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28 days to FSU football: Dunn deal for best ‘Nole No. 28?

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Free puns, people.

Duke V Florida State
Warrick Dunn

When Seminole fans list the faces adorning their personal Florida State Mount Rushmores, Warrick Dunn is seldom excluded— and for good reason: after all, no one has "rushed more" than Dunn in the garnet and gold. Okay, I’m sorry for that pun (I’m not sorry; it’s been a long countdown).

Dunn’s No. 28 is one of just nine retired numbers/jerseys at FSU, and that’s certainly no surprise. The Seminole’s all-time leading rusher, with 3.959 yards, Dunn is the only player ever wearing the garnet and gold to eclipse the 1,000 yard mark in three straight seasons.

A member of the Seminoles’ first title team in 1993, it really all began for Dunn the following year. He earned an Honorable Mention All-American nod from the UPI that year, along with a first-team All-ACC selection.

1995 was Dunn’s most prolific, statistically, for the garnet and gold. In fact, until the 2015 season, it was the most productive in FSU history. His 1,242 yards were the most ever until Dalvin Cook passed him last year. Dunn’s 13 rushing scores in ‘95 are tied for the seventh most in a lone Seminole campaign. He went for 180 yards on just 12 carries vs. Clemson, a 15.0 YPC average that trumps any one-game ‘Nole performance. Dunn’s 184 yards against Miami still rank 20th, all-time at Florida State. On the season, Dunn averaged a school-best 7.5 YPC. He was a third-team Football News All-American, and an Honorable Mention per the AP, as well as again securing a spot on the first-team All-ACC squad.

But ‘96 is when the real accolades flooded in for Dunn, following his 1,180-yard, 12 rushing score year, marks that still hold up as fourth and ninth, respectively, at FSU. His 185 rushing yards against UF that year are the 19th most for a ‘Nole back. Always at his best in the biggest games, Dunn’s career-long 80-yard TD scamper against Miami was his signature statement. The FWAA made Dunn a first-team All-American in 1996, while he was a second-teamer for the AP, Football News, and The Sporting News. He also gathered his third-straight first-team All-ACC award, and, as if all of that wasn’t enough, Dunn also pinned down ACC All-Academic honors.

As far as career records go, Dunn remains the Seminoles’ all-time leading rusher, with 3,959 yards, and is second with 37 rushing scores. His 22 career 100+ yard games lead the list at FSU, too; his six in a row, in ‘95, remains the best such run for any ‘Nole. Dunn’s career yards-per-carry average of 6.9 remains the program standard.

Dunn was also a prolific pass catcher. In fact, his 132 career catches tie him for the 10th most at Florida State, with Andre Cooper and De’Cody Fagg. His 2.93 career grabs per game is 18th in school history, and he tops the Seminole all-purpose yardage list, with 5,321. After the Tampa Bay Buccaneers picked Dunn 12th, overall, in the 1997 NFL Draft, he was a consensus NFL All-Rookie Selection and the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year, as well as a Pro-Bowl choice in his first year, as well as in 2000 and again in 2005, with the Atlanta Falcons. Dunn was inducted into the FSU Football Hall of Fame in 2002.

It’s not easy following Warrick Dunn. But there’s still hope. Specifically, ‘Nole safety Chris Hope, another FSU 28 to garner All-American honors. Hope was a second-team selection of The Sporting News in 2000, the same season that he was a second-team All-ACC pick. The next year, Hope made first-team, all-conference. Hope could crush both on the field and in the classroom: he was a first-team Academic All-American in 2000 and 2001, and an All-ACC Academic honoree in all four years of his time at Florida State. The Pittsburgh Steelers made Hope a third-round selection in 2002. After winning a Super Bowl for the Steel City in 2006, Hope was a Pro Bowl choice from the Tennessee Titans in 2008.

Other ‘Noles of note to sport the FSU 28 include back Bobby Fiveash, who earned AP Little All-American honors in 1953 prior to being drafted by the San Francisco 49ers the next year.

But don’t forget about RB Lorenzo Booker. His 887 rushing yards in 2004 are the 19th most in a Seminole season, and he’s eighth, all-time, with 2,389 yards running out of the FSU backfield. His 15 career rushes for a score tie him for 20th as a ‘Nole. The Miami Dolphins drafted Booker in 2007’s third round. Florida State radio personality Keith Jones earns a spot here as well, thanks to his pair of seasons (1979 and 1980) as a first-team Academic All-American.

The other Seminole 28s:

  • John Filchock (1948)
  • William Swilley (1954)
  • Stephen Dean (1955)
  • Larry Weber (1956)
  • Wes Minton (1957)
  • Jim Hooks (1958)
  • Al Beccaccio (1960)
  • Ralph Norman (1961)
  • Winfred Bailey (1962-1964)
  • T.K. Wetherell (1965-1967)
  • Robert Ashmore (1969-1971)
  • Mike Davison (1972-1974)
  • Jerome Davis (1976)
  • Rocky Kinsey (1981-1984)
  • Dedrick Dodge (1985-1989)
  • Corey Fuller (1990-1991)
  • Sean Hamlet (1992)
  • B.J. Ward (1999)
  • Ryan Reynolds (2001)
  • Robin Charles (2002)
  • Dionte Allen (2008-2009)
  • Nigel Terrell (2011-2013)
  • Malique Jackson (2014-2015)
  • Kevin Robledo (2015)

Click on your choice below: