Mario Pender Ready To Start
Starting running back Karlos Williams is likely to be out this weekend with an ankle injury. That leaves the starting role to sophomore Mario Pender. Pender is averaging 6.7 yards per carry and has 3 touchdowns on the season. When asked about how he’s preparing for this week, Pender responded with a Jimboesque answer.
“I’m approaching it like I do every week,” Pender said. “ Every week coach Fisher coaches us hard and I have to go out and practice hard and execute. Of course I have to be a little more locked in than I usually am because I’m first up, but I still have to approach this week like I have every week.”
Freshman Dalvin Cook will likely get more carries as well, but this is Pender’s chance to really be the running back Florida State fans hoped he would be coming out of high school.
Injuries Piling Up For The Seminoles
Florida State escaped the 2013 season without many impact injuries. That hasn’t been the case so far through 2014. Starting DT Nile Lawrence-Stample is out for the year with a torn pectoral and starting center Austin Barron is expected to miss most of the season with a broken hand. Receiver Rashad Greene missed most of the Wake Forest game with a concussion, but was cleared to return to practice on Wednesday. Add in Karlos Williams, Demarcus Chrismas, Derrick Mitchell and Trey Marshall and Florida State is as banged up as any team in the country.
In addition to Mario Pender, Derrick Mitchell and Ryan Hoefield have done admirable jobs filling in. With all these injuries 2014 Florida State is having to battle through more adversity than the 2013 team did until the National Championship game. Luckily the Seminoles have recruited at such a high level that the guys who are replacing the starters are more than capable of getting the job done.
Rashad Greene Is Chasing Down History
If Rashad Greene is fully healthy the first of the Florida State receiving records will fall this weekend. He is three receptions short of the 212-mark set by Ron Sellers from 1966-1968. Another of the records could fall by the end of November, with Greene being 457 yards short of Sellers 3598 receiving yards. Even if it doesn’t fall before November, Greene will eclipse that record at some point this season.
The record that is questionable is whether he will pass Peter Warrick’s touchdown record of 31. He is currently six away from tying and will need to average one per game if he wants to break the record during the regular season. If he makes it, or even if he doesn’t, he will go down as one of the greatest receivers in Florida State history.
Roberto Aguayo Going For Two
After all the terrible luck Florida State has had in the kicking game over the past thirty years, Florida State was due for some good ones. What the Seminoles got were two all time greats at the position including Roberto Aguayo, who is perfect this year. He’s made 21 straight field goals and is a perfect 116 for 116 on extra point attempts in his career.
By himself, Aguayo has outscored three FBS teams, Kent State, Eastern Michigan, and SMU, with 58 points. With his excellent season so far, Aguayo has put himself in position to become just the second kicker in college football history to win back-to-back Groza awards. Only fellow Florida State kicker Sebastian Janikowski has accomplished this feat.