Florida State is in the final stretch of its strongest regular season in more than a decade. The Seminoles' success against opponents has put the team in control of its BCS destiny and set the stage for coach Jimbo Fisher to gain pivotal recruiting momentum on the way to national signing day.
Consistent title contention in college football is based on an efficient cycle of achievement on the field and in the recruiting spectrum. The two go hand in hand at the foundation of any powerhouse program.
Winning breeds increased recruiting interest. A higher level of incoming talent lends itself to more victories in the future.
Alabama has clearly mastered the formula, like USC in the past decade, Nebraska in the 1990s, and so on.
For the first time since years before legendary coach Bobby Bowden stepped aside, Florida State appears primed to regain its place among the nation's elite programs with plenty of potential to enjoy perennial title contention. The Seminoles are 10-0 with signature nationally televised victories over Clemson and Miami.
Throw in the fact that Florida State is led by a Heisman Trophy front-runner and it's a recipe for resounding success on the recruiting trail. The Seminoles presently have a "coolness factor" swirling around the program and it's a perfect time to capitalize.
Florida State holds 25 commitments in its 2014 recruiting class. The group is ranked seventh nationally and second in the ACC by 247Sports.
The Seminoles have secured 13 pledges from 4-star prospects. Since the start of the season, three recruits have committed to the team and there are several intriguing targets still up for grabs.
Florida State is a finalist for three of the country's top cornerback prospects—5-star playmakers Tony Brown (Beaumont, Texas), Adoree' Jackson (Gardena, Calif.) and Marlon Humphrey (Birmingham, Ala.)—and remains firmly in the mix for 4-star wide receiver Josh Malone (Gallatin, Tenn.).
The Seminoles wrap up the regular season with an annual showdown against Sunshine State rival Florida. That matchup always reverberates for both squads when it comes to in-state recruiting.
How will FSU's success affect its 2014 recruiting efforts?
Key Florida prospects strongly considering the Seminoles include 4-star wide receiver Travis Rudolph (West Palm Beach) and dynamic safety T.J. Harrell. A victory over the Gators would push Florida State one step closer to the national championship game and give the team another boost in the eyes of recruits.
The Seminoles are 21-2 since the start of the 2012 season, carrying a 15-1 record against conference opponents.
In the short term, continued domination would put Florida State in position to win its first national title since 1999. From a long-term vantage point, it gives the program a realistic opportunity to build championship-caliber squads for years to come.
Last year, a 12-2 season and Orange Bowl victory resulted in the country's 10th-best incoming class. Expect improvement on the field to translate into improvement in national recruiting rankings.