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Signing Day Eve

All across this land, from Maine to Maui, grown folks with jobs and responsibilities wait on the edge of sweatness to see where a bunch 18-year-olds, most of whom can't make a credible supermarket run, will decide to play football and maybe go to a few classes.

This is National Signing Day.

Throughout Wednesday, I'll be updating Twitter and/or this blog.

One recent verbal commitment not listed: Tampa Robinson wide receiver Cody Hodgens is coming as a preferred walk-on.

One last warning on reading too much into tomorrow: I'm hearing four members of the 2012 recruiting class, two or three-stars depending on who you consult, have asked for transfers or been asked to transfer. Sources close to FIU say one of the four contributed as much as he could to the football team's GPA taking a dip during the fall semester.

Now, let's hear those fax machines purr...


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Damn, David, you can't just throw that kind of stuff out there without naming names. Well, I guess you can, but it just ain't right.
It's like your boss telling you on Monday that he really needs to talk with you, then scheduling a meeting for Friday afternoon. You know it isn't good, but you don't know how bad either.

David, a very serious question for you that I'd like for you to answer with complete honesty (although I don't expect you to): if you were covering the Hurricane's instead of FIU and reported on UM players' tweets about going to strip clubs and publicly announced that you were trying to dig up dirt on the UM athletic director, do you believe you'd still be employed by the Herald before the next football season started?

P.S. I think you're probably an honest genuine guy trying to do a good job in your little slice of the world, so I'm very interested to hear your honest answer to that question knowing what you know and having walked in corridors of that place.

...or still be covering the Hurricanes as the beat writer. Just looking for your honest answer, David.

Southpaw, you're young or your memory is short -- The Herald, specifically Ken Rodriguez and UM graduate Dan LeBatard, uncovered the violations that got UM smacked by the NCAA in the 1990s. Ken was the beat guy and remained on that beat through some ugliness toward him over in Coral Gables. He didn't leave The Herald until years later when he got a chance to go back to his native east Texas as a columnist. Because of his great UM-related sources, Dan helped while still being a columnist. He's still with The Herald.

And Ray Ray Armstrong got suspended over at UM for the 2011 FSU game after a tweet that indicated dinner with an agent. Same UM reporters who've covered them for years, Manny Navarro and Susan Miller Degnan, reported that. So, uh, yeah, if I covered UM and UM players were stupid enough to tweet about taking recruits to the strip club and I found out about it the next morning, I'd blog it, be immediately asked to write a story on it, be congratulated if either went viral, and, months later, be planted in the press box with Coke and Pop Tarts at opening kickoff of the next season.

I never publicly stated I was trying to dig up dirt on Pete Garcia. I publicly stated I had asked for yearly personnel evaluations -- again, as I stated before, evaluations I asked for before I wrote what was considered a "positive" story on Pete Garcia in August -- and was told they didn't exist. As this ran counter to what I was told on and off the record by people at FIU, I grew suspicious. Any professional reporter who wouldn't in that situation doesn't have a job at The Miami Herald. I've covered this beat for 20 months. There's information about the department and about key people in the department that I should have at my fingertips. For a reporter, Gordon Gekko spoke the truth when he said, "the most valuable commodity I know of is information."

The person who runs The Miami Herald day-to-day is a Gator. My direct supervisors are grads from FIU and UCF. FIU is as tied into the local power structure as UM is. The Conspiracy Bus really doesn't have much of an engine.

Your response to southpaw was well put. I have enjoyed your coverage DJN. As an FIU alumn myself I get so tired of those conspiracy theories... Hopefully that will be the last we hear of it here.

David J Neal... You're the man

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