As we patiently wait for National Signing Day to arrive, and for all the big names being thrown around to announce where they will go, lets take another quick look at where the Canes currently are with their class. To start off with, I want to touch base briefly about the status of the scholarship situation in regards to over signing. I have gotten a few questions regarding this, and I want to try and clear up as much as I can about it. When beginning any recruiting conversation, you at least have to have a grasp of how the scholarship thing works, so here is a breakdown: Each team, by I believe June, can only have 85 football scholarship athletes on the team, period. You can sign more than 85 players, but only 85 are allowed to be awarded athletic scholarships (there are loopholes for purely academic scholly's, but we wont get into those). Each signing period, teams are restricted by NCAA rule to only 25 signees, although there are rules to allow for 3 extra, pushing it to 28. If you have signees that qualify to do so, they can enroll early in the first semester of the year, which allows them to be back counted to the previous year's 25 signee limit.
So what does this all mean for the Canes?
Well, in a recent interview with the Miami Herald. Al Golden said that they would be well under the 85 limit due to at least 32 kids being gone from 2011. If this is the correct number, which we will assume it is, that meas that Miami is able to fill 32 scholarship spots and still be under the 85 scholarship cap. The 2012 class currently stands at 30 kids according to Rivals.com. Technically, this class is over that per-signing year limit of 25, however since 7 of those recruits enrolled early, they count towards last years signing class, which only had 16 kids. Now, a few of the kids in this years class are not expected to qualify for school, which means that, if true, Golden could technically bring in more than the 32 spots he has open because hes planning on a few of the actual scholarships to open up. This is where people start getting upset about over signing, because you are basically planning on other kids to fail so that you can promise a spot to a highly rated recruit. While over signing garners strong opinions either way, its a practice that occurs basically everywhere, and until the NCAA puts in a set of rules to definitively stop it, it will continue. Clear as mud? Good. Now, on to the player updates.
Unranked DT commit Jacoby Briscoe recently said that he is 99% committed to Miami, and his upcoming official visit will more than likely fill in that last 1%. He had planned on visiting Texas A&M, but says he most likely won't anymore, because he is so happy with his choice to attend Miami. He stated that Cane coaches were fine with him taking the visit, but he doesn't feel it's necessary anymore. This is a great sign, because Briscoe also still has strong ties to coveted recruit Davante Bourque, who is currently committed to Tennessee, but plans on taking a visit to Miami. Briscoe says that he will still be talking to him and trying to get him to come down to Coral Gables, and Briscoe's own visit should do wonders for his ability to do so.
Miami LB commit Reggie Northrup has been sort of a quiet kid throughout his recruitment, but recently has been talking more. Unfortunately, its not all good things. He is planning a visit to FSU, who has been coming on strong as of late. While he is listed as a soft verbal to Miami, he says that he is still trying to pick between the Canes, FSU, UNC, Arkansas, and Ohio State (in no particular order). He is also planning a visit to tOSU at the end of the month, right before signing day. Let's hope that Golden and Co don't let this kid slip away, because depth at the linebacker position is badly needed, and he could be a good one.
Coach Golden and his minions have been working hard on the 2012 class, there's no doubt. They have also been spending time and blazing trails for the 2013 class, with Junior Days and visits to next year's recruits. They already list 4 early commitments from local kids, including 1 who flipped from his Auburn commitment. Jayron Kearse, Levonte Whitfield, Keith Bryant, and Alex Collins have all said they want Miami. Now, obviously next year is a long way off, and anything can change, but it is nice to see 4 kids already in next years class. They also have given out offers to some pretty good kids elsewhere, like DE/LB prospect Garrett Sickels out of New Jersey. Here's hoping that this momentum keeps up, and is backed up by strong play on the field in the upcoming season.
As always, keep checking back on The Seventh Floor for all your recruiting questions, and GO CANES!