Following Florida State’s embarrassing 41-14 loss to the Gators ending the ’Noles 2018 season, Willie Taggart stressed the importance of hitting the recruiting trail to shape the future and finding players not deterred by FSU’s 5-7 season. If there is a silver lining to the end of the bowl streak, it is that coaches will now focus completely on recruiting and selling their vision of Florida State football.
We thought we would check in on where the current class stands, and some of the future Seminoles used their social media to weigh in on how they feel about Florida State’s disappointing end to their season and the snapped bowl streak. For the most part, it seems that they understand how their contribution may turn the ’Noles football program around and eventually lead to a successful future for the program. The bowl streak clearly means very little to recruits, and the staff must focus on showing each recruit just how important he will be to the rebirth of a national power.
See their reactions below.
4-star OG Dontae Lucas is ready to be a Seminole, like yesterday!
Ready To Get To It ✊ https://t.co/VSsPlLrQf8— Dontae “Da Pope” Lucas (@7totha8) November 24, 2018
Zont Been Like That ♂️ @godschild3_— Dontae “Da Pope” Lucas (@7totha8) November 24, 2018
4-star DB Nick Cross also liked Lucas’ tweet.
HighSchool Over Now It’s Time To Handle Up In College Na— Dontae “Da Pope” Lucas (@7totha8) November 25, 2018
Earlier today, freshman Jaiden Woodbey announced he wouldn’t be wearing the #20 next year. This evening he let everyone know that it will be because he is giving the number to Cross.
Im giving nick #20 for those who are asking— ⚡️THOR ⚡️ (@JaidenWoodbey) November 25, 2018
4-star OLB Jaleel Mcrae has been among the most vocal and solid commitments of the class.
I’m not stressing at all.... I know for a fact WE’LL BE BACK #TaggartITrust— 14ReasonsWhy (@JaleelMcrae) November 24, 2018
4-star DB Brendan Gant praised freshman DB Asante Samuel Jr. and was enthusiastic about getting in the backfield with him.
Boy I cant wait to play with @godschild3_ that boy is a real DAWG— 1️⃣BG (@TheReal_BGant) November 24, 2018
4-star WR Maurice Goolsby liked Gant’s tweet back to Mcrae.
November 24, 2018
A vocal leader of the 2019 class, 4-star DL Curtis Fann took to twitter to shut down the haters.
Wow !!! The most IRRELEVANT stat I’ve ever read in my life !! Stop hating and trying to bring someone down .. watch how we turn this thing around https://t.co/VS3y1Lz2rT— O C H O ² (@curt_8_) November 24, 2018
November 25, 2018
He also took to twitter to reflect on his in-home visit from the Seminoles’ staff.
Like coach T said they better take their licks now because we comin !!! ‼️ #Tribe19 pic.twitter.com/7L3KNxiI7l— O C H O ² (@curt_8_) November 26, 2018
4-star LB Kalen Deloach’s dad reflected on the coaching staff’s home visit this Sunday morning.
Great Home Visit with The FSU Coaching Staff Coach Barnett, Coach Woody, and Coach Kelly pic.twitter.com/9EWIZyCVhH— Proud Father (@rob_deloach) November 25, 2018
Kalen also responded himself following the staff’s home visit.
We got a plan‼️ #NoleNation #GoNoles #Tribe19 pic.twitter.com/aPNItIBgD3— Delo (@KalenDeloach) November 25, 2018
No great change with 4-star DE Quashon Fuller, who might still be wavering in his commitment and did not have much to say.
....— Quashon Fuller (@quashonfuller) November 24, 2018
Three-star CB commit Renardo Green visited Ohio State University this weekend and had nothing to say about the Seminoles’ loss to the Gators.
November 25, 2018
Five days ago, the Seminoles suffered a huge blow when they lost a 4-star OL commit Charles Cross to Mississippi State.
After the game, Taggart emphasized that despite having a bad football season, he can put together a good recruitment class:
“And like I say, I’ve done this before and we have had really good recruiting classes after a bad year. But I think a lot of recruiting guys that want to be here and recruiting the right guys, and I think we have a lot of guys that want to be here and there’s a lot of other guys that want to be here. We got to make sure that it’s the right guy. And again we’re at Florida State. A lot of kid that want to play here, we got to make sure we get the right kids and not just any kid that wants to be here. So we’re going to work, we’re going to work, and we’re going to find the right guys to come in and help us.”
He further emphasized by saying that the staff needs to “make sure that we’re not just recruiting stars, but we’re recruiting good football players, good students, good people that come here that’s highly motivated and that really want to be winners. We got to make sure that we’re doing that and you do that by going in and going to their homes and finding out everything you can about them and not just off of film.”
It is important to remember that recruits don’t see FSU the same way that seasoned Nole fans do. They don’t place great importance on bowl streaks or consecutive winning seasons. They care about the close family environment and atmosphere in the program, of which Taggart and staff have received high marks thus far. They care about playing time opportunities, which FSU can offer at most positions. They care about trust, and Taggart speaks with them about life on the field and life after football. They care about seeing a road to improvement and a clear place for themselves on that path.
Willie Taggart built much of this staff on the reputation as great recruiters and the next few weeks will go a long way in not only selling recruits on his vision, but selling all Nole fans that he is recruiting his way through many problems we’ve seen this year.
***This article will be updated as more reactions come in, feel free to post anything you see below.”