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RB carnage forces re-education

By BRIAN LANDMAN

© St. Petersburg Times, published November 12, 2000


WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- Florida State sophomore receiver Nick Maddox had a premonition something "special" would happen Saturday afternoon against Wake Forest.

That's not exactly the word any other Seminole would have chosen afterward.

In span of 11 plays in the third quarter, backup tailbacks Jeff Chaney, Davy Ford and Greg Jones all went down, forcing Maddox, a former tailback, to move back to the backfield.

Trying to cut back, Chaney injured his right knee when his leg stuck in the ground. He is scheduled for an MRI exam Monday, but the Seminoles fear the worst. Ford, who has had two knee operations, fractured his right collarbone when Wake Forest linebacker Marquis Hopkins fell on him.

"I landed with all my weight and all of his weight," Ford said.

Jones, a freshman, came on and sprained his right ankle two plays later. He asked for a couple of pain killers and was able to return.

"I've never seen anything like that with that many guys going down," said senior tailback Travis Minor, who sprained his left ankle on one of his first carries and had hoped to play sparingly in the second half.

Maddox finished with 52 yards on four carries, including a 41-yarder that set up FSU's fourth touchdown. He had 29 rushes last season for 111 yards. His longest went for 9 yards.

"My mom told me something a long time ago and I still think it's true: A running back is always a running back," said Maddox, who asked the coaches to move him to receiver in fall practices. "You come to college, no matter how good your coach is, a coach cannot teach you how to run."

"He is their fifth-string tailback and he was the player of the year in North Carolina. They just run them in and out," Wake Forest defensive tackle Nate Bolling said.

Minor and Jones said they would be ready for Florida on Saturday, and Maddox said he hopes Chaney and Ford also are available. If not, he said he wants to make the most of whatever opportunity he gets.

"I may show people that I can still play running back," Maddox said.

INJURY REPORT: Senior defensive end David Warren and freshman defensive tackle Darnell Dockett had mild concussions, and senior safety Derrick Gibson strained his neck.

TYING STAGG: FSU coach Bobby Bowden has 314 wins to tie Amos Alonzo Stagg for fourth on the Division I-A list. Alabama's Bear Bryant leads with 323.

CHART CLIMBER: Senior quarterback Chris Weinke has 9,486 career passing yards, second all-time in Atlantic Coast Conference history. He needs 129 to pass Duke's Ben Bennett.

AWARD WATCH: Weinke and junior safety Chris Hope were named to the Verizon Academic all-district football team. To be eligible, a student-athlete must be a starter or key reserve and carry at least a 3.2 GPA. Weinke also was named one of eight finalists for the Davey O'Brien Award as the nation's top quarterback, and senior punter Keith Cottrell was named one of 10 finalists for the Ray Guy Award. Both awards will be presented on the ESPN College Football Awards Show on Dec. 7.

PLAY IT AGAIN: Sunshine Network shows a replay of the FSU-Wake Forest game at 11:30 tonight and at noon Monday.

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