Miami Football: Cornelius Elder Solidifies Dynamic Canes' Offense in 2013

David KenyonFeatured ColumnistFebruary 14, 2013

Elder via 247sports
Elder via 247sports

In what is probably not a shocking statement, I thought the Miami Hurricanes were readying up for the 2013 regular season after adding 17 new signees.

But man, am I happy I was wrong.

Cornelius Elder, a 4-star athlete from SEC country in Tennessee, gave the Canes' football team a surprise commitment early Wednesday morning.

He tweeted a simple message announcing his decision.

"Just committed to the university of Miami been my favorite school since I was little #blessed glad this over with."

The Hurricanes hadn't been aggressively pursuing Elder throughout the recruiting cycle, but newly-hired running backs coach Hurlie Brown called Elder with a surprise.

Behind a paywall, Matt Shodell of reports the exchange went like this.

"Coach Brown said `If I offer will you commit, and I said `Yes,'" Elder said. "Then he offered."

Long story short, Miami snagged a gem in Elder.

Ranked the seventh-best athlete in 247sports' composite list, Elder backed up his high ranking with an unbelievably good prep career.

He finished high school with 6,531 rushing yards, 84 touchdowns and three consecutive state titles. The Miami Herald notes Elder was also a Mr. Football recipient in Tennessee in 2011 and 2012.

Returning senior quarterback Stephen Morris already has a massive arsenal at his disposal with six explosive receivers and two huge tight end targets.

Elder will compliment freshman All-American Duke Johnson in the backfield giving Miami plenty of speed, but he adds a slightly new dimension to the already-potentially lethal Canes' offense.

Recruited as an athletean amazingly versatile one at thatElder can be split out as a wide receiver as well.

Note: Take a look at his 2012 season highlights. They are nothing short of phenomenal.

New offensive coordinator James Coley calls his offense a "Pro-Spread," and Elder could be utilized in an interesting fashion.

The Hurricanes could run a play with Elder, three wide receivers and one tight end, but quickly run hurry-up offense with Elder split out wide.

Opposing defenses would likely have the wrong personnel on the field with an extra linebacker in charge of covering the newest Hurricane.

Now before any number of us get carried away simply imagining the possibilities, remember Elder is a true freshman. Hanging Duke Johnson-like expectations on the kid is not fair.

But on the flip side, Elder's signing could eventually leave Canes' fans trying to remember...

Alex Collins who?