2022 LB Omar Graham lists Florida State in top-10

Rising 2022 linebacker Omar Graham Jr. has seen his recruitment take off over the first two months of the new year. He’s picked up at least 36 offers in roughly the last eight weeks and is now focusing on cutting his list down. On Friday evening, Graham released a top-1o that included Florida State, West Virginia, Miami, Florida, Rutgers, Penn State, South Carolina, Indiana, UCF, and Howard.

“Out of my recruitment, these schools have shown the most love,” Graham said. “I’m very interested and could see myself at these ten schools.”

Florida State became the third FBS school to offer Graham a scholarship in early January and the Seminoles were his dream school growing up. Head coach Mike Norvell, defensive coordinator Adam Fuller, linebackers coach Chris Marve, and wide receivers coach Ron Dugans have been among the many members of the coaching staff that are in contact with him.

“I like talking to the whole staff, not just the defensive staff, the offensive staff too,” Graham said. “It just feels like family with coach Norvell, coach Marve, coach Fuller, coach Dugans, coach Clinton and the new quality control coach, Sabbath Joseph all talking to me.”

West Virginia is a school that has been heavily recruiting the Florida native since the beginning of his recruitment. He’s been speaking with tight ends coach Travis Trickett, who has ties to FSU through former offensive line coach Rick Trickett and quarterback Clint Trickett, and he also likes the campus.

“I like their campus,” Graham said. “Coach Trickett is an amazing person, he’s a character, he’s very funny. I just love the school.”

Growing up in Fort Lauderdale, Graham lives in close proximity to Miami. The Hurricanes offered him on January 26 and he’s talked to multiple members on the coaching staff, including Travis Williams, who is now the defensive coordinator at another school in his top-10 in UCF.

“It’s close to home,” Graham said. “It’s a great program, and they should be back to their old days soon.”

Florida joined Graham’s recruitment in February and he’s interested in them mostly due to their success. Linebackers coach Christian Robinson has been doing the majority of the work for the Gators.

“It’s an awesome program,” Graham said. “They’re always in the top 25 and coach Robinson is a great person.”

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A program that has been on Graham since very early on in the process is Rutgers and head coach Greg Schiano. He’s built a solid relationship with a few members on the coaching staff, including Schiano and defensive backs coach Fran Brown.

“I’m talking with coach Schiano a lot and coach Brown,” Graham said. “It just feels like family over there also.”

Penn State has impressed Graham due to the program’s history of developing linebackers. He believes defensive coordinator and linebackers coach Brent Pry would be able to turn him into a better player than he already is.

“It’s linebacker U,” Graham said. “It’s just a great program and I know coach Pry would be good at developing me.”

South Carolina is another school that extended the Stranahan product a scholarship in February. He recently took a virtual visit with the coaching staff and really enjoyed the experience.

“I spoke to the whole staff just a few days ago,” Graham. “We had an amazing virtual visit, the energy was high and I loved the facilities they showed me.”

One of the surprises of college football in 2020 was the performance of Indiana under head coach Tom Allen. The Hoosiers finished the regular season 6-1 and nearly won at Ohio State. Graham has been speaking with the staff and likes how they develop players.

“I’m talking with coach Allen, he’s a great person,” Graham said. “Coach Warren is a good person also, I know he’s good at developing players and he came from Georgia. Indiana is good at player development as you saw by them keeping up with Ohio State.”

UCF offered Graham in January prior to former head coach Josh Heupel leaving for Tennessee. However, Gus Malzahn and the new staff honored his offer and are now recruiting him. Graham had high praise for defensive coordinator Travis Williams.

“I like the staff that they’re hiring,” Graham said. “Coach Williams is a great person and I know that if I went there he would look after me, not only in football but in life.”

Howard is unique compared to the rest of Graham’s schools in his top-1o because it is an HBCU. He’s been talking with a few different members of the coaching staff and sees the opportunity as a chance to be different.

“I’m speaking with the head coach, my position coach, and the defensive line coach,” Graham said. “It would just be great to be different and put on for HBCU’s.”

Graham has taken virtual visits to Florida State, Rutgers, South Carolina, West Virginia, and UCF so far this offseason. With the dead period being pushed back until at least the summer, he’s planning to continue doing virtual visits while thinking about where he would like to take official visits.

“I’m going to continue doing virtual visits and things like that,” Graham said. “When it opens back up I want to do official visits but I’m open to more schools, my recruitment is still open. I just had to narrow things down.”

Last month, he stated that his plans were to commit on his birthday, April 16, or near the summer. Now, Graham is in the process of trying to decide if he’d still like to follow that timeline or push things back to continue learning about the schools that are recruiting him.

“I believe so,” Graham said. “I’m still in the thoughts of pushing it back because of all the love these schools are showing me and the schools that are coming forward now. I might just have to sit back and just learn about the schools, get to know the staff’s more.”

The 6-foot-1 205-pound linebacker recorded 38 tackles, 11 tackles for loss, and 9 sacks in five games as a junior due to COVID-19. He saw some of his hard work pay off earlier this week when he picked up his first ranking from 247Sports. It’s something the three-star prospect has been waiting on for a while.

“I’m thankful for the ranking,” Graham said. “I believe I can get bumped up as long as I work hard and grind this offseason and come into the season and perform. I’m not really worried about it but I know I’ll get bumped up. It’s nice to finally be ranked.”

Graham is currently ranked as the No. 559 overall recruit, the No. 35 OLB, and the No. 73 player in the state of Florida in the 2022 class according to 247Sports. He’ll be competing in the Pylon 7v7 event in Panama City Beach this weekend.

Keep up with NoleGameday for the latest on Graham’s recruitment throughout his senior season.

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