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January 3, 2013
It didn't take long for Florida State to get back in the recruiting saddle.
Less than two days after a 31-10 win over Northern Illinois in the Orange Bowl, FSU landed a commitment from Pensacola Catholic (Fla.) four-star inside linebacker Delvin Purifoy.
The 6-foot-2, 228-pounder becomes the first linebacker and the seventh overall commitment in the Seminoles' 2014 recruiting class.
"Just the strides that they're making and the people they are adding to their staff, I already like the coaches like friends," Purifoy said of picking FSU. "Also my family can see me play in college. Overall, that's what I liked most."
Recruited by FSU offensive line coach Rick Trickett, Purifoy had FSU as his leader entering the fall. Playing middle linebacker in the Crusaders' 4-3 scheme, Purifoy tallied 116 tackles and two sacks for the Crusaders on the way to an 8-4 season and a trip to the second round of the Class 3A playoffs.
"Delvin has a great combination that a lot of teams are looking for, especially in second-level defenders," Catholic High head coach Greg Seibert said. "He has great size and he has great speed. He can run. Even your pro-style offenses in college now, you've got to be able to run. He's extremely fast sideline to sideline and he's very physical at the point of attack."
Purifoy showed his speed when he was ran a 4.7 40-yard dash during a Nike SPARQ Camp in Mobile, Ala. This past season, two of Purifoy's most impressive performances came against Madison County, where he faced off against 2013 FSU commitment Ira Denson and the eventual Class 3A runner-ups. Catholic lost to the Cowboys 29-28 in overtime during the regular season and lost 17-14 in the second round of the playoffs.
Trickett began recruiting Purifoy during his sophomore year and Florida State was the first BCS conference school to formally offer. Seibert said that Purifoy's relationship with Trickett played a key role in the decision to pledge to the 'Noles on Thursday.
"Rick is extremely up front, he's extremely easy to deal with and he's very, very good about laying out what's expected from a recruit at Florida State," Seibert said. "The way he approached it was love us or hate us, this is what it is. Delvin appreciated that."
Purifoy currently holds offers from FSU, South Florida, South Alabama and Tennessee but has received heavy interest from Florida, Alabama and South Carolina among others. If Purifoy sticks with his commitment, it will be a meeting of two of his main recruiters; New FSU defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt - who recruited the Pensacola area as the secondary coach at Alabama - had made contact with Purifoy while with the Crimson Tide. Alabama had not officially offered yet, however.
Seibert said the other key factor that swayed Purifoy to Tallahassee was location. He told Rivals.com in May that he preferred to stay close to home.
"I think the greatest mitigating factor is that he's close to his family and Tallahassee is three hours away," Seibert said. "I think that was important to him to have his family have the ability to have this next experience as he sees it through."
Purifoy is a cousin of current University of Florida sophomore cornerback Loucheiz Purifoy, who starred at Pensacola Pine Forest High.