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Florida State football, recruiting news: Two ‘Noles among top 20 college football players in nation

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Miami v Florida State Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Football

FSU lands two players in the top five of ESPN’s top 25 ACC players list in running back Dalvin Cook and safety Derwin James.

4. Florida State safety Derwin James

James is as likely to be found breaking up plays in the secondary as he is to be spotted blowing up plays in the opposing backfield. The 6-foot-3, 213-pounder was a monster as a freshman (91 tackles), and the only mystery is where he’ll make big plays on any given snap.

2. Florida State running back Dalvin Cook

All Cook did last season was lead the ACC with 1,691 rushing yards and 19 rushing touchdowns -- and that was despite missing one game and playing hurt in several more. FSU’s offensive line should be better this season, and that should mean bigger things for the junior Cook in 2016.

James and Cook also find themselves in the top 20 of ESPN’s 100 best players in college football list, coming in at No. 15 and No. 4 respectively.

Ahead of an upcoming feature-length documentary on Bobby Bowden’s career, Jim Henry and the rest of the Tallahassee Democrat sports staff is highlighting Bowden’s career with a variety of stories, beginning with this one.

Louis Bien of SB Nation wrote a spectacular long-form piece on the painkillers, Torodol specifically, that are used to keep NFL players on the field each and every week and its side effects that are just emerging.

Recruiting

Eight FSU commits are in ESPN’s latest list of the top 300 recruits in the 2017 recruiting class, with an impressive five of those eight coming in the top 73.

Bud Elliott, in his role as national recruiting analyst for SB Nation, debates which programs not known for being elite recruiters could make this year’s college football playoffs.

Other Sports

With the season just around the corner, the Florida State soccer team, ranked #1 in the preseason poll, is ready for another run at a national title, as written by Safid Deen of Tallahassee Democrat.