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'CANES HOPE TOUTED CLASS BECOMES A 'FOUNDATION'

Every major conference team in the country claims victory on national signing day - it's practically required.

But Miami's 33-player haul on Wednesday is being hailed as one of the greatest classes in school history, and ESPN ranks it No. 1 in the nation.

"This class is the core, the foundation, can be the foundation of the start of something really, really special," said Randy Shannon, who went 5-7 in 2007, his first season as coach.

A school-record nine graduated high school early and are on campus, allowing them to participate in spring practice. That does not include offensive lineman Xavier Shannon, a transfer from Florida International. Shannon's son will be eligible this season and could moveup the depth chart.

A closer look

AREAS WHERE MIAMI GOT THE MOST HELP: Quarterback, receiver, linebacker, defensive tackle, safety.

AREAS WHERE MIAMI WANTED MORE: Offensive line, tight end, cornerback.

POTENTIAL IMPACT FRESHMEN: Cornerback Brandon Harris, quarterback Jacory Harris, receiver Aldarius Johnson, defensive tackle Marcus Forston, defensive tackle Micanor Regis, linebacker Arthur Brown, linebacker Sean Spence, kicker Jake Wieclaw.

BEST SIGNING DAY NEWS: When Brandon Harris signed, it made the Hurricanes' day. They were desperate for cornerback help and got a player considered among the elite in the nation.

DISAPPOINTMENTS: It was believedunlikely Tallahassee cornerback T.J. Bryant would escape the clutches of Florida State. Bryant did leave but for Southern Cal. Detroit defensive end Nick Perry also picked USC, and Jacksonville running back Jamie Harper chose Clemson. Both had Miami among their finalists.

PLEASANT SURPRISES: Receiver Tommy Streeter, linebacker Ramon Buchanan and offensive lineman Ben Jones.

ONES WHO GOT AWAY: Miami wanted cornerback Patrick Johnson (LSU), defensive tackle Corey Liuget (Illinois) and offensive tackle Matt Patchan (Florida), the son of a former Hurricane. And Ohio State came into Miami and signed two highly rated players, linebacker Etienne Sabino and cornerback Travis Howard.

RECORD HAUL: The Hurricanes signed eight players from Miami Northwestern, which finished the season ranked No. 1 in the nation by USA Today. It was similar to what Florida did last season, when it signed seven players from No. 1 Lakeland.

SWITCHES: Patrick Johnson was the only player to orally commit to Miami but sign elsewhere. But it signed four players who at one time were orally committed elsewhere: linebacker Brandon Marti (Wisconsin), safety C.J. Holton (Florida State), receiver Thearon Collier (Auburn) and Ramon Buchanan (Florida).

THE NAME GAME: One year after signing receiver Kayne Farquharson, the Hurricanes got another Kane, linebacker Zach Kane of New Jersey.

BEST NICKNAME: Quarterback Cannon Smith's name at birth: Frederick Buchanon Smith.

BREAK THE MOLD: At 6 feet 7, Taylor Cook is set to become the tallest quarterback in school history.

Name Pos. Ht./WT. School

Travis Benjamin WR 5-11/160 Belle Glade Glades Central

Arthur Brown* LB 6-1/210 Wichita (Kan.) East

Ramon Buchanan LB 6-1/180 Melbourne Palm Bay

Laron Byrd WR 6-3/205 Boutte (La.) Hahnville

John Calhoun* FB 6-2/235 Micco Sebastian River

Thearon Collier WR 5-9/165 Miami Booker T. Washington

Taylor Cook QB 6-7/230 Eagle Lake (Texas) Rice Consolidated

Marcus Forston* DT 6-2/285 Miami Northwestern

Jordan Futch LB 6-3/200 Hollywood Chaminade

Gavin Hardin LB 6-4/240 Jackson (Tenn.) Central-Merry

Antonio Harper LB 6-3/220 Memphis Melrose

Brandon Harris CB 5-11/185 Miami Booker T. Washington

Jacory Harris* QB 6-4/170 Miami Northwestern

Pat Hill* FB 5-10/245 Torrance (Calif.) El Camino CC

C.J. Holton S 6-2/195 Crawfordville Wakulla

Aldarius Johnson* WR 6-2/200 Miami Northwestern

Davon Johnson WR 5-11/170 Miami Booker T. Washington

Ben Jones OL 6-5/280 Miami Northwestern

Zach Kane LB 6-3/220 Toms River (N.J.) North

Jeremy Lewis DT 6-3/295 West Palm Beach Palm Beach Lakes

Brandon Marti LB 6-0/195 Miami Gulliver

C.J. Odom S 6-0/210 Fort Myers

Micanor Regis DT 6-3/300 Pahokee

Marcus Robinson LB 6-2/210 Homestead

Andrew Smith DE 6-3/240 Coconut Creek Monarch

Cannon Smith* QB 5-11/200 Chatham (Va.) Hargrave Military

Sean Spence* LB 6-0/185 Miami Northwestern

Tommy Streeter WR 6-4/190 Miami Northwestern

Vaughn Telemaque S 6-2/190 Long Beach (Calif.) Poly

Kendall Thompkins WR 5-10/165 Miami Northwestern

Brandon Washington OL 6-4/315 Miami Northwestern

Jake Wieclaw* K 6-2/180 New Lenox (Ill.) Lincoln Way Central

Joe Wylie S 6-2/170 Lauderdale Lakes Boyd Anderson

* Enrolled in January

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