5-star linebacker Matthew Thomas will be in attendance to watch the University of Miami take on Florida State, and this is a game that the Hurricanes need to win for multiple reasons.
The 'Canes are 4-3 on the season and are on a two-game losing skid, so getting back on track against the No. 12 team in the BCS standings would be huge for Al Golden and his program.
It would also be a big win from a recruiting standpoint, as according to Matt Shodell of CaneSport.com, a win could really help Miami recruit Thomas over the Seminoles:
Would a win help the Canes move up in Thomas' recruitment?
"It'll help Miami because FSU is a top team this year," Thomas said. "Miami, they had some ups and downs this season. To overcome FSU would be good."
Thomas, who has offers from both schools, adds that "I'll see how it plays out, how both teams operate. When the pressure is on, how they react. I'll be looking closely at that."
This is the definition of a must-win game for the Hurricanes. Losing three in a row would be devastating for their aspirations for this season, but it would continue to give Florida State the advantage for the 5-star linebacker.
247Sports currently has Florida State on top of Thomas' list, followed by Alabama and Miami.
Thomas is from Miami, and he grew up a Hurricanes fan according to Shodell's report, so not being able to recruit him would be a pretty big shame for Golden. The problem is, Thomas is an elite recruit, and he's going to want to play for an elite program.
Miami is not an elite program anymore.
The kicker here is that the Hurricanes could go a long way towards proving that statement wrong by beating FSU. The Seminoles looked to be one of the best teams in the land before they were upset by North Carolina State, but they are still an elite ACC program, and a program Miami must overcome if they want to make it back to the top of the ACC world, let alone the national scene.
Recruiting is about pitching hope for the future, and if Miami can beat Florida State with Thomas in attendance, they can really sell him on the fact that more wins like that are on the way, especially if he commits to their program.
Every football player dreams of suiting up for the hometown team, but that dream can quickly become shattered if said program isn't up to the player's level.
Make no mistake about it, Thomas is a big-time recruit who can play just about anywhere.
Miami has his interest due to their proximity and the fact that he grew up as their fan, but they're not going to keep it if they continue to lose big games.
They need to beat Florida State if they want to gain a recruiting edge for the 5-star linebacker.