Florida State's July session of the Jimbo Fisher camp begins Tuesday and runs through Thursday. About half of Florida State's starters participated in Jimbo's camp at some point. Each year, quite a few new names emerge and the event helps the coaches form their recruiting board, and it also helps us media in that regard.
Alabama, Florida and some other big schools are also hosting camps, which means many prospects are using the opportunity to hit up several schools and will be staying just a day or two. But it also makes it easy to convince kids to come up.
Camp is a major part of Florida State's recruiting engine because the staff gets to take accurate height and weight measurements and work out prospects in person. Is the kid as fast as his tape looks? How big are his hips and shoulders? Can he add the weight the school needs him to add?
As we saw with the last camp, FSU is likely to be very selective and stingy with some offers to rising seniors. Having a "road" game at Miami in front of many South Florida recruits and the uncertainty swirling in Gainesville may yield opportunities for FSU to be in a position to grab some players it otherwise would not have landed. It needs to have spots open later in the year and not be in a position which forces it to tell commits to look elsewhere. Offers to underclassmen are different and usually plentiful.
We have checked on all players within the last 10 days or so. Players show up between 11 and 1ish and the camp starts shortly after 3:30.
Florida State four-star QB commit Bailey Hockman will be in attendance and all eyes will be on the Georgia QB as Jimbo Fisher’s sessions with his committed quarterbacks are always intense.
2019 QB Grant Gunnell of Houston (Texas) St. Pius X will also be in attendance according to a source. I’ve never met Gunnell and will be interested to see him in person.
FSU 2018 RB commitments Charles Strong and James Cook will both be in attendance as FSU has one of the finest pair of commitments in the nation at the position.
Note: A Mississippi scout told me 5-star 2017 Magnolia State back Cam Akers is coming to FSU’s camp, but Akers did not mention this at The Opening, and I am unsure this will happen since he already visited for the June session. FSU would like to get him back again.
Nico Collins of Pinson (Ala.) Clay-Chalkville told me he is expected to come down. With Alabama involved with so many receivers, Michigan might be the top contender for the four-star’s signature, not Alabama.
2018 Pensacola Pine Forest star Jacob Copeland will hit up Florida State and Florida this week. Kevin Austin, of North Broward Prep will be camping for an offer. He’s a prospect who probably should get more love. Dunbar High four-star Shocky Jacques-Louis also hopes to attend after impressing in the June session, but that’s up in the air for the 2018 star. He is a huge FSU fan.
Pensacola Washington five-star Alex Leatherwood, an Alabama commitment will be making the trip over after also hitting up Miami’s camp during the weekend.
Four-star end Jarez Parks, of Sebastian (Fla.) River is a player most media feels is bound for the Gators, but some other schools including FSU believe they have a shot. This is an important visit. Four-star pass rusher K’Lavon Chaisson of Houston (Texas) North Shore is also coming. I spoke with him at The Opening and FSU is recruiting him hard, as are Oklahoma, LSU and a handful of other schools. Chaisson is a Baylor legacy, but elite prospects aren’t really considering Baylor at the moment.
2018 DT Rick Sandidge is coming down with his teammate Hamsah Nasirildeen (see below).
I’m aware the Oxbridge Academy in Palm Beach is attending with a large group, but I do not know if four-star defensive end Jonathan Garvin is with the bunch as it was reported in early July that he was transferring back to Lake Worth.
FSU needs to have a good year in linebacker recruiting and several stars are due in, including Walter Grant of Cairo (Ga.) and Leonard Warner, of Snellville (Ga.) Brookwood. I was quite impressed with Warner at The Opening, with his ability to cover at 6’3.5 and 218 pounds. Warner has visited before and said he’ll be back again. Both are premium prospects.
Hamsah Nasirildeen, of Concord (NC) is also making the trip down this week in the middle of seeing Alabama and Florida with his teammate. Nasirildeen is a heavy, heavy Alabama lean.
Local 2018 prospect Amari Gainer is also expected back. I expect Gainer to play for FSU, though he held off on committing so far, deciding to check out some other schools first.
The defensive back group will be loaded, featuring FSU commits Stanford Samuels III (five-star corner) and Cyrus Fagan (four-star safety). The pair will be trying to sway five-star DB Jeffrey Okudah, of Grand Prairie (Texas) South. Ohio State is thought to lead Oklahoma, but getting Okudah on campus for a visit is the first step.
South Broward safety Dorian Hall had a strong June camp and will be coming back for more. He is a player I expect FSU to continue to monitor this fall during actual games as he has not played much safety.
Pat Surtain Jr., a 2018 superstar out of Ft. Lauderdale American Heritage will also be making the trip this week.