Noles return to Bayside for 2014 safety

Florida State offered another top junior from Virginia on Sunday, letting Quin Blanding (Virginia Beach, Va./Bayside) know he is welcome to join the class of 2014.

The 6-foot-2,196-pound safety spoke not only with defensive line coach and regional recruiter Odell Haggins, but also had the chance to talk to coach Jimbo Fisher.

"I called Coach Haggins and he was talking to me, saying that they really liked my film and they wanted to offer me," he explained. "Then I talked to the head coach [Jimbo Fisher] and he was also saying he liked my film and that I have a scholarship offer."

The last time FSU went to Bayside High School, it turned out to be a pretty successful endeavor. A top-100 quarterback in the class of 2008, EJ Manuel is set to guide the Seminoles offense as a senior this year.

Sure, that was a long time ago. But in Virginia Beach, Manuel's name still holds some meaning.

"EJ went to Florida State from my school, so that is a good thing," Blanding said. "Just playing at the school that he came from and playing at Florida State and now they offered me, it is just a big blessing."

Blanding already holds many top-flight offers from programs like Florida, Miami, North Carolina, North Carolina State, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Tennessee, Virginia and Virginia Tech. But by joining the group, the Seminoles have provided some incentive for the junior defensive back to make a trip down to Tallahassee, Fla.

"I am looking forward to making it to some games, or make it to a game, but at this point nothing is planned right now," he replied.

Now that football practice has begun and the fall is just about to be kicked into full gear, Blanding's focus lies on his team and achieving success on the gridiron. Recruiting will take a backseat, for now.

"I am just looking to lead my team and go game by game," he said. "I am just trying to make it far into the playoffs and looking to be a team leader and have fun."