When Notre Dame and Florida State, two of college football's blue bloods, did battle back in 1993, I wasn't old enough (or aware enough) to appreciate it. See, I didn't begin to understand Florida State's glory years until after Charlie Ward left, and guys like Warrick Dunn and Derrick Brooks rolled through Bobby Bowden's locker room. However, there was one player who eventually made his way to FSU whom I would soon become terrified of, because anytime he touched the ball, it felt like literally, anything could happen.
His name was Peter Warrick, and back in 1999, he was the most terrifying player in college football.
What people have to remember about Warrick's time in Tallahassee was that the man was making all of these plays as a possession receiver. Yes, that's right. He was a possession receiver in the mold of what Victor Cruz is in today's NFL. You didn't know it at the time, but Warrick wasn't fast at all (as many would soon learn once his speed was an 88 on Madden). However, what Warrick lacked in pure speed, he made up for with greasy shiftiness. The L2 button was invented for Warrick, as any time he touched the rock it felt like he could score. Didn't matter if it was a pass play, a jet sweep, a long kick return or a popped-up punt return, #9 could take it to anyone's house and get a quick six on the board.
As fans, we were almost deprived of so much more than what we got out of Warrick, who was such a unique talent on his own. When Warrick got to Florida State, he wasn't the most hyped receiver recruit on the team. The most hyped receiver was Warrick's roommate, Randy Moss. Moss, who initially signed his letter of intent to play for Notre Dame, was at Florida State because the Irish denied his application once news broke that Moss got into a racially charged fight. Once Notre Dame rejected him (see why I hate Notre Dame?), FSU allowed him to play, but he'd have to redshirt a season. Of course, what did Moss do? He got caught smoking weed and violated his probation in the process. Soon thereafter, he was dismissed from FSU.
However, Warrick would soon find another partner in crime (punny) in Laveranues Coles, and they'd begin wrecking shop as a dynamic wide receiver duo in the ACC. With Coles playing the X-receiver (WR1) role and Warrick owning the slot, defenses had no chances stopping them. Of course, what ended up killing their relationship was the infamous Dillard's incident, thus causing FSU to be nicknamed "Free Shoes University."
The Florida State Seminoles yesterday suspended Peter Warrick, the receiver who is a leading candidate for the Heisman Trophy, after he and a teammate were arrested in connection with a scheme to underpay for clothes at a department store in Tallahassee, Fla.
Warrick, 22, and Laveranues Coles, 21, were charged with a single count of grand theft, as was a department store clerk, Rachel Myrtil, 19.
The Tallahassee police charge that Myrtil allowed the two to buy $412.38 worth of clothing -- designer labels such as Nautica and Polo -- for $21.40 on Sept. 29.
For what it's worth, I've seen many a young man in my younger days willing to sell their souls for some Nautica and Polo gear. Moreover, I've seen "The Hookup" work out well for everyone involved in the employee giving you more than what you paid for. Yet on this day, in that department store, "The Hookup" got everyone set up.
So yes, put it together — we were one positive weed test and one hookup history moment gone bad from Randy Moss, Laveranues Coles and Peter Warrick forming the greatest wide receiver trio in college football history. Makes us wish that players could've just used CBD capsules instead.
What's funny is that you could make the case that while Peter Warrick had the most memorable college career out of the three, as Randy Moss was exiled to Marshall and Laveranues Coles had to take his football home with him until he got to the NFL. When the three got to the league, Moss would prove that he's arguably the second greatest wide receiver of all-time and Coles was able to put together an impressive 11-year career. Warrick would be considered a bust and out of the league altogether in 2005.
Now when I watch old Peter Warrick highlight tapes it feels bittersweet. While watching #9 juke the living hell out of defenders left and right, over and over again, I wonder what it would've been like to watch Randy Moss and Laveranues Coles line up next to him ... all with the greatest grandfather ever in Bobby Bowden coaching them up with his southern drawl and the faint whiff of bourbon on his breath. (And to watch Chris Weinke try to make all this magic work would've been fun and hilarious too.)
Enjoy the Peter Warrick mixtape, and try not to get too depressed on what could've been.
Eddie Maisonet is the founder and editor emeritus of The Sports Fan Journal. Currently, he serves as an associate editor for ESPN.com. He is an unabashed Russell Westbrook and Barry Switzer apologist, owns over 100 fitteds and snapbacks, and lives by Reggie Jackson’s famous quote, “I am the straw that stirs the drink.”