Florida State Football Recruiting: Grading the Seminoles' 2013 Recruiting Class
LB Matthew Thomas highlights a defense-heavy class.
The Florida State Seminoles just wrapped up one of the best classes in the nation again this year. Under Jimbo Fisher's leadership and guidance, the Seminoles have been able to re-tool a team that won the ACC and should be in contention for it again.
Fisher has the Seminoles in a spot to where they could even return to their late '90s dominance of the conference. It will be interesting to see how he meshes all of the raw talent he brought in with the current talent he has on the team.
If he can take the guys that he pulled in this season and develop them properly, Fisher could have the scariest team in the nation with arguably the best defense.
QB John Franklin. Courtesy 247 Sports.com
QB John Franklin: 6'2", 175 pounds, 3 stars, rated 85
Your mobile quarterback graduates and heads to the NFL. So, what's the plan?
You go and get another quarterback who can do the same kinds of things that E.J. Manuel used to do in John Franklin. The 6'2" quarterback will be an excellent asset to coach Fisher and the Seminoles. It will be interesting to see how much zone-read they put into the offense with Franklin—even if Franklin has to redshirt for a year.
RB Ryan Green. Courtesy TampaBay.com
RB Ryan Green: 5'10", 195 pounds, 4 stars, rated 96
Does Florida State really need a running back this year?
Is it always a good idea to bring in a talented player who is almost a 5-star recruit at the position? Of course. Ryan Green is definitely that guy and could honestly challenge James Wilder Jr. for playing time in the Florida State offense.
Wide Receivers and Tight Ends
WR LeVonte Whitfield. Courtesy 247 Sports.com
WR Levonte Whitfield: 5'9", 165 pounds, 4 stars, rated 90
WR Isaiah Jones: 6'4", 195 pounds, 4 stars, rated 90
WR Jesus Wilson: 5'10", 170 pounds, 3 stars, rated 88
TE Jeremy Kerr: 6'6", 262 pounds, 2 stars, rated 77
Florida State always has excellent wide receiver talent. This is a talented group like most of the others. However, it wouldn't be shocking to see Isaiah Jones start early in his career. He's the biggest receiver on the Seminoles now, and he has the speed to be a starting No. 1 wideout.
At tight end, Jeremy Kerr could be a candidate to move to tackle. He's 260 pounds but is more of a blocking tight end than anything else. His height and length could allow him to redshirt, put on weight and then be a starter his redshirt sophomore season at left tackle.
OG Ira Denson. Courtesy 247 Sports.com
OG Ira Denson: 6'4", 322 pounds, 4 stars, rated 94
OG Wilson Bell: 6'4", 296 pounds, 3 stars, rated 88
C Ryan Hoefield: 6'3", 278 pounds, 3 stars, rated 87
Florida State hasn't been a hotbed for offensive linemen in the past few drafts, and it's easy to see why. For whatever reason, it can bring in great talent all over its team. However, the Seminoles have trouble bringing in the 5-star talent at offensive line.
Ira Denson and Wilson Bell are both solid players, but there are no world-beaters in this class that will start right away. Denson looks like he will develop into a decent pro prospect, though, with his excellent size and footwork.
DE DeMarcus Walker. Courtesy Jacksonville.com
DE DeMarcus Walker: 6'3", 265 pounds, 4 stars, rated 97
DT Keith Bryant: 6'1"s 302 pounds, 4 stars, rated 90
DE Desmond Hollin: 6'4", 260 pounds, 3 stars, rated 83
DE Davarez Bryant: 6'4" 230 pounds, 3 stars, rated 81
This class is just average outside of DeMarcus Walker. It doesn't have to be great, though. They had a lot of talent come in last season with Mario Edwards leading that class. It will be interesting to see how Keith Bryant meshes with the current defensive tackles in Tallahassee.
Walker should definitely have a big impact, though. He's a beastly pass-rusher. Once he gets down how the running game should be defended, he could be the true starter across the formation from the possibly dominant Edwards.
LB Matthew Thomas. Courtesy OrlandoSentinal.com
OLB Matthew Thomas: 6'3", 215 pounds, 5 stars, rated 99
OLB Freddie Stevenson: 6'1", 220 pounds, 4 stars, rated 91
ILB E.J. Levenberry: 6'3", 227 pounds, 4 stars, rated 90
OLB Tyrell Lyons: 6'2", 220 pounds, 3 stars, rated 88
OLB Ro'Derrick Hoskins: 6'3", 215 pounds, 3 stars, rated 86
By far the deepest position that the Seminoles recruited, it wouldn't shock anyone to see them with a starting trio of Matthew Thomas, Freddie Stevenson and E.J. Levenberry in a couple of years. Another thought for Thomas is a potential move to safety because he runs a 4.55.
However, as the three of them mature and grow together, they could turn the Seminoles linebacking corps into the best in the country—especially the vastly underrated Levenberry.
CB Jalen Ramsey. Courtesy Miami Herald Online
CB Jalen Ramsey: 6'0", 189 pounds, 5 stars, rated 99
CB Marquez White: 6'1", 175 pounds, 4 stars, rated 90
CB Nate Andrews: 6'0", 193 pounds, 3 stars, rated 86
Despite bringing in just three players, it wouldn't be shocking to see the Seminoles come in and have multiple starters from this class.
Ramsey is an excellent potential lockdown corner. Marquez White has all the tools to be an all-American. And Nate Andrews could eventually star out of the nickel.
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images
Jimbo Fisher has a great class this year. It ranked in the top 10 out of every team in college football. They addressed their biggest needs on defense and even gave competition to everyone on offense.
While it may not have the instant impact players most other classes have, it will be best for the long term. And that's what recruiting is all about in the long run.
All stats used are either from Pro Football Focus's Premium Stats, ESPN, CFBStats or the NFL. All contract information is courtesy Spotrac and Rotoworld. All recruiting rankings come from 247Sports.com.
Scott Carasik is a Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report. He covers the Atlanta Falcons, NFL and NFL Draft. He is also the Falcons analyst at Drafttek, runs the NFL Draft Website ScarDraft.com and hosts Kvetching Draftniks Radio.