Florida State Seminoles: Arizona State Sun Devils

#CampusConnection: Primetime Live

December, 7, 2013
12/07/13
9:46
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The college football regular season has come down to this. Plenty is on the line tonight as the Pac-12, ACC and Big Ten hold their title games and we’ll be here with you every step of the way.

So head on over to Campus Connection at 7:45 ET and follow the action along with several of our on-site reporters, including Ted Miller (Pac-12), Andrea Adelson (ACC), David Hale (ACC), Brian Bennett (Big Ten) and Adam Rittenberg (Big Ten). Post your comments and questions and we’ll include as many of them as possible.
The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's regular feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings. Today's offerings: The nation’s No. 1 player, Leonard Fournette, took an unofficial visit to LSU this past weekend and it looks like he liked what he saw; Saturday’s victories by ASU and Arizona could have a lasting impact on the Pac 12 recruiting race, and Alabama, Florida State and Louisville are trying to change the mind of one of Miami’s top commitments.


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Early Offer: Mixon all mixed up 

November, 7, 2013
11/07/13
5:30
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The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's regular feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings. Today's offerings: Just when it seemed clear on what four-star running back Joe Mixon was thinking, an official visit to Florida State has seemingly brought his decision back to square one; two of the top recruits in Ohio were hoping to make a decision in early January, but the success of their high school teams might change those plans; Missouri and Tennessee made nice climbs in the latest RecruitingNation class rankings.

Mixon mixed up

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Safety Mattrell McGraw (River Ridge, La./John Curtis Christian) has a plan.

Right now, it’s cutting his list down to eight. By the time football starts, it’ll be down to three.


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Chicago De La Salle running back Mikale Wilbon was careful not to name a leader, but he said one team sticks out as having the best résumé among his double-digit offers.

“Everybody is the same but as far as résumés and what schools have to offer, probably Vanderbilt is the best because it's ranked in the Top 25 in education, football and recruiting and that’s the only school,” Wilbon said of his 11 offers. “Vanderbilt is looking good right now, but they’re not leading, though.”

Arizona, Arizona State, Georgia Tech, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Maryland, Mississippi State and Purdue are Wilbon’s other offers.

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Wide receiver Devon Allen (Phoenix, Ariz./Brophy Prep) turned in an impressive performance in the Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl on Friday night, as the 6-foot, 187-pound standout led the West team with six receptions for 67 yards and a touchdown.

Now, Allen will turn his attention to finishing off the recruiting process. With official visits to Florida State, Oregon and UCLA under his belt, Allen will visit Stanford on Jan. 11, then decide between Arizona State and Arkansas for his fifth and final visit, which will take place on Jan. 18.

"After that, I'll figure out what I want to do," Allen said. "Probably a week after that visit, I'll commit and call it a day."

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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- With four officials already done, Priest Willis (Tempe, Ariz./Marcos De Niza) is trying to figure out his fifth and final trip in the next couple of weeks.

Three schools, all from the Pac-12 Conference, are in the mix.

"I have one more left, but I still have to decide which one I am going to take," he said today while at Under Armour All-America Game registration at Disney's Yacht Club Resort. "It is going to be either ASU, UCLA or Washington."

The ESPN 150 safety visited Florida State in November. He enjoyed his trip to see the Seminoles play and likes the idea of playing in the Sunshine State.

"It was a great visit. Marvin Bracy was my host," he said. "He was a great guy, fast. The experience is nice and the state of Florida is nice."

Nebraska, Virginia and LSU, respectively, also received officials.

“Nebraska, the Blackshirts,” he began. “Toby Wright, my trainer, he is from Nebraska so he tells me all about it. Virginia, my cousin plays there, Demeitre Brim goes there. That was a nice visit. It is a beautiful place.

"LSU, what else can I say. It was a great visit.”

Wearing an LSU shirt and socks, Willis might have silently indicated a favorite. But when asked he denied the notion, claiming it was just a matter of convenience.


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Rising Seniors Day 2 notebook 

December, 29, 2012
12/29/12
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One of the standouts for the Rising Seniors East offense on the first day of practice was tight end Milan Richard (Savannah, Ga./Calvary Day). The 6-3, 230-pound junior did not get a lot of passes thrown his way this season, but was still able to catch 22 passes for 341 yards and three touchdowns, and he enjoyed the added repetitions at Grady Stadium on Friday.

“I think I picked up the terminology well, but my route-running needs to sharpen up,” Richard said. “I am able to stretch the field as a big receiver, but I need to do better in a three-point stance because I am used to working out of a spread.”

[+] EnlargeMilan Richard
Radi Nabulsi/ESPN.com2014 tight end Milan Richard has Clemson and South Carolina on top, but several others, including home state Georgia, in the mix.
The ESPN Watch List selection has double-digit offers, but he said two schools are standing out in his mind.

