The top 100 FSU football players: No. 44— running back Devonta Freeman

Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

When Devonta Freeman committed to Florida State in June of 2010 he was just a two-star prospect, a result of coming of age in one of football’s Meccas, South Florida. Having backed up Brandon Gainer (a four-star recruit that would commit to Kentucky) his junior season, Freeman didn’t receive much attention, but a successful camp circuit began to earn him offers: namely, one from Florida State. (Freeman would finish as a four-star prospect, with offers from Auburn, Florida and UCF, amongst others.)

As an early enrollee at Florida State, however, he’d get the chance to contribute right away, taking full advantage and leading the team in rushing in 2011 with 579 yards and eight touchdowns, along with 111 receiving yards. He put up the first 100 yard game of his career vs. Duke, beginning a personal tradition of putting up big games against the Blue Devils.

It was against them in 2012 that Freeman began his ascension as one of Florida State’s best backs of the new decade. With Florida State having lost Chris Thompson the previous week to a knee injury vs. Miami, Freeman stepped up and put up an 104 yard, two touchdown statline, averaging 8.7 yards per carry.

In 2013 it would all come perfectly together for the speedster, when he became Florida State’s first 1000 yard rusher since Warrick Dunn in 1996. An essential part of the doomsday device that was the Seminoles’ offense in its national championship year, Freeman’s finest moment perhaps came against Miami, when the two schools met undefeated for the first time since 2004.

Freeman, a Miami native who had been mentored by Hurricane superfan Uncle Luke, had a little bit of extra swagger to his step as he put up three total touchdowns against the No. 7 team in the country, running for 78 yards and two scores while also catching six balls for 98 yards and a touchdown.

He’d go on to score a touchdown in each of Florida State’s remaining six games, the final being the first strike in the Seminoles’ rally to come back against Auburn in the BCS National Championship Game.

A third round pick of the Atlanta Falcons, Freeman has continued his status as a fan favorite in the 404, coming within 15 minutes and the play-calling of Kyle Shanahan of being a Super Bowl champion and probable MVP. Injuries have kept him from consistent success, but he’s still emerged as one of the league’s more versatile offensive threats, evidenced by the five-year, $41.25 million contract extension he signed with the Falcons in 2017.

Comments

one of my favorite Noles...

loved the clip of him in Atlanta when a staff member walked into the locker room with a UF logo on his shirt…DFree’s response was awesome. If anybody knows of that clip maybe they could post it on here (I’m not sure how to do it). He is a true Nole!!

Mine as well

Runs like his hair’s on fire

all-time favorite 'nole

rough around the edges as a true freshman, but some kids have that fire in them you can see a mile away…you kinda see it in grant, i hope he can evolve in a similar way. cam is a warrior, too, but certain players have a gift for never displaying negative emotion, cam needs that in his game. the switch was always flipped with devonta, intangibles freak!

Freeman has great field vision. Always seemed to find and hit the hole even when it required patience. This is what made him so good.

Obligatory...

TWSS…

Well played.

That’s what.
-She

Matias still looking for someone to block…

I’m still impressed on how that big a man was moving

Good to refresh the memory

That blocking is a thing

Without a doubt my favorite Nole

About two years ago I was lucky enough to run into Devonta at an Atlanta mall, and he could not have been any friendlier. Devonta was nice enough to let me get a picture with him as well as tell me a little bit about how crazy winning the natty was as a player. I really love this guy, and wish injuries would stop getting in the way of his NFL success.

That backfield was so loaded

Just looked at the stats and had forgotten that Karlos Williams averaged 8 yards per carry! And James Wilder averaged 7 himself. Freeman was definitely the leader of that pack though. (I have a soft spot for Freddie Stevenson too, another in a long line of great FSU fullbacks.)

Yep..."Wild and Free"... <img src="//fonts.voxmedia.com/emoji/unicode/1f60a.png" alt=":blush:" class="emoji">

I'd forgot all about this

Wild and Free

Is it just me, or is it lovely to see Miami’s Anthony Chickillo on the receiving end of another losing game to FSU. He never played on a ‘Canes team that won the rivalry. That’s a wonderful thing to contemplate.

Knowing that Anthony Chickenlittle

Lost to the ’Noles every single time he faced them brings a wide smile to my face regularly to this day.

Like this

I referred to him as Anthony Chinchilla. Furry little thing.

Didn’t he tear up the HS state championships

To the tune of 300+ yards in the final? Dude absolutely blew up towards the end of his recruitment and we knew we had a steal on our hands. Really special guy

Scratch that, back-to-back 300 yard games in the semis and final!

As a senior, he ran for a Miami-Dade County leading 2,208 yards and 26 touchdowns, and also recorded 663 rushing yards and six touchdowns in the final two games of the state playoffs.4

Electrifying!! Among my fav Noles!

There was no stopping Devonta once he got his hands on the ball! Great Man on and off the field!!
Never forget "Wild and Free!!"

OMG

The blocking at :22 in the clip is what dreams are made of.

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