Florida State's four-player quarterback battle takes center stage Saturday at 2 p.m. inside Doak Campbell Stadium.
As part of an ongoing series of articles, get a glimpse of each member of FSU's 2013 signing class. Up next: dual-threat quarterback John Franklin II.
As part of an ongoing series of articles, get a glimpse of each member of FSU's 2013 signing class. Up next: cornerback Marquez White.
As part of an ongoing series of articles, get a glimpse of each member of FSU's 2013 signing class. Up next: linebacker Tyrell Lyons.
As part of an ongoing series of articles, get a glimpse of each member of FSU's 2013 signing class. Up first: tight end Jeremy Kerr.
The Dawsey File
Lawrence Dawsey enters his seventh season on the Florida State staff and his fourth season as the Seminoles' passing game coordinator and receivers coach.
Florida State's receivers have prospered under Dawsey's direction. Over the past two seasons, FSU has averaged 24.5 receiving touchdowns and compiled over 3,500 yards per year. In 2012, sophomore Rashad Greene captured honorable mention All-ACC honors and was a SI.com honorable mention All-American after leading the Seminoles with 57 receptions for 741 yards and six touchdown catches. Greene was one of seven players who averaged at least 11.0 yards per reception and caught 20 or more passes. Greene, senior Rodney Smith, junior Kenny Shaw, redshirt freshman Kelvin Benjamin and junior Greg Dent all recorded at least 25 receptions for 350 yards. Smith capped his four-year career by setting the FSU record for consecutive games with a reception (39). He finished his career with 106 receptions for 1,540 yards and 10 touchdowns. Dawsey was instrumental in helping the FSU offense to its most productive season ever in 2012. The Seminoles set an FSU record with 6,591 yards of total offense and surpassed 500 yards of total offense six times. Florida State ranked third in the ACC in total offense (471.50) and scoring offense (39.29). FSU will break in a new quarterback in 2013 after two-year starter EJ Manuel graduated and was the first quarterback drafted (No. 16 player overall) by the Buffalo Bills in the April NFL Draft, but the 'Noles return seven of their eight leading receivers from a year ago - likely promising a another prolific offensive campaign. Smith will start the 2013 NFL season in training camp with the Minnesota Vikings, while Greene, Shaw, Benjamin and Dent will combine with veterans Willie Haulstead, a redshirt senior who had six scores in 2010, senior Jared Haggins (20 catches, three starts) and redshirt junior Christian Green (29 receptions, four starts) and incoming freshmen Jesus Wilson, Isaiah Jones and Levonte Whitfield to form one of the nation's deepest receiving corps.
In 2011, six different receivers averaged better than 11 yards per reception for a passing offense that produced 25 TD receptions and 3,341 yards through 13 games. Dawsey guided Greene, FSU's leading receiver, to one of the best freshman campaigns in FSU history as he posted the second-most receptions (38), receiving touchdowns (7) and third-most receiving yards (596). He ranked among the top five freshmen nationally in receiving touchdowns. Senior Bert Reed left Florida State after four years under Dawsey's tutelage among the top five Seminoles in career receptions and top 15 Seminoles in career receiving yards. Sophomore Christian Green, a converted quarterback who redshirted in 2010, broke out in 2011 leading the team with a 17.3 yard per catch average and finishing third in receiving yards.
In 2010, Dawsey added passing game coordinator to his title and four receivers caught at least 30 passes as Florida State ranked fifth in the ACC in pass receptions and sixth in receiving yards. Reed, Willie Haulstead and Smith combined for 127 receptions, 1,649 yards and 11 touchdowns.
In 2009, Dawsey tutored Rod Owens and Reed who became the first pair of Seminole receivers to collect at least 60 receptions each in the same season since 1995. Owens (61) and Reed (60) joined the prolific `95 tandem of Andre Cooper (71) and E.G. Green (60) as the only duos to match that standard in program history. Five Seminoles in 2009 - Owens, Reed, Jarmon Fortson (45), Taiwan Easterling (35) and Richard Goodman (27) - caught at least 20 passes. FSU had not had five receivers with 20 or more catches since the 1992 season.