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#BlueChipBattles: Nov. 16

November, 16, 2012
11/16/12
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Alvin Kamara, Derrick GreenESPN.comUncommitted 2013 running backs Alvin Kamara and Derrick Green.

ESPN 100 running backs Alvin Kamara and Derrick Green can score from anywhere on the field thanks to their breakaway speed, an attribute that makes them very attractive recruits to the Oregon Ducks. Oregon's pursuit of the duo headlines this week’s #BlueChipBattles. Insider

Click through for our list to rank the top 10 recruiting battlesInsider.

Priest Willis closes in on his goal 

November, 14, 2012
11/14/12
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Safety Priest Willis (Tempe, Ariz./Marcos De Niza) has done everything he can to keep away from the recruiting process thus far as he puts his full effort and concentration into helping his team reach the state championship game. He could be rewarded this Friday, as the Padres take on Tucson (Ariz.) Ironwood Ridge in the semifinals.

The Padres’ one loss this season came to the Nighthawks and Willis is fired up to make a statement this time around.

“We’re hungry,” he said. “Everybody knows that. They run hard and a lot of the same plays over and over, so we’re just going to come out and play hard because it’s win or go home and we’re not trying to go home.”

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New York is a basketball city, but in the small borough of Staten Island, football is on the rise. In the 2013 class, that is due in large part to a handful of talented prospects, including dynamic receiver Malique Belfort (Staten Island, N.Y./Tottenville).

Through eight games, Belfort has 45 catches for 830 yards and nine touchdowns while rarely playing all four quarters. Major BCS programs have taken notice, and he holds offers from 14 schools with Arizona State, Michigan State and Penn State among them.

A handful of programs continue to show interest, including Florida State, which recently offered his teammate Augustus Edwards, a running back committed to Syracuse.

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#BlueChipBattles: Nov. 2

November, 2, 2012
11/02/12
1:42
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RecruitingNation has summoned its writers from around the country to compile a list of the top 10 battles for elite football recruits Insider leading up to February's signing day. We'll update our rankings periodically to reflect a change in a player's status (i.e., new offers, trimmed-down list or a positive/negative official visit).

Our writers have debated the list for weeks, but we value your input as well. Voice your opinion on Twitter (@RecruitingESPN) using#BlueChipBattles or vote for which player should hold the No. 1 spot on Facebook.

OL Mason Cole planning his visits 

September, 6, 2012
9/06/12
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Though he himself doesn't garner all the headlines, Mason Cole (Tarpon Springs, Fla./East Lake) anchors an offensive line that serves as a catalyst for a high-flying offense.

Teammates like quarterback Pete DiNovo and wide receiver Artavis Scott continue to put up prolific numbers and light up the scoreboard. But as the nature of the position suggests, Cole's efforts aren't necessarily categorized.

He's not looking for that, though. The wins and the good performances are what he's happy about.

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Eric Tetlow is waiting to see if an offseason of hard work and improvement can give him one of the opportunities he most covets.

The offensive tackle from Richmond (Va.) Godwin has two schools in mind that he'd like to receive scholarship offers from before he makes his college decision.

“I really like Florida State, the whole tradition down there with (former) Coach [Bobby] Bowden and the stadium, the history of Florida State and what Coach [Jimbo] Fisher is doing with the program,” the 6-foot-6, 300-pound prospect said. “[Offensive line] Coach [Rick] Trickett is a legend himself, just what he does with the offensive line is really cool. I'd love it there. Vanderbilt, I'd love to. I'm kind of waiting on those two to narrow down my list and take my visits.”

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ESPN college football analyst Kirk Herbstreit became the latest pundit to jump on the Florida State bandwagon Tuesday, when he picked the Seminoles to win the national championship. It's a prediction shared by writer Phil Steele, who chose FSU to win it all earlier this summer.

That's a bit more enthusiasm than the voting populace has displayed, but Florida State nevertheless will open the season ranked seventh in both the AP and Coaches' polls, and coach Jimbo Fisher isn't doing anything to temper the enthusiasm.

"I love being up there," Fisher said. "The higher up you start, the less you have to climb."

But while Fisher's point might have merit, FSU's problems during the past decade have had little to do with where the Seminoles have started the season and much more to do with where they've ended it.

FSU hasn't finished the year ranked in the AP top 10 since the end of the 2000 season, twice finishing unranked. The ugly finishes have never seemed to dampen hope among AP voters, who have continued to assume things would turn around virtually every summer.

Since 2000, Florida State's average preseason ranking is 12th, but it's only finished a season that high once.

In just three of the past 11 seasons has FSU wrapped up the year ranked higher than where it began, including 2008 when the Seminoles opened the season unranked but finished 21st.

(Read full post)

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