Family Affair

Florida State linebacker <b>A.J.Nicholson</b> has quickly developed into an impact player for the Seminoles. Nicholson has played extremely well this spring as FSU heads into its final week of practice. Well, Nicholson's younger brother <b>Derek Nicholson</b> is an impact player as well. He's coming off an incredible junior season that saw him register 181 tackles, 27 for loss and 10 sacks. Will the two play together at FSU one day?

Florida State junior linebacker A.J. Nicholson is the kind of player who is never satisfied.

Finish with five tackles? He wants six.

Two quarterback sacks? Nah. He wants three quarterback sacks.

It's that drive and intensity which makes Nicholson one of the Seminoles' most important and exciting players.

Well, those qualities also are shared by Nicholson's younger brother, Derek Nicholson.

The 6-foot-1, 2228-pound Nicholson, from Winston-Salem Mount Tabor, N.C., is coming off an incredible junior season where he has 181 tackles, 27 for loss and 10 sacks.

Nicholson also had three picks, with two going back for scores and added another defensive touchdown with a fumble recovery.

"I read well and I attack the line of scrimmage. I'm a playmaker and move good sideline-to-sideline," Nicholson told TheInsiders.

"I want to work on getting better separation and playing at a faster pace. I want to improve every aspect of my game."

Nicholson does not list a favorite, but just about every big school nationally has shown interest.

Offers from Clemson, North Carolina State, Florida State Miami, Virginia, Virginia Tech, Georgia and North Carolina are on the table. The list also includes Mississippi State Wake Forest and several aothers -- 17 in all, in fact.

"I have 17 offers total and several smaller offers too," Nicholson said.

"I haven't picked a top five yet. I'll have a top five by the end of the summer. It'll be in July, I think."

Nicholson's father, Darrell, played linebacker at North Carolina. Nicholson has been impressed by the Tar Heels' progress.

"I like their colors, the atmosphere and the college life there," Nicholson said.

"It's a fun place. Of course, I also grew up watching all the powerhouse schools like Florida St and Miami."

In fact, FSU extended Nicholson his first offer prior to the start of his junior season. Nicholson knows the Seminoles well thanks to brother A.J.

"I love the tradition and that they are known for linebackers," Nicholson said.

"Also, they have a legend for a coach. Bobby Bowden has an incredible record. I like Clemson a lot too. They have a very nice campus and a big stadium. It's a good college atmosphere and the people are real nice."

Nicholson, a solid student who should qualify easily, says distance won't be a factor.

"I want a home away from home and I'd love to make an impact as a frosh," Nicholson said.

"Location doesn't matter. I'll pick a school where I feel I'd want to go even if I weren't playing football. I get about 20 pieces of mail a day, so it's not just one school. I hear from all of them. I'm not sure what camps I'll be going to."


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