As a football conference, the ACC has managed to gain a little respect this season. The ACC is the only remaining conference with multiple undefeated teams and after the release of the BCS standings on Sunday, the conference has three teams in the top 8 making it the only conference in America with three teams in the BCS’ top 10.
The ACC is not lacking on playmakers either as Clemson’s Sammy Watkins and Miami’s Duke Johnson are noted among the nation’s most electrifying players. Maryland’s Stefon Diggs was one of the nation’s more dynamic players prior to his injury while North Carolina tight end Eric Ebron is raved about by NFL scouts. Somehow lost in the mix however, is a guy having an outstanding season for the school that most feel is the ACC’s best, Florida State.
While quarterback Jameis Winston has without a doubt captivated the college football world, his top target, junior wide receiver Rashad Greene, has failed to get the attention that he deserves. After leading the Seminoles in receiving in each of his first two seasons on campus, Greene is on pace to become the first 1,000-yard receiver that Florida State has had since Anquan Boldin in 2002.
Averaging nearly 18 yards-per-catch, Greene has 690 receiving yards and an ACC-high eight touchdown receptions. Greene leads the Seminoles with 39 receptions and has three games with at least eight catches this season including each of the last two weeks. Despite playing just a half on Saturday, Greene finished with eight catches for 137 yards and a score in Florida State’s 49-17 win over N.C. State. Greene has a touchdown catch in all, but one of Florida State’s seven contests this season.
Despite being small in stature at a generously listed 6’0″ and 180 pounds, Greene is more than just a deep threat or a guy who can run after the catch. Greene has shown a toughness as well and a willingness to go over the middle and make the difficult grab.
Should Greene go on to lead the Seminoles in receiving, he would be the first player to lead Florida State in that category for three years in a row since the mid-1970s. That’s something that not even the likes of Boldin, Peter Warrick, or Fred Biletnikoff can say.
Greene is also one of the big reasons as to why the Seminoles are 7-0 for the first time in 14 years. Despite being the leading receiver for the third-ranked team in America, Greene doesn’t seemed to be overly concerned with individual accolades as long as Florida State continues to win.
“That’s not really my concern whether people want to overlook me or not,” said Greene. “What’s most important is my team and going out there and winning,” the junior added. “The individual stuff will take care of itself.”
While Greene doesn’t receive the national recognition that someone like Sammy Watkins does, his receiving numbers are actually quite comparable and in terms of yards-per-catch and touchdowns, better. Like Watkins for Clemson, Greene has done it all for Florida State in his career that is still far from finished.
In addition to his 21 career touchdown receptions, Greene has averaged better than 10 yards-per-carry on seven career rushes including one touchdown. Greene also has a pair of punt returns for scores in his FSU career.
“Rashad is steady Eddie man”, said Florida State head coach Jimbo Fisher following Saturday’s win over N.C. State. “He’s so smooth, you don’t realize how fast he is. He’s so consistent, you don’t realize how good he is.”
Although Greene doesn’t get a whole lot of recognition nationally or in the ACC for that matter, the junior is on pace to have one of the best seasons ever by a receiver in the storied history of the Florida State program. Greene doesn’t seem to mind the lack of notoriety, but opposing defenses have certainly taken notice to the many things that the talented junior can do.