February 4, 1998 - by


1998 Florida State Football Signees

Seminoles Sign 24.

Feb. 4, 1998

Name                Pos. Hgt.  Wgt.  Yr.   Hometown, High School/ JC
Tony Benford        DL   6-4   260   Fr.   Denver, CO (Jefferson)
Quinton Callum      RB   5-10  180   Fr.   Lake City, FL (Columbia)
Rian Cason          DL   6-5   300   Fr.   College Park, GA (Woodward)
Reggie Durden*      DB   5-9   175   Jr.   Houston, TX (Copiah-LinolnCC)
Kevin Emanuel       DL   6-4   240   Fr.   Waco, TX (Waco)
Nick Franklin*      TE   6-3   265   Jr.   St. Petersburg, FL (S.W. Miss. JC)
Talman Gardner      WR   6-2   195   Fr.   New Orleans, LA (McDonough 35)
Michael Hamilton    LB   6-3   200   Fr.   Madison, FL (Madison Co.)
Montrae Holland     OL   6-3   325   Fr.   Ore City, TX (Jefferson)
Chris Hope          DB   6-2   195   Fr.   Rock Hill, SC (Rock Hill)
Jerel Hudson        LB   6-3   230   Fr.   Homestead, FL (South Dade)
Patrick Hughes      TE   6-5   237   Fr.   Nacogdoches, TX (Nacogdoches)
Octavis Jackson     DL   6-2   255   Fr.   Miami, FL (Carol City)
Jared Jones         QB   6-5   220   Fr.   Walla Walla, WA (Walla Walla)
Antoine Mirambeau   OL   6-4   270   Fr.   Miami, FL (Miami Beach)
Greg Moore          WR   6-1   185   Fr.   Bartow, FL (Bartow)
Robert Morgan*      WR   6-0   180   Fr.   East Point, GA (Tri-Cities)
Stanford Samuels    DB   5-10  180   Fr.   Miami, FL (Carol City)
Raymont Skaggs*     RB   5-8   173   Jr.   Los Angeles, CA (West LA College)
Malcolm Tatum       DB   6-1   170   Fr.   Miami, FL (Killian)
Corey Whitaker      OL   6-4   290   Fr.   Pace, FL (Pace)
Brett Williams      OL   6-6   320   Fr.   Kissimmee, FL (Osceola)
Todd Williams       OL   6-6   283   Fr.   Bradenton, FL (Southeast)
Chris Woods         LB   6-3   244   Fr.   Orlando, FL (Jones)
* Already enrolled at Florida State for the spring semester.

Tony Benford

DL, 6-4, 260

Denver, CO (Jefferson)

An all-state defensive line selection from Denver… has a 4.8 40-yard dash time and a bench press of 365 pounds… has only played two years of football… made the most of those two years as he recorded 20.5 sacks as a senior and 21.5 sacks as a junior… also had over 90 tackles despite being double and triple teamed during senior campaign… the No. 7 rated defensive lineman in the Big 12 region by PrepStar… tabbed as the No. 43 player in the Midlands region by SuperPrep before the 1997 season… named one of the top six rush ends in the Big 12 region by the National Recruiting Advisor… also played basketball at Jefferson… selected the Seminoles over Nebraska, Oklahoma State, Texas and North Carolina.

Quinton Callum

RB, 5-10, 180

Lake City, FL (Columbia)

A talented back who led Lake City Columbia to a 14-1 record and a state runner-up finish in 6A as a senior… will have an opportunity for early playing time as FSU will return just two scholarship tailbacks (Travis Minor and Davy Ford)… owns 4.6 speed and is very poweful for his size… bench presses 330 pounds with a clean-and-jerk of 300 pounds… won the state weightlifting championship… high school coach notes his good vision and excellent cutting ability… rated as the No. 23 overall player in Florida by the St. Petersburg Times… named the Co-Offensive Player of the Year by the Gainesville Sun… a third-team all-state selection… regarded as the top “athlete” in the state by the Florida Times-Union and named to their Super 75 squad… received a 9.25 rating from Jeff Whitaker… totaled 1,346 yards on 188 carries (over 7 yards per carry) and 25 touchdowns during senior campaign… added 19 receptions for 274 yards and three touchdowns… also played cornerback when needed at Columbia… limited Bosley Allen, one of the top wide receivers in the state, to one catch in playoff victory over Bradenton Southeast… becomes the third Columbia graduate to sign with the Seminoles in the last six years (Reinard Wilson and Brian Allen)… chose FSU over South Carolina and Virginia Tech.

