Hillsborough defensive back Terrence Mitchell, one of the bay area's top recruits, has committed to Florida State.
"They recruited me real well," Mitchell said. "They were on me from Day 1. They were one of the first schools to offer me and that meant a lot to me."
Mitchell, ranked the fifth best cornerback prospect by Rivals.com, chose the Seminoles over Illinois and USF. He made official visits to all three schools, as well as Tennessee and Georgia. Mitchell just returned from his official visit to Florida State this week. He said he came back from the visit wanting to commit to the Seminoles, and after discussions with his family, decided to go through with it.
"It had a lot to do with it," Mitchell said about the visit. "I got to talk to the coaches one-on-one and I got to talk to the players. I came home with a really good feeling about it. I talked to my family some and they said to go with my decision."
Mitchell said he was told he will be able to play cornerback and kickoff returner early on and might also have an opportunity to play offense as a slot receiver.
"It's really good to have that kind of opprtunity," Mitchell said. "I'll have to get the defense down first, but I love to have the ball in my hands."
He will also be able to run track at FSU. Mitchell said that the recent firing of coach Jim Leavitt did impact his decision. He has USF as one of his top schools and the idea of playing with his cousin, former Hillsborough standout running back Lindsey Lamar, was intriguing.
"It did affect it," Mitchell said. "I had a real good relationship with coach Leavitt and I think he's a good coach. They did what they had to do there. I didn't get a chance to talk to the new coach and since I dont know him, I wanted to make sure I was in a good situation."
This could mark the beginning of a big year for the Seminoles and new head coach Jimbo Fisher in the bay area. Two other top Hillsborough County prospects, Tampa Catholic quarterback Christian Green and Leto running back Jeremy Deering, also have Florida State among their finalists. FSU is recruiting both to plat receiver. Mitchell said he talked to Deering during his official visit and he's also spoken with Green, who he said is seriously considering the Noles.
- EDUARDO A. ENCINA (email@example.com)