Monday, February 3, 2014
Five on flip watch for signing day
By Gerry Hamilton
The pressure is on for the class of 2014. The last weekend of visits is a wrap, and signing day is just two days away. For those who are 100 percent solid with their pledges, resting easy and rehearsing the national letter of intent signature is the order of the day. For those who are still second-guessing commitments, it’s pressure-packed days and sleepless nights full of family and high school coach discussions while trying to keep the remainder of the noise surrounding a decision to a minimum.
Here are five prospects in the ESPN 300 who have had second thoughts and are on flip watch as #SigningDay quickly approaches.
Virginia Tech commit and No. 117 Ja'Von Harrison (Lakeland, Fla./Kathleen): The longtime Hokies commit made official visits to Florida Dec. 13 and Florida State Jan. 17 before finishing up his officials at Virginia Tech Jan. 24. While the Hokies received the last official, the Seminoles seem poised to flip the versatile athlete, who could play receiver or safety at the next level, with defense being more likely. The loss for the Hokies would sting as Harrison was an early evaluation and commitment before the Gators and Seminoles offered, and they put on the full-court January press. For Florida State, it would be continued flexing of Sunshine State muscle, landing a prospect with size and range.
Jamarco Jones, an OSU commit since June, could cast an eye toward another B1G team.
Ohio State commit Jamarco Jones (Chicago/De La Salle): Jones, No. 74 overall, had been a lock to the Buckeyes since committing in June. That was until the decision last week to make an official visit to Michigan State over the weekend. The departure of Ohio State assistant Mike Vrabel to the NFL is at the center of Jones’ cause for pause, but Vrabel would not have been Jones’ position coach.
Florida commit J.C. Jackson (Immokalee, Fla./Immokalee): It wouldn’t be a potential #SigningDay flip story without mentioning the versatile Jackson, No. 79 overall. The onetime Florida State commit and current Florida pledge has been on campus in Coral Gables five times since committing to the Gators in June, which includes a Dec. 13 official visit. Should Jackson flip to the Hurricanes, he would be the first prospect to commit to all big three programs in the Sunshine State in the same cycle.
Florida State commit Treon Harris (Miami/Booker T. Washington): This recruitment boils down to one thing: Where does Harris, No. 163 overall, believe is his best chance to play quarterback at the next level? While Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher was the first to recruit Harris with the potential to play under center at the next level, both Florida and Miami have made strong January pitches as to his ability to play quarterback in the Gators' and Hurricanes' schemes. A Jan. 24 visit to Auburn is also in the books.
Florida State commit Dexter Wideman (Saluda, S.C./Saluda): Wideman, No. 179 overall, has been committed to the Seminoles since late July, but in recent weeks and months there has been more chatter around the talented defensive tackle signing with in-state South Carolina. Should the Gamecocks win the race for Wideman, he would help fill a void on the defensive front with the early departure of not only Jadeveon Clowney but also defensive tackle Kelcy Quarles to the NFL draft.