Rian Cason

DL, 6-5, 300

College Park, GA (Woodward Academy)

A second-team All-USA selection by USA Today… great lateral movement and aggressiveness made him one of top interior pass rushers in the state… recorded 73 tackles, seven sacks and a blocked kick as a senior… named to the first-team class 3A all-state squad… rated as the No. 5 defensive lineman in the country by Tom Lemming… a top five national defensive tackle prospect by the National Recruiting Advisor… also named an All-American by the NRA and the No. 56 player in the country… a Forrest Davis All-South third-team pick… the No. 8 defensive lineman according to PrepStar… tabbed among the Super Southern 100 and Georgia Super 11 by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution… received All-Southern honorable mention from the Orlando Sentinel… given perfect grades by Jeff Whitaker (10.0) and Forrest Davis (5.0)… had 66 tackles and nine sacks as a junior… played noseguard and offensive guard in leading Woodward Academy to an 11-1 record last year… reported 40-yard dash time at 4.9… won the state shot put title as a junior… brings excellent academic credentials as well… chose FSU over Georgia, Tennessee, Notre Dame and North Carolina.

Reggie Durden

DB, 5-9, 175

Houston, TX (Sam Houston HS/Copiah-Lincoln CC)

Originally signed with FSU in 1996… already enrolled as a junior during spring semester… an outstanding all-around athlete who will likely play defensive back as a Seminole after playing quarterback and tailback at junior college last season at Copiah-Lincoln (MS) Community College and the year before at Texas A & M-Kingsville… totaled 1,554 all-purpose yards in 1997… the National Recruiting Advisor’s No. 7 junior college prospect nationally… one of the nation’s top quarterbacks out of high school… Tom Lemming’s National Offensive Player of the Year… converted 20 two-point conversions during senior year… named to the SportSouth All-South third-team as an athlete… rated the No. 6 “skilled athlete” by SuperPrep… also that publication’s Southwest Offensive Player of the Year… received Max Emfinger’s highest rating of 10.6… listed as the No. 25 overall prospect in the Southwest by Tom Lemming… named City of Houston’s Player of the Year… a first-team all-district pick and district MVP… only player from Houston chosen to participate in the Shrine California/Texas all-star game… accounted for 6,421 yards all-purpose yards and 64 TDs in his four-year career despite missing five games as a junior… started at cornerback each year since the ninth grade… rushed for 1,620 yards and 14 TDs on 209 carries as a senior… added 595 passing yards and totaled 2,421 all-purpose yards… had two 300-yard rushing performances in high school, including a career-high 350 yards and five TDs in one game… also long jumped 25-feet as a track and field standout… selected FSU over LSU, Texas A&M, Kansas State and Arizona out of high school.

Kevin Emanuel

DL, 6-4, 240

Waco, TX (Waco)

Another heralded signee from the state of Texas… has a frame that would allow him to add an additional 25 pounds… tallied 71 tackles (29 solo), seven sacks, one interception (for a TD), two fumble recoveries and two fumbles caused… has a 310-pound bench press and a 40-yard dash time of 4.83… the Central Texas Defensive Player of the Year… David Garvin’s No. 1 defensive end in the state of Texas and No. 5 overall… rated among the top eight rush ends in the nation and tabbed an All-American by the National Recruiting Advisor… named as the No. 5 defensive line prospect in the Big 12 region by PrepStar… SuperPrep’s No. 32 defensive lineman in the preseason… cousin of Atlanta Falcon wide receiver Bert Emanuel… chose FSU over Texas, Colorado, Oklahoma State and Iowa.

