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January 29, 2014

Motlow to walk on at FSU - and make history

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Tampa Catholic wide receiver Justin Motlow knows what it's like to be told 'you can't do that.'

He's been told he's 'too small' or 'too light' to play football at a division I program.

But Motlow, like his heritage - refuses to give up.

Motlow is one-fourth Seminole Indian. His father is half Seminole and his grandmother is 100 percent Seminole.

So for Justin to receive preferred walk-on status at Florida State - well, it's a 'dream come true.'

"I've always loved FSU," Motlow said. "My sister attends school there, and I have friends (Corey Martinez) who are going there."

Motlow said the fact that - if he does get a chance to don the Garnet and Gold - he'll be the first true Seminole to play for the Seminoles - is an incredible honor.

"That would be a huge honor. To be able to say that I'm the first real Seminole to be playing on the Seminoles football team would be a huge honor," Motlow said. "That's not the main reason why I'm going there - I've always loved FSU and they are a great program. But to be able to have a chance to represent the Nation, that's an extreme honor."

Motlow, at 5-foot-11, 190 pounds has the tools to play on the next level, but has not gotten the offers.

"I just want an opportunity to compete with everyone and show them what I've got. Hopefully all goes well," Motlow said. "I'd like to think that I'm a smart football player. I do pretty well in the classroom and I have good awareness."

However, playing for the defending BCS champions - well, that's a pretty tall challenge.

"It's a pretty big challenge, but I feel that I'm up to it. I feel like I can compete for a slot receiver position," he said.

But he still hears how he's 'too short' to play FBS football - a comment that motivates him every day.

"I've heard that a lot. I've heard it's going to be harder because I'm not the tallest guy or the biggest guy, but I use that to my own gain," Motlow said. "I had a pretty efficient season this past year, going over 1,000 yards and I enjoy the challenge."

Motlow played in the Blue-Grey All-Star game at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, where he caught three passes for 67 yards - including a 34-yarder that set up the first score for the Grey.

Motlow also played punter for the Crusaders - and wants the opportunity to try out as a punter for Florida State. As a high school punter - averaged 43.2 yards per punt.

"I just want to play football and get a great education," Motlow said. "I feel very blessed to have the chance to do both - if it works out."



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