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February 6, 2008

Rivals5: Signing Day surprises

Rivals.com Team Recruiting Rankings | Commitment lists | Signing Day Wire

The one thing you can expect on Signing Day is the unexpected, so what were the big surprises this year?

Rivals.com recruiting analyst Barton Simmons takes a look at five of the most surprising events of the day.

Rivals5: Signing Day surprises
1. T.J. Bryant
Lincoln (Fla.) Tallahassee defensive back T.J. Bryant had waited a long time to talk publicly about his recruitment, and on Wednesday afternoon he finally did. The Rivals100 cornerback put on a Southern California hat, shocking many - including his hometown school of Florida State.

Bryant cited the depth chart as the main attraction.

"All of the coaches say you can come in and compete, but at USC I've been able to see that every year," Bryant said.

2. Sedrick Johnson
Sedrick Johnson, a 6-foot-4 200-pound wide receiver out of Arp, Texas, had been committed to Texas A&M since the summer. However, some recent interaction with the Iowa State coaching staff clearly left an impression. On Wednesday afternoon the Rivals250 prospect pulled a switch and said he will be a Cyclone and not an Aggie.

Though he had made an official visit to Iowa State late in January, he had given no indication that the Cyclones were a serious contender heading into Signing Day. Johnson becomes the top recruit in the Iowa State class of 2008.

3. Florida switches
After making a name for himself turning kids late in the process and pulling Signing Day surprises, Urban Meyer got a little taste of his own medicine on Wednesday.

The Gators lost two recruits, offensive lineman Ricky Barnum and linebacker/defensive back Ramon Buchanan, on Signing Day.

Barnum enjoyed his recent trip up to Michigan and signed with the Wolverines. Buchanan, who had previously decommitted from Miami to commit to Florida, reversed his decision once again and will be a Hurricane.

4. Dwayne Allen reversal
For a long time, tight end Dwayne Allen had been planning on being a Bulldog for the University of Georgia. He had entertained overtures from Florida State as well as others, but on Monday Allen seemingly ended his recruitment and confirmed his commitment to Georgia.

Apparently he had a change of heart.

On Wednesday morning Allen switched his commitment to Clemson and signed with the Tigers.

5. Michigan moves
Longtime Michigan commit Sam McGuffie initially opted out of signing his LOI with the Wolverines on Monday because of his rising interest in Cal. However, he finally signed his papers later in the afternoon. While McGuffie was wavering, Michigan was busy.

All-purpose running back Michael Shaw switched his commitment from Penn State to Michigan on Signing Day and will join his teammates Brandon Moore and previous Purdue commit Roy Roundtree in Ann Arbor.

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