Nick Franklin

TE, 6-3, 265

St. Petersburg, FL (Osceola HS/Southwest Mississippi JC)

One of four early enrollees for the spring semester in the 1998 class… will help fill the void left by the graduation of All-ACC tight end Melvin Pearsall and could contend for the starting job… has impressed coaches with his work in the weight room since his arrival at FSU in January… considered by many to be the top junior college tight end in the nation out of Southwest Mississippi Junior College… rated among the top 30 junior college prospects by the National Recruiting Advisor… has three years to use two remaining seasons of eligibility… 40-yard dash time listed at 4.7… selected FSU over Alabama, UCF and Baylor following junior college.

Talman Gardner

WR, 6-2, 195

New Orleans, LA (McDonough 35)

Regarded as one of the top wide receiver prospects in the country… possessess excellent size and speed… named to the Parade All-America team… a second-team All-USA selection by USA Today… pulled down 47 passes for 944 yards and 13 touchdowns as a senior (20.1 yards per catch)… the No. 1 rated wide receiver in the southeast by PrepStar… listed as the No. 3 wideout in the country by SuperPrep, the No. 3 overall prospect in Louisiana and No. 19 nationally… named an All-American and the No. 8 receiver (75th overall) in the country according to the National Recruiting Advisor… listed among the top 60 prospects in the Southwest by Tom Lemming… an Atlanta Journal-Constitution Super Southern 100 selection… an oustanding sprinter who won the state 200m title as a junior… one of the fastest players in the South with times of 4.29 in the 40-yard dash, 10.5 in the 100m and 21.2 in the 200m… chose FSU over Georgia, LSU, Tulane and Florida.

Michael Hamilton

LB, 6-3, 200

Madison, FL (Madison Co.)

A first-team 4A all-state selection as a junior and senior at Madison… an athletic linebacker with good speed and coverage skills… recorded 185 tackles (110 solo) and seven sacks in his final year… received honorable mention All-USA honors from USA Today… listed among the top 35 linebackers in the Southeast by PrepStar… tabbed an All-American by the National Recruiting Advisor… a member of the Super 24 squad and the Tallahassee Democrat’s Big Bend Defensive Player of the Year… rated as the No. 2 outside linebacker in the state by the Florida Times-Union… also a Super 75 pick by the Times-Union… listed among the top 30 prospects in the state by the St. Pete Times… received a 9.25 rating from Jeff Whitaker (highest – 10.0)… bench presses 275 pounds, runs the 40-yard dash at 4.5 and has a 33-inch vertical leap… selected FSU over Auburn and Michigan State.

Montrae Holland

OL, 6-3, 325

Ore City, TX (Jefferson)

Considered one of the top three offensive lineman in Texas… also played on the defensive line where he recorded 71 tackles, three sacks and two fumble recoveries as a senior… posseses excellent upper body strength (450-lb. bench press)… regarded as a phenomenal drive blocker with the speed to pull and pass block… an All-East Texas selection… rated the No. 9 offensive line prospect in the Big 12 region by PrepStar… also named to their Big 12 region Super 30… listed as one of the top five offensive linemen in the state by Jeff Whitaker… named a top 10 guard prospect and All-American by the National Recruiting Advisor… Tom Lemming’s No. 21 player in the Southwest region… named the No. 70 overall prospect in Texas by SuperPrep… the state’s No. 2 offensive lineman according to David Garvin… received a 9.75 rating from Jeff Whitaker (highest- 10.0)… also an accomplished track and field performer… chose FSU over Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech and Oklahoma.

Chris Hope

DB, 6-2, 195

Rock Hill, SC (Rock Hill)

USA Today First Team All-American…Parade All-American…named USA Today South Carolina Player of the Year…regarded as the nation’s top safety prospect by several publications…combines 4.6, 40 speed with hard-hitting style…played both offense and defense his senior year…recorded 114 tackles and three interceptions, while rushing for 1,319 yards and 20 touchdowns as a running back…selected to the PrepStar Dream Team and ranked the No. 1 defensive back prospect by the same publication…#6 prospect nationally by Bill Buchalter…received first-team All-America honors from G&W recruiting…first-team All-South from Forrest Davis…rated the No. 3 defensive back and No. 50 nationally by the National Recruiting Advisor…member of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution Super Southern 100…selected to the Orlando Sentinel All-Southern team…Tampa Tribune’s No. 8-rated recruit and No. 1 defensive back nationally…No. 6 recruit nationally by St. Petersburg Times…finished four-year career with 474 tackles, 10 interceptions and four fumble recoveries…set a school record starting 55 consecutive games…selected FSU over Michigan, Florida and South Carolina.

