Florida State Blog - College

  • With 12 former athletes, and one signee, participating in the London Olympics there is plenty for Florida State fans to keep up with over the next few days (other than pride in their own countries of course).

    With the exception of Colombian swimmer Mateo De Angulo, who didn't advance to the finals of the 400m freestyle, all the Seminoles are participating in the track and field competition.

    Jamaican shot putter Dorian Scott finished 10th in the shot put finals with a throw of 20.61 meters. He also jokingly landed the role of Usain Bolt's bodyguard in the Olympic Village. Fellow Jamaican Kim Williams finished sixth in the triple jump.

    The Belgium twins Kevin and Jonathan Borlee (pictured at the 2011 World Championships)  both advanced to the finals of the 400m dash on Sunday night. Jonathan Borlee finished third in his second semifinal heat, but qualified with a time of 44.99 seconds. Kevin Borlee qualified automatically by finishing second in 44.84 of his semifinal. The final is set for 4:30 p.m. ET on Monday (who knows when NBC will televise it).

    American Lacy Janson did not advance to the finals of the Women's Pole Vault. Irish distance runner Ciaran O'Lionard did not advance in the 1500m. Great Britain distance runner Barbara Parker just missed out on a qualifying spot in the prelims of the 3000M Steeplechase. She will also compete in the 5000m on Tuesday.

    Sprinter Kemar Hyman pulled out of the 100m Semifinals with a hip injury. Hyman ran  a 10.16 in the first round, and also had the honor of carrying the flag for the Cayman Islands in the opening ceremonies.

    "Kemar had a really tough choice to make: run hurt or protect his future," said FSU sprint coach Ken Hardnen, who is in London as Hyman's coach.  "I believe he made the right choice."

    FSU signee Anne Zagre (Belgium) will compete in the qualifying heats of the 100-meter hurdles on Monday as well. Zagre, who comes into the games with a personal-best of 12.79, will try and secure a spot in the semifinals by placing in the top three of her first heat.

    Monday will also include the Olympic debut of Great Britain's Hannah England. The 2011 IAAF World Championship runner-up at 1500m, will compete in the qualifying rounds. The top six runners in each of three qualifying heats — plus the next six best times — will move on to the semifinals.

    Tuesday will be when American sprinter Maurice Mitchell will begin his Olympic games in the first round of the 200m springs. Mitchell also has an outside shot at being selected to run a leg of the 4x100 relay for USA.

    Decathlete Gonzalo Barrohilet will compete in the decathlon for Chile on Wednesday.

    --FSU Sports Information contributed to this report

  • It was something that everyone knew was coming once the announcement that Omaha was building TD Ameritrade Park was made.

    Still even as the College World Series moved out of the charming neighborhood and into downtown, Rosenblatt was always still there. You could drive by and reminisce about the past and all the great players who flashed the leather inside.

    That is no longer the case as the demolition of Rosenblatt began on Wednesday. The building was the home of the CWS from 1950-2010, and was taken down piece by piece on Wednesday. Unfortunately Mike Martin was not driving the bulldozer.

    Despite his lack of success in Rosenblatt, Martin's teams played in 14 CWS there never winning the title, Martin still was as nostalgic as the locals about the stadium during this year's CWS. The Florida State head coach had originally planned to take one last visit to the stadium before the demolition began but changed his mind when he heard of its current state.

    "I don't want to go over there and see a bunch of weeds, and no lights, and no outfield walls or that beautiful big old scoreboard," Martin told Yahoo! after a win over Stony Brook in the CWS. "I want to look back on that time when people were playing with their beach balls out there in the stands. I want to remember Rosenblatt from 2010 when we were here and got to close it. And by George, that's the way I'll remember it."

    I have been fortunate enough to cover the CWS twice. My first time was in 2010 for the final hurrah for Rosenblatt, and then I went again this year as Martin advanced his club to Omaha for the 15th time.

    When I arrived in Omaha this summer I was unsure of what to expect from the new park. I had heard that it was really nice but seemed a bit flat compared to the 'Blatt. I was more than pleasantly surprised with TD Ameritrade.

    Yes it is big corporate structure with sky boxes and a club level, but it's a really great park and a fitting home for the College game's biggest stage. It's much easier to get in and out of parking wise than Rosenblatt, which was sandwiched in the middle of a neighborhood and the zoo (which is awesome by the way).

    I will be honest though I did miss the carnival atmosphere outside the stadium. During the CWS all the houses across the street from Rosenblatt would rent out their front yards to vendors so you could just walk up and down the street and hit all the food tents and merchandise vendors. There are still tents and food stations around TD Ameritrade but they're spread out all over the place and it's not quite the same.

    The 'Road to Omaha' statue and the beach ball have made the move quite nicely to the new park. It's not the same, but it's still a special place and in the end all that really matters is that the CWS stays in Omaha.

    Hey who knows perhaps this park will bring Martin and the Seminoles better luck moving forward (I know 2012 and history suggest otherwise), and perhaps even the program's first title.

    I just hope that 60 years (or however long) from now when its time to move on from TD Ameritrade Park for a newer structure people who love the college game as emotional about the change as they were for Rosenblatt.

