Jimbo Fisher and his coaching staff were able to fill a variety of needs for Florida State with the biggest gains coming on the offensive and defensive lines.
Florida State added five offensive linemen and five defensive linemen among its 25-man class. Three of those additions on the line — offensive linemen Landon Dickerson and Jauan Williams along with defensive linemen Brian Burns and Shevar Manuel — were last-minute commitments. All four are composite four-star prospects.
“When you got a chance to get those guys, you better jump all over them because high-quality offensive and defensive linemen are hard to find,” coach Jimbo Fisher said. “You take as many as you can get because of injuries and sometimes they just aren’t there.”
The Seminoles ended up with 13 from the state of Florida but recruited from 10 states. Six of those commitments came on Wednesday as they had one of the top classes in the country.
“I’m very happy with the group we’ve got,” Fisher said. “I think our coaches did an outstanding job building these relationships. A lot of these relationships were two-, three- and four-year relationships.”
Other things to know:
Top 25 class: Yes
Best in class: Levonta Taylor, CB, Virginia Beach, Virginia. He was the consensus top-ranked cornerback prospect in the country and committed early enough that he helped attract others to Florida State. He also could end up as a kick or punt returner. At 5-foot-10, 175 pounds, Tyler lacks in size but Fisher said he has a unique skill set, including great ball skills.
Best of the rest: Malik Henry, QB, Long Beach, California. Fisher usually has true freshmen run the scout team but the 6-foot-3, 184-pound Henry has enough athleticism and is an early enrollee, meaning he could challenge for the starting spot during spring practice.
Late addition: Shevar Manuel, DT, Bradenton, Florida. Manuel had originally committed to Florida but was wavering. Florida State remained in contact with Manuel and convinced him to flip at the last minute.
One that got away: Safety Jamel Cook was leaning toward Florida State but the Miami native ended up going to Southern California.
How they’ll fit in: With the signings, Florida State will have 18 offensive linemen on scholarship when preseason practices begin August. Fisher said that not only benefits the offensive line in terms of building a rotation but should help guys develop faster.
Republished with permission of the Associated Press.