Jerel Hudson

LB, 6-3, 230

Homestead, FL (South Dade)

A hard worker who emerged as one of the top linebacking prospects in the state as a senior… coverage skills are so good that he played saw playing time at strong safety at South Dade… registered 92 tackles, 10 tackles for loss and two interceptions as a senior… a class 5A all-state first-team honoree… SuperPrep’s No. 24 prospect in Florida and No. 28 linebacker nationwide… rated the No. 2 inside linebacker in the state by the Florida Times-Union… also participated in basketball and track… turned in personal bests of 4.6 in the 40-yard dash and a bench press of 365 pounds… selected FSU over Florida, Miami, West Virginia and Kansas State.

Patrick Hughes

TE, 6-5, 237

Nacogdoches, TX (Nacogdoches)

Rated the top tight end prospect in the country by National Recruiting Advisor and No. 65 overall…a USA Today honorable mention selection…also ranked as the top tight end by SuperPrep…caught 13 passes for 225 yards and four touchdowns in a run-orientated offense as a senior…recorded 81 “pancake” blocks…tabbed No. 13 prospect nationally by Bill Buchalter…No. 7 overall prospect in Texas by the Austin American-Statesman…received 10.0 ranking from Jeff Whitaker…member of the Waco Tribune-Herald Top 30…twice named All-District…selected FSU over Miami, LSU, Texas A&M and Texas.

Octavis Jackson

DL, 6-2, 255

Miami, FL (Carol City)

Versatile performer who has shown consistent improvement in strength and agility during high school career… a class 6A first-team all-state selection… led Carol City to a second consecutive state title this fall… totaled over 80 tackles and 22 sacks as a senior… listed among the top 45 players in the state of Florida by SuperPrep… the No. 2 defensive lineman in the state according to the Florida Times-Union… rated as one of the top seven noseguards in the Southeast by the National Recruiting Advisor… along with teammate Stanford Samuels, became the fourth Dade County player to commit to FSU… chose FSU over Kansas State, Miami, and Alabama.

Jared Jones

QB, 6-5, 220

Walla Walla, WA (Walla Walla)

Joins Chris Weinke and Dan Kendra as the third Parade All-American QB on the Seminole roster… rated the nation’s No. 5 quarterback and No. 26 prospect overall by the Tampa Tribune… tabbed as the No. 7 quarterback in the country by Tom Lemming and 12th by SuperPrep… listed as the sixth QB and No. 37 player nationally by the National Recruiting Advisor… threw for 893 yards as a junior and 684 yards (62 of 124) as a senior in a run-oriented high school attack… completed 201 of 411 passes for 2,816 yards, 21 touchdowns and 19 interceptions in three-year career… carried 70 times for 317 yards and one TD… also played receiver, safety and kick returner… named to the all-state team as a free safety… combines outstanding arm strength with an ideal quarterback frame… attended the same high school as New England Patriot QB Drew Bledsoe… a top prospect on the baseball diamond as a pitcher/shortstop… fastball has been clocked at over 90 mph and is rated as one of Baseball America’s top 20 prospects… has recorded a 40-yard dash time of 4.63 and a vertical leap of 34 inches… selected FSU over Washington and Tennessee.

Antoine Mirambeau

OL,6-4, 270

Miami, FL (Miami Beach)

Widely regarded as one of the best pure center prospects in the country…rated the No. 1 center prospect in the country by National Recruiting Advisor…missed senior season after reconstructive knee surgery to repair a torn ACL…benches over 400 lbs. and timed at 4.9 in the 40…would have been the most sought after player in Florida after a remarkable junior season before injuring his knee…No. 12 offensive line prospect by SuperPrep …Top 75 selection by Florida Times-Union…selected to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution Super Southern 100…rating of 9.75 from Jeff Whitaker (10.0-highest)…Forrest Davis rating of 5.0 (5.0-highest)…named to Border Wars All-South team in the preseason…finished third in the prep heavyweight wrestling championships last year…chose FSU over West Virginia and Miami.

