You’ve seen his highlights. You’ve marveled over his stats. But they’re all a means to an end when we consider Florida State running back Dalvin Cook. Cook’s job, ultimately, is to put points on the board— and in 2015, he did that better than any other ‘Nole non-specialist except for one in program history, when he led the ‘Noles in scoring with 120 points.
As far as scoring goes, kickers tend to have a leg up. After all, offensive touchdowns are (typically) divided between running backs, receivers, tight ends, and quarterbacks, while a clear-cut starting place kicker — which FSU has far more often than not, given its rich history at the position — tends to get every single field goal attempt, not to mention extra-point tries, which add up.
Especially when you make them all, like Roberto Aguayo did over the last three years before going pro. Aguayo’s 157 points in Florida State’s title season of 2013 are the most ever scored by a ‘Nole in a single campaign, and his 136 in 2014 topped the team as well. All of this continued a trend of FSU kickers leading the team in scoring every year since the turn of the century, when, in 2000, receivers Snoop Minnis and Atrews Bell led FSU with 66 points apiece. If that number seems low, it is, and primarily the result of the Seminoles spreading kicking duties across Brett Cimorelli, Matt Munyon, and Chance Gwaltney.
Which really lends perspective to Cook’s accomplishment in 2015. Far from juggling kickers, the ‘Noles had an All-American leg in Aguayo’s— and Cook still led the way, while doing so with triple-digit points. And not many who’ve worn the garnet and gold can make that claim. The last non-kicker to lead FSU in scoring before the Minnis-Bell combo in 2000 was running back Zack Crockett, who equaled their total off 66 points to top the list in 1994. Fellow rusher Amp Lee led the Seminoles in scoring in consecutive seasons in 1990 and 1991, with 108 and 84 points, respectively. And RB Greg Allen did the same in 1982 (126 points) and 1983 (80 Points).
Aside from them, there are a bunch of players who led Florida State in scoring in what was, frankly, a different era— as evidenced by the fact that several yearly scoring leaders posted point totals in the 30s, 20s, and even teens. So the list of position players to lead FSU in scoring with 100+ points is a short one: Allen, Lee, and Cook. What remains to be seen is if Cook, like his two predecessors, will repeat as the Seminoles’ top scorer.
It’s hardly a far-fetched possibility. Cook will be, without question, Florida State’s top offensive option, and the extenuating circumstances seem to support his chances as well. Whichever way the QB battle plays out, the signal-caller will nevertheless be largely inexperienced. And the kicker, in Ricky Aguayo, is a true freshman— if Jimbo Fisher is ever waffling between a long field-goal attempt and getting the ball to Cook, which way do you think he’ll lean?