Statistics are a necessary evil in the world of sports fandom.
They are an objective measure that gives the casual onlooker a framework upon which to compare performance. Stats are used to compose arguments, present viewpoints, and compile highly subjective lists that eat up approximately 100 days of the offseason doldrums (wink wink.)
While it’s true that all “good” players essentially have “good” stats, the greats of the sport often transcend the numbers. There is not a Florida State football player that embodies that statement more than running back Greg Jones.
This isn’t to say that Jones was a slouch in the key numerical measurements that judge RB performance. In fact, it’s quite the contrary. He currently ranks inside the top 10 in both career rushing yards and career rushing touchdowns.
His stats are very good.
But, the memories he created on the field were absolutely transcendent.
Allow me to take your mind on a trip to the faraway land of 2002.
Gas was $1.44 per gallon, A Beautiful Mind won the Academy Award for Best Motion Picture, and Jones embarrassed the Clemson University football program so bad it must have considered a self-imposed death penalty (that would have been nice.)
“Oh wow, Trey. That’s pretty hyperbolic.”
Oh yeah, I’ll show you hyperbolic!
Speaking of hyperbole, ladies and gentlemen of the Tomahawk Court, let me point your attention toward Exhibit B.
If the above moment can be best categorized as a mass embarrassment, then this next play should be classified as a public execution.
To borrow a quote from broadcasting legend, and purveyor of delicious BBQ sauces, Jim Ross, “As God as my witness, he’s broken in half!”
Seriously though, Jones’ hit on UNC defender Dexter Reid may be the most violent and spectacular play in the history of Florida State football. That is not hyperbole either; that is fact.
Don’t believe me? Ask the handprint where Reid’s sternum used to be.
Believe it or not, Jones is actually a cousin of the legendary boxer Joe Frazier. But, after reviewing the tape, I still can’t tell who hits harder.
After winning conference championships and piling up bodies as a Seminole, Jones moved on to the NFL where he went on to have a very successful career as a member of the Jaguars, Texans, and Saints. He’s a player that left his mark on the record books and the memories of countless FSU fans.
Jones is a worthy member of this countdown series, and someone I personally loved watching take the field at Doak Campbell Stadium. His numbers were some of the best, but the moments he created were truly unforgettable.
Although the people he hit have a hard time remembering them.