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Miami’s Ruben Carter slept with a football when he was little. That’s how much he loved the game.
Very passionate and hard working, Carter played youth football with Liberty City Optimist, competed for Jackson High School and currently is a red-shirt freshman with Florida State University.
Carter (6-5, 310) is a versatile offensive lineman who has enjoyed success on the youth league and high school levels. He is now working hard to succeed on the college ranks.
When Florida State recently battled Northern Illinois in the Discover Orange Bowl at Sun Life Stadium in Miami Gardens, Carter was one of six Seminoles from Miami, making a Homecoming during the bowl season.
His parents attended the game along with family and friends. His mother recalled how Ruben got so upset one time (when he was a Pee Wee player) that he did not want to play football anymore.
That didn’t last long; he played again.
Growing up in Miami, Carter was named the Most Outstanding Defensive Player for the Liberty City Optimist 120-pound team, winners of the Greater Miami South Florida Pop Warner Super Bowl. His father, Ruben Carter Sr., coached him and FSU teammate Devonta Freeman, when they were younger, on the Liberty City Optimist 65-pound team.
Freeman, a 5-9, 209-pound sophomore running back for FSU, is a Miami Central High School alum, reuniting with Carter in Tallahassee. The Miami Central High School football team, the 2012 Class 6A state champion, was a guest of the Discover Orange Bowl, watching an alum from field level.
FSU won the Orange Bowl 31-10.
Following the victory, Carter and Freeman spoke with friends Robert Daniels (Overtown Rattlers/Jackson High School), Nathaniel Flowers (Liberty City Optimist/Jackson High School), Willie Quinn (Liberty City Optimist/Jackson High School) and Robenson Therezie (Moore Park Generals/Jackson High School).
FSU junior defensive back Xavier Rhodes (6-2, 217) had a cheering section of 22. He starred in youth football for the North Dade Bulldogs and then Miami Norland High School.
In the Orange Bowl, Freeman had 14 carries for 30 yards and caught three passes for 43 yards. Rhodes made four tackles (two solo, two assists) including one for a loss. He caused and recovered a fumble to stop a drive.
Miami’s Rodney Smith, a 6-6, 219-pound senior receiver, grabbed three passes for 41 yards (25 long). Smith is a graduate of Archbishop Carroll High School.
FSU finished the season 12-2.
Discover Orange Bowl
FLORIDA STATE UNIVERSITY
At Nova Southeastern University in Davie
Devonta Freeman - So - RB
Miami Central High School
Liberty City Optimist (Pop Warner)
• On whether or not they were surprised that they were playing NIU:
“I was kind of happy for their program that they actually got a chance to be in a BCS bowl game. It was kind of shocking because I thought we would be playing Louisville instead of them. But I definitely don’t take them for granted or look at them down in any type of way because they practice hard — just like we practice. I think they deserve to be here. They got here on their God-given ability. The media is going to say a lot of stuff, but they deserve it. I think
it is a great chance for them to show that they can play a great game against us.”