Wednesday, June 5, 2013
Florida State has London calling
By Corey Dowlar
Madre London (Fort Lauderdale, Fla./St. Thomas Aquinas), a running back at a school that has been very good to the Seminoles over the last couple of years, is on the Florida State recruiting radar.
New defensive ends coach Sal Sunseri evaluated London's ability in person and came away impressed. Once the 6-foot-2, 202-pound London picked up the phone and called the staff, he learned just how impressed they were.
"They came down and it seemed like they really wanted me," London said. "They came down in the spring and saw me do my thing on the football field. I called them afterward and I called them and Coach Sunseri said that I have an offer from them. I talked to Jimbo Fisher, the head coach."
London has a healthy amount of offers. Teams like Arkansas State, Boston College, Cincinnati, FIU, Houston, Illinois, Kansas, Memphis, Michigan State, Nebraska, North Carolina, Purdue, Rutgers, South Carolina, Tulane and Wisconsin have already jumped in.
But there was something about those schools, and where they're located, that doesn't match up with Florida State.
"I was just happy when I got the offer," he said. "It was my first in-state offer. They definitely moved up my charts, probably the top two, top one, top whatever."
London is familiar with the Seminoles. He attended one of their biggest home games in the last several years when they hosted Clemson in what turned out to be the game that decided the ACC Atlantic Division in 2012.
The atmosphere made an impression, and the fact that Florida State won and ran the ball helped them, too.
"I visited Florida State last fall when they played Clemson," he said. "I fell in love with the fans. They were incredible. They run the ball and the thing I like about them, they use all their running backs. They don't just key in on one running back. I think it would be a good fit for me."
Sunseri, the Seminoles' assigned recruiter to London's school, told him that he has high expectations. Sunseri even went to lengths saying that London could even be the featured back in their offense.
"He's a new guy," London said. "He is my recruiter down here at St. Thomas. I've talked to the rest of the coaches, too.
"He was basically telling me that I could be the centerpiece of the team. I could be that player that carries them to the BCS championship game. He likes the way I run the ball. I run hard and physical. Even though I am a big back, I can catch the ball out of the backfield. I have quick vision and all that."
Because of his size, London should be durable as well. He can take some punishment in between the tackles and dish out a fair amount, too.
That balance, depending on the team he's facing or the situation in a game, is something he believes gives him an edge.
"I can run people over when I feel like they are small; I have an advantage there," he said. I can use my body. I can outrun people like a smaller guy. I try to use my size to my advantage throughout the course of the game."
Besides Florida State, several teams known for power running games are in the picture. And given his stature, that's not a surprise.
"Michigan State, Wisconsin, Illinois, Boston College and Nebraska," London said.
This summer, Florida State would love to have London at camp and working with running backs coach Jay Graham in person. It looks like they'll get their wish.
"I think so," he said. "I think I am [attending a camp]. I have been talking to the coaches and they want me to come."