What is Florida State getting in Deondre Francois?
I was excited to have him but didn’t know him personally until he got here. I spent first couple of months just getting to know him, evaluating him. What is his ability to process information and what type of kid is he? What I found is that he’s very even keel with a high football IQ. What’s most glaring is how competitive he is. He doesn’t say much. When he does everyone listens. He’s a perfect combination of things you need to be a successful quarterback. The physical part speaks for itself. He spins it as well as any kid I have ever seen. It’s a natural spin of the football coming off his hand. He’s athletic and what I am so excited about is that the kid is a sponge. He comes into my office every day to ask for more information about our offense to make sure that he knows everything he needs to know to know our offense.
What areas have you worked on with him since he has been here?
Our offense is different than what he’s used to. We are going to put him under center a little bit. One of the things we focused on is his rhythm and his feet. He’s a great athlete and has great feet but it didn’t translate into the rhythm of the passing game. We worked a lot on that. He has to play with more consistency. I want him throwing the ball with anticipation and have some consistency with it. Those are things we work on a daily basis. I thought he made great progress this spring. In the last week or so he’s throwing so well. He looks locked and loaded and ready to go. We will continue to work on those fundamental things to be consistent throughout the year.
He’s going to another QB guru in Jimbo Fisher. How will he translate there?
I think history speaks for himself. They have had a lot of success at that position with Jimbo there. And so it’s a natural transition for him to go in there and follow in the footsteps of the guys before him. Jimbo has done an outstanding job there at that position. He comes from a system here which is going to be similar in a lot of ways of what they are doing up there, which should give him a leg up on the competition.
What will it take for Deondre to do what you did at Florida State?
You know if you are going to school there you will be in a competitive battle every single day. I think that’s one of the reasons that FSU has had success over the years. They are bringing in great players and they are competing every day in practice. In some ways look back at college career and realize that my toughest games were practices Monday through Friday. You are going against some of the best athletes in country. He’s going to have same opportunity. He is the perfect fit for what they are looking for in that offense as well as I think how he and Jimbo will play off each other.
Kai Locksley just committed and Deondre didn’t even blink an eye. Is one of the reasons you guys have meshed so well because you are both so competitive?
I don’t know any other way… do you know what I mean? It’s how I have always been and it’s how he is. That is one of the things I look for in a quarterback. From day one we have hit it off. He’s a special kid. With the announcement of another quarterback making a commitment he didn’t shy away. I was standing out in hallway and we both knew it. He said ‘lets go… I am ready to make my commitment.’ Obviously he’s not afraid of competitive. He believes in himself. He is not cocky but confident. I see the kid on daily basis. This is a special kid.
Since he got here, what have you told him about Florida State and the recruiting process?
I never specifically talked about Florida State... ever. And I did that on purpose. I am a firm believer that if each and every kid goes through recruiting process the right way their gut will tell them where to go. It was very hard for me. As much as I wanted to talk about the university, if he asked me question I gave him any knowledge I had. But we never specifically talked about Florida State. We talked about the recruiting process. We talked about things to look for. We talked about the questions to ask. We talked about many things,. It could have been one of many schools. He’s a very mature kid who went through the process the right way. He made the decision.