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Florida steals another from Miami

GAINESVILLE -- As if tensions between Florida and Miami weren't already red hot this recruiting season, Florida has apparently steered another former Miami commitment away from Coral Gables.

First it was offensive lineman Matt Patchan of Seffner Armwood, who was considered by many to be a future Miami Hurricane. (His father and uncle played for Miami.) Now Florida's coaches have changed the commitment of Ramon Buchanan, a safety from Melbourne Palm Bay. Buchanan spurned Miami on Sunday, changing his oral commitment from the Hurricanes to the Gators after an official visit to Gainesville. Players can, of course, change their commitments 393 times until they sign a national letter of intent. The signing period begins on Feb. 6.

If anyone was watching ESPN's College GameDay basketball show on Saturday, Buchanan was the football recruit who did the Tim-Tebow-aided Gator chomp on live national television. A 6-1 safety, Buchanan is the sixth defensive back of the 2008 recruiting class to commit to the Gators. The others: Will Hill (Jersey City, N.J.), Dee Finley (Auburn, Ala.), Jeremy Brown (Orlando), Janoris Jenkins (Pahokee) and Adrian Bushell (DeSoto, Texas).

Buchanan is the second defensive back to change a commitment from Miami to an SEC school in less than a month. Patrick Johnson (Pompano Beach Blanche Ely) told Miami coaches he wanted to be a Hurricane before he changed his mind (about 5,000 times) and eventually enrolled early at LSU. (It now appears Miami knew Johnson wasn't going to qualify. Johnson's test scores were recently red flagged by the NCAA Clearinghouse.)

-jo-

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Our secondary should be covered next year. I think we have a pretty good group coming in and should push last years secondary into a good competition for starters.

Brandon Harris or T.J. Bryant would be the icing on this recruiting season for UF. I can't wait til the Gators crush UM this season.

who said da U's recruits weren't smart ?

Top-rated DB recruit Patrick Johnson calls out Urban Meyer
January 19, 2008
By Mike Strom

LSU's top-rated football recruit, cornerback Patrick Johnson of Blanche Ely High School in Pompano Beach, Fla., said he still plans to join the Tigers even though he was unable to begin school this week as expected after his ACT score was flagged by the NCAA at the request of Florida Head Coach Urban Meyer.

Johnson, the nation's top-rated defensive back and No. 2 overall defensive prospect by Rivals.com, said he took the ACT again Thursday and is awaiting results in hope of registering for the spring semester by the deadline next Thursday.

"I'm still coming to LSU," Johnson said Friday via telephone from his Pompano Beach home. "(ACT officials) are trying to get me out and get everything cleared up. I was good to go regardless. I just had to take it again for the writing portion."

Johnson said he took the ACT three times before Thursday, scoring 22 in October after 16s on his first two.

Johnson said Florida had no problem with his academic eligibility when he first scored his ACT. It wasn't until after he decided to attend LSU that Urban Meyer had one of his assistant coaches contact the NCAA. ACT officials subsequently reviewed his test results at their request and "flagged" his October score.

"I'm not upset, Urban is" Johnson said. "Florida made an issue about the ACT score. They're cowards. He had to go behind my back when things didn't go his way. But that's OK. What goes around comes around. We play them this year (on Oct. 11 at Florida)."

Johnson, who committed to LSU on Jan. 5, had expected to arrive in Baton Rouge by Wednesday to begin taking classes and participate in spring practice with an eye toward earning a spot on the two-deep depth chart.

If Johnson does not meet Thursday's registration deadline, he still can sign with LSU on Feb. 6, national signing day, in anticipation of joining the Tigers in the fall.

"Everything is going to be cleared up," Johnson said.

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