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College Football Preview: 8. Florida State Seminoles

8. Florida State Seminoles Returning Starters: 18 Returning Star: DE Brandon Jenkins Key Loss: LB Nigel Bradham Player to Watch: CB Greg Reid Last season the hope that the Seminoles had returned to old form seemed to disappear in a flash. But, with a healthy E.J. Manuel and 18 starters returning this could be the year Florida State returns to its old dominance. Manuel is athletic, smart and will be confident as he begins his senior season. Sophomore Clint Trickett played in Manuel's absence. As any freshman pushed into a slot he had little confidence and struggled. Though with that experience he is a very valuable second option for the Seminoles. The backfield is deep and has loads of talent in it. Senior Lonnie Pryor is experienced and is underrated and tailback Devonta Freeman is still learning the ropes. Senior Chris Thompson is speedy and tough to tackle. With the loss of Bert Reed, Manuel's options are a little more limited but still has talent. Sophomore Christian Green and senior Rodney Smith are reliable targets and junior Greg Dent has good hands. The offensive line is improving but is still a weakness. Senior guard Jacob Fahrenkrug is gritty and tough and sophomore tackle Bobby Hart is a beast. The defense returns 9 starters and is the ACC's best. The defensive line is big and experienced. End Brandon Jenkins had a big junior year and is back for his senior season. He constantly gets past linemen thanks to his superior size and speed. Senior tackle Everett Dawkins is a monster that can add pressure and stuff up backs. Anthony McCloud is an underrated tackle to add to Dawkins. The linenbackers lost leader Nigel Bradham but is still a formidable unit. Senior Vince Williams and junior Jeff Luc aren't given much credit for how much big plays they make. The secondary is strong also headed by junior Xavier Rhodes and Lamarcus Joyner. With some coverage improvement Greg Reid could become one of the most talented all-around players in the nation. The special teams is solid thanks to the returns of returner Reid and kicker Dustin Hopkins. The punter position is a question mark. Heisman Hopeful: E.J. Manuel ACC Rank: 1st

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