- Corey Dowlar, RecruitingNation
Florida State's victory over arch-rival Miami was witnessed by some high-caliber recruits two weeks ago. Arguably, the Booker T. Washington group consisting of Matthew Thomas, Denver Kirkland, Treon Harris and Nigel Patten were the most important.
Patten, an offered junior defensive back, relished seeing two of his favorite teams go head to head in a physical bout.
"I thought it was great," he said. "It was a hard-fought game. Miami manned up to the competition. Florida State, with all the good recruiting classes, I feel like they were able to do what they did. It probably should have been a blowout."
Patten wasn't about to play favorites, though. Whether it was the chop, or throwing up the "U," he tried to distribute his cheering evenly.
"I was rooting for both of them," Patten said. "Anytime one of them scored, I would throw up their sign."
That may have not been the case for the other three Tornadoes. Growing up in the shadows of UM, it was the orange and green that had their attention.
"I know Treon Harris, Matthew Thomas and Denver Kirkland were all going for Miami," Patten said. "We all grew up wanting Miami to win in that type of rivalry game."
The 33-20 win may have had some impact on other prospects that were there, but for Patten, it really wasn't a huge factor. He is more concerned with matters off the field.
"It doesn't matter," he said. "It comes down to who recruits you the hardest and things like that."
About a month ago, Patten seriously considered committing to Florida State. He even went as far to say so on social media.
But after having a chance to think things over, the 2014 corner figured it would be better to let things play out a little longer.
"I thought it was Florida State, but now I don't really know," Patten said. "I like both teams. Miami played their freshmen defensive backs. Florida State starts their young defensive backs as freshmen. They keep them going from there."
6dJeremy Crabtree and Brandon Chatmon