When a player transfers to a community college from a power conference juggernaut, it can be quite the transition. Fortunately for John Franklin III, he will be moving to a program with a coach who may have a good understanding of where he is coming from.
Franklin III will transfer from Florida State to East Mississippi Community College, according to a report from Bruce Feldman of FOX Sports. His new quarterback coach will be former Florida State quarterback Clint Trickett. Trickett himself once transferred from Florida State, moving to West Virginia where he later became a starter for the Mountaineers. If anyone can understand Franklin III’s situation, it just might be Trickett.
Franklin III was a three-star recruit in Florida State’s Class of 2013, but he just happened to arrive at a time when a guy named Jameis Winston was taking over the starting job. Now Florida State may be seeing the starting job go to Notre Dame transfer Everett Golson, or perhaps Sean Maguire. Whatever the case, Franklin’s chances of starting in Tallahassee appeared to be limited at best. Franklin announced his decision to transfer shortly after Golson’s arrival.
Photo credit: Florida State Athletics
The first post-Everett Golson casualty is unofficially in the books.
Exactly 10 days after the former Notre Dame quarterback became a current Florida State quarterback, John Franklin‘s high school coach revealed to the Orlando Sentinel that his former player has decided to move on from the Seminoles. It’s relatively big news as Franklin had exited the spring as the unofficial No. 2 on the depth chart behind Sean Maguire, although most observers thought Franklin would be able to continue pushing for the job once summer camp kicked off.
In confirming the decision to move on, South Plantation (Fla.) coach Doug Gatewood stated that Franklin “is just looking for an opportunity” at another school. Gatewood added that he’d be open to that opportunity being at another position, although why he couldn’t play another position at FSU if he’s open to it is unknown.
Franklin was a three-star member of FSU’s 2013 recruiting class, rated as the No. 25 dual-threat quarterback in the country. Tennessee was the only other Power Five program to offer Franklin a scholarship.
After redshirting as a true freshman, Franklin appeared in two games. According to his official FSU bio, he also practiced at wide receiver in 2014.
(Photo credit: Florida State athletics)
UPDATED 2:39 p.m. ET: On Instagram, Franklin confirmed that he is indeed transferring from FSU. In addition to his confirmation, he wrote out a lengthy statement, which appears below.
I want to first and foremost thank Coach Jimbo Fisher for being the first coach to take a chance on me at playing Quarterback out of high school. He saw something in me that many other schools looked over and for that I will forever be greatful. I want to thank all the coaches for taking me under their wing and treating me as one of their own. Want to thank the one and only Nole Nation for supporting me while I was here at FSU. No matter where I end up I will always be a Nole at heart. Lastly, want to thank my teammates for being a family away from home. I’ve built relationships with yall boys that no one will ever be able to understand nor break up. I’m going to miss grinding on the field and all the love we shared together. Some people may not understand why I decided to leave, but this is my life and I’m doing what is best for me to continue reaching my dreams and making them reality. I appreciate all the love and support as I go through this transition and I’m looking forward to see what God has in store for me in the near future. Thank you.
Franklin also added a rather amusing postscript.
PS: Any schools that are interested in me or want to talk feel free to message me on any social media. I’m open to all schools right now.
While FSU coach Jimbo Fisher won’t quite anoint him as Jameis Winston’s successor, it looks like Sean Maguire is in line to be Florida State’s quarterback when the ‘Noles open the 2015 season against Texas State Sept. 5.
Fisher explained to ESPN’s Andrea Adelson why Maguire has the inside track on winning the job, which largely boils down to the New Jersey native’s experience. Maguire quarterbacked Florida State to an overtime win over Clemson last year while Winston was suspended for yelling something incredibly stupid on campus, with his 74-yard touchdown heave to Rashad Greene midway through the fourth quarter bringing the ‘Noles level.
In that game, Maguire completed 21 of 39 passes for 304 yards with two interceptions and one touchdown. Perhaps with a better grasp and more control of the offense he’ll play a less tentatively than he did against Clemson, though we don’t have much else on which to evaluate him.
