The Florida State Seminoles are likely to sign at least two safeties during this recruiting cycle, and they appear to be getting more selective after they received a verbal commitment from Trey Marshall at The Opening on July 3.
With Marshall in the fold, the Seminoles can afford to be selective, and ultimately, that likely cost them Kendall Gant who committed to Georgia last night. Gant received an offer from Florida State (his favorite childhood team), but rumors circulated that the Seminoles were not actively recruiting the Lakeland, Florida native as hard as they were early on. Most recruiting experts thought Gant would commit to the Seminoles if they pursued him, but in the end, they chose to be patient and wait for players higher up on their board.
The two high-profile safeties they covet the most are Montae Nicholson from Monroeville, Pennsylvania and Cortez McDowell from Locust Grove, Georgia. Both are rated as four-star players and are in the updated ESPN 300.
The Seminoles will soon roll out the red carpet for Nicholson, who is expected to be on campus in Tallahassee this week for the second Jimbo Fisher Football Camp. The 6-foot-2 210 pound athlete is a tremendous two-way player in high school, but will probably end up on the defensive side of the ball at the collegiate level thanks to his size and speed. Michigan is perhaps the biggest competition for Florida State, but the Seminoles will have a chance to impress Nicholson this week.
McDowell is a versatile defensive back who plays well in both zone and man schemes at safety. At 6-feet, 200 pounds, he has the ideal size to play in the back end because he is athletic and rangy enough to defend the deep ball, but is will to come up and tackle against the run. Tennessee is the main competition for the Seminoles, but Auburn is still in the picture as well.
The Seminoles would be thrilled to land one of those two in addition to Marshall, and would likely make room for both of them if they wanted to come to Florida State.
B.L. is an ACC Football writer for Rant Sports and can be followed on Twitter @coachlip.