football

Seminoles strike in Rocky Top

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Alcoa, Tenn., is the heart of the Big Orange Nation.
Alcoa High School is just 15 minutes away from Neyland Stadium and recruits that fly into and out of Knoxville on official visits often go through Alcoa since it's where the regional airport is located.
But Florida State fans can now stake a claim to the town as part of Seminole County because defensive end Brandon Warren, the top player in Tennessee and a Rivals100 member, announced on Tuesday he was heading to Tallahassee.
Warren took unofficial visits last weekend to both Miami and Florida State and it was on the visit to Tallahassee where he said he fell in love and found his new home. He came back and talked things over with his family and then made the call for the Noles.
"I called the Florida State coaches after I got back and committed," he said. "It was definitely a tough decision, but it's the right one for me. That (the unofficial visit) was the first time that I've been to Tallahassee, and it just felt like home to me. I grew up a fan of FSU all my life, and that sort of played a big part in it, too."
The Noles are getting a good one in Warren.
Warren was recruited by FSU recruiting coordinator John Lilly. He also had was considering offers from Auburn, LSU, Miami, Ohio State, Oklahoma and Virginia Tech.
The 6-foot-2, 230-pound athlete/defensive end is ranked as the No. 60 player overall and the No. 5 athlete by Rivals.com. As a junior playing both sides of the ball, he earned all-state honors. He racked up 950 yards receiving and had 15 touchdowns. On defense, he had 75 tackles, 24 tackles for a loss and a whopping 20 sacks.
"I think I run down the field well and stretch the defense," Warren said. "I think I can block pretty good for running backs. I think I'm a mix of power and speed."
Warren, who had a touchdown catch in Alcoa's state championship win over Huntingdon in 2004, is a talented tight end prospect and also terrorizes quarterbacks and running backs from his defensive end spot.
"I can't decide where he'd be better," Alcoa coach John Reid said.
"He's got tremendous hands. He's going to weigh 240 or 250 in college, and would be tight end with breakaway speed. As a defensive end, he has a motor that just doesn't quit. He may be the first you see that goes as a tight end/defensive end. You know how they do with some defensive backs and receivers. He may be a guy that you just can't keep off the field.
"He can catch the football like nobody's business."
And in the future he'll be catching it in a Seminole uniform, something that has to be a big disappointment to Tennessee fans who were hoping that they could get the home-town star to stay home.
"It's definitely not easy, I know that some people will say that I turned my back on my friends or on Tennessee, but people that know me know that I'm not like that," Warren said. "It's real tough. I know that a lot of my friends wanted me to go to Tennessee, but I had to do what was best for me."
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