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Wednesday, February 6, 2013
WR Cunningham says yes to Vanderbilt

By Corey Dowlar

ESPN 150 wide receiver Jordan Cunningham (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla./University School) has decided Vanderbilt is the place for him. The 6-foot-1, 175-pound prospect chose the Commodores over Florida State and Stanford.

Cunningham, ranked No. 107 in the ESPN 150 and the No. 13 wide receiver in the country, took official visits to Florida State, Oklahoma State, Stanford and Vanderbilt during the recruiting process. A very successful student, academics were always going to play a huge role in his decision.

What is the impact of Cunningham’s decision?

Instant Analysis

What it means for Vanderbilt: The Commodores have come into the state of Florida and pulled a high-level talent out of it. Cunningham brings great hands to the Vanderbilt offense at the receiver position to go with his athleticism. A very smart kid, he will likely be able to pick up the offense quickly.

What it means for the teams that lost out: For Florida State, it won't be too big of a blow, so long as it lands Stacy Coley (Oakland Park, Fla./Northeast). Stanford, meanwhile, has two wide receiver commitments, including one four-star prospect. Still, the Cardinal could have used a talent like Cunningham.

Turning point: There was a better comfort level at Vanderbilt. Sure, Nashville, Tenn., isn't exactly next door to South Florida, but it's a lot closer than the left coast. Stanford is a great academic institution, but Vanderbilt is excellent in its own right.

Surprise (scale of 1-5): 2. Vanderbilt's push for Cunningham has been well documented over the past two weeks, so it shouldn't come as a major shock that it won out. Stanford was the early leader in the clubhouse, but faded late.

Immediate impact (scale of 1-5): 4. This isn't your parent's Vanderbilt. Coach James Franklin has the Commodores' roster looking a lot better than it ever has in terms of talent. Still, Cunningham could jump out onto the scene early and push for playing time in Year 1.