Chatting With Ryan Gilliam

Lincoln High standout Ryan Gilliam followed his heart recently when he orally committed to attend Florida State next season. Gilliam will make it official on National Signing Day Feb. 5. He also hopes other area stars follow his lead and "come join us and get some more rings." Here is a conversation with Ryan.

"Little article in school newspaper that I am supposed to be the hometown hero. A lot of love, a lot of support from a lot of different people in town, in the area, about staying home. Everyone has been very supportive. I haven't heard one negative thing."

Have you been in touch with other recruits who are considering FSU?

"I am talking to those guys every day, working on those guys every day, trying to get some more teammates. I've been getting some great reactions. Some guys want to take their visits because this is a decision for the next four or five years, and you can't double-check enough. I've been getting some good reactions and I've got some reactions that that's something they don't want to do. But I welcome all the guys who do want to come on. "I think this is going to be one of the best skilled classes - receivers, defensive backs - in a long time at Florida State. They get a great class every year, but guys who can come in this year. ... mainly the area guys that can come in this year, it's tremendous. You get all those guys on one team, it's going to be hard to stop. I definitely think this is going to be one of the best skilled classes ever if everybody goes ahead and comes on in."

What position do you expect to play at FSU?

"Basically, coach Jeff Bowden and coach Andrews. ... (Andrews)wants me to play corner, Jeff wants me to play receiver. We made a deal. Whoever they sign or don't get, if it's more receivers than corners, I will play corner. If they sign more corners than receivers, than it's vice-a-versa. I don't mind what I play. It doesn't matter to me. I will do whatever it takes to get on that field."

Talk about playing in a city which features some of the nation's top recruits in players such as Ernie Sims, Antonio Cromartie and DeCody Fagg.

"It's tremendous. I think coach Lilly are going to get all four of us in. Us four by ourselves wouldn't be a bad class at all. Just the area guys. Obviously, I have some insight on some things. ... I don't want to mess any relationships. But, hey, I hope all of them come join me. I really do. I drill Cromartie every day. Ernie's real busy these days, so it's hard to get a hold of him."

Did FSU's struggles on and off the field influence your decision at all?

"There's stuff that's going to happen at every university in America. The more people want to hear about good things and bad things. It's a story, so the media is going to feed on it. It happens at every university and you are going to have guys that make bad decisions. That does not reflect the whole program and whole community of Florida Sate though. The reason why I committed when I did is at the time, I think Florida State needed good news at that time. Any good news wasn't going to hurt at all."

What kind of feeling do you get from FSU's returning players?

"They are family. The entire class, (Kendyll) Pope, (Michael) Boulware and those guys. They are hungry. They want that ring. That's their goal. I don't see no reason why they won't be in that Sugar Bowl playing for the national championship."

FSU has always been your favorite right?

"I was signing in eighth grade. They want guys who want to be there. One selling point for me is they are not going to comprise who they are or what they do for anybody."

What our your plans this spring?

"I am running track but I also plan on getting a jump start, watching film. Working out with all of them last summer. When they get ut there, working out with them makes me better. I played with 15 guys on that team, i basically know everyone."

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