January 2, 2000 - by
Seminoles Tailback Plays Big In Big Games

Jan. 2, 2000

By BRENT KALLESTAD
Associated Press Writer

NEW ORLEANS (AP)Travis Minor doesn’t get as many carries as the country’s
star tailbacks. He also doesn’t get the recognition.

Yet on Tuesday night, he’ll be the envy of them all as his Florida State
Seminoles play Virginia Tech for the national title.

“A lot of guys out there with 1,500 yards are going to be watching us on
the 4th,” Minor said.

The junior has run for 2,295 yards in three seasons to rank fifth on Florida
State’s career list. And while his numbers might not be as impressive as those
of other tailbacks, he plays his best in big games.

Minor averaged 100 yards in three games against rival Florida and 98 yards
in seven games against Top 10 teams in his career.

“It’s a matter of whenever the coaches call your number, you’d better be
ready for it,” he said. “We’ve all got roles.”

The 6-foot, 190-pound Minor is also a top blocker and receiver, catching 64
passes in his three seasons. Running backs coach Bill Sexton says he has few
flaws on the field.

“He’s got strong marks across the board in all areas,” Sexton said. “He’s
extremely tough, very intelligent and a student of the game.”

Virginia Tech defensive coordinator Bud Foster says it’s critical that the
Hokies control the Florida State running game, which ranked 83rd nationally
this season.

“If you can’t, that’s when they like toying with you,” Foster said. “If
they have success running the football, then for sure you’ll have to crowd
eight guys around the football.”

While Minor isn’t as well known to fans, opposing coaches don’t need an
introduction.

“He’s right there with some of the best we’ve played: (Virginia’s) Thomas
Jones, the kids from Miami and any other backs we’ve faced,” Foster said.

“There is a lot of focus on Peter Warrick. If you put all your attention on
one individual, they have other guys that can exploit you.”

For the second time in three years, Minor will be playing in the Sugar Bowl,
about an hour’s drive from his home in Baton Rouge. He was recruited out of
Baton Rouge Catholic High School, the same school as former Seminoles great
Warrick Dunn.

Minor’s biggest challenge in the week leading up to the national title game
has been finding tickets for family and friends.

“Anytime you get a chance to come back home it’s great,” he said. “Except
for tickets. They’re so hard to come by that I had to quit doing that.”

Whether it’ll be block, catch or run, Minor says he’s ready.

“We have so many great athletes, it’s not going to be just run the ball.”

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