this week in unintentionally grim-sounding recruiting headlines
After the first good weekend in Michigan athletics in some time (Basketball win, signing two football recruits, Gardner early entry, Denard defeating OSU on the track...) I kept frequenting MGoBlog hoping for new content. I read a few of the Forum topics devoted to recruiting and there's one theme that keeps coming up and I wanted to discuss it. The topic is how we're going to fit in all of the recruits considering us into this class - whether it be the 29 we all are hoping for or the 26 that Rodriguez mysteriously mentioned this afternoon.
Obviously we all want the best class possible and right now I really like this class for many reasons. We also know that there are going to be some surprises. Today alone there's talk of Davion Rogers signing, who none of us were talking about, and Jake Ryan, a LB we know little about other than his numerous MAC offers. So needless to say, we'll be surprised again before signing day.
But that's not the theme that keeps bothering me. The talk is about how to fit everyone in this class and whether someone will be asked to Gray Shirt or creatively be encouraged to pursue other schools. That discussion alone concerns me, but when it immediately focuses on Ray Vinopal it frustrates me even more. Why Ray? Let's talk about that for a minute.
Anyone who watched the safeties play last year....or the last two years....or the last TEN years would crave any and all recruits that play safety. And if you knew nothing except that Michigan signed an all-state safety from one of the best teams in Ohio, he has been timed at 4.6 in the 40, he's a legit 5'11" and 190-lbs, and he is a great student - wouldn't you be drooling to sign him? (We'll get back to this...)
Why doesn't anyone bring up Conelius Jones when they talk about freeing up another scholarship? He's barely played high school football, was incredibly mediocre this year, is extremely raw, and was offered before he had even played a game as a QB. Basically we signed him to be our #4 QB and hold a clip board for the next four years. In all reality we hope that his career tops out as being the #2 QB or a moderately productive player at another position. Really? Everyone's okay with that?
The answer? Yes. We're okay with it. Why? Because we need depth at the position - badly. And we need someone who is going to work hard and has potential - even if he rarely sees the field. Now think about Vinopal. He plays a position woefully lacking depth and talent. He may not be a 5* recruit, but as with QB you need to comprise your roster of stars and guys who will push those stars to be better every day and may just turn out to be contributors of their own.
I for one am glad to have Ray in the class and I think that he's going to contribute in the future. And I hope that the coaches aren't even considering asking him to delay his enrollment or look elsewhere. Same with Carvin Johnson, Conelius Jones, or anyone else.
(Sorry for the length. I thought it might be better as a Diary but I don't really have much substance - just ranting opinion.)
This was just a brief blurb mentioned over at rivals ($), but I figured it was important. From rivals -
[Rashad] but mentioned he was blown away with the trip to Michigan and just stated several times that the atmosphere at Michigan was second to none at both the basketball game and being around all the coaches.
I didn't see anybody pick this story up so I figured I would share. Mike Taylor was on First Take this morning talking about his decommitment from Tenn. He said he took a visit to Florida earlier in the week that made him decide to decommit and open up(go to Florida) his commitment. He said he tried to decommit even before it was announced that Kiffin was leaving for USC, but he couldn't get ahold of any of the coaches for a couple days.
So...yeah. We never really had a chance, and apparently neither did anybody else not named the Florida Gators. I know he hasn't officially committed yet to Florida, but I've got a strong gut feeling!!! he will.
Per ESPN, http://insider.espn.go.com/espn/blog/index?entryID=4826275&name=West_Rec... Baxter is taking trips to Oregon and Florida and will most likely decide between one of those two schools. Hopefully we can get back into his recruitment but considering how early our semester starts that might have gone against us.
Kyle Prater just said at the AAA Bowl that he has cancelled his Monday trip to USC. He was going to enroll.
This could get very interesting!
Watching the Army All American game...so far Seantrel and Prater have both been interviewed and said they are now waivering with USC. Even though Seantrel hasn't committed, he said things are "very different" with USC now. Prater was supposed to enroll early on Monday and is now flying home instead of to LA after the game. Thank you Mr. Carroll. Dillon Baxter is there, but they did not interview him yet.