FSU's 2015 recruiting class is off to a great start with the commitment of Terance Mann, a consensus top 100 shooting guard with a great pedigree. Now the coaches turn their sights on 5* SF Dwayne Bacon, and 3* C Jean Marc Christ Koumadje, who both visit this weekend.
Since many official visits for basketball players take place during football season, I typically like for recruits to be in Tallahassee for a big game rather than for a game versus a pushover like The Citadel or Florida. But this is a night game, and FSU's first at home since beating Auburn for the National Title, so I expect the crowd to be sizable and in a good mood, even though the game won't be closely contested.
Two years ago FSU focused many of their resources on the recruitment of Andrew Wiggins, only to miss out in a race that most national pundits predicted would end well for the Noles. Last year FSU brought on assistant coach CY Young and his already developed relationship with top Georgia power forward Jakeenan Gant. But Gant committed to Missouri out of the blue, and once again FSU was left out. The Seminoles would later land two of the top JUCO players in the nation, only to see one de-commit and one get booted before he ever made it to campus.
That may have been the low point of recruiting.
Since then, the pendulum seems to be swinging back in the Noles favor. First, 4* power forward Phil Cofer was released from his LOI to Tennessee due to a coaching change, and he ended up topping off last year's class. Then FSU started this year with the addition of Mann.
How far that pendulum swings in FSU's favor could be determined by this weekend. Dwayne Bacon shot up the charts this summer with his dominant play, and many consider him to be among the most offensively gifted players in the nation. He also plays a position (SF) in which FSU has zero players on the roster. As he studies the depth charts of his finalists - he's visited USC, and plans to visit Tennessee and Georgetown - it's hard to imagine him finding a situation better set up for him to be an instant contributor. He'd be joining a senior laden team, and - if Aaron Thomas turns pro - a team without many proven scorers. In other words, as a freshman he could be the key piece on what could be an exceptionally good team.
Georgetown, where his girlfriend is a freshman basketball player, is considered to be Florida State's main competition.
7-4 center Jean Marc Christ Koumadje (from the African nation of Chad) is a very different type of player. Where Bacon is polished and ready, Koumadje is just learning the game. But he's athletic and has good coordination for someone his size, so his ceiling is unlimited. FSU has a good track record with international big men, and coach Stan Jones ability to develop big men will be important in this recruitment. He's expected to choose between UConn, UCLA, and FSU.
A late addition to the weekend is Malik Beasley, a consensus top 50 guard out of Alpharetta, Georgia. Beasley has been on several unofficial visits to Georgia, which is considered the favorite, but don't be surprised if the needle swings towards FSU.
Beasley is a 6-4 shooting guard who can score at all three levels. With his offensive gifts he needs to work on getting stronger, increasing his motor and ball handling skills, and developing a more aggressive attack.