"It's a lot easier being a drug dealer than an AAU coach" - this guy. Tell me something I don't know. I mean, don't think but have never tried either.
Ohio running back Alden Hill (6'2", 220 lbs) planned on going up to Michigan's camp to prove to the coaches he was worthy of an offer. He was happy with his performance and so were the Michigan coaching staff. Hill called me today to let me know that he spoke with the coaches and they have offered him a scholarship. Here's a look at his film and what he said about the offer.
TOM: What did the coaches say?
ALDEN: I talked to Coach Hoke and he said that I have an offer to Michigan.
TOM: Did they tell you what role you would be playing, or what position you would have on the team?
ALDEN: They want me as an all purpose back, a full back and running back. Someone they don't have to change personnel if they switch plays out of the two back system. I'm definitely good with that role, it's good for competition. I actually just got an offer from Iowa too, so the Big Ten is starting to come in now.
TOM: What's next for you then, are you heading out to any other camps? Are you going to try to make it out to Iowa?
ALDEN: I haven't been to Iowa yet, but I'll be at Ohio State on Saturday. I'll go up there and workout because I know there will be other coaches there too.
TOM: What do you want your timeline to look like? How is your recruitment going to play out?
ALDEN: I'll probably make my decision early to mid football season, I'll have it done by then. I'll have it narrowed down by the time my season starts up.
TOM: With this Michigan offer now where does that put the Wolverines? Are they in your top group?
ALDEN: Oh definitely. They're in my top five with Illinois, Boston College, Vanderbilt, and Iowa now.
TOM: You have a few teammates that are also being recruited. I know Zach Higgins is committed to Michigan State and 2013 ATH Dymonte Thomas has a Michigan offer. Are you close with them?
ALDEN: Yeah, we are real good friends. I have been friends with Dymonte before he came to our school through sports. Dymonte, Zach, and I all stay close through this recruiting process because we can all relate in this unique situation. We would love to play together, not too many guys get to play with their teammates from division three high school to a division one college.
Flint defensive tackle Danny O'Brien (6'2", 293 lbs) has seen his recruitment take off. He's added offers from the likes of Alabama and Florida among others. He went up to Michigan's camp today to show the Michigan coaches what he could do and prove his worth. Here's what he had to say about the day.
TOM: How did the day go?
DANNY: Good, I tore it up. I didn't work out in the second part, I just kind of hung out and talked with everybody.
TOM: What was the outcome from this camp with Michigan? I know there was a discrepancy of sorts with being on the same page.
DANNY: There was basically some confusion during the spring on how they wanted things to go and they told me they wanted me to come to camp and prove myself. They told me that there's basically only a couple defensive tackles with offers and they will probably only take one interior guy. They're going to recruit me really hard now and they gave me the pitch and everything.
TOM: So what's next? I know you told me the other day that you were going to come out with a top five soon.
DANNY: Yeah in July I'll come out with a top five. I don't have a leader anymore, I'm just going to evaluate all the schools in the top five and go from there.
TOM: Do you know when you want to have your final decision made?
DANNY: I'd like to take some official visits then make the decision late in the season or after the season, but I'm not sure yet.
FREE PRESS EXCLUSIVE:
Brian Cook's Wedding
Logo Finally Revealed!
ANN ARBOR, MI-- Early this morning, an anonymous source with ties to MGoBlog confirmed that an official logo has been created for Brian Cook's Wedding, AND even supplied us with a link to the image. Official sources have neither confirmed or denied its authenticity, and even TomVH and Misopogon declined comment.
[SPOILER ALERT] The image is displayed below:
According to the anonymous source, official replicas of the groomsmen jackets may be inadvertently displayed by MDen as early as Thursday. Look for Mike Rosenberg's exclusive rebuttal of the entire institution of marriage in tomorrow's Free Press, as we continue our exclusive coverage of the Brian Cook Wedding.
On behalf of all of us, Brian, congratulations! You sacrifice ungodly amounts of your free time in the name of sports and our entertainment, and certainly that time also belongs to your fiance as well. So thank you, and above all else, detach and enjoy the honeymoon together.
PS. I'd like to encourage all readers to treat this post as a guestbook of sorts for the happy couple. After all, this is like the Royal Wedding of MGoBlog...
