Florida State Seminoles: Football

Underclassmen shine at IMG event 

June, 24, 2014
Jun 24
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BRADENTON, Fla. -- There were more than 30 prospects ranked in the ESPN 300 in attendance at the IMG National Championship at IMG Academy over the weekend. With so much talent on hand, it would be easy to overlook some of the underclassmen who stood out over the course of the two-day event. Here is a list of several younger players who did enough with their performances to stand out.

BRADENTON, Fla. — There were as many as 10 games going on at the same time at the IMG 7v7 National Championship over the weekend, and at times it was difficult to determine just who the top performers were. After all, there were more than 30 prospects in the ESPN 300 who participated. Here's a closer look at several seniors who stood out during the two-day event.

ATH Deon Cain
Committed to Clemson
ESPN 300 rank: 25
Cain helped lead his team, Unsigned Preps from Tampa, to the championship game with several acrobatic catches. The trio of Cain, Ray Ray McCloud III and junior-to-be wide receiver Nate Craig proved to be too much for teams to handle. Cain is solidly committed to Clemson and said he is not considering any other schools at this time.
S Derwin James
Committed to Florida State
ESPN 300 rank: 26
James is known for his physical play, but he showed he is more than just a big hitter. James broke up several passes and just always seemed to be around the ball. Like Cain, he is solid with his commitment, but in this case to the Seminoles.
CB Iman Marshall
Uncommitted
ESPN 300 rank: 20
Marshall played wide receiver and defensive back for his team, B2G, and excelled at both. The four-star prospect teamed with another ESPN 300 receiver, Trent Irwin, to form a dangerous pass-catching combo. Marshall is still narrowing his choices but knows he will take visits in the fall to Florida State and Notre Dame.
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South Florida is arguably the most fertile area in the country for recruiting, and college football coaches annually flock to the talent-rich area to try to land a small piece of a very large pie. The large area located south of Lake Okeechobee that includes the football hotbeds of Broward, Palm Beach and Dade counties has produced 45 ESPN 300 members in the last two recruiting cycles and almost half (22) signed with out-of-state schools.


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ACC class rankings analysis 

January, 15, 2014
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The final installment of the ESPN 300 brought significant changes to the top 40 of the ESPN class rankings. More than half of the schools in the rankings moved up or down at least one spot and two schools in the top 30 a little more than a week ago have now fallen completely out of the rankings.


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ESPN 300 DE Chad Thomas solid to Miami 

December, 28, 2013
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ORLANDO -- Miami defensive end commit Chad Thomas (Miami/Booker T. Washington) finished his high school career with a state and national championship. Now Thomas, No. 70 in the ESPN 300, turns his attention to recruiting where recently Thomas stated that he would likely take official visits to Alabama, Florida State and LSU.

After taking an official visit to Miami, Thomas has now backtracked and said he is unsure if he will visit those schools.


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Dalvin Cook shutting down recruitment 

December, 14, 2013
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ORLANDO, Fla. — Florida running back commit Dalvin Cook (Miami/Central) has remained open in his recruitment, but the No. 20 player in the ESPN 300 is ready to shut down the process.

Cook, who rushed for 223 yards and four touchdowns in Central’s 52-7 win in the FHSAA Class 6A state championship game on Saturday afternoon, said the messages he continues to hear from coaches are all starting to sound the same.


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ORLANDO, Fla. -- On Saturday, Jacksonville (Fla.) Trinity Christian won the FHSAA class 3A state championship game 34-7 over Clearwater Central Catholic.

Louisville wide receiver commit Isaiah Ford, had a big day with two touchdowns, but for the most part, Trinity was led by several talented junior prospects including two, Kevin Toliver II and Jeffery Holland, that are ranked in the top 10 of the ESPN Junior 300.


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Canes DE commit Thomas to take visits 

December, 8, 2013
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ORLANDO, Fla. -- ESPN 300 defensive end Chad Thomas (Miami/Booker T. Washington), a Miami verbal commitment since July, ended his high school career on Saturday night with a 40-21 victory over Jacksonville (Fla.) Bolles in the FHSAA class 4A state championship game.

The 6-foo-5, 240 pound defender said after the game he will likely take all five of his official visits before signing day on Feb. 5.

The No. 70 prospect in the country, who was visited by Alabama offensive line coach Mario Cristobal this past week, said the Crimson Tide will get one of his visits next month.


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The annual Florida-Florida State game is usually one of the top games in the country. This year, with Florida’s disappointing season, the game seems to have lost some luster. Florida State, however, is fighting for a chance to make it to the BCS National Championship game in January. The Gators would like nothing more to ruin their archrival’s season, especially in front of several top recruits. Here’s a closer look at which recruits will be watching this weekend.


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ESPN 300 WR Pack flips to Ole Miss

November, 23, 2013
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ESPN 300 wide receiver Markell Pack (Purvis, Miss./Purvis) flipped his commitment from Florida State to Ole Miss, according to the Jackson (Miss.) Clarion-Ledger. Pack confirmed his decision in a text message.

