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Florida State has no plans to release five-star LB from NLI

Matthew Thomas

Earlier this month, Matthew Thomas, a five-star member of Florida State’s 2013 recruiting class, told the Miami Herald he would be seeking his release from his National Letter of Intent without ever playing a down for the Seminoles. Thomas added that FSU coaches did not want to release him and were planning on visiting him to try to talk things over.

On Tuesday during ACC meetings, FSU athletic director Randy Spetman confirmed to the Tallahassee Democrat that the school had no intention of releasing Thomas, and that he would have to go through an NCAA appeals process if he wanted to get the decision overturned.

“You’d get into a situation where if you release him, then people would be doing that every year,” Spetman said. “We would be more than happy to release someone if there is a compelling reason.”

Finding one is probably going to be difficult for Thomas if he decides to go through the appeals process. Thomas said in a February interview with 247Sports that he originally planned to sign with USC, but his mother would not sign off on the NLI with the Trojans. So, Thomas signed with FSU instead, essentially at the request of his mother.

Thomas has expressed interested in transferring to either USC or Georgia.

So while “my mom made me do it” may not be a good enough reason to get Thomas his release, it is where the responsibility of this mess currently lies regardless of whether the mother’s intentions were legitimate, or something more insidious.

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23 Responses to “Florida State has no plans to release five-star LB from NLI”
  1. cowbulls says: May 14, 2013 3:11 PM

    Wow, when did Sabin take over at FSU? This sounds like the evil one.

  2. be4bama says: May 14, 2013 3:22 PM

    cowballs, I didn’t see Saban’s name mentioned in the article. You must be hatin on all things BAMA.
    ROLL TIDE

  3. donovandancy says: May 14, 2013 3:23 PM

    OR you can be responsible and read his mother’s comments on her preference on NSD.

    She didn’t like the type of attentions Thomas was getting at USC, especially regarding the people he would be around there. She was worried he would go to USC and get into trouble because of bad influences and felt the coaching staff would not keep a tight line on keeping Thomas out of trouble.

    One of the biggest reasons he does not like FSU is the very same scene that would get him in trouble at USC isn’t present at FSU regarding both distractions at USC, and people he knows who are at that school. Therefore she wanted him closer to home, closer to her and his mentor.

    If you had bothered to actually check the situation out you would see this is a situation where he may rail against it now, but will thank his mother profusely later for this decision.

    As for UGA, there is a girl there. Same old story.

  4. woebegong says: May 14, 2013 3:27 PM

    I can’t see what FSU gains by trying to keep a kid at their school, that doesn’t want to be there. He can simply go to Jr. college for a year, or even someplace like GA. Military Academy and do some work for a year on his academics as well as play football for them. Then next year, he can sign with who he wants to, and play in the fall. Is FSU willing to let him sit in class and pay for his education without him playing football for them? It seems a little counter productive to me, but either way, there are other ways around it for the young man.
    I think it is just a poor decision on the schools part. Nothing is going to be gained out of it, except to hurt the kid really.

  5. Ben Kercheval says: May 14, 2013 3:34 PM

    OR you can be responsible and read his mother’s comments on her preference on NSD.

    —————

    OR you can read the last line of the post again and actually comprehend words for a change.

  6. jimmy53 says: May 14, 2013 3:45 PM

    When he signed his LOI (no matter the reason) he filled a scholarship spot that could have gone to someone else just as deserving. You don’t get to back out of that without any repercussions. And Spetman is right, if FSU lets him out of his LOI this would happen more and more at other schools, and recruiting would never end.

    so perhaps a simple “thanks FSU, for handling this the right way” will suffice…

  7. donovandancy says: May 14, 2013 3:51 PM

    OR you could read more of her comments and get a bigger picture of what she is actually thinking, or is noles247 the only source out there?

