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Top-12 Center Has Chosen the 'Noles

An elite talent is headed to Tallahassee.


Florida State has landed another lengthy seven footer, as John Butler has chosen the 'Noles. This is a huge get for the 2021 class for Leonard Hamilton and staff. Check out SI's exclusive interview with Butler

Original Article (Published July 27): 

Florida State basketball already has a commitment from South Carolina's 2021 prospect, Bryce McGowens-- but the Seminoles aren't done with the Palmetto State. Blue-chip center John Butler is the state's No. 2 recruit; he's a Seminole target who's announcing his collegiate choice on Wednesday. 

And the 'Noles look like they're in the driver's seat for his commitment. Butler (7'1, 190) is the country's No. 12 center and the No. 57 prospect in the nation. A four-star talent, Butler outlined his top six recently, which, in addition to FSU, includes Alabama,  South Carolina, Georgia Tech, Vanderbilt, and Wake Forest. He also has offers from Tennessee, Clemson, Virginia Tech, Baylor, and others. 

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The Seminoles have been in on Butler for a while, having offered him in early July of 2019, and they got him on campus a couple months later. He's also visited the Tigers, Gamecocks, and Yellow Jackets, making the short trips from his home in Greenville, SC, where he attends Christ Church Episcopal Church School. He's coached by his father, John Butler, Sr. 

Butler's commitment would boost FSU's 2021 recruiting class nicely. The Seminoles are currently No. 7 in the country, behind Villanova, Baylor, Ohio State, USC, Louisville, and Michigan. A commitment from Butler, as things stand now, would vault the 'Noles to the No. 2 spot, just tenths of a point behind 'Nova. 

Butler is an absolute eraser on the inside, and it's impressive how he moves off the ball defensively to put himself in position to use his impressive length to help. He reminds me of Jonathan Isaac, as he doesn't just rely on his size defensively, displaying solid lateral movement and using his feet well. On the offensive end, Butler is a matchup nightmare, as he can hut jumpers off the dribble and pull up to stroke the three. He's also a skilled passer and can even bring the ball up the court, making him an ideal fit in Leonard Hamilton's largely positionless offense. 

Be sure to check back with us, as we'll update this piece when Butler announces his decision.