On Friday, the media got a chance to catch up with Cam Erving, FSU’s starting left tackle. If you will recall, Cam Erving was an up-and-coming defensive tackle in 2011.
2011: Redshirt freshman defensive tackle, who played in all 13 games, predominantly behind starter Everett Dawkins…extremely agile for a big man, he thrived as a run-stuffer and a disruptive force as one of FSU’s primary reserves…helped the Seminoles rank first nationally in yards allowed per rush (2.3) and second nationally in overall rushing defense (82.7 ypg)…compiled 20 tackles on the season, including 11 solo stops…had 2.5 tackles for loss and a sack on the year…posted a career-high four tackles in the road win at Boston College…notched his first career sack in the season-opener against ULM…also had a tackle for loss among his three solo stops at Clemson.
And then, Rick Trickett worked his voodoo, pulled a rabbit out of a hat, converted Cam Erving to a lineman, and delivered FSU a starting left tackle.
2012: Redshirt sophomore who started all 14 games at left tackle after making the transition from defensive tackle in the spring…played his best football down the stretch, grading out at 73.6 percent over the final six regular season games…enjoyed perhaps his finest game against Boston College, grading out at a season-best 82 percent as the Seminoles passed for a season-high 448 yards and four touchdowns…had a season-high three knockdowns and earned a grade of 81 percent in victory over Duke.
Now, Erving enters the spring as a seasoned left tackle, ready to provide leadership, and confident about his abilities. Erving explains that the team is ready for more — they weren’t taking time off, they are focused on getting something more than the Orange Bowl.
Personally, Erving admits he needs to be a better leader and more vocal on the offensive line to help his teammates. He sounds confident and ready to do so, with a full year under his belt at left tackle.
We have talked before that, at least on the offensive side of the ball, losing players like EJ Manuel and Lonnie Pryor means not only a loss in talent but also a tremendous amount of lost leadership. The players are now doing their best to fill that void and Cam Erving is taking that job seriously.
Erving says that leadership is about consistency and doing things the right way–not just “talking.” I couldn’t agree more and I couldn’t be more impressed with Cam. FSU fans should be excited about what Cam can do this year with another full year of experience. He, like many other players on the team, are not taking the easy way out–they’re continuously refining their trade:
“I have just been focusing on being a student of the game,” Erving said. “Just being smarter and knowing what’s going on everywhere and not just what’s going on with me and what I have to do. Just trying to learn to what’s going on with the whole offense. And from the offense you have to watch the defense to know what’s going on and anticipate what’s coming instead of just being surprised.”
Interestingly enough, the student now becomes the teacher. Last year, Cam learned from EJ and his other lineman. This year, Cam has flipped the script and will be helping his new QB and the younger lineman. Cam didn’t say anything specifically about the younger guys, but I hope he is mentoring them. Especially Bobby Hart. Cam is a living and breathing example of if you work hard enough, you will get to where you want to be. Cam now has a future in the NFL as an offensive tackle.