    OR I could read the last line of the post over and over, and still have the same point:

    “So while
    (1)“my mom made me do it” may not be a good enough reason to get Thomas his release,
    (2)IT is where the responsibility of this mess currently lies regardless of whether the MOTHER’S INTENTIONS were legitimate,
    (3)or something more insidious.”

    1- Mom made me do it is not a good enough excuse for the NCAA. —-yup, I agree.

    2- “responsibility” rests with mother, got it, we’re focusing on mean ole mom.

    3- Are they insidious? Lets see, the player hasn’t suggested she doesn’t have his best interests at heart. The mom has given good reasons for her decision, which are decidedly non-insidious. The school has decided in line with what is best for Thomas as well as the school itself. Perhaps conspiring to keep a young man out of a bad situation is “insidious”. Ooh I know, perhaps the school is plotting with his mother and mentor to have him . . . GRADUATE too!!!!!!
    So the only thing insidious here is your analysis, which makes an unnecessary, illogical jump from “MT signed where his mother said she would let him” to “perhaps this is an evil plot by his mother, mwahahaha” Show some pics of his mother driving a Benz, or perfecting her army of robo-zombie chickens before you insinuate on her “dark side.:

  8. bigcalidawg says: May 14, 2013 3:51 PM

    Thats ghetto

  9. bigcalidawg says: May 14, 2013 3:53 PM

    Im sure future recruits are pulling up a chair for this one.

  10. donovandancy says: May 14, 2013 3:54 PM

    “When he signed his LOI (no matter the reason) he filled a scholarship spot that could have gone to someone else just as deserving. You don’t get to back out of that without any repercussions. And Spetman is right, if FSU lets him out of his LOI this would happen more and more at other schools, and recruiting would never end.

    so perhaps a simple “thanks FSU, for handling this the right way” will suffice…”

    I dont know jimmy, it may be part of their insidious plot to get players to play where they give their word to play. Sounds pretty evil considering the other players that wanted to have the same chance at FSU but couldn’t because he gave his word. I mean really, for FSU to be good they should not let any players have scholarships.

  11. bigcalidawg says: May 14, 2013 3:57 PM

    How the hell is this kid going to take other visits if hes no longer welcome home? This kids stuck between Mom and the NCAA. Think of anything more dramatic?

  12. bigcalidawg says: May 14, 2013 4:04 PM

    How many 18 year olds are sure of anything? Kid has the right to leave any school, at any time, for any reason. Im not saying its right, or wrong, but FSU does not own the kid…his mom does. Thats what messed him up.

  13. woebegong says: May 14, 2013 4:05 PM

    Again, I repeat. Who benefits from this whole deal? Not the school certainly and surely not the student athlete. With comprehension also goes a little reasoning as well. Sometimes you just have to take it on the nose. If he will not play for them, they have lost the spot either way for this year, so what do they gain? You can have an open scholarship to use for an early signer next year or waste it this year on a kid that will not play for you. Comprehend that if you will. To prevent future problems like this, just change the LOI a little to make sure the kids understand that if they change their mind after they sign, they have to sit out, say a certain amount of time or maybe even not be able to get a scholarship to another Div. 1 school. Right now though, that doesn’t exist, so this will just be a loss, no matter what, in most likelihood for FSU.

  14. ramsyanks says: May 14, 2013 4:08 PM

    Man, Governor Christie is everywhere!

  15. Ben Kercheval says: May 14, 2013 4:34 PM

    OR you could read more of her comments and get a bigger picture of what she is actually thinking, or is noles247 the only source out there?

    OR I could read the last line of the post over and over, and still have the same point:

    “So while
    (1)“my mom made me do it” may not be a good enough reason to get Thomas his release,
    (2)IT is where the responsibility of this mess currently lies regardless of whether the MOTHER’S INTENTIONS were legitimate,
    (3)or something more insidious.”

    1- Mom made me do it is not a good enough excuse for the NCAA. —-yup, I agree.

    2- “responsibility” rests with mother, got it, we’re focusing on mean ole mom.

