With a #1 recruiting class in the books, it is time to take a look now at the 2012 class (which is likely 1/3+ full already)! More specifically, I'm going to start a discussion about 2012 QB recruiting, that I find to be interesting.
EJ Manuel will have a year remaining after the 2011 season. Clint Trickett will have 3 years and assuming Coker redshirts, he will have four. And while you will never hear me talk badly of any of the quarterbacks on our roster (especially when you know how high I am on Coker), I think it is fair to say that Trickett and Coker lack the "elite QB" tag that came along with Manuel. I don’t think it is necessary to bring in a QB recruit tagged as "elite" considering Jimbo took 3* Christian Ponder and turned him into the most NFL ready QB as shown by his MVP performance in the senior bowl. However, competition breeds success and we should never assume anything, so it will obviously be necessary to bring in a QB in the 2012 recruiting class.
Here are some things we know about QB recruiting for the 2012 cycle:
A. There are so many blue chip QB recruits nationally, with SEVERAL realistic such recruits being in Florida State’s recruiting backyard for 2012, that it would be shocking to expect us not to secure the commitment of one of them. Some of these guys include
- Bennie Coney (Plant City, FL)
- Jameis Winston (Hueytown, AL)
- Grayson Lambert (Jesup, GA)
- Tyler Cameron (Jupiter, FL)
2. We have a ridiculously fantastic pitch to recruits right now, including but not limited to
- We are clearly on the uprise after having our first 10 win season in 7 years and having just put together the best recruiting class in the country in the year prior (and assumedly a top-5 class for 2012). Also, we just defeated our instate rivals by a ludicrous margin and we have the longest tenured staff of all the major schools in-state.
- The 2012 QB will have a chance to compete for a starting job in their second year on campus (following Manuel’s departure). Like I said, I am THRILLED to have Coker and I have the opinion that he will be our next Ponder, if not better, but that is just a projection and the best man should always play.
- Jimbo Fisher has proven to be one of the top-QB developers and the top preparers for the NFL of any coach in the country. Jimbo obviously taught Ponder well enough to help him win MVP of the senior bowl, which is a HUGE deal.
D. We may very well have a dilemma on our hands this year in our QB recruiting. It is ALWAYS a goal to get the very best recruits, and Jameis Winston could very well be the top QB in the nation in terms of recruit rankings next year. If you haven’t already, do yourself the favor of watching his highlight film (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ljB0FmF4aA). While Winston is an Alabama native, and those players usually go to Alabama (and if not, Auburn), and Alabama just so happens to be in the hunt for a premier QB, Winston just so happens to have the Seminoles in his top-2 list of schools. A quick google search of ‘Jameis Winston Florida State’ and the third result down will yield a quote from 247Sports saying "Bessemer (Ala.) Hueytown 2012 dual-threat quarterback Jameis Winston says that Florida State and Alabama currently lead for his services." I believe this is supposed to be an insider story, but it comes up when you Google it and I don’t have a 247 account.
So what could be the problem? Read this:
The uber-talented Winston is in fact SO uber talented that he might be a first-round MLB pick. This bodes an issue for us for the following reason… YOU NEVER TURN DOWN A RECRUIT THIS TALENTED WITH YOU IN HIS TOP-2 IF HE FITS WHAT YOU WANT TO DO. Certainly a dual-threat pass first QB like Winston who has an offer (according to Rivals), the interest and the skills to be a complete game-changer fits the mold of what we want to do. But the dilemma runs in the fact that we have such limited scholarships for next year. Trust me, do NOT read that last sentence and say that I am implying that we wouldn’t have room for Winston or any QB. Rather, I’m asking whether we’ll have room for TWO QB’s.
- What do we do if Winston commits to us early? Do we stop recruiting other QB’s altogether with the risk that Winston will play baseball and we will have missed out on a QB in a GREAT QB year?
- Do we hold off on other QB commitments in pursuing Winston and again miss out on a QB altogether?
- Do we take another QB’s commitment early with the risk of scaring off Winston if he just so happened to decide to play football (and would’ve wanted to do so at Florida State) but now didn’t want to as the result of us already having taken a good QB recruit?
- Do we take Winston's commitment AND the commitment of another target QB if they want in with the risk of overloading QB scholly numbers?
From everything I’ve seen/read, this kid (Winston) is certainly the real deal and might truly be a Joe Mauer type of player. He might be the best QB in the country next year. We are in good shape to land a good QB next year with all of the good prospects out there, but what do y’all think we should do about this "dilemma"?
Also, if there are any QB prospects that we are involved for next year that I didn’t mention/forgot/don’t know please post about them!