Ohio State OL commit Kyle Kalis has been caught in the mix with the Ohio State allegations. He said that he was set to decommit from the Buckeyes until interim head coach Luke Fickell talked him out of it. Kalis then went on to say that he does have interest in Michigan and a few other schools. He told me tonight that he and his father will be visiting Ann Arbor this weekend. Here's a look at his film and what he had to say.
TOM: Is there any chance that you head up to Michigan this week for their camp?
KYLE: Yeah me and my dad are going up there this weekend to meet everyone for a visit. We're driving up Friday night then staying all day Saturday.
TOM: What prompted this visit? I know that you've been saying you are interested in Michigan, but why visit now?
KYLE: It's pretty much for the past few months I've become really good friends with Tom Strobel and he said I would love it up there, he fell in love with it. Tom was up there last weekend and he was talking about me with the coaches, they were joking around saying we could be roommates. I think Chris [Wormley] will be up there too [TomVH ed: I confirmed with Wormley that he is visiting this weekend]. I'm closer with Tom, but I am friends with Chris.
TOM: Is that important for you to have people that you already know there, too?
KYLE: Yeah, a big part of me liking Michigan is being able to come in with guys like Tom, maybe Chris [Wormley], being able to know that I'll practice with guys that are going to make me better.
TOM: I'm assuming your dad is an Ohio State fan too, what has he said about all this?
KYLE: He's actually not an Ohio State fan, he's indifferent. With him he's already been through this so he tells me to go with my heart. He's told me to get up there and talk with Coach Hoke, get up there and meet them in person.
TOM: What are you looking to get out of this visit
KYLE: The main thing is just getting a chance to sit down with Coach Hoke and a big thing is also to meet with the strength coach. I want to sit down with him and see his tactics. I also want to sit down with Coach Funk and maybe meet a few of the players.
TOM: Is this your first time up there?
KYLE: Yes, this will be the first time. Tom [Strobel] said when you get up there it's just a different place.
TOM: What's next after this? Are you taking any more visits?
KYLE: This summer I might get out to Auburn, Alabama, Iowa, or Miami. I probably won't get out to all of them, I want to enjoy my summer so we'll see.
It was an important weekend for offensive line recruiting with a total of six linemen on campus: Jordan Diamond, Andrus Peat, Chris Muller, Blake Bars, Trey Keenan, and Steven Elmer. New offers were also extended and camp has begun. Here's a look at some of the recent happenings and what a few recruits had to say about Michigan.
6'5", 270 lbs.
Michigan was always high on Keenan's list since his family is originally from Michigan. A summer visit had always been in the works for him and he finally got to take in Ann Arbor this past weekend.
All the places I've been to are southern schools and I've never really been to a place like Michigan. It's flattering to be here and see all the tradition and history in the buildings. They have national championships and all americans so it's pretty cool to be here.
This visit gave Keenan a better look at what Michigan really has to offer, and it also gave him a chance to meet face to face with the coaches.
We got to talk to everybody, Coach Hoke, the Athletic Director, Coach Funk. We took a tour of everything and you could definitely tell that the whole thing was a well thought out process. Every place has nice stuff and nice facilities but Michigan has so much tradition. I really felt welcomed, too, and I felt wanted and needed.
Feeling like he was wanted was something that really stuck out to Trey while he was on campus.
They only have something like eight scholarship linemen. We've been to places that have said they need linemen, but with Michigan it was major here. There's a chance to play early here and that is something really cool at a place like Michigan. I also really liked the strength coach and how he put everything. He talked about everything and how they individualize certain aspects.
So what's next for Keenan?
We're going to the morning session of camp tomorrow [Monday]. I'm going to work out with Coach Funk to get a feel for him and how he interacts with his players. We do have a short list right now and Michigan is on that short list. I don't want to say how many are on it yet. We're going to take the next week then talk about everything with my coaches and family. All my planned summer visits are done with so we'll figure out what's going to happen next. This visit did nothing but up Michigan's status though.
Like he said he plans on meeting with his coaches and family within the next week to discuss what's next. If I had to guess it would seem like he's getting close to a decision, and it seems like Michigan could be in good shape.
6'3", 325 lbs.
Kansas City, Missouri
Pipkins recently released his top seven of Michigan, Alabama, Oregon, Tennessee, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Florida. It's no secret that Ondre has ties to Michigan, especially with his father still living there. He has planned on taking a summer visit to Michigan all along and it looks like he has an idea of when it will take place.
I'll be up there in late July or the beginning of August. I just can't wait to see the Big House, somewhere that I can possibly live out my dreams.
