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FSU’s Deondre Francois named first Sunshine State winner

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Even on the morning after, Deondre Francois was impressive.

Even in hindsight, it was fairly impressive when a redshirt freshman was thrust into the starting role and led FSU to the largest comeback (22 points) in its history. Even upon reflection, it was starting that he threw 52 times for 419 yards against the No. 11 team in the country.

After all of that, it seems like slam-dunk that Francois would be the first Sunshine Player of the Week.

Other nominees from the state:

Demarcus Walker, defensive end, FSU: Walker had 4 ½ sacks as the defense finally woke up against Ole Miss quarterback Chad Kelly.

Ricky Aguayo, kicker, FSU: Aguayo hit all six of his field goals in FSU’s victory.

Luke Del Rio, quarterback, Florida: Del Rio threw for 258 yards in his debut as the Gators’ quarterback.

Brad Kaaya, quarterback, Ole Miss: Kaaya threw for four touchdowns as Miami coasted to a 70-3 victory over FAMU.

Mark Walton, Gus Edwards and Joe Yearby, running backs, Miami: Think of them as one entity. Togther, the trio rushed for 327 yards against FAU, each back gaining more than 100 yards.

Jason Driskell, quarterback, FAU: Driskell threw for 287 yards and two scores and ran for a third in FAU’s comeback win over Southern Illinois.

Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit

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