Florida State Football: 7 Freshmen the Seminoles Can Build Around
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Florida State was praised after completing its class of 2013 recruits on national signing day last Wednesday, as the team drew in a number of 3-, 4- and 5-star recruits.
Following a year that was complete with a victory over Northern Illinois in the Orange Bowl and an ACC championship, the Seminoles hope to once again dominate the ACC's Atlantic Division, which also features the Clemson Tigers.
This shouldn't be a problem for Florida State this year and for years to come thanks to their 2013 class, which features freshman that the team can build around to make a true powerhouse in the ACC.
These seven players—out of the 22 that made up the 2013 signing class—will provide a base for the 'Noles in 2013 and beyond.
Defensive back Jalen Ramsey chose Florida State over USC on National Signing day, giving the Seminoles a five-star recruit.
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The 6'1" defensive back decided to sign with Florida State on national signing day over USC, giving the Seminoles a 5-star recruit that is truly impressive.
Ramsey is the consensus No. 1 player to come out of Tennessee, according to 24/7 Sports, and provides incredible speed on the outside for the Seminoles, who gave up 162 yards per game through the air to opponents last season.
In his senior year at Brentwood High School, Ramsey recorded 49 tackles, four tackles for a loss, two forced fumbles and he caught nine touchdown passes on the offensive side of the ball.
Ramsey is one of the best overall athletes that the Seminoles signed, and he is capable of becoming one of the best corners in the ACC by the time his collegiate career is over.
One of the most sought after players in the country, Matthew Thomas has the ability to be one of the top linebackers in the ACC, and even the nation.
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One of the most coveted prospects in 2013, linebacker Matthew Thomas has the skill to be a force in the Seminoles' linebacking corp.
Thomas signs with a Florida State team who only gave up about 92 yards per game on the ground to opposing teams and only allowed 10 rushing touchdowns in 14 games.
The 5-star recruit was ranked as the best linebacker in this year's class by ESPN, and rightfully so.
In 2011, Thomas recorded 102 tackles and 12 sacks in his junior year at Booker T. Washington High School in Miami.
However, his numbers dropped in 2012; he recorded 53 tackles and seven sacks, mainly due to the fact that his team was beating opponents by an average of 42 points, and he was often pulled early from games to avoid injury.
Not only can Thomas tackle, but he possesses the speed to get around the field. ESPN recorded Thomas as running a 4.59 in the 40-yard dash and a 4.09 in the 20-yard shuttle.
Four-star recruit Keith Bryant will bring size to a Florida State defense that recorded 36 sacks last season.
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The Seminoles surprised their in-state rivals Miami on national signing day when defensive tackle Keith Bryant chose Florida State over the Hurricanes.
The 6'2", 206-pound lineman attended Atlantic High School in Delray Beach, Fla.
Bryant's greatest strength is his initial burst off of the snap, and it showed as he led his team to an 8-3 record in 2012 and a district title, along with a trip to the FHSAA Class 7A playoffs.
Rivals.com ranked Bryant as the 17th best defensive tackle, and Bryant is sure to fit in with Florida State's line.
The addition of Bryant proves that Florida State was a true winner in 2013, as he had offers from a dozen other top-25 schools including Miami, South Carolina, Tennessee, Florida, Georgia, LSU, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Penn State and USC.
Ryan Green joins a Florida State backfield that put up 40 touchdowns last season.
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The 5'10" running back out of St. Petersburg, Fla. joins an already potent backfield that put up 40 touchdowns, with seven players scoring at least one rushing touchdown.
Green is rated as a 4-star recruit by ESPN and is ranked 30th on their top 150 prospects list.
While Green missed the majority of his senior season with a shoulder injury, he starred in his junior season at St. Petersburg Catholic High School, rushing for 1,069 yards and 14 touchdowns.
Green also played on defense, recording 57 tackles and two interceptions.
On both sides of the ball, Green's quickness has paid off, as the 187-pound recruit is listed as having a 4.45 40-yard dash and a 4.22 20-yard shuttle.
Green is just the type of athlete that Jimbo Fisher loves to use on offense in a run-heavy playbook.
Isaiah Jones was invited to "The Opening" on Nike's campus, and showed off the speed and hands that earned him the title of a four-star recruit from ESPN.
A consensus 4-star prospect at wide receiver, Isaiah Jones joins a Florida State receiver corps that averaged 12.88 yards per catch last season.
Jones chose the 'Noles over Auburn, Arkansas, Clemson, Georgia, Miami, Ohio State, Tennessee and Louisville.
The 6'4" receiver is one of the tallest recruits Florida State brought in, and joins an offense that ranked 40th in the country in passing yards.
Jones' strength lies in his speed, as ESPN has him clocked at a 4.69 40-yard dash and a 4.18 20-yard shuttle, and is considered an overall great athlete, as he has a 99.33 SPARQ rating from Nike.
Jones is powerful and can make plays in traffic. He will use his size and strength to make sure that opposing defenses know he is there.
While Ira Denson played on both offense and defense in high school, he is slated to play on the offensive line at Florida, which gave up 26 sacks in 2012.
One of only three offensive lineman that Florida State brought in last Wednesday, Ira Denson was a late bloomer in recruiting season, but eventually made his way up to 121st on the ESPN Top 150 list.
Denson helped the Madison County High School Cowboys to a 12-2 record as a senior and an appearance in the FHSSA 3A state championship game.
The 317-pound lineman originally committed to Florida State in May and kept true to his word, despite other offers from Miami, Mississippi, South Florida, Nebraska, South Carolina, Kentucky and Tennessee.
A two-way starter in high school, Denson proved that he can back up his size with speed, and he rightfully earned his 4-star rating from a number of outlets, including ESPN, Rivals and Scout.
Defensive end DeMarcus Walker had originally committed to Alabama, but left in favor of Florida State.
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Previously committed to Alabama, DeMarcus Walker chose to attend Florida State and enrolled in the school in the spring of 2013.
Walker was named a U.S. Army All-American in 2012 after recording 14 sacks and 24 tackles for loss in his senior season.
ESPN had Walker ranked as the fourth-best defensive end and the 25th-best recruit in the state of Florida.
The 6'4", 280-pound lineman is also one of the more athletic defensive players from the 2013 recruiting class, recording a a 5.04 40-yard dash time. He had one of the highest vertical jumps at 30.6 inches.
With the loss of four defensive lineman to graduation, Walker will surely fulfill a need for the Seminoles on the line almost immediately.