In the midst of a bevy of draft-eligible players jumping early, a pair of ACC schools will welcome back key components to their recent run of success.
Florida State, hit hard with early defections recently on both sides of the ball, announced Thursday that star kicker Robert Aguayo will return for to the Seminoles for his redshirt junior season in 2015. Because Aguayo is three years removed from high school, the redshirt sophomore would’ve been eligible for the NFL draft this year.
“I’m very excited that Roberto has elected to come back to school,” head coach Jimbo Fisher said in a statement. “He’s a big part of our Florida State family’s success. I believe he has a chance to become arguably the best kicker in NCAA history and we’re very fortunate to have him. But more importantly, what he brings to our team from a leadership and character standpoint means more to us as an organization and we’re truly blessed to have him back.”
Despite playing just two seasons, Aguayo is already one of the best kickers in FBS history. He’s a two-time All-American who won the Lou Groza Award in 2013, and was a finalist for the honor this season.
Aguayo has not missed an extra point in 149 attempts, and has converted on 94.2 percent (48-52) o his field goal attempts. That percentage is the best ever at this level, topping Nebraska’s Alex Henery’s 89.5 percent (68-76) from 2007-10.
“After praying about it and talking with my parents, coaches and others I trust, I know that the best decision for me is to return to Florida State for another year,” Aguayo said. “I am more than excited to continue to build on the success we have had here at Florida State and I’m looking forward to continuing to improve next fall, to obtain my degree and to grow as a person.”
Meanwhile, in the Coastal division, standout Duke safety Jeremy Cash has decided to return as well. While Aguayo could very well have been a mid-round pick, Cash was faced with the possibility of going undrafted, will likely played a significant role in his decision.
In 27 career games with the Blue Devils, Cash has compiled 232 tackles, 20.0 tackles for loss, 5.5 sacks, six interceptions, 11 pass breakups, seven QB pressures, six caused fumbles and two fumble recoveries. According to the school, he was the only defensive back in the nation to record 100-plus tackles, 10.0-plus tackles for loss and 5.0-plus sacks this past season.
Cash, who received his degree in psychology last month, is a two-time second-team All-ACC selection.