Greg Moore

WR, 6-1, 185

Bartow, FL (Bartow)

Among the best wide receiver recruits in the country… ranked the No. 8 wide receiver in the nation and 10th-best prospect in Florida by SuperPrep…clocked at 4.35 in the 40 and possesses a 38-inch vertical leap…missed six games during senior season with a broken arm, recording 13 receptions for 330 yards……Tampa Tribune’s No. 44-ranked recruit nationally and No. 2-rated wide receiver in Florida…No. 1 recruit in Florida by the St. Petersburg Times…member of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution Super Southern 100…No. 1 receiver in the state and selected to the Super 75 team by Florida Times-Union …ranked the No. 3 receiver in the Southeast by PrepStar…named to the Border Wars All-South team…Forrest Davis rating of 5 (5.0 scale)…received rating of 10.0(10.0 scale) by Jeff Whitaker…made 64 receptions for 1,003 yards and 13 touchdowns as a junior…selected FSU over Michigan, Ohio St., Tennessee and Maryland.

Robert Morgan

WR, 6-0, 180

East Point, GA (Tri-Cities)

A member of last year’s recruiting class who practiced with the Seminoles before the Sugar Bowl after meeting academic standards… entered the spring academic semester as a true freshman… reminds coaches of current Seminole standout Peter Warrick… a great athlete who can go up and get the ball or beat defenders with speed… emerged as one of the South’s top receiving prospects during senior campaign… had 952 yards and seven touchdowns as a senior… rated as the No. 5 wide receiver in the southeast by PrepStar… earned class 4A all-state honors… labeled as an impact player by Forrest Davis… listed on Jamie Newberg’s “Border Wars Top 100″… named to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Super Southern 100 and one of their top 50 recruits in Georgia… an All-Southeast selection by the National Recruiting Advisor… timed in the 40-yard dash at 4.45 and has a 40-inch vertical leap… coached by former FSU All-American Michael Tanks in high school… chose FSU over Florida, Tennessee and Georgia.

Stanford Samuels

DB, 5-10, 180

Miami, FL (Carol City)

First-team 6A All-State selection following senior season…excellent combination of speed and strength…benches more than 300 lbs. and has been timed at 4.5 in the 40…recorded 31 tackles, five interceptions and three blocked punts while missing six games with a separated shoulder…three-year starter on one of Florida’s top programs… led Carol City team to their second consecutive 6A State Championship and 15-0 record as a senior …member of the PrepStar Dream Team and rated the No. 8 defensive back prospect in the country…No. 2 defensive back in the Southeast by the same publication…selected to the Orlando Sentinel Super Senior team…member of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution Super Southern 100…rated the No. 8 recruit in Florida by St. Petersburg Times…member of Florida Times-Union Super 75…National Recruiting Advisor rates him seventh best cornerback in the southeast…chose FSU over Georgia Tech, Miami and Northwestern.

Raymont Skaggs

RB, 5-8, 173

Los Angeles, CA (Dorsey HS/West L.A. College)

Already enrolled at FSU this spring… completed his associate of arts degree last semester at West Los Angeles College… will likely play tailback, a position that returns just two experienced scholarship performers… fits the mold of recent Seminole “scatbacks”… boasts outstanding speed and quickness, documented by his 4.4 clocking in the 40-yard dash… caught 24 passes for 297 yards and three touchdowns as a slot receiver last season at West L.A. College… also a dangerous kick returner… hails from the same high school as New York Jet receiver Keyshawn Johnson and Miami Dolphin tailback Karim Abdul-Jabbar… worked out against Southern California’s standout cornerback duo of Daylon McCutcheon and Brian Kelly during summer passing drills… selected FSU over Oklahoma, Iowa St. and Syracuse.

