The last signee to join Florida State's 2022 signing class is already soaking things up from his new team.
football Edit

Late FSU DT signee Ayobami Tifase already soaking up knowledge

He's still new to football, having only really played the sport for three years, but Florida State newcomer Ayobami Tifase can already tell how much a difference his new position coach is going to make on his career.

"I'm thrilled, I'm more than thrilled," Tifase said of FSU defensive tackles coach Odell Haggins. "I'm just excited. The things I've learned and heard about Coach Odell makes it in my mind that he's an amazing guy. And this is hearsay, but I came here and experienced it myself.

"I feel like in just a week, my work ethic has been better. I've learned so many skills, stuff that I can use to make myself so much better to be effective. ... It's amazing. And just with my daily conversations with him and everybody on the staff. You don't walk around here and nobody knows who you are. Everybody is going to greet you and say hello."

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Here's who Tifase is.

He's a three-star recruit, of Nigerian descent, who grew up in Baltimore with four older sisters. He was the final addition to the Seminoles' 2022 signing class, having committed and enrolled earlier this month.

He says he grew up in a very strict household and it was understood he would be out of the house, doing something with his life, by the time he was an adult

"As a 17-year-old coming out of Baltimore, I know how to live by myself and I know what to do," he said. "Because I've been taught that. So, it makes it beneficial to me."

Tifase says that other than one year in elementary school, he didn't really start playing football until halfway through his high school career. Before that, he was a wrestler.

So, naturally, he was accustomed to using his power, size and quickness to get leverage on an opponent.

"I just liked to slam people, to be honest with you," Tifase said.

When he transferred to a private school during high school, his wrestling career was cut short because the new school didn't have a team.

So, he turned his full athletic focus to football, where he can still use that size and quickness to get an advantage over his opponent. He just won't be able to slam them.

Tifase knows he has a lot left to learn, though.

In fact, he seems genuinely excited about redshirting this year so he can learn as much as possible about the position.

"This year is the most beneficial year for me, I believe," said Tifase, who will be an academic redshirt. "Actually, I know. It gives me so much time to get bigger, faster, stronger and more powerful than anybody else. Because at this weight, I believe I have the body size to be a threat.

"If it gives me one year to be to myself to do that, and to become two, three, four times bigger than what I am, I will take it. And I know Coach Odell will get me to where I need to be. And I know it, I don't doubt it at all. I don't need to doubt it, because I know."

During his redshirt year, the Baltimore native said, he wants to soak up as much as he can from veterans like Fabien Lovett and Robert Cooper. He says all his teammates have been helpful in the short time he's been in Tallahassee, but he expects to learn quite a bit from the more experienced players ahead of him on the depth chart.

"Since I've been here, I've been with them every single night," Tifase said. "Every day after practice talking. Talking about what I can do to get better, Just helping me. During practice, they push me harder. ...

"They keep reminding me constantly. That's what I need. Because it helps me to learn and gets my brain to function on how their level is. And that's what I want to achieve. Because they're about to leave. And with them leaving, you have me. And I need to devour everything they give to me before they leave."


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