FSU Hoops target committing this week

Florida State’s resurgence on the hardwood is helping some Seminole fans cope with the failures of Willie Taggart’s first season leading the football team.

Leonard Hamilton and the No. 14 ranked ‘Noles started their season 2-0 with wins over Florida and Tulane. FSU will be challenged again when they open the Advocare Invitational next week on Thanksgiving day.

After missing the NCAA Tournament from 2012 to 2017, Florida State has found its way again due to its coaching staff recruiting elite talent and players that fit into the system that the team runs.

Highly ranked players like Dwayne Bacon, Jonathan Isaac, MJ Walker, Malik Beasley, and Terance Mann have come through Tallahassee since 2015. FSU is trying to make that the norm instead of an anomaly so that they can push to be one of the top programs in college basketball.

At least five players will leave Florida State following 2018, Phil Cofer, Terance Mann, Christ Koumadje, PJ Savoy, and David Nichols, and more could follow due to attrition or the NBA Draft. Mfiondu Kabengele had his stock rise during the NCAA Tournament. Trent Forrest and MJ Walker could pop on the pro radar with solid seasons.

That makes the 2019 class absolutely crucial for the Seminoles. Currently, FSU has four players committed which ranks them as the No. 16 recruiting class in the country. Four-star prospects Patrick Williams and Balsa Koprivica, three-star forward Zimife Nwokeji, and junior college guard Nathanael Jack round out the class.

Florida State’s class could grow later this week with three-star center Naheem McLeod announcing his intentions to commit on Thursday, Nov. 15. McLeod is a prospect who can be compared to the likes of Koumadje, Boris Bojanovsky, and Michael Ojo. He’s a guy who will need to put on weight and develop as his career goes on.

McLeod’s final contenders are FSU, Temple, La Salle, and Rhode Island. He’s officially visited the `Noles, La Salle, and Rhode Island but recently took an unofficial visit to Temple on Nov. 2.

The three-star center is reportedly still in heavy contact with the coaching staff despite Koprivica’s commitment a few weeks ago. Florida State needs a second big regardless.

“I don’t know how it would work with playing together (with Koprivica),” McLeod said according to OwlScoop.com. “We’ll see how it goes when I commit.”

Take that quote as you will, but it sounds like potentially good news for the Seminoles.

McLeod is listed as 7-foot-1 to 7-foot-3 by multiple recruiting services. His height would serve well on a team that is generally one of the tallest in the country. He’s currently ranked as the No. 184 prospect in the country and the No. 35 center.

Stay tuned on Thursday. FSU is the perceived favorite with 75% of the crystal ball predictions.


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