Expectations of a return to dominance for the Florida State Seminoles in 2012 got a boost Thursday with news that their leading pass rusher, junior defensive end Brandon Jenkins, is returning for his senior season.
John Crist, Editor-in-Chief of NoleDigest.com is reporting that the Seminoles' star is returning after speaking with Jenkins' mother. Felicia Jenkins is quoted as saying, "He took all of that information and we all thought he was still going to go but he decided to stay."
The 6-3, 265 pound Jenkins was viewed by NFLDraftScout.com as the latest undersized Seminole pass rusher whose best opportunity in the NFL might be in switching to outside linebacker for a 3-4 club. He was graded as a possible second round choice and as NFLDraftScout.com's No. 7 outside linebacker prospect.
Jenkins exploded onto the scene in 2010, recording 56 tackles and tying Troy's Jonathan Massaquoi for second in the country with 13.5 sacks. Clemson's Da'Quan Bowers led the nation with 15.5 sacks and he did it in 13 games compared to Jenkins' 14.
With opponents now game-planning against his speed, Jenkins saw his numbers dip in 2011. He totaled 41 tackles and eight sacks as a junior but still was recognized as a Second Team All-ACC pick.
With an extra year to develop his strength and flexibility, Jenkins should prove one of the nation's most feared pass rushers in 2012. He'll be aided by the usual Florida State talent, including intriguing Berlin, Germany native Bjoern Werner, who finished second on the team to Jenkins with 11 tackles for loss and seven sacks in 2011.