Posted: 11:51 pm Tuesday, February 2nd, 2010
By Jason Lieser
Everybody thinks they know, but nobody knows for sure — including me.
There will be surprises on national signing day. It is impossible to know what goes on in the mind of an 18-year-old football player. They could go to bed thinking Florida and wake up saying Tennessee.
That being said, I’ll take a shot at predicting eight of the unknowns heading into the big day:
1. Glades Central DB Travis Bell.Bell (6-2, 186, No. 7 on The Big Board) was one of several players to commit to West Virginia on a visit last September. He never budged on that promise until Marshall hired away Doc Holliday and Jajuan Seider. He committed to Marshall, but immediately backtracked and said he still was considering West Virginia.
PREDICTION: West Virginia. No offense to Marshall, but Bell is out of the Thundering Herd’s league. He had offers from many BCS schools and was Glades Central’s most pursued recruit. It is difficult to imagine him stepping down from a BCS program to Marshall. Mountaineers coach Bill Stewart has been in Palm Beach County lately and likely smoothed over any hurt feelings.
2. Atlantic WR James Louis.Louis (6-0, 185, No. 6 on The Big Board) tried to commit to the Gators in July, but they wouldn’t take him. Then he chose Ohio State. There has been recent speculation over him switching to several schools, including Virginia Tech and Minnesota.
PREDICTION: Ohio State. When Louis canceled a planned trip to Virginia Tech last weekend, it appeared to indicate he was sticking by his original choice. The Buckeyes coaches have treated Louis well and it seems like he will stick to his commitment.
3. American Heritage WR Darius Millines.Millines (6-0, 175, No. 16 on The Big Board) committed to West Virginia on the same trip as Bell. He also was with Bell when he went to Marshall. There were rumors that Millines committed to Marshall, but he and American Heritage coach Doug Socha said those reports were false. Since then, Illinois has jumped into the mix.
PREDICTION: Illinois. Millines visited the Fighting Illini last week and sounded very excited about it. Head coach Ron Zook flew down for a home visit and might have sealed Millines’ signature in the process. Illinois is a spread team and would be a great fit for him.
4. Pahokee DB Raheam Buxton.Buxton (6-1, 180, No. 35 on The Big Board) is closing out a bizarre recruitment. Despite never holding a starting spot, Miami offered him at halftime of his spring game last year. Buxton had a solid 2009 season, but the Hurricanes pulled his offer due to academic concerns.
PREDICTION: Western Michigan. Buxton visited Western Michigan last month, but has adamantly maintained that he is not committed and will not sign there. He said this week Miami is still an option, despite his coach saying there is no way that will happen. Western Michigan is his best offer and he will take it.
5. Fort Pierce Westwood WR Leon Shorter.Shorter (6-3, 175, No. 28 on The Big Board) led all big-school players with 780 receiving yards last season. Louisville was one of the first schools to offer him a scholarship, but he has been very quiet about the process.
PREDICTION: Louisville. Louisville has been there since the beginning and it is a tremendous opportunity for Shorter — as long as the offer is still there. It is possible the offer no longer stands because the school could be tired of waiting for him to commit. If Louisville is not an option, look for him to sign with Florida International, which would be a steal for the Golden Panthers
6. Glades Central DL Isiah Corbett.Corbett (6-1, 250, No. 33 on The Big Board) had 85 tackles and 10 sacks after transferring from Royal Palm Beach prior to last season. He went largely unnoticed by major college scouts until late in the season, but committed to Iowa State in December. He later visited Marshall and opened himself back up to all schools.
PREDICTION: Marshall. Doc Holliday can’t get everybody he wants, but he will add Corbett to a pretty solid group of Palm Beach County players headed to the Thundering Herd.
7. Pahokee WR De’Joshua Johnson.Johnson (5-10, 163, No. 11 on The Big Board) has wandered the commitment spectrum ever since pledging to Florida State last summer. In November, he said he was looking at Alabama and South Florida. In December he said he was locked in to the Seminoles. Yesterday he said he might sign with LSU.
PREDICTION: Florida State. Johnson likes to have fun and he’s been doing plenty of that with the recruiting process. The Seminoles are a great fit for him and his flirtations with other programs have likely been attention grabs.
8. Glades Central DB/RB Antwon Chisholm.Chisholm (5-8, 165, No. 38 on The Big Board) has two confirmed de-commitments on his record and possibly a third. He made a surprising announcement early in the football season that he was committed to Oklahoma State. That lasted a month or so before he committed to Mississippi State. Multiple Glades Central sources said last month he committed to Marshall, but Chisholm denied it.
PREDICTION: Brigham Young or Yale. I honestly have no clue. I drew those names out of a hat. If I have to be serious, I guess it’s Marshall.