    Be sure to check out Warchant.com for the latest on Florida State baseball. You can follow Paul Thomas on twitter @WarchantPaul.

  • Because every Monday needs a little Bobby Bowden:

  • While Florida State big man Bernard James may have been the only Seminole to hear his name on draft night, he won't be the only one to get a shot at making an NBA roster this summer.

    Xavier Gibson will get the chance to lace it up for the Milwaukee Bucks' summer team in Las Vegas.

    After an All-Star season in Israel, Derwin Kitchen will play summer ball for the Denver Nuggets.

    Ryan Reid will be playing for the Oklahoma City Thunder this summer. Reid was drafted by the Thunder in the second round of the 2011 draft. He played a few games for OKC, but spent most of the season in the D-Leauge playing for the Tulsa 66ers.

    Al Thornton, who sat out last season due to injuries, will look to get back into the league as a member of the Brooklyn Nets.

    Deividas Dulkys won't be playing in the NBA Summer League, but he will be plenty busy as a member of the Lithuanian National Team. After an 86-80 loss to Nigeria on Wednesday, Lithuania needs to defeat Puerto Rico on Friday to keep its 2012 Olympic hopes alive.

  • In case you missed it, former Florida State, and current Tennessee Titans defensive end Kamerion Wimbley took on an extreme obstacle course on "American Ninja Warrior'.

    The 6-foot-4, 255-pound pass rusher looked to breeze through the course (admittedly I don't watch the show so I have no idea if it was a good time or not).

    Anyways enjoy:

    P.S. How many more days until football again?

  • It was a very unexpected weekend for Florida State to say the least. After blasting Stanford ace Mark Appel 17-1 in game one on Friday, FSU came back and mashed Stanford 18-7 on Sunday to clinch its third College World Series trip in five seasons.

    After Robert Benincasa completed his third ninth-inning strikeout, players in gold uniforms poured onto the field to celebrate the victory. Here is a full video of the celebration.

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    You'll notice that Senior James Ramsey was the last member to race in and join the pile. No the senior didn't gracefully land on top of his teammates, instead he skied over all of them and landed on the other side of the pile. He had to jump back on the pile for a second time.

    Afterwards Ramsey said the big jump was by design.

    "I kind of wanted to to be honest," said the St. Louis Cardinals' first-round draft pick. "(In 2010) I was wearing metal cleats and I almost sliced somebody's neck off. So I kind of wanted to do like a high jump and kind of a slower tumble and then I jumped straight over it and as I was jumping over it I was like 'Oh shoot'. So I got to jump to twice so that's my tactical advantage. If I make it to the Not-Top Ten then maybe that'll help it out a little bit."

    See Rammer's experience pays off even when it comes to post-game celebrations. You'll also notice he is the first one to lead the team to go over shake Stanford's hands.

    We've got full coverage from Florida State's Super Regional weekend in our baseball section at Warchant.com and we'll have you covered every step of the way in Omaha for the College World Series.

  • After rolling through the Tallahassee NCAA Regional in three straight games Florida State players now have the difficult task of balancing emotions between preparing for a Super Regional match-up with Stanford, and the Major League Baseball draft.

    The draft begins on Monday night at 7 p.m. on the MLB Network. Only the first round and the compensation round will be on Monday night. Rounds 2-15 will take place on Tuesday and rounds 16-40 will be on Wednesday.

    FSU senior center fielder James Ramsey has a chance to hear his name called on the first night of the draft. Last year Ramsey was selected in the 22nd round of the draft by the Minnesota Twins.

    In 61 games this season the Alpharetta, Ga. native is hitting .385 with 13 home runs and 55 RBI. He has shown tremendous range since moving to center field this season and also has 10 stolen bases on the base paths.

    Perfectgame.org ranks Ramsey the 40th best prospect in the draft. Baseball America rates him at No. 51, and MLB.com rates him at No. 41. While no mock drafts show Ramsey as a first round pick there has been some buzz about him possibly being a compensation round pick.

    Behind Ramsey the next highest-ranked Seminole is junior closer Robert Benincasa (4-1, 1.29 ERA with 15 saves). PG ranks him No. 196,  while BA  has him No. 216.

    The two other FSU juniors with the most draft intrigue are Devon Travis and Jayce  Boyd. While both would seem like locks to forgo their seniors seasons for pro ball, that may not be the case.

    Boyd is currently hitting .390 with 57 RBI, but has just three home runs. The lack of power, as well as his strange decision making on the field at times (see behind the back flip against Clemson and getting picked off at second against Samford on Sunday), could hurt Boyd's drat stock. PG doesn't have them in his top 250 and BA has him at No. 394.

    Travis meanwhile is hitting .310 with 22 doubles, five home runs, and 37 RBI. He also makes the turn at second on double plays as fast as anyone in the country. Still Travis doesn't have that top end speed and is not in PG's Top 250 or BA's Top 500 draft picks.

    The feeling around the program is that there is actually a decent chance that FSU gets both back for their seniors season, but we'll see where they fall in the draft.

