March 3, 2008

Five offensive players to watch this spring


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size="4">Christian Ponder

Quarterback (6-3/210) Home: Colleyville, Texas
When a team has a
quarterback returning for his senior season with 33
starts there usually isn't any reason talk about a battle
for the starting job. But that's not the case at Florida
State this year. Offensive coordinator Jimbo Fisher has
made it clear that the position is open and Christian
Ponder, who will be a redshirt sophomore this season, is
in the best position to possibly unseat Drew Weatherford
as the player under center.



What we know: During two-a-days last
August, Ponder showed flashes of his potential but being
a freshman with two experienced juniors ahead of him
there wasn't a real opportunity for him to move up the
depth chart. Where he really caught the coaches' eye was
when he came on in relief for Drew Weatherford in the
November 10th game against Virginia Tech in Blacksburg.
The rookie signal-caller, making his first ever
appearance in college, directed the Seminole offense to
two third quarter touchdowns to give FSU a brief lead
going into the final quarter. But after a turnover early
in the fourth quarter, Ponder's youth and inexperience
came through and the Hokies rolled late.

Opinion:
In order to have a legitimate shot at the starting job,
Ponder will have to go toe-to-toe with Weatherford in
spring practice. He will need to take full advantage when
he is given the opportunity to direct the first team
offense. Weatherford is usually a strong practice player
so it won't be easy to keep pace.


2007 Stats: 8-for-18
(44.4%), 105 yards, 1 TD, 2 ints.
HS Video: href="https://floridastate.rivals.com/content.asp?cid=489481">
High School Ranking & Stats:
A three-star player by Rivals.com…ranked 14th in the
nation among pro-style passers by Rivals.com and stands
as the No. 50 overall prospect in the website's
postseason Texas Top 100 list. Threw for 2,214 yards and
20 touchdowns during his senior season at Heritage, while
also rushing for 911 yards and 12 scores.
Quick Fact: Father,
David, lettered at linebacker for Florida State from
1980-83


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