'Noles Rebound

<b>Leon Washington</b> ran for 104 yards and a touchdown and Florida State sacked Alabama-Birmingham's Darrell Hackney eight times Saturday night to rebound from a disappointing loss to Miami with a 34-7 victory.

It didn't take long for the Florida State offense to shake out the cobwebs Saturday against UAB.

On their first three drives, the Seminoles picked up almost as many yards (163) as they tallied during the entire game in their 16-10 overtime loss at Miami (165). FSU's eight first downs over that span were just two short of their effort against UM.

Quarterback Chris Rix silenced a smattering of boo-birds on the opening drive of the game, leading FSU on a 6-play, 74-yard scoring strike. Rix found Dominic Robinson for a 21-yard gain on the first play from scrimmage.

Leon Washington's 48-yard run up the middle on he next play eclipsed his rushing total from a week ago (44 yards) and the output of the offense during the entire first half against the Hurricanes (44 yards).

Rix posted the first touchdown of the season for the offense when he plunged in from one yard out on fourth-and-goal to cap the opening drive.

THEN AND NOW

Saturday's game marked the second meeting between the Seminoles and the Blazers. FSU dispatched UAB 29-7 in 2001 with quarterback Chris Rix making just his second career start as a redshirt freshman.

Rix had one of the better games of his career, throwing for 246 yards and rushing for a team-high 52 yards. Included was a highlight-reel touchdown run in which Rix somersaulted over a Blazer defender into the end zone.

The win also extended FSU's home unbeaten streak to 53 games.

Since then, the Seminoles are 25-12 and haven't finished a season higher than tenth in the AP poll. Rix remains the starter under center though he has been under fire numerous times throughout his tumultuous career.

SEE NO EVIL

Bobby and Ann Bowden were on to watch their granddaughter Jacquelyn Hines – a member of the Clemson women's soccer team– play against Florida State Friday evening at the Seminole Soccer Complex. The Bowdens left at halftime to attend the FSU Athletics Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Shortly afterward Hines was ejected for taking down an FSU defender in the Tigers' 2-1 loss.

HALL OF FAME

Five former Seminoles were inducted into the FSU athletic Hall of Fame Friday and were honored before kickoff Saturday.

All-American defensive players Andre Wadsworth and Peter Boulware, basketball guard Sam Cassell, Olympic swimmer Brendon Dedekind and high jumper Holly Kelly-Thompson comprised this year's class.

"I met a lot of good friends and lot of good people here," said Boulware who lives in Tallahassee during the NFL off-season. "It's just good to come back and see them."

NOLES RESHUFFLE LBs

A week ago against Miami, FSU linebackers Sam McGrew and Ray Piquion made their first career starts against the Hurricanes. Both were replaced Saturday against the Blazers. Sophomore Buster Davis took over McGrew in the middle while sophomore Ernie Sims stepped in for Piquion on the strong side.

Additionally, split guard Cory Niblock made the first start of his career in place of Matt Meinrod, who is out for the season with a torn right ACL.

FOURTH AND GOAL-DEN

FSU scored both its first-half touchdowns on fourth-and-goal plays from within the UAB one. Quarterback Chris Rix went over the top while fullback James Coleman followed left tackle Alex Barron to paydirt.

Fullback BJ Dean added a fourth down conversion at the UAB 30 late in the second quarter.

FSU converted 7-of-8 fourth-down conversions in the game.


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