FSU Adds Alabama Tight End Jackson West to the 2021 Class

Jackson West is a player Florida State head coach Mike Norvell is very familiar with from his time at Memphis. Today, West made the announcement that he was committing to FSU and ending his recruitment. We spoke to him about the decision and what led to him becoming a Seminole. 

Huntsville, AL tight end Jackson West is someone the current coaching staff at Florida State has had their eyes on for some time. His recruitment began in 8th grade when a defensive staff member from Memphis saw him at Lee, and since then it grew from there.

“My recruitment really started when I was in 8th grade,” explained West. “I was at Lee High school playing defensive end. One of the coaches from Memphis came over and saw me, this is when Coach Norvell was there, and he liked what I showed him. I transferred to Hunstville, and the coaches asked me what I wanted to play. I told them tight end because I like to catch the ball and score touchdowns.”

“It picked up more the summer before my junior year when I went to the mega camp at Memphis,” continued West. “Purdue was the first big time school to offer me there. There were some sprinkles here and there, but things really picked up with schools like Florida State, Pitt, Boston College, Duke, Air Force all offered. I don’t have any SEC offers which is fine because I don’t want to be a glorified tackle. Since my time going to camp at Memphis I liked Coach Norvell then.”

Jackson says his long-time relationship with Coach Norvell played a big role in his decision. Combined with the way he uses tight ends, West says FSU is the place for him.

“The relationship with Coach Norvell played a big role as we have been acquainted for some tie,” said West. “When I went to their Junior Day in January I sat with Coach Norvell and Coach Dillingham. We talked about how they would use me in their offense which I really like. He uses tight ends a lot. It kind of worked out with him coming over to FSU. Coach is a better person than he is a coach. He is someone I am going to have fun playing for and I am going to give him max effort. You have some of these kids going to schools because of the logo, and when they get there they realize they don’t like the coaches and the school. FSU is where I will give my best every day. You have to be around these people every day as they become your family.”

Coach Thomsen has been the lead recruiter for Jackson and the two hit it off from the start. Coach Thomsen has high expectations for the future Seminole. 

“Coach Thomsen and I have been talking every few days,” said West. “He told me he wasn’t going to blow my phone up but stay in contact which he has. I spoke to him the other day and he was telling me the two hardest positions in this offense are quarterback and tight end. I am going to have to learn so much. They may line me out wide to give the inside guy some looks, they might line me up in the backfield or the slot. I have to be ready for all of that and know what to do. I am going to do what the coaches want me to do. If they say play fullback, I am going to play fullback.”

West told us he really knew about a week ago that FSU was going to be the school he committed to.

“Coach Norvell is such a humble guy and he is a grinder,” said West. “He knows not everything is glitter and gold and that you have to work for whatever you want. He has a winning culture that he is going to bring to Florida State. He doesn’t like to lose, which is how I am. I knew about a week ago I was going to commit to them. There is no downside, nothing is going to backfire with me choosing them. I’ve been praying about it. There’s been a few signs that it was the place for me. Just the other day some guy was walking down the street in an FSU shirt, and I was like “hmmm”.

While Jackson isn’t known on the scene yet nationally his profile has started to rise as the summer approaches. He sees himself as a multi-dimensional player with a chip on his shoulder.

“I play with a chip on my shoulder because my mom has always told me that no one is going to give me anything,” explained West. “I am someone that will go make a difference. I keep my head down and do what I need to do because I want to be successful.”

Jackson doesn’t have social media per rules from his parents. While that may make it harder to recruit other players for the 2021 class, he says he will make it happen if the coaches want him to reach out to certain players.

“It is my mom’s rule that I don’t have social media as she is not a big fan of it,” said West. “I personally don’t use it which would make it harder, but if the coaches give me the numbers of some guys that they want I will call them and talk to them about why FSU is the place to be. I’ve been talking to Micah (Pettus) a little bit. It would be cool to play with someone I grew up with playing little league with on the next level.”

West is a really good scheme fit for FSU. We will track his progress over his upcoming senior season. Stay tuned for more!

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