Manatee junior defensive tackle Ryan Fines commits to University of Miami

Junior Ryan Fines makes early pledge to remain a Cane

jlembo@bradenton.comFebruary 21, 2014 

Manatee High football players, from left, Michael Keehbauch, Austin Reeves, and Ryan Fines visit the WWII Memorial on Saturday in Washington, D.C. TOM HUBBARD/Special to the Herald

BRADENTON -- Nearly a year stands between now and the 2015 edition of National Signing Day.

But Ryan Fines doesn't expect to change his mind anytime soon.

Manatee's junior defensive tackle has verbally committed to the University of Miami, sold on the school after taking a visit to Coral Gables earlier this week.

"Me and my family did a lot of research the last few weeks, and the more we learned about Miami, the better and better it got," Fines said Thursday. "Me and my family can't picture a more perfect fit."

Born in Royal Palm Beach but raised in Colorado before moving to Bradenton prior to last season, Fines got an ever better vibe from Hurricanes personnel during his visit.

"The main thing was the family atmosphere around the whole school. I was completely comfortable everywhere I went," he said. "And academically, it's a fantastic school."

Fines also received offers from USF and Arizona. The owner of a 3.6 grade-point average who hopes to study finance, Fines also has received interest from Northwestern, Duke, Wisconsin, Louisville and Missouri.

"At this point, I have no plans for the other schools," Fines said. "I'm secure in my commitment."

The timing couldn't be better, either.

"My goal was to make a commitment before senior year so I could focus on the season," Fines said. "I feel relieved to get it done, even before spring football."

Manatee had a program-record 12 players sign college letters of intent earlier this month, including defensive linemen Demarcus Christmas, Danny Doyle and Raland Brewer.

Fines, however, is as confident in the 2014 Hurricanes as he is in his decision to play college ball with Miami's Hurricanes.

"Even though they're new to varsity, they're really good players," Fines said about the guys who will be called in to replace the players who left. "Once we get them into the system, we're going to be very good."

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