Seminoles have interest in JUCO linebacker

Linebacker James Collins (6-1, 235) is a physical playmaker who says Florida State has expressed some interest but have yet to offer.

"I went to Blount High School in Alabama and then when I came out here, it's a lot different," Collins said. "The athleticism out here is different, but it's all about competing and improving and getting better."

Out of high school, Collins was rated the second-best linebacker in the state of Alabama and signed with Iowa State. He didn't end up qualifying and so he started looking around for a JC to play at.

"I went to (Los Angeles) Pierce last year and started every game," Collins said. "I had a good year, but I know I can play better and get better this year. The coaches from Pierce headed down here to ELAC and so I followed them."

As a freshman in 2006, Collins posted 60 tackles, four sacks, two forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries and he said he's ready to do whatever it takes to make a D-1 roster.

"I can play inside or outside," said Collins who runs a 4.6 forty. "I like being a physical guy at the point, making the ballcarrier pay for coming at us. I want to take his will away and to knock him out when I arrive at the ball.

"Linebacker is about playing physical and hitting on every play. If you don't like to hit, you should play another position, because linebacker is the in the middle of everything."

On the recruiting front, Collins is hearing from four schools and expects to get more contact once his film gets out.

"I have offers from Iowa State and Ole Miss," Collins said. "Florida State and Oregon are the other two who are really contacting me a lot and talking to me about playing time and stuff like that.

"My family is going to have a lot to say about where I end up playing. I also want to make sure they have a good program in engineering because I really want to do that if football doesn't work out."

Collins expects to graduate in May of 2008 and will have three years to play two wherever he ends up.

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