[+] EnlargeMarkell Pack
Derek Tyson/ESPNMarkell Pack is the No. 12 wide receiver in the ESPN 300.
The 6-foot-2, 180-pound athlete switched his pledge while on an official visit to Ole Miss. Pack is the No. 12 wide receiver in the country and the No. 92 player overall.

Pack also held offers from Clemson, Georgia, LSU and Mississippi State, among many others.

This comes as welcomed news for Ole Miss, as four-star offensive tackle Andy Bauer (St. Louis/De Smet Jesuit) recently flipped his commitment from Ole Miss to Missouri.

The Rebels' 2014 class is currently ranked 15th. They have 23 verbal commitments, including three who are ranked in the ESPN 300. Pack is the third wide receiver to commit to Ole Miss.

Florida State, meanwhile, still has 24 commitments, including nine ranked in the ESPN 300.

Ole Miss' Laquon Treadwell, the No. 1-ranked wide receiver in the country in the 2013 class, enters Saturday's game with 53 receptions for 477 yards and five touchdowns for the Rebels as a freshman.

The List: Most important SEC recruits 

August, 20, 2013
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Whether it's on-field production or friendships that recruits develop with other recruits, some prospects just have a desire to play with other top prospects. Here's a closer look at the most important committed player for each SEC school.

Alabama

ATH Bo Scarbrough (Bradenton, Fla./IMG Academy)
6-foot-2, 215 pounds
ESPN 300 rank: 20
The 20th-ranked player in the country has been committed to the Crimson Tide for nearly a year and is the highest-ranked Alabama commit. With his size and athleticism, Scarbrough could play either running back or linebacker. Alabama is targeting at least three players in the ESPN 300 top 10, including RB Leonard Fournette, OL Cameron Robinson and CB Marlon Humphrey, and Scarbrough is the type of star player with whom other big-name recruits want to play.


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GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- CeCe Jefferson isn't ready to commit yet, but the ESPN Junior 300 defensive end has at least named a leader.

Jefferson has put Florida top his list and said he plans on being on campus a lot during the season. But the Glen St. Mary (Fla.) Baker County standout says he's still going to take some trips elsewhere before making his decision.


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GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- It's never too early to talk Florida-Florida State, even if the game is still more than four months away.

[+] EnlargeJimbo Fisher, Will Muschamp
AP Photo/Phil SearsBoth Jimbo Fisher (right) and Will Muschamp have faced struggles against their rivals.
GatorNation's Michael DiRocco and NoleNation's David Hale discuss the Nov. 30 meeting at Florida Field. They posed three questions to the other:

Florida State questions

Q: What does QB Jameis Winston bring to the Seminoles' offense that EJ Manuel did not?

Hale: I think there are two distinctly opposite emotions in play here. On one side, Manuel always took a few more lumps from fans than were probably deserved. He finished his career 25-6, winner of four bowl games and the school's all-time record holder for completion percentage. That's a sturdy resume. On the other side, Winston is already getting so much hype that anything short of a Heisman and a national title during his tenure would probably be a disappointment. The truth on both guys is probably somewhere in between, which likely means Winston is going to have a hard time eclipsing Manuel's production this season.

Still, looking back at last year's Florida game, the bar is low -- and 12 games into the season, Winston should be clicking on all cylinders by then. Manuel was dreadful in that game (four turnovers) and I think it's his ugly mistakes in big moments that angered fans the most. Winston has a flair for the dramatic and a love of the spotlight, and that confidence might be his best weapon -- which is saying something, because the guy's got a ton of weapons.


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Rivalry Week: Flip-flopped recruits 

July, 18, 2013
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- It's rivalry week. And what in-state college football rivalry wouldn't have it's fair share of recruiting battles and spurns?

RecruitingNation takes a quick glance at some players at Florida and Florida State who turned down one school or the other during the recruiting process to sign with a rival.

WR Percy Harvin (2006): Harvin would go on to be one of the most electric college football players during his time in Gainesville. But, at one point, he was leaning to Florida State. Growing up, he liked the Seminoles mainly for their tradition and success. But coach Urban Meyer came in and did a great job recruiting him to the Gators and got a couple of national titles out of the deal.


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Rivalry Week: UF, FSU future stars, part 2 

July, 17, 2013
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We're taking a look ahead to the next three meetings and projecting which Gators and Seminoles could possibly leave their mark on the rivalry.

Today, we’ll highlight the UF offensive players and the FSU defensive players. We did the reverse on Tuesday.

2013

UF RB Matt Jones

The 6-foot-2, 228-pound Jones had a fantastic spring and is poised for a breakout season. He’s the perfect fit for the Gators’ power-run offense. He’s a punishing runner who quickly hits the hole and runs through contact. He’s likely going to average 20 carries per game behind a physical offensive line and should have no trouble topping Mike Gillislee’s total of 1,152 yards in 2012.

FSU LB Telvin Smith

Without question, Smith is the vocal leader of Florida State's defense, and for a senior who plays with so much emotion, there are few bigger stages than the Florida game. The 6-3, 215-pound Smith has been through the battles with the Gators, but he came up small and made just two tackles in last year's loss. He won't want to go out on a sour note, and he figures to be in the center of the action for the Seminoles this time around.


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