TALLAHASSEE — When Jimbo Fisher took over for Bobby Bowden as Florida State's coach after the Gator Bowl, he stressed he would be his own man and do things his way.
Well, when it comes to recruiting, he and his old boss share the same knack for a fast finish.
FSU won several huge last-minute battles for players on Wednesday.
They include Lake Howell LB Christian Jones, rated as a five-star prospect by Rivals.com; DE Bjoern Werner, a German exchange student who some tab as one of the sleepers in the class nationally; LB Telvin Smith; and the last signee of the 24-member class — Tampa Catholic WR Christian Green.
"That was big," Fisher said of Green. "Not only is he a great receiver who's going to be able to do things, but he also has the ability to run reverses. … (You can) put the ball in his hands as a wildcat guy. You put him in the backfield. He can run. He can throw. He's physical. There's a lot of things you can do with him."
Two months ago, FSU was staring at a class ranked among the 30s nationally. By Wednesday, it was sixth, according to ESPNU and 10th, according to Rivals.com and Scout.com.
"I thought we had a great day," Fisher said. "We met a lot of needs."
Leader by example: CB Lamarcus Joyner, a Parade All-American, didn't actively try to recruit players to follow him to FSU.
"I lead by example," he said. "If guys want to follow and help FSU come back like I expect them to, then they should roll along. Hopefully, if guys respect me as being a great football player and great person, they'll just want to join with me and Jeff Luc."
Fisher said the oral commitments by Joyner and Luc, a heralded linebacker who enrolled in January — shortly after Bowden announced he wouldn't be back — provided street cred for the new FSU staff.
"They okayed it for everybody to make sure they looked at Florida State," Fisher said. "That allows you to get in the door and then sell what Jeff and Lamarcus saw."
closer to home ... relatively speaking: Werner told an ESPNU audience that not only did he love FSU's coaches, his fiancee is excited to be in a warm-weather climate (as opposed to Oregon) and he likes that he'll be on the East Coast, "closer to Germany."
Fisher said when you go that far from your recruiting base as he did for Werner and teammate Will Tye in Salisbury, Conn., "You should get an impact guy. I think both of those guys are impact guys."
Best nickname: It's hard not to like Joyner's nom de plume of Frank, short for Frankenstein — as in he's a monster on the field. But our favorite belongs to powerful 6-foot-5, 264-pound TE Darnelius "Tank" Sessions.
family tradition: WR Jarred Haggins (Lakeland) is the nephew of former Seminole standout and longtime defensive tackles coach Odell Haggins. LB Christian Jones (Lake Howell) kept his family tradition alive. Father Willie Sr. (1975-78) was part of Bowden's first class, and brother Willie Jr. also played for Bowden (2002, 2004-05). Green's cousin is former FSU receiver E.G. Green. And QB Clint Trickett is the son of offensive line coach Rick Trickett.
Quotable: "We always talk about recruiting. We don't talk enough about the development of players. … There's a lot of guys (already) on our football team I think are big-time playmakers." — Fisher