FSU Football: 2017 Signing Class Sees Decline in Sunshine State Recruits


FSU football brought in another top recruiting class in 2017 – but this year’s group was notable for a decrease in recruits from the Sunshine State.

When you look at the Jimbo Fisher era for FSU football, one thing is for certain: the Seminoles have gone out of their way to recruit all parts of the country. But even with all the talent brought in from places like Texas, New Jersey, Alabama and elsewhere, almost every one of Fisher’s eight recruiting classes has been largely from the talent rich state of Florida.

In 2017, the Seminoles again brought in a double digit number of recruits from the Sunshine State – 10 of them to be exact our of the 22 member class. Still, that’s the lowest number in half a decade dating back to when just five of the 18 member class in 2012 was from Florida.

When you break down the numbers, the steady decline is more than notable:

"2017: 10 Players from Florida (22 total signees)2016: 11 Players from Florida (23 total signees)2015: 13 Players from Florida (20 total signees)2014: 15 Players from Florida (29 total signees)2013: 15 Players from Florida (22 total signees)2012: 5 Players from Florida (18 total signees)2011: 22 Players from Florida (29 total signees)2010: 10 Players from Florida (23 total signees)"

At the same time, FSU football’s two biggest rivals in the state – the Florida Gators and Miami Hurricanes – stocked up on talent from home. Miami signed 15 players from the Sunshine State out of their 24 member class, while the Gators brought in 16 players from Florida out of the 23 member class.

One of the most notable areas where the ‘Noles seemed to not be profitable this year was in the fertile recruiting ground of Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties – maybe the best ti-county area for recruiting in the country. After having four players from the area in each class the past four classes, that number was cut to two this year – Stanford Samuels III from Pembroke Pines and James Blackman from Belle Glade.

Florida State Seminoles Football
Florida State Seminoles Football /

Florida State Seminoles Football

That number is the lowest since no players from the area were a part of the 2012 class (just one year after the 2011 class had nine players out of the 29 player class being from those three counties alone). By contrast in 2017, the Gators brought in 10 players from South Florida while the hometown ‘Canes kept 11 players home.

During various interviews on National Signing Day, Fisher pointed to FSU football being a national brand – something amplified by the players coming in from as far as Massachusetts in this year’s class. With the top rated players in Texas, North Carolina, Virginia part to FSU’s class, you can’t complain too much.

However, old school Florida State fans will remember during the “lost decade” of the 2000’s, the numbers dwindled as far as recruits from the Sunshine State – in particular, South Florida. While we’re not predicting anything like that happening, it does raise some eyebrows. In a land where you can swing a helmet and hit a four star recruit, why not keep it at home more often than not?