Up Close With Ernie

What did Ernie Sims say on Wednesday following his decision to sign with FSU? Click here to read the entire transcipt. "I am very excited this is all over with, I couldn't do homework at night. I can finally get my grades back up. I can finally just relax. I can do regular things that a teenager can do at night on weekends, go hang out with friends, I was too tied up in college recruiting and everything. Now that this is over I feel relieved. It's like a burden off my heart right now."

Here is the transcript from Ernie's interview with the media, including TheTerritory, Wednesday morning. This is an unedited version.

"I just basically had to review my pros and cons [of each school] and I narrowed it down and I decided last night."

DECIDING FACTOR? I would have to say it was probably a coaching matter. Me and other players had talked and we made the decision. Cromartie, DeCody Fagg, we had no concerns about coaches and we just made the decision on that."

SO CROMARTIE'S COMING TOO? "I'm not gonna say, he has to make his own choices, but for what we talked about, I'm pretty confident."

OLDER BROTHER: "That means a lot to me, my older brother. I'm representing Mike and everything."

WHERE YOU WANT TO PLAY: I think I've decided I want to play linebacker at Florida State.

DECIDING FACTOR, AGAIN? Last ngiht around 11 o'clock, I based it on coaching, I was talking to some coaches last night and I realized florida state is the place for me. They got a new linebackers coach, Coach Steele, and he's a great man. He loves the Lord and I love the Lord, he loves animals and I love animals, so it was kind of a match, so I kind of went with my heart.

FACTOR DR. CAMPS PLAY ON YOU? I have been over to his house several times, and he told me he wants me to go wherever's best for me and I went where I wanted to go.

HOW MUCH DID THIS PROCESS WEAR YOU OUT? Of course all this means wear and tear on you. You got people calling you every night. You got internet services calling you, coaches call you, newspapers call and want to come to your house. My dad helped me out a whole lot with that. He basicall screened all those calls and everything and helped me out. Without a dad and without a family like that I don't see how you can go through it.

HOW MUCH YOUR DAD PLAYING FOR FSU WEIGHING ON IT? My dad told me, "son, I want you to go wherever you want to go, wherever is best for you, and he really, I could see in his heart he really wanted me to go to Florida State. But as a father he had to tell me, 'son I want you to go where you want to go.'' But when I told him I was going to florida state last night, I mean, it was crazy around the house, my dad was running around the house, he was like "I couldn't see my son [not] playing for Florida State.'' So it was a great time last night.

DID YOU CALL THE COACHES last night?

Yeah, I called coach Billy last night. He was very happy, very excited.

COACH BOWDEN'S AGE AND OTHER NEGATIVES ENTERED YOUR MIND?

I THINK all the Florida schools are gonna have a great recruiting class this year, for the next couple years all Florida schools are gonna be strong, very strong, they got all kinds of recruits, I think especially Florida. Florida is gonna have a great recruiting class and it's gonna be a battle between those three schools, this year, next year and for three years.

DID YOU BUY INTO THE RUMORS?

Of course, I live in Tallahassee, I'm gonna be the first person to hear it, so I kind of blocked it all out. I went with my heart. I didn't want to get into all of that. I just went where I feel like I should go.

HOW MANY SCHOOLS WERE YOU REALLY WEIGHING AT 10:45 LAST NIGHT?

I based it down to Florida and Florida State.

WHAT PUT FLORIDA BACK INTO THE PICTURE? Florida, they had these coaches I really liked. But when they had, brung in these new defensive coordinators, I didn't think they was the style for me. I didn't that was the right kind of person I wanted to be around. I didn't think I wanted to be around those coaches coaching me, so that's what led me to Florida State -- and Coach Steele.

DDID BOWDEN SAY ANYTHING THAT HELPED YOU MAKE THE DECISION?

Not really, coach Bowden was a straight-up man with me, he told me I would have a great opportunity to come in and showcase my talent.

PREFERENCE FOR INSIDE OR OUTSIDE?

I Think I'm gonna play outside.

YOU ENCOURAGING BOULWARE TO MOVE TO SAFETY? Well, matter of fact, on a visit, me and Boulware, we rode around in a truck and talked for a long time. Basically he just told me, he was in the same situation I was in, because his brother went there and they thought he was supposed to go there. And my parents, they were supposed to think I'm supposed to go there, so I'm in the same boat he in. basically he told me go wherever your heart leads you and that's where I went. My heart led me to Florida State. I got family, I got friends, all at Florida State. They love Florida State, so I'm here.

DID YOU HAVE A FLORIDA HAT READY?

(shakes head no)

HOW TOUGH HAS IT BEEN?

I'M VERY excited this is all over with, I COULDn't do homework at night. I can finally get my grades back up. I can finally just relax. I can do regular things that a teenager can do at night on weekends, go hang out with friends, I was too tied up in college recruiting and everything. Now that this is over I feel relieved. It's like a burden off my heart right now."

Typical Day: "It was crazy. On a heavy night it would probably be three coaches a night. The day before I went to Florida State (visit), I flew in 2 a.m. in the morning from my (senior) skiing trip, at 8 a.m. I talked to the Florida coaches. At 10 a.m., coach Richt came to my house. At 3, the Auburn coaches walked in as soon as they left and then I had to go to Florida State at 5. That was the most hectic day I had. I really am (relieved)."

Will you wear No. 34?

"I want to wear it because I want to be like Herschel Walker or Bo Jackson or whoever. But I want to wear it because my older brother wore it in high school and of course he went to Florida State. I want to symbolize him."

On local pressure

"As you can see, everybody wanted me to go to Florida State. I had a whole bunch of pressure on me to go to Florida State. And, believe it or not, I had a whole bunch of pressure on me to go to Georgia. Everybody wanted me to go to Georgia. Really, my family told me to go where I want to go, what's best for me. I wanted to go to Florida State because it's the best place for me, it really is."

Important on hiring coach Steele

"It was very important. Not to say anything bad about coach Kines or anything, but I have talked to players -- I am going to talk to players and they are going to tell me the truth -- and they had told me coach Kines was not the right coach to play for. He just wasn't that the right coach. When I heard that, that kind of steered me from Florida State because in my heart I think I want to play linebacker. When coach Steele came in, it changed my mind."


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