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December 17, 2003

'Baby Shaq' for Heisman

It has been a interesting few weeks for Courtney Abbott. A little over a month and half ago the 6-foot-9, 340-pound offensive lineman nicknamed 'Baby Shaq' stunned the recruiting world when he committed to Florida State when most believed he wasn't even looking at the Seminoles. Then, last week he told Warchant.com that he wanted to "look around a little bit" and would take visits to Florida and LSU.

His uncertainty changed following an in-home visit from Florida State head coach Bobby Bowden on Monday night.

"Now I'm 100-percent sure," Abbott said. "First, it was just having coach Bowden come to my house. Then there was the fact that he just told me the truth. He had a mindset like mine -- I'm a 17-year old kid with coaches calling me every day and being six-nine and 344 it's crazy. He told me, it's hard for me to tell these schools not to call any more. He told me it's going to be hard. He has always been straight forward with me, him, coach (Odell) Haggins, and coach (Jimmy) Heggins."

If there was any doubt, Abbott added that he will not take any official visits. If he does follow through on his decision, and signs with the Seminoles in February, he has some lofty goals for his college career.

"I'm going to tell you my little secret, and this will make the front page of the USA Today -- I'm going to be the first offensive lineman to win the Heisman Trophy," Abbott said. "I promise everybody that... If I don't get one, I plan on being considered for one. I at least plan on going to New York."

In addition to his Heisman aspirations, Abbot has another prediction for Seminole fans.

"Me and Drew (Weatherford) we plan on letting the whole nation know that in three years Florida State will win a national championship," he said.

Abbott is rated by Rivals.com as No. 28 offensive tackle in the nation.

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