The Daily Nole

Florida State Football Recruiting: National Signing Day 2016 Scenarios athletics

Feb. 3 is approaching fast, and that means National Signing Day is almost upon us. Florida State has typically done very well the past few years in regards to locking up their classes before National Signing Day. There have not been too many surprises for the Seminoles –which is probably a good thing.

2016 is shaping up to be a bit different however.

As it stands, FSU has an almost guaranteed top 10 class. 60 percent of the class is blue-chips prospects and that is keeping in mind it took two specialists and a fullback. Unless a rash of de-commitments happens, it will be another stellar class from head coach Jimbo Fisher and staff.

But as January nears its end, the Seminoles are still in the competition for around eight more blue-chip recruits. We don’t claim to have insider information (and some of those “insiders” don’t either) but there are a few publicly well known recruitments which involve FSU. Here is a basic list so far (rankings are from 247Composite):

Keith Gavin (WR): 4-star
Trayvon Mullen (CB): 4-star
Landon Dickerson (OL): 4-star
Stephon Taylor (DT): 4-star
Dontavious Jackson (LB): 4-star
Brian Burns (DE): 4-star
Carlos Becker (CB): 4-star
Jauan Williams (OL): 4-star
Jonathan Kongbo (DE): 4-star
Terrell Hall (DE): 4-star

The last one on that list is a bit questionable, since many had assumed that he had shut FSU out. But a recent tweet might indicate otherwise. Or he might just be messing around. Either way, we’ll include him on the list.

Nobody should expect Florida State to get every single prospect mentioned above. But if Florida State wants to in any way have a “successful” close in recruiting, it’ll need to fulfill at least one of the scenarios laid out below. To be clear: We are not saying that every one of these scenarios needs to happen.

Sign one of the remaining defensive ends

Janarius Robinson’s announcement that he’d be staying with FSU and subsequent early enrollment was fairly shocking for many. Rumors had flown around that he was going to flip any second and that the coaching staff was beginning to grow wary of him. As with many rumors though, much of it turned out to be false.

Robinson’s commitment means that the Seminoles only really need one more defensive end. Grabbing one now would certainly help in the future and secure the position for at least the next recruiting cycle. Jonathan Kongbo, Terrell Hall, and Brian Burns are fantastic prospects that would pair very well with Robinson. Getting any one of them would be a win for the Seminoles.

Keep Keith Gavin away from Alabama

Ever since Gavin de-committed from FSU in late August, many had presumed he was a lock to Alabama. When Crimson Tide head coach Nick Saban sets his sights on a recruit, he rarely loses.

But most indications point to a coin flip decision with Gavin. Derek Tyson tweeted the other day that he would be shocked if Gavin doesn’t choose FSU, but that has largely been one of the first indications as to which school he will choose.

The Seminoles still don’t have a wide receiver committed for this cycle, though their current number on the roster is largely the explanation for that. But Gavin looks like he could really progress into a superstar at the next level. Nabbing him would be a very welcome development for the class.

Obtain a commitment from Dontavious Jackson

Florida State’s luck with linebackers has not been good the past couple of years. Whether it be injuries (Matthew Thomas, Tyrell Lyons) or attrition (Ukeme Eligwe, Kain Daub), the defense has had to rely on varying groups of players. Now they have two seniors in Terrance Smith and Reggie Northrup leaving.

The current committed linebackers are Josh Brown (4-star), Keion Joyner (4-star), and Emmet Rice (3-star). All three are listed as outside linebackers, though one will probably move to the inside. Regardless, Jackson is a true inside linebacker and by far the highest rated of the four just mentioned. Securing a commitment from him would help the future of the position immensely for Florida State.

Jackson recently had an in-home visit from some of the Florida State coaches. It seems that the staff has made him a priority and is trying its hardest to get him to Tallahassee.

Get one more offensive line commit

The Seminoles recognized their need here early on. So far they have guard Andrew Boselli (3-star), center Baveon Johnson (4-star), tackle Josh Ball (4-star), and tackle Mike Arnold (3-star) all committed. Getting another lineman here might seem like a little bit of a luxury, but you can never have too many talented linemen. Line coach Rick Trickett would almost certainly agree with that statement.

Both Dickerson or Williams would cement this as a truly great offensive line class.

Prevent a slew of flips on Signing Day

Even if Florida State was to miss on every single player listed above, the recruiting class would still be very solid and fulfill most needs. Assuming, of course, that no one currently committed decides to flip.

This hasn’t been a running theme or anything like that for Florida State, which could largely be attributed to Fisher and his staff’s awareness with certain recruits. This year’s signing day could continue such a trend if Florida State maintains what it currently has.

Get at least one of the recruits mentioned above

This one just needs to be mentioned in order to cover all the bases. Not obtaining a single commit from any of the players its in contention for would be a very bad look on FSU. There have already been murmurs about certain staff being dead weight on the recruiting trail. Striking out completely would almost definitely force some sort of shake-ups within the coaching staff.

As for a little speculation time: If one had to guess which of the above scenarios are more likely, it would probably be the last three. Florida State seems to be in good standing with both Dickerson and Williams, with many thinking the latter has already chose Florida State in his mind. Such a development would fulfill the last scenario as well.

The first three are a bit more difficult. The best chance would probably be Gavin coming back to FSU, considering how he has said his decision is very difficult. Burns, Hall, and Kongbo are more of reaches, and Jackson would be a surprising get.

It’s hard not to feel good if you’re Florida State however. You’re in contention for a group of blue-chip athletes and are almost guaranteed to have one of them commit. An already good class can become great, and some commitments would be the cherry on top for the Seminoles.

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