Back to the Future: How FSU overcame coaching changes and divisive cliques to build a dynasty

If you’re a Seminole fan who remembers rotary dial phones and the Edsel, you probably also recall Mike Shumann. You know, that Go-To receiver from Leon High who played for three different FSU coaches in the 1970s? Who reminded us of Fred Biletnikoff? And later had an NFL career with the 49ers, Bucs and Cardinals?

Yeah, that guy. But did you know Mike was such a dependable pass catcher, he’s still in the FSU record books? Nearly half a century since suiting up for the Noles, his 2,306 career yards is still ninth-best in program history.

For younger fans who don’t know the name, Mike was a possession receiver. Third-and-8? Chances are the ball was coming to Shumann. Not the fleetest of foot, but like Biletnikoff he had the moves to get open. And, most important, you could count on him to catch whatever came his way.

So today we toss it to Mike for a history lesson from the Garnet & Great podcast. 

As disappointing as FSU’s 2020 season was, Mike can tell you about a worse one. He suffered through the grim, forgettable, winless campaign of 1973 (yet still made 21 catches as a true freshman). Yet Mike hung in there, through two coaches and few wins, until a game changer named Bobby Bowden took the helm. Spoiler alert: Things got better.

In the interview, Shumann talks about the similarities between then and now, including coaching changes and disunity among players — plus, what he thinks about Mike Norvell and the challenge of recreating Bowden’s amazing transformation in the 70s.

Listen here