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Florida State at “the top” of James BlackStrain’s list

FSU staff made quite the impression.

James BlackStrain (Twitter)

James BlackStrain is a 6’2 180 pound wide receiver who plays his high school ball at Holy Trinity Episcopal Academy (FL).

The Class of 2021 prospect is a 4* (91 rating) on the 247 Sports Composite. He’s ranked 238th nationally (42nd best WR and 32nd best player in Florida).

He has offers from Baylor, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Louisville, LSU, North Carolina, Penn State, South Carolina, Tennessee, USC, Utah, and Virginia, among others.

He recently took a trip to Florida State with his HS coach, as well as his QB, Davin Wydner:

TN had a chance to chat with BlackStrain and get the scoop on his recruitment:

Which FSU coaches have you been in touch with, and which ones did you hang out with on campus?

“Coach Dugans and Coach Norvell liked a couple of posts, and I [saw] Coach Dillingham and Coach YAC (David) Johnson, as well. Most [of] the full offensive guys. They showed me a very [good] time, and a lot of love. [I really] felt as if I was a top priority over there!”

Can you give us a little background on your visit? What was your day like from the time you arrived to the time you left?

“Made it to 8:30 AM practice to watch the team. Was a very good practice. Then, we had the campus tour, and [we finished with] pictures and coaches talking to me. I was there until about 3. During practice I noticed a former HT guy Jashaun Corbin.”

I assume you had a chance to talk with Jashaun—what’d he say about the new staff?

“He said it’s a great time to come be great. They’re moving in the right direction as a program.”

What’d the coaches say to you after the pictures?

“I talked personally with Coach Dugans, and we [were] talking about more than football, [including] life after football—[he] wanted to know about me personally!”

What sort of impact did that make on you?

“A huge impact there for sure—[the ’Noles] made their way to the top of my list!”

What other schools are up there?

“UNC, West Virginia, USC, Florida, Nebraska, and Penn State.” (random order)

What’s FSU’s pitch to you?

“Their pitch was just trying to bond a great relationship for the future and come by a part of the family of greatness Florida State has to offer. Coach Dugans used a family perspective. [Coach Norvell] wants a change over class to bring back championships.”

What players do you model your game after?

“[Like] Michael Thomas the way I go up and make catches and similar to Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen.”

How would you describe your game? What are your biggest strengths?

“My biggest strengths are my hands and playmaking ability. My wingspan (6’5”) separates me from defenders.”

What would it mean to potentially be part of Coach Norvell’s first full class & help bring FSU back to greatness?

“[It] would mean a lot, and I would have to bring back that winning culture.”

Is that something FSU’s coaches are selling, too? Getting back to that winning culture?

“Yes sir, and that they want a family atmosphere!”

Do you have a return trip scheduled?

“I was trying to see the Spring Game, but I [won’t now] with this virus.”

What about a final decision date?

“Not sure yet; will figure it out after this virus passes!”


On Sunday, we published our FSU WR board, which included BlackStrain. If you missed it, make sure to check it out, as we took a detailed look at this talented group the staff is chasing.

On Monday morning, BlackStrain mentioned a top-5 coming soon:

We fully expect Florida State to make that list, but we’ll keep an eye out and will update this story when the receiving target releases it.