Florida Atlantic added a four-star recruit with a brand name to its 2021 recruiting class on Monday when ESPN 300 quarterback Shedeur Sanders (ranked No. 41) announced his commitment to the Owls.
The son of legendary lockdown Hall of Famer and ultimate football performer Deion Sanders is the highest-ranked commit to the Owls since ESPN began rankings in 2009.
— Shedeur Sanders (@ShedeurSanders) July 13, 2020
Willie Taggart — who will be taking over a program that was 11-3 under Lane Kiffin (who bounced for the Ole Miss bag) — may have found the cornerstone for his next challenge.
With a robust set of tools and special guidance from his Dad, Sanders is the No. 8-ranked pocket-passer in the class.
While his Dad elevated to iconic status by excelling on the defensive side of the ball, the 6-foot-2, 200-pound quarterback out of Trinity Christian School in Cedar Hill, Texas, threw for 3,477 yards, 47 touchdowns and four interceptions as a junior.
He had 3,088 yards, 42 touchdowns and seven interceptions his sophomore season with his father as his offensive coordinator. In addition to his defensive prowess, Deion Sanders was also a very creative and elusive offensive player, so the thought of him coordinating a high school offense is legit.
With total control of the offense, Sanders was able to showcase Shedeur. Sanders’ stature in the game also provides his son with certain resources that other players may not have. Whatever his Dad can’t teach him, then somebody like six-time Super Bowl champion Tom Brady gladly comes in and offers some assistance.
Shedeur can’t go wrong by receiving tutelage of that ilk. He’s basically bred for greatness.
— Shedeur Sanders (@ShedeurSanders) June 13, 2020
Once he gets to college, he will be running the offense for former Florida State head coach Willie Taggart, who had an inauspicious two years as head coach at Florida State, going 9-12 and basically getting run out of town before he could even impress his culture on the school.
Taggart, however, has a track record as a program builder and winning coach at Western Kentucky, South Florida and Oregon.
Sanders, a four-star recruit, turned down offers from his father’s alma mater Florida State, LSU, perennial juggernaut Alabama, and several other Power Schools to play for the less-heralded Owls, where he feels he has a shot to play early and often.
“I wanted to write my own legacy, FAU gave me an opportunity to do that! I trust the staff,” Shedeur Sanders told ESPN’s Gerry Hamilton in a text message. “[Owls coach] Willie Taggart was the first coach to offer me an opportunity to play at the next level.”
According to reports, Taggart signed his son, dual-threat quarterback Willie Taggart Jr., in the 2020 class after the program did not sign a quarterback in 2019. FAU signed three-star quarterback Cordel Littlejohn in 2018 and has starter Chris Robison on the roster for potentially two more seasons.
After adding Sanders to the class, FAU has 18 total commitments, with Sanders as the only four-star. FAU also added another son of a ‘90s football legend, tight end Michael Irvin II. Irvin transferred from Miami, where his Dad launched his future Hall of Famer career as a flamboyant All-American wideout during the Hurricanes’ Dynasty years.
Remember when Louisville elevated its profile and built its program on the back of Lamar Jackson? Well FAU has committed to Shedeur and will expect him to do big things once he arrives on campus.