
a lot different than in college. But playing hard is playing hard everywhere. Just like in high school
when I tried to play hard, I continued to play hard in college.”

Rick Trickett, the Seminoles’ offensive line coach, who began recruiting Hudson when he was an
assistant coach at West Virginia, noticed his work ethic when he first saw him play as a freshman.
He even convinced Hudson to make a verbal commitment to play for the Mountaineers. That commitment
changed when Trickett became a member of the Seminoles’ coaching staff and he asked
Hudson to visit Tallahassee to take a look at Florida State’s program.

“His work ethic and how hard he played the game of football were the things I remembered
about Rodney after seeing him play for the first time,” said Trickett. “I also took away that he
was a super kid and that’s something I really
look at when I am recruiting a player.”
Hudson, who began playing football when
he was eight years old, has looked into the
stands to find his mother’s beaming face
before nearly every football game he has
ever played. It’s rare, said Hudson, that she
misses one of his games.

“I make sure I talk to her before every
game,” said Hudson. “The two things that
she tells me are to play my best and to play as
hard as I possibly can. That’s the main thing
she has instilled in me and that’s the piece of
my mom that I take into every game I play.”

Hudson is considered to be one of the nation’s
top-20 offensive linemen for the 2008
season and is a pre-season All-ACC selection
by most national publications. He gained extensive
experience along the offensive front
as a freshman and will
utilize that experience
as a sophomore to help
one of the youngest offensive
lines in college

“I’m not all about the
accolades,” said Hudson.
“If I win them, I
win them. It’s great for
our team and it’s great
for Florida State. I’m just
a football player who
loves to play the game.
I’m just a football player
from Mobile, Alabama.”

By Chuck Walsh
Associate Director of Sports Information

Related Articles