The production of Dawsey's receivers has helped the Seminoles improve in total offense over each of the past six seasons, including their average of 470.8 yards per game in 2012 which was the best season at FSU since 2000 and the school-record total mark of 6,591 yards. FSU's wideouts had a hand in quarterbacks Christian Ponder and EJ Manuel becoming first round NFL draft picks. Manuel finished his career as the FSU career-leader in completion percentage at 66.9 percent - a mark that also ranks second in ACC history. Manuel finished the 2012 season with 3,392 yards passing - the second-most in Seminole history. He finished his career third in the FSU annuals in career passing yards, third in completions and sixth in passing touchdowns.
In Dawsey's first two seasons at Florida State he helped Greg Carr climb the charts as one of the most productive receivers in school history. Greg Carr finished his career with 148 catches for 2,574 yards and 29 career touchdowns.
In 2007, Dawsey's first season, Florida State boasted three receivers - Preston Parker, De'Cody Fagg and Carr - with 700 or more receiving yards for the first time in school history.
Beyond the playing field, Dawsey too has established himself as one of the nation's top recruiters. He's picked up the Seminoles' efforts in the Tampa area and helped the Seminoles attract the nation's No. 1 recruiting class in 2011. He was named one of ESPN.com's Top 25 Recruiters of the Year in 2011. Dawsey was also named the 2011 ACC Recruiter of the Year by SI.com and one of the Top 25 recruiters in the nation in 2011 and 2012 by Rivals.com. He was selected as one of the top 50 recruiters in the country by 247Sports in 2012 and 2013.
Dawsey's first coaching job came as a high school assistant at Tampa Catholic in 1998. He did not return to the sideline until serving as a training camp assistant coach with the NFL's St. Louis Rams in 2001 and returned to the high school ranks in 2002 at Blake in Tampa.
He spent the 2003 season as a graduate assistant on Nick Saban's LSU staff, where he worked with Jimbo Fisher and also crossed paths with fellow graduate assistant and current FSU assistant James Coley. The Tigers posted a 13-1 record and won the BCS National Championship.
Dawsey had the opportunity to work with LSU receiver Michael Clayton, who later became the No. 1 selection of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and broke several of Dawsey's rookie receiving records with the club.
The season at LSU opened the door for Dawsey's first, full-time college position as he returned to Tampa as the wide receivers coach at USF from 2004-2006. As a recruiter, he was instrumental in landing the talent which helped the Bulls break on to the national scene. USF's passing offense also took flight during Dawsey's three seasons and ranked among the best in the Big East.
Dawsey was an integral part of the Seminole football dynasty as a player. His four seasons at wide receiver corresponded with the first four 10-win, top-five poll finishes by FSU. As a player, he was known for his work ethic, accountability, precision route-running, down-field blocking and the ability to rise to the occasion in big games. Those are the same qualities he has instilled in his current group of receivers.
A third-round selection by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 1991, Dawsey enjoyed a seven-season NFL career. He also played for the New York Giants (1996), Miami Dolphins (1997) and New Orleans Saints (1999).
Dawsey was named the NFL Rookie of the Year by Sports Illustrated and named to the All-Rookie Team by Pro Football Weekly in 1991 after he led Tampa Bay with 55 receptions and set the club's rookie record with 818 receiving yards. Dawsey also led the team in receptions (60) and receiving yards (776) in 1992.
Dawsey's family also has enjoyed success as well. His daughter Dominique and son-in-law Michael Moffitt, both Florida State graduates, have each earned their M.D. at Meharry Medical College in Nashville, Tenn. Dominique is a clinical resident in Anesthesiology at Brigham and Women's Hospital - a Harvard University Hospital.
Dawsey's Coaching Ledger