Wednesday, February 6, 2013
NoleNation signing day recap
Welcome to NoleNation's live coverage of national signing day for the Florida State Seminoles. We'll be with you throughout the day providing up-to-the-minute updates on a class that has a lot of question marks.
Florida State’s signing day is complete. Check out the official Class of 2013 here.
3:10 p.m. ET:E.J. Levenberry is officially signed, completing FSU's recruiting class. "I thought we really met some needs, and we got some big-time recruits," Jimbo Fisher said. Fisher commends the new coaching staff for its ability to bring together a strong class at the last minute.
2:59 p.m. ET: Reports say Levenberry is signed, though the school has yet to make it official. That would finalize FSU's class at 22 players, including Klepal, who will have an injury disqualification due to concussions. There were no signing day defections, which should constitute a win for FSU's new coaching staff. Fisher is set to meet with the media shortly after 3 p.m.
2:35 p.m. ET: Florida State has finalized things with two more top commitments -- Green and Denson, both 4-star prospects. That leaves LB E.J. Levenberry as the lone hold out for the Noles. Levenberry wavered on his commitment over the past few weeks, but said Tuesday night he planned to stick with FSU.
1:48 p.m. ET: Jimbo Fisher landed one last jewell for his 2013 recruiting class with defensive tackle Keith Bryant (Atlantic Community/Delray Beach, Fla.) announcing he was heading to Florida State. Bryant is 6-2 and pushing 300 pounds and should be a nice fit at a position where Florida State has had a ton of success developing talent the past few years. It's also another head-to-head win for Fisher over in-state rival Miami, where Bryant had been committed previously. Of FSU's most likely uncommitted targets, Bryant was the final hold out, which means -- barring any last-minute changes -- the Seminoles class should finish with 22 signees.
12:50 p.m. ET: Florida State has received the LOI from John Franklin (South Plantation/Plantation, Fla.), which means there are just three commits who still haven't had paperwork officially finalized. LOIs from Ryan Green and Ira Denson appear imminent.
12:38 p.m. ET: Florida State continues to round out its class of wide receivers with an official LOI from Jesus Wilson (Christopher Columbus/Miami). Wilson has been committed since June, but it's still reassuring for FSU to have held on to so many South Florida-area recruits following the departure of James Coley, its top recruiter in the area, for Miami. Wilson is the fourth (and probably final) receiver FSU will sign.
11:41 a.m. ET: It certainly doesn't make up for missing out on Stacy Coley, but Florida State has made things official with wide receiver Nate Andrews. The three-star prospect from Fairhope, Ala. has sent in his LOI. ESPN ranks him as the No. 74 overall receiver in the nation.
11:39 a.m. ET: It comes as no surprise at this point, but former FSU commit Davin Bellamy officially committed to Georgia. Bellamy was the subject of some controversy during the past week after tweeting a picture of a recruiting visit to Oregon that included drug paraphernalia. There was no indication the item belonged to Bellamy, however, and he said he was only in the apartment where the photo was taken for a few moments.
11:29 a.m. ET:Jalen Ramsey (Brentwood, Tenn) offered some closure to the wild speculation on his college destination Tuesday when he suggested he was headed to Florida State. He made it official on Wednesday, with his signed LOI coming in moments after his announcement. Ramsey is one of the top corners in the country, and he appeared headed to USC for a while. At 6-0, he's tall, but his leaping ability and fundamentals in coverage should make him an exceptional defender in the passing game.
11:18 a.m. ET: Tough climax to the Stacy Coley announcement for Florida State. The highly regarded wide receiver looked like a potentially big get for FSU, but it was clear coaches were dubious as the announcement neared. Coley was shown on TV with tears in his eyes, which elicited a "that makes me nervous" from Jimbo Fisher. He was right to be concerned, as Coley selected Miami. FSU has four other commits at receiver, but Coley was considered at or near the top of the class at the position.
10:57 a.m. ET: Bryant announced his commitment to Florida State earlier today, and he's now made it official with his letter of intent. Bryant is rated as the No. 77 defensive end in the nation, and he joins Hollin, a juco transfer, as FSU's latest additions at end.
10:35 a.m. ET: Fisher has the letter of intent from his biggest catch of this year's class, Thomas. The five-star linebacker is Florida State's 12th official signee for the Class of 2013 so far and the fourth linebacker, joining Hoskins, Stevenson and Lyons.
10:24 a.m. ET: At long last, Florida State has landed an offensive tackle. Three-star prospect Wilson Bell (M.T. Blount/Prichard, Ala.) has submitted his letter of intent. He doesn't match Kirkland or Golson in terms of recruiting hype, but at 6-4, 290, he has the frame for line coach Rick Trickett to work with, and his high school pedigree suggests he can handle himself in both the running game and in pass protection.
