Oct. 6, 2000
By Mark Long
MIAMI – Though they vary in age and experience, Florida State’s
Weinke and Miami’s Ken Dorsey are strikingly similar.
Drop-back passers who typically make few mistakes, they are successful
starters and have emerged as team leaders.
Weinke and Dorsey also have concerns as the top-ranked Seminoles (5-0)
the No. 7 Hurricanes (3-1) on Saturday.
Weinke, who has been slowed all week by a sprained left foot,
starting the game but knows he’ll be limited. If he can’t play, Florida
will turn to Marcus Outzen.
Dorsey’s worries are a little different.
“I have no question in my mind that I’m going to take some late hits,”
Dorsey said. “I’m sure in their game plan they can afford a 15-yard penalty
me here and there. I have no doubt that’s going to happen. The key is
back up and staying in my game.”
Both teams need their quarterbacks in the game to be successful.
The 28-year-old Weinke is 26-1 as a starter. His only loss came on a
when he threw six interceptions against North Carolina State as a sophomore
1998. He didn’t throw another one the rest of the season.
And he hasn’t lost since.
“Year after year after year he’s been the one stabilizing aspect of
offense,” Miami coach Butch Davis said. “They’ve changed some offensive
linemen and turned over receivers, but he’s been there to effectively run
“You’re not going to go into ball games and trick him. Maybe three
ago, you could disguise, bluff and show a lot of things and maybe get him to
make some fundamental errors and throw into bad coverages. But there’s very
little things he hasn’t seen in the last several years.”
Weinke has completed nearly 64 percent of his passes this season,
12 touchdowns and three interceptions. Against Miami last year, Weinke had
yards passing and two TDs in a 31-21 win. He did it without his top
Weinke also is one of only five first-year starters to win in this
Florida State’s Thad Busby and Peter Tom Willis and Miami’s Craig Erickson
Steve Walsh are the others.
Dorsey wants to be next.
The 19-year-old sophomore is 6-1 as a starter. In those games, Dorsey
completed 64 percent of his passes and has 18 touchdowns and just one
He has thrown 121 consecutive passes without an interception – two
shy of tying the school record set by Heisman Trophy winner Gino Torretta in
“It’s a whole different level when you’re playing Florida State,”
said. “It’s almost like playing an NFL game. It’s going to be a lot of fun,
but it’s going to be a really big challenge.”
The Seminoles don’t have quite as much for respect for Dorsey.
“Anytime you playing a young quarterback, you’re going to be able to
confuse him,” linebacker Brian Allen said. “He’s going to fold under
pressure. There are a lot of different things we’re going to show him this
The Hurricanes torched Florida State’s secondary last year. Kenny Kelly
threw for 370 yards and three TDs, and Santana Moss caught nine passes for
yards and two scores.
The Seminoles don’t think that will happen with Dorsey.
“Kenny Kelly, he is more of a threat,” said defensive end Jamal
who leads FSU with 10 sacks. “He can hurt us on the run or throwing the
It’s just great to have a guy that’s not as much of a threat as Kelly.”
Maybe not as dangerous as Kelly, Dorsey can still be a threat –
if he avoids the late hits.
“He is at home, so that will help out a little bit,” Seminoles coach
Bowden said. “He hasn’t teed it up against us, but he’s mighty good. We’ve
gotta harass him, gotta have something to break his rhythm or he’ll pick you