Steward Enjoys Junior Day

Tony Steward is arguably one of the top linebackers in Florida for 2011. The punishing linebacker was at FSU this weekend for Junior Day. NoleDigest caught up with him after the event to get his thoughts on the visit and to see where he's at with his recruitment at this time.

Pedro Menendez standout Tony Steward is a ferocious linebacker who brings it every time he hits the field. His ability to close on the ball and make plays from his position is what makes him a recruit to keep an eye on in 2011.

Saturday the standout linebacker was at Florida State to check out their Junior Day. Steward told NoleDigest that he's been to FSU several times already, but this time something was different.

"I enjoyed the visit a lot," said Steward. "I didn't expect to see how organized the new coaching staff was, though. I liked how everyone embraced each other. It was better than I thought it would be. Just how open the coaches are and the players are were nice. They act like they actually care about you."

One aspect about the visit that impressed Steward was having 4 current players speak to the group of recruits in attendance. Christian Ponder, E.J. Manuel, Greg Reid and Lonnie Pryor were the players who took questions from the recruits and talked about why they chose the Seminoles.

"The coaches and players talked about change which was good," Steward said, "and it is something you can see. It was cool hearing from guys who've been in our shoes talk about why they chose FSU. You could see the chemistry there. I especially liked it because sometimes coaches will tell you one thing and the players another, but the players and the coaches all talked about the direction the team is heading."

Tony said on his visit he spoke to several coaches throughout the day, but he spent most of his time with Coach Fisher, Coach Hudson and Coach Haggins.

"I spent time with Coach Haggins because he is my primary recruiter, and I also spent time with Coach Hudson and Coach Fisher throughout the day," explained the standout linebacker. "Coach Hudson was talking to me about position and schemes they like for me if I were to choose them. He said they like me as a "mike" or "will". I can play all 3 positions but I will play whatever the coaches want me to. Of course talking to Coach Fisher was great. He is excited about the players and the direction of the program. I am comfortable with him."

"Some of the things that really stood out to me were how the coaches really care about the recruits," continued Steward. "How they want you to get your schoolwork right first. I like how the coaches care about the athletes and how they had the players come out and talk to us and give us their point of view about the transition."

Steward admittedly says he is a huge FSU fan and that getting an offer from them is a dream come true, he is going to stay open to the process.

"I feel real strong about Florida State because it was childhood favorite," said Steward. "I grew up liking the Garnet & Gold and it's a dream come true to have an offer from them. I will not say though that I have a top school, but FSU is up there in the top 2 with Florida because I have visited there. I haven't visited Clemson yet. I think I'm going to go through the whole process. I don't plan on making an early decision because I'm still wide open but I am very interested in Florida State."

Steward plans on making a visit to FSU sometime in the summer, most likely for Showtime.

Schools that have offered at this time are FSU, Florida, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Clemson, South Carolina, Texas Tech, Rutgers and North Carolina.

**Steve Chase contributed to this update.

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