Matthew Thomas wants out of his letter of intent to Florida State University (FSU). That’s the short version of this breaking, and continuously developing, story.
The long-version is as follows: Thomas, a 5-star linebacker, says he only made the decision to sign with Florida State because his mom was pressuring him and the spotlight on Signing Day (Thomas announced his decision on ESPN) was too bright to step away from so that he could truly mull over his options.
“What happened was on Signing Day [was] I wasn’t sure who I wanted to sign with. I had issues with different schools. But when I told my mom I didn’t want to sign with anybody and wait and give it a few days she said I couldn’t do that. She said, ‘FSU is a good school – pick them. It’s close to home.’ I wasn’t agreeing with it. But I felt like I was being disrespectful to her if I didn’t sign. So I made her happy.”
Thomas said the pressure of having already committed to make his college announcement live on ESPN also made things tougher. He said he has spent the last few months trying to convince himself Florida State was the right choice, but it just hasn’t felt right. (Manny Navarro, Miami Herald).
“My dad talked to me and gave me some facts about the situation,” Thomas said. “If I tried to go to a school in FSU’s conference I would have to sit out a couple years. But that’s not what I want to do.
“I’ve been in Miami all my life. Georgia needs linebackers. It’s a big program. I have family in Georgia. USC, growing up I never thought I would have an opportunity that big. I just want to go have fun and play football.” (Manny Navarro, Miami Herald)
You’d have to figure that Georgia, should Thomas have the opportunity, would at least consider entertaining Thomas as a potential addition to their 2013 signing class—especially with the need for linebackers being so obvious—however, I would have to give a little pause to being too quick to accept Thomas under these particular circumstances since it’s hard to know how FSU will ultimately handle his release.
That said, how likely is it that he would even end up at Georgia? Sure, he mentions the Dawgs in the interview, but Southern California is every bit as likely a destination given his desire to get as far away from home as possible (plus, I seem to recall him canceling his official visit to Georgia at the last minute in the days leading up to Signing Day).
In any event, it should be an interesting development to follow over the next few days—or weeks—as the longer he holds out on attending classes at FSU, the more pressure FSU coach Jimbo Fisher will be under to take some sort of action.