Did Pressley make the grade?

Florida State landed several studs at running back for the 2008 recruiting class. One of those was JUCO All-American Tavares Pressley. The coaches have been waiting on Pressley to qualify as he's the last of the expected recruits expected to play this fall. NoleDigest got the exclusive update with Pressley to talk about his qualifying situation and to see when fans can expect him on the field.

Tavares Pressley is a guy who's expected to play major minutes and be a big time playmaker in 2008. He needed the additional months since the end of the school year to get the qualifying score, and now he says it's just about all said and done. According to Pressley, he's slated to begin practice with his teammates tomorrow.

"Basically I am good to go," said an excited Pressley. "My teacher hasn't emailed me yet but he said my grade should be posted tonight. By the morning it's going to be all set and done. Everything has been set up and once the grade is posted I'll officially be a Seminole. I've been up here for a few days now and I am slated to start practicing with my team Tuesday. I'm excited to get going."

Tavares is extremely excited that he's achieved his goal of making it in to FSU. He's taken the long road to his dream school but now that he's on campus he is ready to make the most of it both in the classroom and on the field.

"I'm in Tallahassee for good," said Pressley. "I've just been adjusting and getting acclimated to my team and this town. I've been getting to know the players and getting to know everyone around me. So far so good I'd have to say. I'm rooming with Smurf so it's nice to see him again. I have a sense of relief that this is all over. I took the long road to get here now its time to step it up. I never thought I'd be a college student, but now I am here and I am happy to be here. I'm ready to get this thing started."

Pressley has been focusing primarily on academics since he left El Camino JC earlier this year. He says he has done his best to stay in shape and that he reported at a good weight. Now that he can turn some of his focus back to football, Pressley said it's only a matter of time before he gets back into the swing of things.

"I feel ready to go," explained Pressley. "I reported at 214 pounds. It's healthy weight. I'm good to go so now I am ready to turn my attention to getting ready to see the field. I'm just so excited that I am here. Now I am focused on learning the plays. I think I will pick it up quickly but I just have to take it a day at a time. The guys here have their wind up because they've been in the summer program. Physically I will get there quicker so I am focused on getting the mental part right. I'm now at a major university so I'll be getting a lot more plays thrown at me. Like I said before I've been a quarterback before so I think I'll get the plays down."

Antone Smith is the lone running back coming back that played major minutes at the running back spot last year. Tavares is expected to be in the two-deep roster and some feel he'll be a guy who can come in and make an instant impact on the team. Pressley told NoleDigest that he's looking forward to working with Smith and that he thinks the two will form a formidable 1-2 punch.

"I'm coming to play," said a confident Pressley. "I'm trying to get the system down first then I will go from there. I know it's going to take 2 backs to make it work. I'd love to be the guy who plays with Antone. He's a good player and a good person who I will be leaning on early to help me pick things up. I think the two of us will share carries and that we'll do well to help our team win."

Tavares getting the grade is huge for FSU because he is a bigger back with legit homerun speed. Once he gets the system down look for him to show what the hype has been all about in terms of him as a player. Tavares understands that he's a student athlete and he's excited to take advantage of every opportunity FSU will offer him. Pressley is slated for a big year if everything falls into place. Stay tuned to NoleDigest as we track Tavares' 2008 season, as well as the rest of the team as they head into camp in a few weeks.

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