October 8, 1999 - by
Quarterbacks At The Center Of Big Football Rivalry

Oct. 8, 1999


Associated Press Writer

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) – Quarterbacks always play a big role in the
Miami-Florida State rivalry.

That won’t change Saturday, especially with the loss of No. 1 Florida
State’s top two receivers, Heisman Trophy hopeful Peter Warrick and speedster
Laveranues Coles.

Warrick was indefinitely suspended following his arrest Thursday on
he and Coles, who was kicked off the team, were allowed to underpay for
at a department store by about $391. They were arrested and charged with grand
theft and could face up to five years in prison if convicted.

Neither player will be available for Saturday’s game against the
Hurricanes, leaving quarterback Chris Weinke to guide the Seminoles without
two of his best weapons. Meanwhile, Kenny Kelly, leading the 19th-ranked
Hurricanes against one of the toughest defenses in the nation, will try to
Miami rebound from two straight losses.

The two quarterbacks will be key to their team’s success. But that
should be
expected from this series, which as often as not in the past two decades has
been key to deciding the national championship.

Heisman Trophy winners Charlie Ward of Florida State and Miami’s Gino
Torretta and Vinnie Testaverde all took their teams to victory.

Some other big names – Jim Kelly, Bernie Kosar and Steve Walsh from Miami
and Danny Kanell, Brad Johnson and Casey Weldon of Florida State – have also
been involved.

This year, Weinke will be trying to take the Seminoles to a fifth
victory in the series.

Kelly reminds Florida State coach Bobby Bowden of North Carolina’s Ron
Curry. Both are sophomores and very athletic.
“Sometimes his inexperience shows up,” Bowden said. “But he can hurt in a
lot of different ways.”

The 6-foot-2, 195-pound Kelly has completed 52 of 98 passes for 683 yards
and five touchdowns, but has been intercepted eight times.

While Kelly is in his first season as a starter, Weinke is midway through
his second – successfully coming back from a season-ending back injury last

He has completed 61.7 percent of his passes for 1,295 yards and 11
touchdowns in Florida State’s five victories.

In last year’s game at Miami, Weinke completed 17 of 32 passes for 316
and two touchdowns, with Warrick catching seven for 190 yards, including a
62-yard touchdown.

Weinke, 27, has always had a tendency to look for Warrick first, but
now he
will have to count on less experienced receivers.

“He looks like he is playing with more maturity,” Miami coach Butch Davis
said. “He is throwing with a lot more confidence.”

Senior Ron Dugans, averaging 18.5 yards on 14 catches, is the most
experienced receiver left. Senior Germaine Stringer and junior Marvin Minnis
also will help replace Warrick.

Sophomore Robert Morgan takes over for Coles, with backup help from
Talman Gardner and Anquan Boldin.

Bowden is convinced his team will be ready regardless of the week-long
distraction surrounding Coles and Warrick.

“The kids are really into it and playing well,” Bowden said. “They are
focused on Miami.”

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