Olivier Vernon has been injured the majority of his senior season, but that hasn't kept big time programs from heavily pursuing the 4-star defensive end. Vernon's commitment to Miami has been soft in nature for some time, and Florida State has been one of the programs giving him something to think about. This past weekend he was in town for an official visit as the Seminoles beat the Clemson Tigers. Vernon told NoleDigest that the visit went very well.
"The visit was a 10 and an A-plus," said Vernon of the visit. I had a great time over the weekend. I got a chance to see the players and meet all of the coaches this time. Over the summer I didn't get to do that."
Vernon said his unofficial visit over the summer was outstanding. That fact made him anticipate this visit to FSU because he was eager to see what it was like during the season. After seeing the atmosphere, as well as meeting with legendary coach Bobby Bowden, the visit was what he was hoping for.
"The only things I did different from the summer was that I got to see a game and the facilities, and I had the chance to have more one-on-one time with the coaches," explained Vernon. "It was cool talking to Coach Bowden. He was telling me that he wasn't leaving anytime soon and that he wanted me to come back for a visit with my parents. I'm thinking about doing that so I have to talk to my family about that."
"The weight room and the facilities at FSU were nice," continued Vernon on the things he saw during his visit. "Miami's are smaller than FSU's. All around FSU was mind-blowing. See that was a good thing."
Olivier's primary recruiter has been Chuck Amato. Vernon said during the visit all of the defensive coaches made sure that they spent some time with him as they showed him he is a major priority to them for this class.
"The whole defensive staff spent time with me," said Vernon. "They all want me to come in as a defensive end there. I knew where they were coming from with what they were saying. I'm a speed rusher who can get to the quarterback; that is what they like me as and I think I fit into their system."
One of the highlights of the visit for Vernon was sitting in on the defensive meetings. He said he saw some things he liked about the Seminoles' scheme, and that he saw what would be expected of him if he were to come to FSU.
"I got to watch film with the defense," said Vernon, "and that was the first time I've ever done anything like that. We broke down certain plays and I learned the expectations of the defensive ends in their defense. I like the scheme and I think I can play in that system. The defense there is full of speed so I think I'd fit in."
"Nick (Moody) showed me a good time," said Vernon. "The visit strengthened FSU's place in my top 3 and it gave me a lot to think about. The college life there…I love it. Down here Miami is a big city life. That is something I really noticed on my visit. The love the fans show to the team is something I can get used to and the atmosphere was great. I can see myself wearing that Garnet and Gold."
Stay tuned to NoleDigest as we track the rest of Vernon's senior year, as well as the rest of the recruits from the 2009 recruiting class.