Florida State’s 21-member 2015 signing class features five players rated a five-star by Rivals – the most in the nation
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The Florida State football team continued its success on the recruiting trail on National Signing Day on Wednesday, wrapping up its 2015 class with a nation-leading five five-star signees, according to Rivals, and ending with the fourth Top 3 class in five years under head coach Jimbo Fisher.
The Seminoles inked 12 star high school seniors and one junior college All-American for next fall on Wednesday. The 13 signees along with eight Seminole early enrollees brings Florida State’s 2015 class to 21 athletes.
In addition to the five five-star signees, FSU’s 2015 class features 11 ESPN Top 300 prospects, 11 four-star recruits, nine Under Armour All-Americans and three U.S. Army All-Americans.
Rivals has five FSU signees tabbed as five stars, while Alabama, Tennessee and LSU tied for second with four five-star players. Rivals only gave 34 athletes a five-star rating.
Florida State’s 2015 class is rated the second-best in the nation by ESPN and No. 3 by both Rivals and 247Sports.
2015 FLORIDA STATE FOOTBALL SIGNING DAY ROSTER
Calvin Brewton 6-0 175 DB
George Campbell 6-3 183 WR
Ethan Frith 6-7 336 OL
Derwin James 6-2 205 DB
De’Andre Johnson 6-2 186 QB
Jacques Patrick 6-1 230 RB
Da’Vante Phillips 6-1 206 WR
Josh Sweat 6-5 240 DE
Abdul Bello 6-6 300 OL Uyo, Nigeria (Montverde [Fla.] Academy)
Deondre Francois 6-2 191 QB Orlando, Fla. (IMG Academy [Bradenton, Fla.])
Sh’Mar Kilby-Lane 6-2 220 LB
Marcus Lewis 6-2 194 DB Washington D.C. (Gonzaga College H.S.)
Tarvarus McFadden 6-3 200 DB
Cole Minshew 6-6 320 OL
Nyqwan Murray 5-11 164 WR
Lorenzo Phillips 6-3 230 LB Patterson, La. (East Mississippi C.C.)
David Robbins 6-5 305 OL
Auden Tate 6-5 205 WR
Darvin Taylor 6-3 305 DT
A.J. Westbrook 6-0 180 DB
Jalen Wilkerson 6-4 230 TE
JIMBO FISHER PRESS CONFERENCE QUOTES
“I’m very pleased with the class we had, another outstanding class coming in. Very excited especially getting eight of those guys to enroll early, which I think is very important not only for their development but for our development as a team as far as where things go and depth going into spring practice. Across the board, very pleased that we hit all of our needs, as far as going for all positions. You hit quarterback, receivers, tight ends, (offensive) line, running backs, (defensive) line, (defensive) ends, linebackers, (defensive) backs. We filled every need of every position, and that’s rare that you do that. Twenty one guys that we have, I think that we’re very pleased. I think academically we’re all in great shape. We expect every guy to qualify, to be in the class. Very anxious to see some of these young freshmen come out in spring practice, I’m hearing great things about them, but also the guys coming in the summer. Again, very pleased. Very unique group in my opinion as far as character. I think there’s a lot of intelligence in this group, I think there’s a lot of leadership. I think there’s a lot of guys who during the recruiting process that I’m very pleased with, that I think will have not only an effect on how they play, but affect the other guys in the class very well with their attitudes and leadership and their demeanors. I mean, a real lot of high-character class in my opinion also. Looking forward to it, but a big thing you’ve got to remember, again, don’t judge them on the first year, don’t judge them on the second year. Let those guys develop. We’ve got them ranked high and if they don’t quite get to where we think they ought to be quick enough we’re ready to shoot them now… people ask me all the time which ones will redshirt, which ones will play, I don’t know. I gave up that a long time ago, like I’ve always said, because the guys I think do, don’t, and I guys I think won’t, do. It’s just the way it goes. But to let them all develop and put them in situations to be successful. I think, I really do, I think the intelligence level and character of this group, I think you’ll see quite a few of them contribute just like you did this year. I think that’s the nature of college football today. I think that’s just the nature of the beast and the way the game is going. These kids are much more ready to come in to college at an earlier age than they’ve ever been. So it’ll be very interesting to watch them go. But I’m very pleased, very happy with them and excited to have this class.”
On size of last year’s offensive line class impacting 2015 signees:
“I would’ve taken any one of those guys. How many did we take last year? Six, seven, something like that. We took four this year. We would’ve taken another guy or two if we had the right guy. I think that’s important. Numbers don’t always get me. It’s quality, not quantity. You’ve got to make you sure you get guys that can play, because if you’re not sure you’re getting guys that can play at that level and do what you ask them to do, then you have a guy that for four years eats up a scholarship of somebody else you could’ve recruited. I think the offensive line group, I think (Abdul) Bello is off the charts. I think that guy’s got an upside that’s ridiculous. I think (Cole) Minshew is unbelievable, the most underrated guy I’ve seen out there in a long time. I mean that is a powerful, athletic guy. (David) Robbins I think has a tremendous…he is powerful, big…you talk about two sets of guards now that can be unbelievable. He was 327 pounds on his visit, Minshew was 350. They’re both 6’4”-ish, I mean big, powerful, strong guys. (Ethan) Frith is doing a really good job from what I hear now, very athletic and size doing a very good job. Two tackles and two guards in that group that are very, very talented. ”
On whether Josh Sweat would have been the No. 1 overall player before his injury:
“I agree with it. When you’re talking about the number one player, the production he was having on offense and defense, and then you’re talking the measurable of size, speed, you’re talking about a guy who’s almost 6-4 and change, 6-5, 245 pounds and runs a sub-4.5 and a vertical of 39 inches and can cover you, can play wideout. If you ever watch him play wideout he looks like KB (Kelvin Benjamin) out there playing wideout, and he can rush him. The guys who can affect that quarterback and come off that edge standing up with their hand in the dirt, it’s so effective. And he’s the type of guy who has that type of ability.”
On progress of Josh Sweat’s recovery:
“No. He won’t be for spring. Because that happened in the middle of the season for an ACL. He’ll go all the way through and hopefully we can get him ready by next year. If we don’t, however his rehab goes. I’ll tell you one thing; He is very diligent. He’s on time, he does every workout, he’s doing his rehab very well. He’s got a little ways to go. I can’t give that prognosis yet, but he’ll be fine. Those knees can come back now are always usually stronger.”
On impact of FSU strength and conditioning and training staff aiding in Sweat’s recovery:
“Critical. Because we’ve done this so many times, and the regiment and having that right at your fingertips is very critical. And was one of the reasons I was so tickled to death that we could get him here.”
On importance of enrolling early for a high school recruit:
“Well it says that he’s very committed to his craft that getting in early, getting an education and getting on the field early and playing football is very critical. So he gave up a lot of his summer school. He gave up a lot of his nights at home doing online classes or summer school classes or whatever he had to do to get here. So to me, I always tell our kids “Your actions speak so loud I can’t hear what you’re saying.” Everybody says it’s important to them. All of them do. Well let me see. These guys here have been willing to pay that price to get here early, to try to get a jump and get an extra semester of school, maybe get closer to graduation quicker, get into a masters, and then the recognition of our system to be able to get on the field quicker.”