Hawkeyes sign Alabama RB after Karan Higdon flips to Michigan

Chad Leistikow

IOWA CITY, Ia. -- National Signing Day got off to an ominous start for Iowa, as one of its top verbal commitments flipped his commitment at the 11th hour. The Hawkeyes later rallied by picking up a high-upside prospect from the state of Alabama.

Karan Higdon is shown in a photo after a signing ceremony at Riverview High School in Sarasota, Fla. This photo was taken from TV reporter Adam Shadoff.

Sarasota, Fla. running back Karan Higdon signed with Michigan and new coach Jim Harbaugh on Wednesday. He had been committed to Iowa since late October.

Higdon was viewed as a three-star recruit by Rivals.com and the No. 45-ranked running back in the country.

The 5-foot-10, 180-pounder from Riverview High School, originally committed to South Florida. He then gave his commitment to Iowa after recruitment from Chris White on Oct. 28, telling HawkeyeReport.com he was done with the recruiting process: "I've already decommitted from USF before and looked around. I don't think I would have committed tonight if I wasn't fully ready. I learned my lesson before. I feel more confident about this than I ever have. I just feel like it was the right thing to do."

A few hours after the Higdon news broke, Iowa signed a replacement running back -- 5-9, 195-pound Eric Graham.

PROSPECT BREAKDOWN: Iowa's 2015 football recruiting class

Graham, of Prattville, Ala., was a late academic qualifier, according to HawkeyeInsider.com's Rob Howe. Rivals created a profile page for Graham on Wednesday, and lists the Autauga Academy product as running a 4.41-second 40-yard dash.

Graham rushed for 33 touchdowns and more than 2,400 yards as a senior. Graham is Iowa's lone running back in the Class of 2015.