Florida State has appeared to turn a corner in 2022 finishing the regular season 9-3 with a tenth win still on the line in the bowl game. Not only has the record improved but the vibe around the program has too. This team plays hard, never quits and the culture at FSU is something to behold under Mike Norvell.
On top of that, FSU finished top 15 in TV ratings in 2022 and the crowds at Doak Campbell Stadium once again resemble that of the glory days. It’s not an exaggeration when I say the energy and excitement around this program are as high as they have been in almost a decade. So, is FSU back? Personally, I can’t say that after only one good season, but they certainly look to be headed that way!
This brings us to take an early look at what 2023 could be for Florida State. You get the feeling it could be a very special year, however, this all hinges on one very crucial factor. How much of their production will FSU return for next season?
When you look at how many crucial players could depart from the program it would leave FSU with numerous holes to fill that could sway the projection of 2023 in the other direction. On the other hand, if Florida State were to retain a majority of those key pieces, I firmly believe they could make a run at their first ACC title and playoff appearance since 2014.
The exciting news for FSU, over the past week a lot of those question marks have already been answered thanks to the emergence of the new NIL collective “The Battles End” who’s made a huge splash in the FSU player retention pool. The Battles End has already signed NIL deals with a multitude of crucial players who will now be returning for the 2023 season.
While the names keep rolling in seemingly by the minute, some of the bigger ones like Jordan Travis, Tatum Bethune, Kalen Deloach Renardo Green, Jarrion Jones, Robert Scott Jr, Maurice Smith and many others have already made their intentions clear. They are coming back for 2023 to finish the CLIMB they started at FSU.
In time, there will be a way for all to be involved with this platform regardless of the size of contribution. In the meantime we don’t need money, we ask only that you judge us by the work that we do and you can make a decision as to if this is a collective you want to support.— TheBattlesEnd (@TheBattlesEnd) December 6, 2022
Opening statement from The Battles End collective via Twitter
This is obviously huge news for Seminole faithful to have already secured this many impact players for another season. There is a feeling of unfinished business around the program with FSU going 9-3 and all three losses being in close fashion. If there had been a few breaks here and there this team could have easily found itself in the playoff conversation this year and was playing as well as any team at the end of the regular season.
Of course, signing an NIL deal doesn’t mean these players are only here for the money. It’s just part of doing business in the new era of college football and is nice to see FSU able to be a real player in the NIL space now. The Battles End has said they can be as competitive as they want to be in this space and with a primary focus on football and player retention, it appears FSU football will also be competitive for years to come.
FSU will also be looking to add more key pieces from the portal to address some needs going into 2023 and with this staff’s success in the portal there will likely be some big additions this off-season. Norvell and this staff have turned FSU into one of the premier transfer destinations in the country by taking multiple players that could be considered “diamonds in the rough” and helping them become housed hold names.
There may be no better example of this than Jermaine Johnson who left a Georgia team that was favored to win a national championship. He left there to seek a bigger role and knew he wanted to join Mike Norvell at FSU, something he was not shy about saying. That decision led to Johnson to become an immediate star for the Seminoles, All-ACC player and first round NFL draft pick despite FSU only winning 5 games during his lone season in garnet and gold.
His success and influence certainly helped the Noles land highly sought-after defensive end transfer Jared Verse. It’s these types of things that make you excited about the future when players are willing “pay it forward” by singing the praises of this staff and program.
The Noles have already landed a 6-foot-6 300-pound defensive tackle from Miami this season which will help solidify a position of need. FSU will certainly be in the mix for some top tier players this off-season. There are still a few big names currently on the FSU roster left to state their intentions for next season which we will hopefully find out about it the coming days/weeks.
All this builds momentum for the Seminoles heading into year four under Mike Norvell. Success on the field in 2022, the potential to have a special season in 2023 and being able to be a serious player in NIL will undoubtedly pay dividends in recruiting too. At a time when college football seems chaotic with literally thousands of players jumping into the portal in a single day, it is refreshing to see FSU be one of the more stable programs around. NIL aside, players simply want to be part of what they see at FSU.
This staff has never been shy about focusing on fit and family versus just chasing star rankings on a recruiting site. While it may have taken a few years to blossom we are seeing the difference it has made by building things the right way. With FSU breaking ground on their new football only facility this month, some talented recruits on the way and success on the field starting to show, the future seems bright for FSU.
The football program is in good hands with this staff and administration. While I can’t yet say whether FSU is headed back to the dynasty days, I firmly believe the dark days are over in Tallahassee. If FSU stays on their current path, it appears they are ready to be back playing big boy football sooner than later and I for one am excited to see it. Thanks for reading and Go Noles!
Enjoy this article? Share it on social media so others can too! We thank you for your support.
Be sure to check out the Plant The Spear Podcast for those who bleed garnet and gold!