Florida State fought with many suitors for the commitment of Janarius Robinson and, in the end, the Seminoles emerged as Robinson's school of choice, earning an well-built defender with significant upside.
Robinson, a 6'4.75, 253 pound weak-side defensive end out of Panama City (FL) Bay High School, was rated a four-star recruit by each of the major recruiting services (247Sports, Rivals, ESPN, Scout) and, unsurprisingly, is also a four-star recruit according to 247Sports' composite rankings. Per the composite, Robinson is the No. 7 weak-side defensive end in the country, the No. 14 player in the state of Florida, and the No. 85 overall player in the 2016 class.
Over his three seasons as a member of Bay High School's varsity squad, Robinson totaled 98 tackles (69 solo), 8 sacks, 4 forced fumbles, a pair of blocked field goals, and a fumble recovery. However, more impressive than his high school stats is his athleticism; Robinson has been clocked at a 4.62 40-yard dash, a respectable time made even more exceptional when remembering his nearly 6'5, 250 pound frame.
During his recruitment, Robinson had a long and, at times, trying relationship with Florida State. He committed to the Seminoles way back in September of 2014, his junior year. However, that didn't stop him from taking a total of 10 trips, either visits, camp workouts, or junior days, to other schools while also making multiple trips to Tallahassee including an official visit to the NC State game. In the end, Robinson held firm to his original commitment to Florida State, releasing a statement December 9th of last year reaffirming his pledge to FSU and announcing that he would be an early enrollee. Robinson chose the Seminoles over 21 other offers including Alabama, Clemson, LSU, USC, Notre Dame, Miami, Florida, Georgia, UNC, and Louisville.
Entering Florida State, Robinson will be competing for playing time with four returning defensive ends who saw playing time in all 13 games last season. Included in those returning players are DeMarcus Walker, who had 10.5 sacks a season ago, Josh Sweat, who made a significant impact in his freshman season, as well as Jacob Pugh and Rick Leonard, who have each shown flashes of great play in their careers.
It will be important for Robinson to keep his eyes on the prize, because he is far from a finished product. Robinson has great athleticism, length and frame, but he is incredibly raw and played receiver for the first part of his high school career. Unless he makes major strides during his early spring on campus, he does not project as an early-impact player, though his ceiling is as high as just about any defensive end in the 2016 class. In time, Robinson has the potential to be an elite player capable of adding 25-30 pounds and controlling the run game with his length while still adding pass rush moves.
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