High School Sports

Coast football standout has change of heart and flips commitment from Miami

St. Martin’s offensive lineman Brandon Cunningham leads the way for running back Jovann “Ham” McGee on a carry against Gulfport on Sept. 22, 2017, at Milner Stadium in Gulfport.
St. Martin’s offensive lineman Brandon Cunningham leads the way for running back Jovann “Ham” McGee on a carry against Gulfport on Sept. 22, 2017, at Milner Stadium in Gulfport. amccoy@sunherald.com File

St. Martin offensive lineman Brandon Cunningham kept some in the recruiting world in suspense Friday evening. Others "in the know" seemed less surprised by the day's news.

The rising senior announced on Twitter just before 5 p.m. that he was de-committing from Miami.

"First of all I would like to thank God for leading me in the right path with this decision. I would like to decommit from the University of Miami. I have talked to God and my mom about this and they left it in my hands," Cunningham originally tweeted, adding he wanted to stay closer to home.

An hour later, Cunningham was a Mississippi State Bulldog, simply tweeting "Committed sip boys" with a photo of him suited up in Maroon and White from his recent visit to Starkville.

Miami was the first major school to show interest in the 6-foot-5, 270-pound Cunningham. The massive lineman picked up an offer in early July and verbally committed to the Canes a couple weeks later.

Cunningham recently announced an offer from Florida State. He also boasts offers from Florida, Ole Miss, Southern Miss, South Alabama and Memphis, among others.

247Sports.com's composite rankings have Cunnigham as a three-star recruit and the No. 392 prospect in the class of 2019. He's also the No. 39 offensive tackle in the class and the 15th-best Mississippian.

The Coast's 2019 class of offensive lineman is rather strong, with Harrison Central's Bryce Ramsey committed to Ole Miss and D'Iberville's Louis Paul Smith sticking close to home with a Southern Miss pledge.

MSU has also done a strong job recruiting the Coast. The Bulldogs' spring roster boasts Pascagoula lineman James Jackson, Ocean Springs receiver Austin Williams, Resurrection/Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College long snapper Paul Blackwell and OSHS Greyhound kicker Brad Wall. MSU also signed East Central star tight end Brad Cumbest.

Patrick Ochs: 228-896-2326, @patrickochs
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