The Florida State kickoff return team was the most dynamic return unit in all of college football during their national championship season in 2013, leading the country in return average with 28.16 yards per return. While the unit struggled to repeat that same feat in 2014 (ranking 88th in the nation with 19.82 yards per return), the team is looking to turn its return game back around for 2015.
The situation of return men was never in question for the Seminoles. Receiver Kermit Whitfield has been in place for the position for some time now. The only question was who would be alongside him. Fans got their answer in the spring game when top defensive back Jalen Ramsey was back deep to return the kicks.
The problem with Whitfield and Ramsey returning kicks is their jersey numbers. Both Ramsey and Whitfield wear number 8. The NCAA allows teams to have players with the same number as long as they play on opposite sides of the ball and aren’t on the field at the same time. That obviously would be a problem with both of them returning the ball.
According to Tomahawk Nation, the elder leader of the defense has decided that he will change jerseys on kickoff returns. Ramsey stepped up and made the decision because he knew it would be best for his team. The fact that Ramsey made this decision all but confirms that he will be on the kickoff return unit in 2015.
It’s unclear what number Ramsey will wear on kickoff returns, but he isn’t unfamiliar with number changes in his career. During his freshman season, Ramsey wore number 13 when Timmy Jerningan had claimed number 8.
This is surely going to be exciting news for Seminoles’ fans. They have been eagerly awaiting the team’s decision on who would be returning kicks this year and will be happy to know that one of the top NFL Draft prospects will be one of the two men doing the honors.
The Seminoles open the season on September 5 when they host Texas State.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports