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Monday, January 28, 2013
Vandy loses running back commitment

By Greg Ostendorf

Three-star running back Johnathan Ford (New Hope, Ala./New Hope) first committed to Vanderbilt while on a visit in April, but as interest steadily picked up over the last month, he’s started to look around at other options.

On Monday, he decommitted from the Commodores and opened back up his recruitment.

“It is a late decision, but with that said, it’s not like some of these other schools, that they have not been in contact with one another,” said Ford’s head coach Randall Taylor. “He’s been on Tennessee’s campus numerous times, even as a junior. At Auburn, he grew up a fan of Auburn, and he’s been on there campus many times before. Coach [Jeremy] Pruitt is at Florida State now, so he’s had contact with these different schools and coaches.”

In addition to Auburn, Florida State and Tennessee, a new school emerged on Sunday night. After returning home from his official visit to Auburn, Ford received an offer from Georgia, a school who’s shown interest for awhile.

“I really was not surprised,” Taylor said. “They recruited him for a period back in November. They requested him to come over for a visit, so they liked him back then. Because of schedules, the weekend didn’t work out, and he didn’t have a chance to go.

“They came back. Coach [Will] Friend stopped by the school. Then he spoke to a couple of other coaches -- Coach [Bryan] McClendon and Coach Friend, again -- yesterday sometime, and they gave him the official offer.”

The offer from Florida State became official on Sunday as well. Pruitt, a former Alabama
assistant coach, has been high on Ford throughout the process.

“He’s always liked him, and he was ready to offer him for quite some time,” Taylor said.

The FSU coaches stopped by Ford’s school on Monday. This week alone, he’s expecting coaches from Auburn, Georgia, Tennessee and Vanderbilt to come by and see him.

The Alabama native, who has already taken official visits to Auburn, Vanderbilt and Tennessee, remains undecided if he will visit anywhere this weekend.

“There’s a probability that he will not, but it’s still up in the air,” Taylor said.

Ford is expected to announce his decision on national signing day.