Cincinnati’s second commitment from over the weekend comes in the form of Miami, Florida cornerback Antonio Howard. 247 Sports is reporting it on his profile. Howard was offered by Tommy Tuberville and co. just last week but he jumped all over it. The cornerback actually committed to the Florida International Panthers on March 22nd when he attended their Junior Day. But he backed out of it a month later. FIU’s loss is Cincinnati’s gain, it seems. In addition to the Bearcats and Panthers, Antonio Howard boasted offers from Syracuse, Kentucky, and South Florida with several big time programs like Alabama showing interest.
|Height - Weight||5'10", 157 lbs|
|247 Sports||** - 79|
Antonio Howard is appropriately dubbed “Tony Island” via Hudl and it’s easy to see why. The cornerback is a tough defender for wide receivers to shake due to his flexible hips and raw speed. Howard simply does a nice job sticking with them and when the ball is in the air he high-points it perfectly to snag an interception or at least knock it away. The corner is only listed at 5’10″ on a good day but appears to have long arms which serve him well against 6’0″ and taller receivers. Plus he knows how to tote the line between tight coverage and interfering with the pass. It’s a dangerous game Howard plays but that confidence and knowledge will serve him well at the next level. Additionally, the cornerback displays above average technique on contacting, tackling through the ball carrier more often than not and uses his arms to drive him to the ground.
Howard will likely redshirt his freshman year at Cincinnati due to the wealth of defensive backs at Tuberville’s disposal in 2015. That’s not a knock on the cornerback, though. He’s extremely talented and has a knowledge of several techniques that the best defensive backs in college have down pat. If Howard uses that redshirt year to refine those abilities and add a little muscle, he could really shine at Cincinnati.