    3- Are they insidious? Lets see, the player hasn’t suggested she doesn’t have his best interests at heart. The mom has given good reasons for her decision, which are decidedly non-insidious. The school has decided in line with what is best for Thomas as well as the school itself. Perhaps conspiring to keep a young man out of a bad situation is “insidious”. Ooh I know, perhaps the school is plotting with his mother and mentor to have him . . . GRADUATE too!!!!!!
    So the only thing insidious here is your analysis, which makes an unnecessary, illogical jump from “MT signed where his mother said she would let him” to “perhaps this is an evil plot by his mother, mwahahaha” Show some pics of his mother driving a Benz, or perfecting her army of robo-zombie chickens before you insinuate on her “dark side.

    ——————————
    TL;DR

  16. paulhargis53 says: May 14, 2013 5:26 PM

    Really Ben too long, didn’t read?

    I actually had to look that dumb crap up.

    You’re to good to read his rebuttal?

    That’s partially what’s wrong with this whole NBC site, the “writers” think they are above the commenters.

    You’re pretty condescending, circa copy and paste from other sources “writer”.

  17. mjrcu says: May 14, 2013 5:42 PM

    I’m surprised there is this much discussion on this. It is pretty simple:

    Thomas is offered a scholarship at FSU. On NSD he can accept officially or continue to wait and decide later. He is a 5 star, teams would find room if need be. Thomas signs a contract accepting the offer in return for a his college expenses paid for.

    He now wants to go to another school. He can do so and can play immediately if he pays his own way or can sit out a year and receive another scholarship at another school. FSU lost the ability to sign a fall back on NSD and Thomas agreed to the terms for a spot.

    Him being released pretty much voids the process and will extend recruiting pretty much up to the first day of classes. Thomas basically wants all the benefits without putting up something on his end. That’s life

  18. normtide says: May 14, 2013 6:32 PM

    If FSU releases him, it sets a precedent. Next time a kid doesn’t get playing time, he will want a release. 18 year olds can join the military, they are expected to keep their word. Every 18 year old out there can make decisions that effect their lives. If anything, the NCAA should drop their age requirements for a LOI. These kids are far to coddled anyway.

  19. bigdinla says: May 14, 2013 6:47 PM

    Donovan fancy pants,

    Relax and stop acting like Ben is making a personal attack on you.

    As to the point of the story; FSU can refuse to release the kid, but they can’t force him to play or enroll in classes. I understand the concern over setting a bad precedent, but why waste a scholly on a kid that does not want to be there. This is not because FSU did anything wrong, but it jut doesn’t make since to keep this kid where he doesn’t want to be. This is the problem with kids letting their parents choose for them. Of course I wouldn’t want my boy playing for Kiffin either.

  20. goodfieldnohit says: May 14, 2013 10:19 PM

    I have no dog in this fight, but the moment Kercheval uses the TL;DR line, he becomes just another idiot Internet poster.

    And oh yeah, that dude is owning your sorry ass right now, Ben.

  21. gamustangdude says: May 16, 2013 11:59 AM

    Ben Kercheval says:May 14, 2013 3:34 PM

    OR you can be responsible and read his mother’s comments on her preference on NSD.

    —————

    OR you can read the last line of the post again and actually comprehend words for a change.

    ________________________

    OR it looks like someone needs to grow thicker skin if he/she wants to be a writer. (I understand your name is masculine but your actions are feminine).

  22. 32stork says: May 17, 2013 6:49 PM

    Coaches do this all the time. Why should they be allowed and not players? The fact is that kids do this all the time: don’t like where they are for whatever reason and schools release them…..without an exodus starting. The FSU AD is grasping at straws for a reason to keep him.

  23. donovandancy says: May 26, 2013 9:26 PM

    DNR means did not read, DR? Maybe you mean “cannot read?” Would make sense considering how far apart your version is from realty. Later!

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