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Why I think Coker stays at FSU and doesn't transfer if Winston gets starting job.




There are a lot of comments on twitter, especially by TN staff, that seem to think that Coker is going to be gone. I go by @FSUMogle on twitter. I'm not sold on this at all and this is why:

First, he is a redshirt sophomore and not a junior. If he was a junior I could see departing before this season. If he isn't going to graduate at the end of the fall or spring, it would be even more imperative as a junior. Sure, the NFL is the prize. But it isn't like this is his last shot.

Two, as much as I like the football nerdiness of this site, I think some of the folks here don't always understand what it is to be an athlete. Not only are elite athletes driven by goals, financial and emotional, but ego is a strong part of what makes the best the best. It doesn't have to be shown. An athlete can be quiet and humble but deep inside still feel like he is the best and he will prove he is the best even if the odds are against him. To transfer now is a tacit hit to that ego that someone is better than you and you can't beat them. If this is one year from now, I consider this to be less a factor. All athletes reassess where they are and what their goals are. However, your elite athlete is also usually pretty emotionally invested in the offseason and the team. To transfer right now, throws away the work of the offseason and severs that emotional bond.

Three, at the same time, it makes the assumption that what is done now is set in stone and never going to change. We are on the brink of the season. Playing the game is what most athletes live and work for all year long. We as fans may sometimes assume that the next great coming is going to come and be that way without any issues. I'm not saying this will happen but for all we know, Winston just doesn't cut it in the live game or, God forbid, goes down with a season ending injury. If Coker transfers now, as some here suggest he should, he could end up missing the chance to seize the opportunity that he has been working towards for the last few months.

Fourth, why rush into a bad situation? Where is he going to go right now? You have a short window to decide and get into school. He would likely have to settle for a team with far less championship potential then there at FSU. Don't sell winning short. Athletes want to win at everything they do and to the highest level. There is also the rush of the challenge. Challenge Winston day in an day out to make both Winston and him better could be a more fulfilling challenge than to play an extra year in a less competitive environment. If he waits until after the season, the board is going to be much more open on where he can go than if he tries to do it right now. Plus, I don't know his academic situation. If he can graduate this spring somehow, there is no reason to toss away a season. Even if he can't, I think he is still better off to wait until after the season.

I know they are a lot of folks here who think NFL $'s are the be all end all for athletes. I don't deny that there are athletes like that. However, having been both a nerd and an athlete (not exactly elite but I trained for years with athletes and coaches who went on to Olympic success) there is more than just that goal. I can't think of a single athlete that would voluntary throw away a season right as it begins unless there is absolutely zero chance of meeting their goals. I would have put Clint Trickett in this category if he had hung around. That is not the case for Jacob Coker. As a goal oriented and driven elite athlete, I would fully expect that he looks at this season as an opportunity to not only show what he can do but he will try his hardest to seize that starting position every day in practice and ever snap in a live game he gets. I think he will see he still has time and the opportunity this season to succeed at FSU. Come the end of this season, his opportunity may be elsewhere and he may decide to leave. I think he will decide that his best opportunity to get a payoff on everything he has done this year will be right here and right now.

If I am wrong, feel free to never let me forget it. I just think that Coker believes in himself and thinks he will still be able to do it here this year and won't leave before the season. As an athlete, that is what I would be thinking.

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