Wharton High senior Auden Tate, a four-star football recruit and one of the top receivers in the nation, announced his verbal commitment to defending national champion Florida State on Tuesday, choosing the Seminoles over Clemson, Maryland, Florida, Michigan, Georgia and South Florida.
Tate committed during an official visit last weekend.
“I really liked Michigan,” he said. “Michigan was probably my favorite at the time but after going on a visit (to Tallahassee) and talking with the coaches, I knew then.”
Florida State has the 11th-ranked 2015 recruiting class in the nation, according to ESPN. Tate said he plans to graduate in December and enroll at FSU in time to participate in spring practice.
“They had two receivers with over 1,000 yards (last season) and one had 933, so that’s three with almost over 1,000, so they spread the ball a lot and I like that,” Tate said.
FSU coaches showed game film to Tate of former receiver Kelvin Benjamin, who was drafted 28th overall by the Carolina Panthers in May.
“They moved him inside and out. They didn’t put him at tight end and they kept him as a wideout and he’s a matchup nightmare,” Tate said. “That’s how they would use me.”
As a junior, the 6-foot-5, 202-pound Tate had 49 receptions for 815 yards and five touchdowns. He said he plans to take more official visits, including Michigan.
“They’re getting a great guy who is well balanced and will do whatever it takes to get there,” Wharton head coach David Mitchell said.
The Tampa Mustangs 18-under travel team won the ASA/USA national championship in Montgomery, Ala., going 10-0 in a tournament that consisted of 109 teams.
Coached by Jamie Boyton, the team is comprised of players from nine high schools in the Tampa Bay area and is 91-12 this season. In the championship game, Megan Kugelmann put the Mustangs ahead with a two-run homer to beat the Birmingham Vipers, 2-1
Also, the organization’s 16-under team, coached by T.J. Goelz, finished second out of 136 teams with a 7-2 record at the ASA/USA Nationals in Salem, Va.
“It was a great week for the Tampa Mustangs,” program director Ray Seymour said. “What we did was pretty remarkable considering these are college showcase kids that are all going off to college after their travel careers.”
Gary Hector, the second-leading scorer on Lennard’s state semifinal last season, signed with Saint Leo, head coach Danny Gaddis announced.
Hector averaged 14.1 points and a team-high 5.8 rebounds for the Longhorns, who made the first state final four appearance for any program in school history.