Have Florida State football recruiting questions? We’ve got answers. You can tweet @Sanjay Kirpalani or @NolesDieHards with your questions. Join us every Friday for the Florida State DieHards recruiting mailbag to discuss Seminoles recruiting. This week, we discuss …. where things stand with potential commitments, especially at defensive end.
First up this week, we have Marcus D. Kemp asking about the potential landing spot rankings-wise for Florida State’s class.
First, Marcus, let’s start with what we know.
Florida State’s 2018 class currently ranks No. 23 nationally in the 247Sports team rankings and has 12 current commitments — 7 of which signed in the early signing period. The remaining commits are scheduled to sign on Feb. 7.
Among teams currently ranked in the Top 25, Florida State has the fewest commits. USC joins Florida State as the only teams in the Top 25 with less than 15 commits. I point that out to explain the Seminoles have room to move up while a majority of the classes above them are close to full.
Of course, it depends on how the Seminoles close and the amount of players they end up with, but I think Florida State has around seven or eight spots left to give in this class.
Let’s start with a few guys that may be trending toward Florida State. Offensively, that would be 4-star Montgomery (Ala) Lanier quarterback James Foster, 4-star Seffner (Fla.) Armwood receiver Warren Thompson and 4-star Seattle Garfield athlete Tre’Shaun Harrison.
Using the 247Sports class calculator feature, adding just those five players would push FSU’s class to a score of 252.80 — which would slot the Seminoles at No. 12 just behind USC.
Now, factor in that the Seminoles could pull a few leans or targets at positions of need. Going off my figure of adding eight more players as the maximum capacity of this class, that leaves three spots.
I think the way it would likely break down is by adding a running back, one more receiver and another defensive end. If the Seminoles don’t sign a running back, that spot could go to another defensive lineman or a linebacker. For this exercise, we will go with the latter scenario.
With that criteria in mind, I’ll add 4-star Rockledge (Fla.) receiver Antoine Green, 4-star Kissimmee (Fla.) Gateway defensive tackle Dennis Briggs and 3-star Homerville (Ga.) Clinch County defensive end John Mincey.
That finish would put Florida State with a score of 261.35 — which would currently be good for the No. 10 spot and just a little more than 2 points behind Auburn for No. 9.
Keep in mind that other schools will add players so the numbers will fluctuate, but you get the point. Also, the players I added were used for the purposes of showing what the class could look like. Even if some of the names change, the point is to show the Seminoles have a chance to make up ground if they close strong.
With that in mind, I anticipate Florida State finishing somewhere in the top 15. For arguments sake, I’ll put the finish at No. 12 for now.
Next, Jam Gelsey asks about which recruits remaining on FSU’s board are flip candidates.
Jam, the first thing to note here is that with the early signing period coming into effect, the number of flips will be drastically lower than what we’ve seen in years past simply because the pool of prospects is that much smaller in the second signing window.
Grant is committed to Tennessee, but he’s taken visits to North Carolina and Virginia Tech recently. He earned an offer from the Seminoles last week and he’s scheduled to visit Tallahassee next weekend for his final official.
Meanwhile, Peters is committed to Kentucky, but he’s scheduled to be on campus at Florida State this weekend for an official visit.
Those two are the only committed prospects elsewhere on the radar at this time.
Finally, Jeff Burrow asks about the trio of targets from Seffner (Fla.) Armwood on the radar for the Seminoles and their chances of landing all of them.
Jeff, while the above exercise was simply to calculate where Florida State’s class could end up rankings-wise, I’ll go on record stating that I do believe the Seminoles will sign Thompson, Lamar and Miller as things stand right now.
Florida State fans have long discussed the “Armwood curse” since the Seminoles have failed to sign any touted prospects from that school in recent memory. However, that could change for a few reasons in this cycle.
For starters, Taggart is bringing a new approach to the Seminoles program and he’s going to be aggressive recruiting top high schools all over the state — Armwood included.
Plus, he held commitments from both Thompson and Lamar while he was at Oregon. Both of those players happen to play at positions of need for Florida State in this cycle so it only makes sense for the Seminoles to provide the best fit in this case. That doesn’t mean they are 100-percent locks, but it does offer a glimpse as to why the Seminoles are optimistic about their chances with those two players.
As also noted above, Miller was just offered earlier this week. The Seminoles came in late, but linebacker is another need that Taggart and his staff have to fill down the stretch. This could be another case where the fit seems to make sense for all parties involved.