Louisville adds ESPN 300 LB to 2013 class

The Louisville Cardinals will have a late addition to their 2013 recruiting class, as ESPN 300 linebacker James Hearns (Tallahassee, Fla./Lincoln) announced he will enroll before July 13.

The 6-foot-3, 230-pound was previously committed to Florida, but academic concerns forced UF and other schools to back off of Hearns' recruitment. Hearns finally got the test scores he needed and will be academically eligible in the fall.

Hearns said he decided to attend Louisville because of the relationship he has built with the Cardinals' coaching staff.

"They are definitely on the upswing," Hearns said. "They will be going in to the ACC soon. Coach [Charlie] Strong is doing a lot of good things down there. The coaching staff really won me over. I've never been around a coaching staff that I've felt so comfortable around. It's like family. Coach Ron Dugans is from Tallahassee. My mom and aunt went to middle school with him. So we have a good relationship."

Hearns believes he has an opportunity to compete for playing time early in his career.

"I see me coming in and fitting in well," Hearns said. "They already have some good linebackers, but I still see an opportunity for me to come in and play early."

With the addition of Hearns, Louisville will have 19 prospects, including four in the ESPN 300 in its 2013 class.