UM/FSU Rivalry Goes Beyond Field

Ryan Moore is one of several big time recruiting prospects that is strongly considering both Miami and Florida State heading into this weekend. In this article, I talk about 12 other prospects who are in a similar situation, complete with quotes from the players, and more.

The rivalry between Florida State and Miami seems to intensify more and more every year. The major reason why these two programs have been two of the best in college football over the last 20 years is because both sign some of the best prep talent year in and year out.

This year plans to be no different and while the Canes and Noles will battle on the field Saturday, they battle every day off it – for the top recruiting prospects from not only around the state, but also the entire country.

Running backs Michael Johnson and Brandon Snow have both been offered scholarships by both programs and both players plan on making official visits to both schools.

The top three wide receiver prospects in the state have all been offered by both programs and are still considering both. Miami Springs standout Devin Aromashodu is leaning more toward Miami right now, but Florida State's definitely on the back of his mind. "Florida State invited me to come to the game, and I would love to be there. It doesn't get any bigger than this," he said. "I just want to see some of the top games this year, and this would have been a great opportunity. Unfortunately, I'm unable to make it up there."

Hester agrees to the magnitude of the game. "I plan on being there for the Florida State/Miami game," Hester said. "That's going to be a great game and since those are probably my top two schools right now, it'll be real exciting for me."

Orlando's Ryan Moore has scheduled an official visit to Miami, but not Florida State. He's in the process of doing that, and obviously has both programs at the top of his list.

Tight end Lonnie Davis grew up an FSU fan, and is really looking forward to the game. "They're two of my top choices right now. I can't wait to see the game," Davis said.

Offensive lineman Heath Benedict is strongly considering both schools as well. He's so excited about the game and the rivalry that he decided to take an official visit to Tallahassee for the game this weekend. Benedict will visit Miami after the season.

There isn't a program in college football that attracts defensive linemen like the Hurricanes or Seminoles, and that's no different this year. All-Americans Marco Martin and Manuel Wright are both strongly considering both schools.

"It'll be a great game," Wright said. "But it doesn't matter to me who wins. My decision will be based on other factors."

Linebacker Ahmad Brooks is currently favoring Virginia slightly over Florida State, but he has Miami as a possibility for his fifth official visit. If the Hurricanes play well on Saturday against one of Brooks' favorites, Brooks could decide on a visit to UM. Another linebacker who will be watching very closely is North Carolina standout A.J. Nicholson, who has scheduled visits to both programs later in the year.

And going back to some in-state kids, this game should be closely watched by two of the state's best defensive back prospects. Tallahassee Lincoln's Pat Watkins will likely be in attendance and he has named UM and FSU as his two current favorites, while Miami's Glenn Sharpe is getting closer to making a decision and has the Hurricanes and Seminoles both on his mind.

Over the last 15 to 20 years, these two programs have produced some of the best games in college football. And they've both been involved in some of the best recruiting battles off the field. As you might be able to tell from the above information, that should be no different this year.

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