    Justin Gonzalez (.242 with eight home runs) actually could end going before Travis and Boyd in the draft. BA has him ranked 441 and scouts like his pop and he has a great glove.

    Seminole fans also need to keep an eye on the 2012-13 Baseball signing class in the draft. Obviously two-sport star Jameis Winston is the one that 'Nole fans will be sweating out the most. PG ranks him as the No. 91 overall prospect, BA has him the highest at No. 59, and MLB.com rates him No. 62. However from what scouts and those close to program have told Warchant.com Winston won't likely be selected high enough to give up football.

    The highest selected FSU prospect will be Tyler Pike. The 6-foot-1, 180-pound LHP/OF is ranked at No. 143 by PG, and 125 by BA. If he goes high enough there is chance that Pike will never suit up in the garnet and gold.

    Other FSU signees to keep an eye on are catcher Tomas Nido (BA No. 303), LHP Andre Martinez (BA No. 404), RHP Hayden Hurst (BA No. 406), OF D.J. Stewart (BA No. 405)  and LHP Max Foody (BA No. 349).

    Note: PG lists C Bryan De Le Rosa, OF Jamal Martin, and IF John Sansone as FSU commits but none have signed LOIs at this point.

    For the latest on Seminole baseball and the MLB draft be sure to check out Warchant.com.

  • So EA Sports launched a new trailer on Monday that features the new feature for Franchise mode in NCAA Football 13. Fans can now build a national powerhouse by placing one of 10 former Heisman Trophy winners on the team of their choice for the upcoming NCAA season.

    Included in the trailer is Charlie Ward, who is featured not just in his FSU uniform, but in Florida and LSU gear as well.

    Now if you'll excuse me I have to join the posse already marching from Doak to the nearest Gamestop to ensure that no one actually chooses to play with Charlie on UF, or Herschel Walker on Auburn.

  • With the regular season complete, and the postseason set to begin on Wednesday at 11 a.m. against Georgia Tech in the ACC Tournament, let's take a final look at the regional projections for Florida State.

    FSU currently has an RPI of No. 2 behind Florida. The Seminoles wrapped up the regular season with a 43-12 record (best in the nation).

    SEBaseball.com has the Seminoles as the No. 1 overall seed in their latest regional projections. They predict the Tallahassee regional will include Ole Miss, Florida Atlantic, and Bethune-Cookman and be paired with the Tuscon, Arizona regional.

    The good news for Seminole fans in this projection is that UCF is sent to Gainesville instead of Tallahassee. UCF still looks to be on the outside looking in when it comes to hosting a regional after dropping two of three to Rice over the weekend, but could get back into the discussion with a run in the C-USA Tournament.

    ESPN's Jermey Mills also has FSU as No. 1 in his latest bracketology, but does have the Knights in Tallahassee for Regionals. He also has Bethune-Cookman, and Ole Miss, which would be a very tough regional for FSU. He has FSU's regional paired with a Stanford regional that includes Pepperdine and Vanderbilt.

    Once again Kendall Rogers of Perfectgame.org has the most favorable projection for FSU. He has the Seminoles as the top-seed hosting Ole Miss, Bethune-Cookman, and Wichita State. Once again he has the Tallahassee regional paired with a Purdue regional. Rogers has UCF headed to Gainesville.

    In his latest stock report, Baseball America's Aaron Fitt has FSU as a secure national seed, along with UF, Baylor, LSU, Oregon, UCLA, and UNC. He still has UCF on the outside looking in when it comes to hosting a regional.

    This week we've got a new edition to the regional round ups as Dustin McComas of Orangebloods.com (Texas Rivals site) tries his hand at forecasting the field of 64. He projects FSU as the top-seed, hosing UCF, Bethune, and Georgia. Like Rogers he has the Tallahassee regional paired with Purdue for Supers. He has Texas headed to Baton Rouge as a three-seed.

    It will be an interesting week with conference tournaments taking place. In order for FSU to lock up the top-seed (Not that it really matters since the NCAA doesn't really reward you any differently for being the 1 or 8 national seed) the Seminoles will likely need to win two of their three games in Greensboro. It will also depend on whether or not Florida and Baylor make a run at their conference titles.

    I'll be heading up to Greensboro on Thursday for live coverage of the ACC Tournament. For the latest on the how the Seminoles are fairng be sure to check out Warchant.com's baseball section.

  • The ACC announced its 2012 baseball All-Conference team on Monday afternoon. Five Seminoles were named All-ACC, including four first-teamers.

    ACC Player of the year James Ramsey was joined on the first team by Jayce Boyd, Devon Travis, and Robert Benincasa. Mike Compton was named second-team All-ACC.

    Head coach Mike Martin was named ACC coach of the year as his team tied the record most ACC wins in a single season with 24.

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    FSU opens up the ACC tournament on Wednesday against Georgia Tech at 11 a.m. ET. We'll have full coverage from Greensboro starting on Thursday as FSU also faces Clemson on Friday afternoon, followed by Virginia on Saturday.

    For the latest on FSU Baseball be sure to check out Warchant.com's Baseball section.

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