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54   A.J. Nicholson
A.J. Nicholson

Class:
Senior

Hometown:
Winston-Salem, NC

High School:
Mt. Tabor

Height / Weight:
6-2 / 235

Position:
LB


Senior Year (2005): A Butkus Award semifinalist and second team All-ACC selection, the senior started all 12 regular season games...led the defense with 100 tackles, recording a team-best 53 solos along the way...tied for third on the team in tackles for loss with 10.5...set a new career-high for interceptions with two, and scored his second career touchdown on an interception return at Boston College...his career-high 19 (17 solo) tackles and two interceptions (including the one returned for a score) against B.C. earned him Walter Camp National Defensive Player of the Week honors...led the defense in tackles in four games in 2005, tallying double-digit takedowns four times...had 10 tackles and forced a fumbled in the regular season finale at Florida.

Junior Year (2004): Led the team in tackles as a junior with 88...recorded a season-high 14 tackles against Duke also had two tackles for loss in that game...in the Gator Bowl against West Virginia had 12 tackles, one for loss and an interception in the FSU victory...had a season high two sacks against NC State...was third on the team in sacks with four...led the team in fumble recoveries with two.

Sophomore Year (2003): Saw action in all 13 games and started three (Duke, Wake Forest and Notre Dame)...recorded seven tackles, one tackle for loss and recovered two fumbles including one he returned for a touchdown in his first career start at Duke...ranked eighth on the team with 55 total tackles ...also had three tackles for loss, two pass break-ups, four QB hurries, three recovered fumbles and a forced fumble...tallied 12 tackles (nine solo) against Wake Forest...had six tackles against Maryland and Notre Dame.

Freshman Year (2002): Played in 13 games as a true freshman...finished 20th on the team with 23 tackles...one of only eight true freshmen to see playing time during the year...had 14 unassisted tackles and nine assisted tackles in 2002, including one sack and a tackle for loss...recorded a season-high five tackles on two occasions (Clemson and North Carolina)...leading tackler among the freshmen...saw action as a member of special teams as well as a backup outside linebacker.

High School: Graduated from Mt. Tabor in 2002...highly recruited linebacker who was named a Parade All-American...PrepStar Dream Team selection...named to the USA Today All-USA second team...TheInsiders.com's No. 3 linebacker in the nation...No. 3 rated middle linebacker in the nation according to Max Emfinger...rated the eighth-best linebacker in the nation according to SchoolSports...Countdown to Signing Day First Team All-South selection...selected to Athlon Sports Top 100 High School Seniors and the Alliance Sports Top 100 lists...named to the Atlanta Journal Constitution's Super Southern 100 team...had 147 tackles as a senior...made 170 tackles and had 23 tackles for losses as a junior...selected Florida State over Tennessee, North Carolina, Florida and Texas.

Personal: Majoring in sport management...born June 25, 1983.

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