National signing day started out with a bang for Al Golden and his Miami Hurricanes. Tracy Howard, the number one cover cornerback in the nation and a Miramar High star, surprisingly picked the U over both FSU and UF after only making his first official visit to the school last weekend. The coup has helped the Canes move into the top ten of ESPNU's recruiting class rankings.
"I've chosen Miami because it's the best overall pick for me from an academic standpoint and opportunity standpoint. Playing early is a big part of it," Howard said this morning while making his announcement. "Why not stay in my hometown, win in my city. I'm ready to rock with Miami."
In addition to UF and FSU, Howard also weighed interest from LSU and Alabama. At the end of the day, Howard decided to stick close to home and join several other local friends in Coral Gables, a factor that has always given the Canes an edge with local recruits.
The 2012 signing class is Golden's first complete effort at assembling a class, and the looming possibility of NCAA sanction hadn't made things much easier for him. Though, Golden has managed to assemble a quality class considering.
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The Canes signing class is also highlighted by Randy "Duke" Johnson, the top-rated, all-purpose back by Rivals.com and a Miami Norland grad. In addition, the team also has commitments from four-star defensive end/outside linebacker Tyriq McCord, Raphael Kirby, four-star offensive lineman Ereck Flowers, four-star defensive back Deon Bush, and four-star athlete Anjelo Jean-Louis.
Though, the Canes had a lot of roster spots to fill and have taken on a lot of lesser recruits and players who hadn't received attention from any other major programs. Golden is betting that he's found a few diamonds in the rough.
Avery Young, an offensive lineman out of Palm Beach Gardens, could also be considering the Canes and is set to make his announcement at 2 p.m.