The Daily Nole

Superlatives for the 2018 FSU Recruiting Class

Clint Eiland/The Daily Nole

Everything was working against the Florida State Seminoles when it came to a strong recruiting finish for the 2018 class. Despite the difficulties and chaos, head coach Willie Taggart and his staff were able to reel in a top 15 class.

It all came together on Wednesday afternoon, when Florida State received letters of intent from five previously uncommitted players. By all accounts, it was a resounding success.

With the class sitting at a total of 21 players, it’s fun to look forward and predict how their careers might shake out. The class superlatives are a fun part of The Daily Nole recruiting coverage that we’re bringing back for a third year in a row. Check out who we pegged below:

Most Likely to Contribute Next Year

Warren Thompson, WR

The need for receivers has been known since the beginning of the 2017 season. With Auden Tate leaving and other attrition, the commits this year will be getting heavy rotation starting next year. Warren Thompson is the most complete receiver of the class and will be hard to keep off the field.

He’s similar to Auden Tate in some important ways. He’s physically imposing, measuring in at 6-foot-4 and 200 pounds, and his tape shows that he can utilize it effectively. Thompson is powerful when going up for the ball and has good speed for his size.

Consider how both James Blackman and Deondre Francois were reliant on Tate during his time in Tallahassee. They might find that Thompson can replicate his impact pretty well, and he could break out very soon if that connection is made early on.

Most Likely to Switch Positions

Anthony Grant, RB

Perhaps the most surprising of the Signing Day additions was 3-star athlete/running back Anthony Grant, who flipped from Tennessee at the last minute. His profiles all list him as a running back, but it’s been known for a while that Grant is a versatile player who could be put in the slot or even flipped to defense and played in the secondary.

Given how stacked the depth chart is for running back at Florida State, Grant will probably not be seeing many reps at the position. Where he could make an earlier impact is on the defense as a nickelback or jack-of-all-trades type of defensive back.

He’s got decent size and great speed for any of the positions except perhaps safety. Receiver is less of an issue now that Florida State signed five of them on Wednesday, but he will certainly get a chance there if he so desires.

Most Likely to Redshirt

Jalen Goss, OT

We mentioned in The Weekly Nole podcast that Jalen Goss reminds us of current FSU lineman Jauan Williams. Those who remember Williams as a recruit know that his athleticism and mobility were never in question. He simply was not filled out enough to come in and contribute immediately.

Goss possesses a lot of similarities with Williams, though Williams was probably further along in his development at this point in his career. Goss is another project that can find success in Taggart’s system, given how light he is on his feet and how fast he can reach the edge. He will still need that redshirt year to bulk up.

Best Chance of Winning the Heisman Trophy

Tre’Shaun Harrison, ATH

This superlative is less serious than the others and typically requires a lot of imagination. For reference, the past two winners have been Malik Henry (miss) and Cam Akers (possible).

Since Florida State did not sign a quarterback and only got one running back in a crowded depth chart, the only logical choices for the above superlative are receivers. Of those signed, Tre’Shaun Harrison figures to be the most versatile one.

He’s listed as an athlete that could make an impact on either offense or defense. If he lived up to the hype and was able to impress the coaching staff so much that they used him on defense as well, he could pull off a Desmond Howard type season and capture the prestigious award. That has quite a few assumptions however.

It’s best to just use this superlative as a fun hypothetical.

Most Underrated

Jordan Young, WR

Jordan Young’s ranking does not accurately reflect where he stands amongst fellow wide receiver recruits. According to 247Sports composite, he’s the 64th best receiver in the nation. But his combination of size, speed, and athleticism mean he’s closer to top 10 at the position.

The main reason for the lagging ranking is based on his lack of exposure. Young was virtually unknown until late January, when Tennessee discovered him and offered a scholarship. Despite the Volunteers’ best attempts to lock him down, Florida State convinced him to take an official visit on Feb. 2. That visit turned out to be the deciding factor in his recruitment.

Young could realistically get reps next year. He’s got truly special physical abilities, and with little proven talent at the position, Young has just as good a shot at cracking the rotation as others.

Biggest Unknown

Isaiah Bolden, CB

When it comes to under-the-radar signees, Bolden was a prime example for the Seminoles. He’s a good prospect, having been ranked in the top 300 overall and among the top 25 cornerbacks. But shortly after his Early Signing Day commitment, Bolden seemed to take a backseat to the other recruits in the class.

It’s not surprising when one considers the amount of talent that Florida State signed in the secondary. This would initially suggest that Bolden will struggle to make an early impact. However, Bolden has a very high ceiling regardless of the defensive backs accompanying him.

He’s an impressive athlete that could play any number of positions in the secondary, including safety. It’ll depend largely on how he develops in Tallahassee and how quickly he picks up on the coaching. For right now, it’s a bit of a mystery where Bolden and his natural talents will be utilized.

Clint Eiland is the lead writer for The Daily Nole. Be sure to follow Clint on Twitter @ClintEiland and “Like” The Daily Nole on Facebook.

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