I know that Pipkins has wavered on when he would like to make his final decision, but it seems like there's a chance that it could be sooner than originally planned.
6'6", 297 lbs.
Elmer was on campus today with his father and was extended an offer from the Michigan coaches. He's a 2013 offensive line prospect that now holds offers from Michigan, Michigan State, Wisconsin, and Mississippi State. It's safe to say he'll be one of the better prospects in the country come next year. His father told me a little about how the visit went today.
It was great, we took an unofficial visit before camp today. We got to meet with the coaches, Coach Hoke, Borges, Funk, and the fact that it was the busiest day for them and they got us in there says a lot. I told Steven that this will probably be as good as or better than anything he's ever seen so far, and we were very impressed.
Academics will be a big factor in Steven's recruitment and Michigan always seems to impress in that department with Shari Acho.
The academics was the best part of the trip. Shari gave the part that I wanted to hear the most and it was fantastic. She explained that when you go to the University of Michigan you are part of a select group of people and you don't really understand that until you hear it in person. She was trying to talk fast and squeeze it all in but I told her we can see everything else any time. If I could go back and talk more about the academics with her I would.
This is all happening very early, especially for an offensive lineman, so the family is still taking everything in.
Steven did really well at the Sound Mind Sound Body camp. We really like the message that camp sends so we went out there for that and he did really well. There's obviously been a good amount of interest from what he did there and people have been watching the videos all over the place, too. My wife is actually going with him out to Notre Dame later this week. She hasn't seen Notre Dame. She needs to see that stuff too, and the academic pitch from places like Notre Dame, Wisconsin, and Michigan.
The family plans on sitting back and watching everything play out. They plan on trying to get out to a few games during the season as well. I spoke more with the elder Elmer and will post more on Steven later in the week.
5'7", 151 lbs.
Wiggins was another 2013 prospect who had an outstanding performance at the Sound Mind Sound Body camp. Following the event he was notified that he had received an offer from Michigan. He also reports holding offers from Cincinnati and Ohio State. He told me that he was very surprised to see Michigan jump in the mix.
My coach in Atlanta always talks about Ohio and Michigan players are real ballers. So I wanted to come up north and show my southern skills. I wasn't trying to impress anybody, just go out there and play. I really wasn't expecting the offers at all. I never really heard anything from them so I guess when they watched me in the one on one drills they liked me.
An early offer is definitely a good indicator of how interested they are. Wiggins also talked about his process and who he grew up watching.
My dream school was Florida State, but after Cincinnati offered me I had a long conversation with their staff. They made me really comfortable. I like how FSU uses their cornerbacks, and I know that Michigan is known for great talent at corner. Guys like Charles Woodson, I can't remember some of the other names but they're good for cornerbacks. From how I feel now I'll probably wait until after my junior year or during my junior year. I think I'll make my decision pretty early so I get my recruitment over with.
Wiggins told me that he plans on making it back up to Michigan very soon. I have a feeling that Michigan has made a very good impression on him and he wants to explore that further. There's a good chance Michigan is one of his top schools.
Arizona OL Andrus Peat discussed his visit to Michigan. I think this trip helped Michigan tremendously with Peat. He didn't know much about the city or university so this gave him a good look at what they have to offer.
2012 Georgia WR Jason Croom recently received a Michigan offer. His mother happened to be in Michigan and stopped by campus this past weekend. Jason will make it back up to Ann Arbor in August.
Here's a list of some of the visitors expected in for camp this week.
2013 Ohio DB Cameron Burrows could be hearing from Michigan soon. He hails from Trotwood Madison which is the home of Roy Roundtree, Mike Shaw, and Brandon Moore. He is friends with Roy and talks to him on occasion. Keep an eye on his name.
I reported last week that Ohio DB Jarrod Wilson will be meeting with his coaches again on Monday [the 20th] to discuss what's next for him. He's very quiet so they aren't sure if he plans on making a decision or waiting things out.
Ohio QB Maty Mauk told me via text that his decision should come in the next few weeks. He's been keeping everything close to the vest so I'm not sure where he's leaning, or who he's deciding between.
Illinois OL Jordan Diamond stopped by Michigan before he made it over to the Sound Mind Sound Body camp. He also made it back over to Ann Arbor Sunday morning for one more trip.