9:48 a.m. ET: Florida State has landed an LOI from juco defensive end Desmond Hollin. Originally from Miami, Hollin has the size and strength to step in and get some immediate snaps at FSU, which will be working with a relatively young group of ends in 2013. Jimbo Fisher has had immense success with juco transfers over the years, including DE Cornellius Carradine and RT Menelik Watson most recently.
9:30 a.m. ET: Florida State gets a commitment from three-star defensive end Davarez Bryant (New Smyrna Beach, Fla.). The 6-foot-4, 245-pound D-end didn't play football until his senior season, making him a bit of a work in progress. Of course, FSU enjoyed plenty of success from another three-star defensive end with limited experience in Bjoern Werner.
9:27 a.m. ET: Florida State's best news of the day was followed quickly by a bit of bad news, as offensive line target Denver Kirkland (Booker T. Washington/Miami, Fla.) announced he was headed to Arkansas. Kirkland had been a late priority for Florida State after the decommitment of Golson, another tackle who is headed to Ole Miss. Currently, FSU's only commitment at offensive tackle is Richy Klepal (Plant/Tampa).
9:21 a.m. ET: More on Thomas: Jimbo Fisher has reeled in by far the biggest fish left for Florida State, with Thomas announcing he's headed to Tallahassee. It's a huge get for Fisher, as Thomas becomes FSU's highest-rated addition for the 2013 class and he fills a huge need at a position of limited depth on the current roster. Thomas had narrowed his choices to FSU, Miami (Fla.), Alabama and USC. Fisher was able to get the job done with Thomas despite the departure of FSU's top South Florida recruiter, James Coley, last month for a job with the Hurricanes.
9:16 a.m. ET: Five-star Under Armour All-American OLB Matthew Thomas (No. 6 in ESPN 300; Miami/Booker T. Washington) picks Florida State.
9:15 a.m. ET: While Golson is headed to Ole Miss, FSU received an official LOI from another offensive lineman. Three-star center Ryan Hoefeld (Brother Martin/New Orleans) has made things official. He's been a firm commitment since July.
9:14 a.m. ET: It will be Ole Miss for former Florida State commit Austin Golson (Prattville, Ala.). The four-star offensive line prospect had been on board at FSU until last week, when he announced he was looking elsewhere. He was likely the biggest commitment casualty of the FSU coaching shakeup, having been recruited by departed QB coach Dameyune Craig. The Seminoles have three other commitments on the line, but Ira Denson projects to be as much of an impact player as Golson.
9:06 a.m. ET: As Florida State preps for what figures to be a very big announcement from OLB Matthew Thomas, the Seminoles have made it official with another OLB. Four-star linebacker Ro'Derrick Hoskins (Maynard Evans/Orlando) has sent in his letter of intent, making him the third linebacker to officially sign for 2013. The others are Freddie Stevenson, who is already enrolled, and Tyrell Lyons, who submitted his LOI earlier this morning.
8:36 a.m. ET: It's official for tight end Jeremy Kerr (St. Petersburg, Fla.). The 6-foot-5, 236-pound Kerr was recruited by Miami (Fla.), too, and was one of FSU's later additions to the class. He's got the size and strength combination to be a decent blocker immediately, though he's joining what figures to be an increasingly deep group at tight end for 2013.
8:22 a.m. ET: The letters are rolling in a bit faster for Florida State now. Marquez White (Northview/Dothan, Ala.) makes his decision official. The four-star corner adds to what is shaping up to be a solid class of defensive backs for new DC Jeremy Pruitt.
8:14 a.m. ET: Florida State has its second letter of intent today, with Tyrell Lyons (First Coast/Jacksonville, Fla.) making things official. Lyons is a four-star outside linebacker -- a position where FSU desperately needed to add some depth with this signing class. He's one of Florida State's oldest commits, dating back to last February.
8:11 a.m. ET: Been a somewhat quiet start at FSU, as expected. Things have been a bit more interesting at a few other in-state schools, where former Seminoles targets appear to have landed. Three-star running back Augustus Edwards (Tottenville/Staten Island, N.Y.) landed at Miami after flirting with FSU following a decommitment from Syracuse, while the drama surrounding another former FSU target, defensive end Tashawn Bower, appears headed to Florida. Bower's letter isn't yet official, according to his Twitter feed, however, with the defensive end saying, "I never signed anywhere."
7:54 a.m. ET: Florida State's signing day opened with a letter of intent from Levonte Whitfield (Jones High/Orlando), who has been a Seminoles commit since August. The speedster was recruited by one of FSU's few holdovers on the coaching staff, line coach Rick Trickett, and figures to have the skill set to work at either receiver or corner.