Wednesday's Premium Football Notebook

The Seminoles continued preparations for Clemson Wednesday and are finally starting to shake off the injury bug. While Monday and Tuesday's premium notebook contained stories of questionable players, that trend is starting to change.

INJURY REPORT

The following players have made improvements and, according to coach Bobby Bowden, should be in the lineup Saturday against the Tigers.

Neefy Moffett

Greg Carr

De'Cody Fagg

Willie Reid

Seniors Gerard Ross (knee), Kamerion Wimbley (knee) and Leon Washington (ankle) will not play.

"Leon is out," Bowden said.

THAXTON TO REDSHIRT

Keeping up with the injury trend, one player who will most definitely not be seeing action this weekend is true sophomore linebacker Jae Thaxton, who suffered a concussion in the second game of the season.

Instead, the talented defender will take a medical redshirt this year. The Hartwell, Ga. native has been missing from action since suffering the injury against The Citdael.

"I am going to get a medical redshirt," he said. "I really want to play but it's what's best since I have missed so much time."

In 2004, Thaxton played in all 12 games and led all freshmen with 19 tackles. He also notched two blocked kicks as a staple on special teams, becoming the first 'Nole to register multiple blocks in a season since Tommy Polley did so in 1999.

"I wish I could be out there with teammates to help out," Thaxton said. "It's real tough because it makes it even harder that I had some playing time already this year."

With his 6-foot-3 and 235-pound frame, Thaxton is a guy that many see as a possible candidate to make the switch from linebacker to defensive end. When he returns next season, it's something he would prefer not to do.

"I don't really want to play defensive end because I love being a linebacker," he said. "I mean there is always the possibility but if I had my choice I would stay where I am."

BUTKUS FINALISTS ANNOUNCED TOMORROW

The Downtown Athletic Club will announce the three finalists for the 2005 Butkus Award tomorrow. FSU Junior Ernie Sims and senior A.J. Nicholson are both up for consideration for the annual award.

CHANGES HELP CLEMSON

Clemson's 1999 squad nearly put a blemish in Florida State's undefeated title run.

Bowden thinks the team the Tigers have assembled this season may be just as good and it's thanks to new offensive coordinator Rob Spence.

"Their biggest difference is the running game," said Bowden. "Their offensive coordinator has really stressed the running game and it's just so much improved from what it was in the past."


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