Maguire appeared in three other games last year: A pair of blowout wins over The Citadel and Wake Forest, and FSU’s blowout loss to Oregon in the College Football Playoff.
Even if those three cups of coffee were his only in-game experience, though, he’d have more than the other three quarterbacks on Florida State’s depth chart. John Franklin redshirted last year, four-star recruit De’Andre Johnson enrolled early and incoming freshmen JJ Cosentino won’t get to campus until the summer.
Making matters difficult for Maguire will be the amount of turnover around him. Only four 2014 starters return on offense, with guys like Greene, Nick O’Leary and Cameron Erving all done in Tallahassee (though having Dalvin Cook around will be awfully nice). Still, ESPN ranked Florida State No. 15 in a way-too-early top 25, so there’s plenty of reason to be optimistic in Florida’s panhandle this year.
Texas head coach Charlie Strong is doing all he can to rebuild the Texas football program, and now he may have his quarterback to get things going. Kai Locksley switched his commitment from Florida State to Texas, giving Strong a huge recruit just days before National Signing Day.
Locksley, the son of Maryland assistant coach Mike Locksley, is a four-star recruit according to Rivals. The recruiting service labels Locksley an athlete, but he is expected to play quarterback for the Longhorns. Locksley had committed to the Seminoles last July, but with a crowded quarterback position in Florida State’s recruiting class and in Tallahassee, it was likely one quarterback was going to pursue a different route. This turned out to be Locksley, who now will have a chance to step in early and have an impact in Austin as Strong attempts to revive the program.
Strong did tremendous work in building the Louisville program and he had a quarterback more than capable of carrying the load the entire time in Teddy Bridgewater. It would be premature to suggest Locksley will be as good as or better than Bridgewater turned out to be at Louisville. Bridgewater was a special player and was the perfect quarterback to buy into Strong’s philosophies. If Locksley brings the same qualities to Austin, then things should be pretty fun to watch at Texas rather soon.
As for Florida State, the job to replace Jameis Winston loses one potential candidate in 2015 with Locksley going to Texas. Florida State returns Sean Maguire, J.J. Cosentino and John Franklin and will add early enrollee De’Andre Johnson and Class of 2015 commit Deondre Francois (unless he has a change of heart as well).
To say that Florida State may be at less than full strength offensively for its next game would be an understatement.
Both running back Karlos Williams and wide receiver Rashad Greene suffered injuries in the win over Wake Forest that puts their respective availabilities for the Syracuse game in doubt. The former suffered an ankle injury while the latter a concussion.
Of the two, it appears Greene has the best chance of being cleared for the Orange game.
“Rashad’s response [Monday] was really good. [He did not have any] lingering effects. He still has to go to protocol and a step process to come back,” head coach Jimbo Fisher said. “He had the symptoms of concussion and now he’ll go through the protocol and our doctor here, we have an expert here and we feel very comfortable with the hands he’s in. He’ll make all of the decisions.”
As for Williams, Fisher said “I would say yes” when asked if the back would be sidelined this weekend.
Williams is far and away the Seminoles’ leading rusher with 353 yards and five touchdowns. He’s also the team’s fourth-leading receiver with 12 catches.
Green has 38 receptions for 576 yards, more than double the team’s No. 2 receiver. He’s also four catches away from breaking the school’s career receptions leader.
In addition to the two skill players’ uncertainty, starting center Austin Barron has already been ruled out of the Week 7 game. Barron suffered a fractured arm in the Wake win and is out indefinitely.
But wait, there’s more.
Backup quarterback Sean McGuire, who started the Clemson win as Jameis Winston served a one-game suspension, will be out for at least the Syracuse game after suffering a hand injury against Wake. Winston’s backup this weekend will be either be redshirt freshman John Franklin or walk-on redshirt freshman Troy Cook, neither of whom have thrown a pass at the collegiate level.
“Sometimes the gods smile on you, sometimes they don’t,” Fisher said of the recent spate of injuries. “That doesn’t mean you still can’t have success. You’ve got to have a plan and everybody has attrition.”