As the always quotable T.O. would say: "Get your popcorn ready" Canes fans. Today, National Signing Day, is your birthday. Make a wish. Make 33 of them. Make 35 of them if you really want. Just cross your fingers and hope it all works out for best.
Today, I'll be making my way across Miami-Dade county to check in on potential Canes. I'm starting at Northwestern at 9 a.m with a tray full of appetizers. Then, I'm headed to Booker T. Washington at 1:05 for the main course when Brandon Harris makes his announcement live on ESPN. I'll try to bring you as many updates as I can throughout my travels. Herald.com will have updates as well.
But before it all begins I figured I'd share with you my predictions with how I think it will all end for the Canes today with kids who are either on the fence or are undecided. Since I have such a great track record, I'll warn to go ahead and place your bets the other way...
Morning announcements (between 9 and 11 a.m.)
* Tommy Streeter, WR, Northwestern. His options: UM, South Carolina, South Florida, Oregon and Boston College. My take: Spoke to him Tuesday night for about 10 minutes and came away thinking South Carolina was the school he was most impressed with. Then, when I went back and listened to the audio heard something that changed my mind. My final call: UM.
* Kendal Thompkins, WR, Northwestern. His options: UM, FIU or Nebraska. My take: I was stunned when I heard he had skipped out on his visit to UM to visit Nebraska last weekend. Then, it started to make sense after I heard Laron Byrd had committed Tuesday. To me, if Streeter ends up going with UM, then Thompkins heads elsewhere. After all, how many receivers is UM going to take? My final call: Nebraska.
* Ben Jones, OL, Northwestern. His options: UM or Clemson. My take: I've never thought for a second Jones was headed anywhere else but UM. I think he follows his buddy Brandon Washington and the rest of the Bulls. My final call: UM.
* Jeremy Lewis, DL, Palm Beach Lakes. His options: Miami, North Carolina, Clemson, Tennessee and LSU. My take: Lewis is a kid who hasn't really spoken with the media since after his visit to UM two weekends ago. He's a kid whose been a UM commitment for a long time. But the fact he took all five of his visits makes me believe he's been seriously considered bolting for someplace else. If ever there is a guy to leave Miami hanging at this point, it's this guy. Still, I think Lewis wises up at the end. My final call: Miami.
Afternoon announcements (Noon and later)
* Nick Perry, DL, Detroit King. His options: Miami, Michigan or USC. My take: Of all the kids who are uncommitted this is the one I've always thought would be the toughest for UM to snag. But I really believe Miami impressed this kid. I just think in the end his family is going to have the final say and tell him to stay home. My final call: Michigan.
* T.J. Bryant, CB, Tallahassee Lincoln. His options: Miami, Florida State, USC, Alabama, Florida or LSU. My take: Everyone keeps saying its impossible for UM to snag a kid away from the Noles out of Lincoln including my friend Charles Fishbein. Warchant.com is even predicting Bryant stays home. But something tells me part of the reason Bryant has kept such a low-profile throughout this recruiting process is because he's wanted to make a clean, quiet escape out of Tallahassee. The fact his mom is from Miami could help the Canes. My call: UM.
* Jamie Harper, RB, Jacksonville Trinity Christian. His options: Miami, Clemson, Florida State or Illinois. My take: Harper has a deep, close bond with teammate Daniel Andrews (a Clemson commitment). Even though Harper "opened" things back up after Clemson running back James Davis announced he was coming back for another year, I always thought his relationship with Andrews would ultimately push him to Tiger town. My call: Clemson.
* Ramon Buchanon, LB/S, Melbourne Palm Bay. His options: Miami or Florida. My take: Buchanon is a guy UM coaches always feared would defect to the Gators because his high school has sent some pretty big prospects Florida's way before including Joe Cohen and Reggie Nelson. Buchanon finally switched to the Gators three weeks ago, but then threw a wrench into the whole deal when he decided to keep his commitment to visit UM last weekend. He could pull the switcharoo on the Gators today. But I think peer pressure will win out. My call: Florida.
* Brandon Harris, CB, Booker T. Washington. His options: Miami, Ohio State, UCF, LSU or Florida. My take: I think Harris has tried his best to wait until national signing day, to really leave his recruitment wide open and give potential suitors a real shot. I just don't think he's ever really fallen out of love with leaving his family, friends and teammates. It just makes too much sense for him to play anywhere but The U. My call: Miami.
* Herman Davidson, S, Long Beach Poly. His options: North Carolina and UM. My take: When UM landed his teammate Vaughn Telemaque last week it basically signaled to eveyone UM was filled at its safety spot. But there are no guarantees in recruiting. So, keep an eye on Davidson. He might surprise tomorrow. My call: North Carolina.
PROGRAMMING UPDATES: I'll try to post as many audio interviews throughout the day as I come across them. I'll also be going on the Dos Amigos show tonight at 790 The Ticket at 11 p.m. to talk about National Signing Day and how the Canes fared. Be sure to also check out a podcast Larry Blustein and I plan to record Wednesday night.