Chris Parson explains Florida State decommitment — and what's next for 4-star QB

Tom Kreager
Nashville Tennessean

BRENTWOOD – Ravenwood four-star quarterback Chris Parson has a simple message to potential college football recruiters:

Parson — a day after decommitting from Florida State — said he is "open to all schools."

"As of right now it's free game," Parson said. "I'm just looking for the best fit for me."

The best fit is no longer Florida State, his childhood dream school where he'd be a lifelong fan for the Seminoles.

Parson, a 6-foot, 200-pound athlete, had been committed to Florida State for nearly a year after committing to the ACC program July 22, 2021 before decommitting on Tuesday. He is the No. 6 college football recruit in Tennessee according to the 247Sports Composite and No. 16-rated quarterback in the country. He's the top-rated uncommitted quarterback in the country.

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"FSU was my dream school," Parson said. "I had to realize that I had to be somewhere that was the best fit for me.

"I didn't visit any schools for a very long time. Once I started exploring my options and things like that I became open minded and realized some things I needed to take into consideration. That led to me making the decision."

Florida State finished 5-7 in 2021, including a loss to Jacksonville State, an FCS program.

FSU adding second 2023 QB not issue

The FSU coaching staff chose to recruit two quarterbacks for its 2023 recruiting class, a decision they spoke to Parson about. Parson said that wasn't why he's decided to drop his commitment.

"Florida State was fully transparent on what was going on," Parson said. "I understood where they were coming from — taking two quarterbacks from the same class. I had no issue with that. They were doing what's best for Florida State at a time when I was committed for Florida State.

"They let me know what guys they were going after."

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Parson said the coaching staff told him they were courting Lausanne's Brock Glenn and Baton Rouge quarterback Rickie Collins, a Purdue commitment. Glenn and Collins also competed at the Elite 11 Finals in California.

"Brock Glenn and I have a really good relationship," Parson said of the Memphis private school athlete. "We were friends before the Elite 11. Him and I are really good friends."

Chris Parson spoke to Bryce Young

Ravenwood's Chris Parson (1) advances against MBA during the second half at Montgomery Bell Academy in Nashville, Tenn., Friday, Aug. 20, 2021.

Parson said he talked to Alabama quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner Bryce Young about his recruitment. Young was at one time committed to USC and is a California native who eventually flipped to the Crimson Tide.

"He wanted to go to USC, but he changed his mind," Young said. "He felt that was a better fit.

"He said when it comes to college and making your decision that you are the one that's going to have to live with it," Parson said. "I started thinking about it. He said at Alabama he was going to get developed at the highest level."

What's next for Chris Parson?

Parson isn't ready to tip his cap if he has a frontrunner to where he may be headed with Florida State behind him.

"Calls have been crazy (since decommitting)," Parson said. "Once I committed it had slowed down for a little bit. Things are starting to ramp up. A lot of schools have been in contact with me. 

"The next couple of weeks I'll just process everything."

Parson said he has no timetable as to when he'll commit except he plans to sign during the December early signing period, which starts Dec. 21, because he will graduate from Ravenwood at Christmas break and be an early college enrollee.

He visited Mississippi State in Starkville — where his father went to school and where his mother is from — in mid-June.

"That doesn't play a factor for me," Parson said. 

A week later, Parson visited SMU in Dallas. He played high school football in Texas as a freshman and sophomore.

"I'm familiar with the coaches that are there at SMU," he said. "Before they were at SMU they were at Miami and Miami was one of my top schools on my list before I committed last year. 

"I have a really good relationship with the staff at SMU."

Reach Tom Kreager at 615-259-8089 or tkreager@tennessean.com and on Twitter @Kreager.