The Florida State football team is going green for its game against the Fighting Irish, writes Brandon Mellor. FSU is expected to start four true freshmen on the offensive line in the Champs Sports Bowl.
About Datko... Four-year starting left tackle with 40 career starts to his credit...instrumental in one of FSU's best rushing attacks in a four-year stretch (158.5 yards per game)...one of the leaders of the offensive line who played alongside FSU consensus All-American Rodney Hudson for three seasons in producing one of the top left sides in college football.
Starting left tackle who was a preseason candidate for a number of national awards and was headed towards all-conference honors before a shoulder injury forced him to sit out the remainder of the season...started the first four games of the season and played 252 snaps while posting a season average grade of 75.8...allowed just one sack...posted a season-high grade of 84 percent in the opener against Louisiana Monroe...had 40 career starts to his credit...given an Unselfish Leadership Award at the annual football team banquet for his mentorship he provided to a young offensive line after he missed the remaining nine games of the regular season...earned the Matt Schmauch Academic Award at the end of spring practice, which is given to the player who is dedicated to getting a degree, is accountable and responsible in the classroom and works everyday to be a better student...earned one of six community service awards given out at the end of spring practice.
2010 Third-year starter as a true junior, he missed three games after suffering a shoulder injury late in the Oklahoma game, which snapped a streak of 27 consecutive starts...played his entire career at left tackle, where he has been responsible for protecting the quarterbacks' blind side and excels in that area...relinquished just one sack in 11 games (all starts) on the season, stifling heralded pass rushers from Oklahoma, Miami, Clemson, Florida and Virginia Tech...penalized just three times and issued five missed assignments in 691 snaps...Datko's season average grade of 87 was second only to Rodney Hudson on the team...presented the Bob Crenshaw Award by the Tallahassee Quarterback Club as the "Most Courageous" Seminole.
2009 Started every game at the left tackle position and boasted a season average grade of 80 percent...registered 24 knockdown blocks...allowed two sacks all season, shutting out Georgia Tech All-American Derrick Morgan and All-ACC standouts Robert Quinn (UNC) and Willie Young (NC State)...made his 25th consecutive start in the Gator Bowl...earned ACC Lineman of the Week honors following dominating performance in the come-from-behind win at North Carolina...was penalized just three times on the season...earned honorable mention All-ACC honors...recognized by the coaches as the offensive player most committed to physical development in the spring of `09.
2008 Started the final 12 games of his true freshman season...became the third Seminole to earn Freshman All-American honors from the FWAA under line coach Rick Trickett...also collected Freshman All-American honors from Sporting News, Rivals and Phil Steele...was the first FSU tackle to earn that distinction since Brett Williams in 1999...played 852 snaps and recorded 21 knockdown blocks...named top newcomer on offense by the coaching staff.
PERSONAL Coveted three-star recruit who earned All-Broward honors from the South Florida Sun-Sentinel as a senior at St. Thomas Aquinas...an outstanding student who carries that intelligence on to the field...understands leverage and balance...a tireless worker in the weight room, who has added nearly 40 pounds of muscle mass since arriving at FSU...played for the state championship every season at powerhouse St. Thomas Aquinas and was part of the 14-1 team that won the title his senior season...a business major, he won the freshman class academic award for offense in 2008 and was named to the ACC All-Academic team that season...chose FSU over UCF and FIU...born August 15, 1990.