The 2015 season is over for Florida State football, as the 'Noles topped Vegas projections by posting double-digit regular-season wins before falling to the Houston Cougars in the Peach Bowl. And while many predicted a big year for FSU running back Dalvin Cook, I'm not sure a lot of people foresaw just how dynamic the Miami native would actually be. Here's a look back at his incredible year and his new rank among elite Seminole RBs.
Seasons, of course, are comprised of individual games, and Cook's name is now all over the list of top-20 rushing games in FSU history. Coming into 2015, Cook held just one top-20 spot with regard to yards in a single game: his 177 yards vs. Georgia Tech in the ACC title game last season was the 19th-highest in 'Nole history.
He's now on that list three times after having ran his mark against GT right off the page. Cook's 266 rushing yards against South Florida is the second-highest total in Florida State history, and his 222 yards on the ground against Miami comes in at No. 5. Cook also amassed 194 rushing yards at No. 1 Clemson, the 14th-best ground game in 'Nole history.
Explosive runs became Cook's calling card, and he now appears thrice in the top-20 of longest TD runs in FSU history. His 94-yard romp against Wake Forest is No. 3 all-time, while his 75-yard score against Clemson is 19th, and his 74-yarder vs. USF ties for 20th. Chris Thompson is the only other Seminole to appear in the top-20 three times.
With regard to season marks, Cook captured the most prestigious record this season, breaking Warrick Dunn's single-season 1995 record. Dunn had posted 1,242 that year, and Cook's 1,691 in 2015 set an even tougher new bar. Cook was also one rushing TD away from tying the single-seaon rushing touchdown record in 2015, as he finished with 19 (Greg Allen had 20 in 1982).
Cook is in the process of re-writitng the FSU record books by year-in-school, too. He holds the freshman rushing record with his 1,008 yards last year. And he's now the best sophomore in 'Nole history after his 2015 campaign. Dunn has the junior and senior marks, the former of which is the previous single-season high-point of 1,242 yards that Cook demolished this year-- it seems destined for revision in 2016. The senior record? 1,180 yards by Dunn in 1996. Although something tells me Cook may be turning heads in the NFL by that point.
What remains are the big boys: the career marks that really cement one's place in school history. And they're all well within Cook's grasp. Not surprisingly, Dunn holds the FSU career rushing record of 3,959 yards. Cook is currently fifth, at 2,699. That puts him 1,261 yards away from officially becoming the most prolific back in Florida State history. With regard to career rushing TDs, that mark is currently held by Greg Allen, who toted the rock to pay dirt 44 times in the garnet and gold. Cook is presently at 27.
So, basically, if Cook replicates his 2015 results, he's primed to take over as the owner of just about every major rushing record in FSU history.