Posted by Tom Fornelli
Big East teams aren't supposed to be able to snag nationally-recognized consensus five-star recruits, especially not when that team has undergone a sudden coaching transition just days before signing day. But don't tell that to Darius Hamilton.
The five-star defensive end out of Don Bosco Prep in New Jersey decided that he'd like to stay close to home, announcing that he had committed to Rutgers on Tuesday night.
A huge recruiting victory for Rutgers, and new head coach Kyle Flood, as Hamilton is not only considered the top player in the state of New Jersey, but MaxPreps has him ranked at #30 in the entire 2012 class.
Making Hamilton's decision even more significant, he chose Rutgers over schools like Miami and Florida. Two schools who may have experienced some struggles in recent seasons, but two programs with a deeper history of success both on the field and on the recruiting trail. So the fact that Flood was able to keep Hamilton in state could be a good omen for his future as a recruiter at Rutgers.
This commitment also erases the sting of seeing tight end Michael Giacone flip his commitment from Rutgers to Boston College earlier on Tuesday. So on the same day Kyle Flood lost his first recruit, he picked up an even bigger one.
A trade off I think Rutgers fans will gladly make over and over again.
Photo by Vincent Carchietta