Massachusetts OL Eric Olson told me that his decision will likely come before the 4th of July. I think Michigan has a good chance, but he keeps everything quiet so we'll see what happens.
Nike and ESPN are hosting an event called The Opening that takes place in Oregon on July 5th to the 9th. It is invitation only and you'll notice some familiar names on the list. Anthony Standifer told me that he will likely be going, as will Ron Thompson and Danny O'Brien.
Note: I edited this since my original post to better utilize the ESPN data. Apologies if this makes some of the comments confusing.
Never having contributed anything of value to this site, I thought I’d take a shot at combining the Scout, Rivals, 247, and ESPN player rankings into one. The goal is to come up with a straightforward way to compare elite recruits’ status with the ranking services (i.e. without forcing people to juggle rankings and star ratings from four different sites in their heads).
Aggregating across the sites is not easy, partly because of data availability and especially because of the different methods used by different sites. There are countless ways to do this, with most requiring some kind of data imputation. Since no data imputation strategy would be liked by all, I’m proposing a different method that requires no imputation. Let’s call it the Veto-Based Aggregate Recruiting (V-BAR?) Rankings. (Crappy name & acronym? Check.)
The basic idea is that we restrict the rankings to players who appear in every site’s top X list (i.e. no one was unimpressed with the recruit) and then order them based on their average rankings across the sites. It’s “veto-based” because any site can prevent a player from appearing on the aggregated list.
I see two primary objections to this:
(1) It eliminates highly regarded prospects when only one outlier site is unsold on them.
(2) It gives excessive veto power to ESPN (and eliminates a lot of players) just because the ESPN 150 only ranks 150 prospects while the other services rank 247-300.
First, for (1). This is just the design of this ranking. Basically, to get on this list, there is consensus that you’re outstanding, and the average rankings tease apart just how highly you’re regarded. Interestingly, for each recruiting service, one guy stands out, rankings-wise, as a glaring omission. For Rivals, it’s Sheldon Day (#65 to Scout, #80 to 247, #144 to ESPN). For Scout, it’s Amos Leggett (#104 to Rivals, #75 to 247, #95 to ESPN). For 247, it’s Avery Young (#38 to Rivals, #13 to Scout, #119 to ESPN). For ESPN, it’s Zeke Pike (#72 to Rivals, #33 to Scout, #18 to 247). In general, though, there aren't too many really serious outliers.
Now for (2). Giving ESPN excessive veto power seems problematic, especially since ESPN’s rankings are often questioned for their quality and objectivity. Therefore, in addition to using the ESPN 150, I grabbed the next 150 players from ESPN’s recruiting rankings (link: http://espn.go.com/college-football/recruiting/prospects). So we have rankings for 300 players from ESPN.
By my count, 147 players appear in Rivals’ top 250, Scout’s top 300, 247’s top 247, and ESPN’s top 300. Here they are in order of average ranking across these four sites:
VETO-BASED AGGREGATE RECRUITING RANKINGS (as of 6/19/11)
(incorporates Rivals, Scout, 247, and ESPN)
|3||Mario Edwards||6.25||DE||Florida State|
|28||Dante Fowler||41.75||DE||Florida State|
|39||Jarron Jones||49.75||DT||Penn State|
|40||Trey Williams||50.5||RB||Texas A&M|
|44||Ronald Darby||57.5||CB||Notre Dame|
|45||Kyle Kalis||57.75||OT||Ohio State|
|49||Chris Casher||61.5||DE||Florida State|
|60||Tee Shepard||83.5||CB||Notre Dame|
|67||Brock Stadnik||91.25||OT||South Carolina|
|72||Mario Pender||98||RB||Florida State|
|80||Se'von Pittman||109.25||DE||Michigan State|
|86||Kendall Sanders||115||CB||Oklahoma State|
|90||Michael Starts||116.5||OG||Texas Tech|
|93||Angelo Jean-Louis||119||WR||Miami (FL)|
|102||Matt Davis||131.25||QB||Texas A&M|
|103||Brionte Dunn||131.75||RB||Ohio State|
|105||P.J. Williams||134.5||S||Florida State|
|109||Bralon Addison||137||WR||Texas A&M|
|132||J.J. Denman||173.5||OT||Penn State|
|134||John Michael McGee||173.75||C|
|138||Camren Williams||185.25||OLB||Penn State|
|143||Joshua Perry||194.75||OLB||Ohio State|
|145||Dalvon Stuckey||207.25||DT||Florida State|