Hardaway's Justin Crawford de-commits from Louisville

dmitchell@ledger-enquirer.comJanuary 20, 2014 

Joe Paull jpaull@ledger-enquirer.com Hardaway's Justin Crawford runs for a touchdown Friday night against Jordan at Kinnett Stadium.

JOE PAULL — Joe Paull

Former Hardaway running back Justin Crawford, a member of the 2015 recruiting class, officially withdrew his commitment to the University of Louisville on Sunday.

In a letter shared with the Ledger-Enquirer, Crawford said he had decided it was in his best interest to reconsider his options for the future after former Cardinals head coach Charlie Strong left for a similar job at the University of Texas.

In a Jan. 10 interview with the Ledger-Enquirer, Crawford expressed concerns over his situation with Louisville after its hire of new coach Bobby Petrino. Discussing the coach, who had unceremonious departures from jobs with the Atlanta Falcons and Arkansas Razorbacks, Crawford said at the time he wasn't sure how he felt.

“I’m still thinking about it,” he said. “With Petrino coming in, I know about what he did. He’s not a bad coach, I just don’t know about him as a person. … What student do you know would want to play for a guy who could write you a note and be gone the next day?”

Crawford said his recruitment is wide open and he has no timetable to make a decision. In his letter, he listed the top seven colleges who he has been in contact with as Georgia, Tennessee, Florida, Texas, Alabama, Penn State and UCLA. Of those, he claims offers from Georgia, Alabama and Tennessee. He added Texas to the mix because of his relationship with Strong, stating in a text message that he hopes Strong his still interested and will offer him a scholarship with the Longhorns.

Crawford is a rising senior, but is ineligible to play his final season with the Hawks because he has already turned 19 years old. He will spend his final year conditioning, staying healthy and handling his recruitment.

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