Malcolm Tatum

DB, 6-1, 170

Miami, FL (Killian)

Defensive back with excellent cover skills and speed… burst onto the Florida high school recruiting scene late during senior year… named the state’s top cornerback prospect by the Florida Times-Union… also a great punt returner… an All-Dade selection as a senior… named to the third-team all-state 6A squad… the No. 27 rated player in Florida according to the St. Pete Times… an All-Southeast selection by the National Recruiting Advisor… a teammate of Derrick Gibson last year at Killian, who signed with FSU in ’97… joins a long line of Dade County defensive backs to sign with the Seminoles (most recently – James Colzie, Samari Rolle, Shevin Smith, Stanford Samuels)… reported 40-yard dash times in the 4.3 range… chose FSU over Florida and Miami.

Corey Whitaker

OL, 6-4, 290

Pace, FL (Pace)

Regarded as one of the top offensive lineman in the state… played tackle in high school, but is athletic enough to play either guard or tackle at the collegiate level… attended the same high school as former Seminole quarterback Thad Busby… graded out at 80 percent or better on his blocks over junior and senior seasons… a Florida Times-Union Super 75 selection at guard… recognized as one of the top 50 offensive line prospects in the Southeast by PrepStar… tabbed as an All-American by the National Recruiting Advisor… selected FSU over Alabama, Syracuse and Florida.

Brett Williams

OL, 6-6, 320

Kissimmee, FL (Osceola)

The No. 1 guard prospect in the country according to SuperPrep… named to the first-team USA Today All-USA squad… a Parade All-America selection… combination of excellent size, strength and speed could lead to early playing time… rated among the top two guards in the country by the National Recruiting Advisor… a Prepstar Dream Team preseason selection… regarded as the No. 3 offensive lineman nationally by Tom Lemming… a Forrest Davis All-South first teamer… an Orlando Sentinel All-Southern pick… the Tampa Tribune’s No. 20-rated national recruit (No. 4-rated offensive lineman) and state’s No. 3 prospect… also tabbed as the No. 3 overall state prospect by the St. Pete Times… named to the Times-Union’s Super 75 team… a member of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution Super Southern 100 team… graded out at 91 percent for the season as a senior and totaled 51 pancakes… has great quickness and upper body strength (4.9 in the 40, 370-pound bench press)… won state titles in the discus as a sophomore and both the discus and shot put as a junior, while also lettering on the weightlifting team… owns personal bests of 177′ in the discus and 60’4″ in the shot… selected FSU over Florida and Alabama.

Todd Williams

OL, 6-6, 283

Bradenton, FL (Southeast)

Athletic offensive tackle with a frame that will allow him to add weight… tabbed as the No. 5 offensive tackle in the state by the Florida Times-Union… rated as the No. 27 state prospect by the Tampa Tribune… named one of the top seven offensive tackles in the Southeast by the National Recruiting Advisor,… an Atlanta Journal-Constitution Super Southern 100 pick… graded out at 85 percent with 24 pancakes during senior season… named to the class 6A all-state second-team… reported 40-yard dash time of 4.9 with a 335-lb. bench press… attended the same high school as current Seminole wideout Peter Warrick… chose FSU over South Carolina, Southern Mississippi and Michigan State.

Chris Woods

LB, 6-3, 244

Orlando, FL (Jones)

The Orange County defensive player of the year… has excellent strength with speed in the 4.6 range… a tough player who recorded 128 tackles, six sacks, forced six fumbles and recovered five during senior year despite nursing a fractured foot… broke his foot in the first game, but chose to have surgery after the season… projected to be a defensive lineman at FSU, Woods played inside and outside linebacker, noseguard, tight end, fullback and deep snapper at Jones… reminds high school coach of current Seminole defensive ends now in the NFL (Peter Boulware and Reinard Wilson)… led team to state playoffs all three years as a starter… a member of the Orlando Sentinel’s All-Central Florida team… a 4A all-state second-team pick… rated the No. 66 prospect in Florida by SuperPrep… finished as the state runner-up in the discus as a sophomore and junior… selected FSU over Alabama, Tennessee, Florida and Georgia.

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