If you haven't heard of Dorial Green-Beckham yet, you will soon. He's a soon to be junior and is 6-foot-6, 220-pounds. Stephen Spiewak wrote an awesome article about his struggles with an alcoholic mother, and what kind of athlete he is. It's really worth a read.
Some quotes that stuck out to me:
His basketball coach about Dorial's role on the basketball team:
"There were times where he'd bring the ball down, pass and post up, and we'd throw him the ball down in the post," Schaefer said. "I know that sounds pretty crazy, but that did happen a couple different games."
Dorial's mother had a drug and alcohol problem, and they bounced around as kids:
At one point, they stayed in the basement of a relative, who locked the door to deny them access to other parts of the house. The children would sneak in and out of a window to get food.
Take a look at the article, it's a pretty amazing story.
Instate OL Jake Fisher is ready to announce his decision. He'll be holding a press conference within the next few days, but he wasn't sure the exact date.
Cyrus Hobbi just left Ann Arbor from his unofficial visit. He's on the road, so not much of an update. Here's some quick quotes.
The visit went great, I really enjoyed it a lot.
I asked him if he saw enough to let him know that he has definite interest in Michigan, or if he would want to take an official visit:
I'll tell you I'm definitely way more interested in Michigan than I was before the trip.
This was an exploratory visit for Cyrus to see if he wanted to continue talking to Michigan. It sounds like he does indeed want to keep the communication open.
And as always, Mike Barwis has left his mark.
He was a great firey guy. He definitely helps in recruiting for me.
We'll just have to see where it goes from here. I'll have more from him tomorrow once they're not on the road.
This is a big week for visits but other than that it's pretty slow since coaches are on vacation. Here's a look at who's visiting with some updates elsewhere.
Visiting July 13th:
- Jake Fisher - Instate lineman is coming down from Traverse City to visit both MSU, and Michigan. I spoke with him about the visits and his timeline: he's visiting MSU first, then Michigan. Take from that what you will, other than that MSU happens to come first geographically on his trip. He is on commit watch.
Fisher: "I'd like to make my decision shortly after these visits. I might have a leader right now (laughing), but I don't want to say who."
- Cyrus Hobbi - As mentioned in last week's update, Hobbi is coming up to Michigan on his way to a family trip in New York. That is a huge break for Michigan. Without it, it's safe to say that Cyrus wouldn't have been able to get up to Michigan for an unofficial visit before the season. If Cyrus likes what he sees, it should give Michigan a serious shot at landing the big lineman. West coast schools are the main competition.
- Jordan Walsh - As it was noted in my interview with Jordan this past week, he is also making a trip to Ann Arbor on Tuesday. If you didn't read the article, here's how his mom feels about Michigan.
"She loved the junior day visit, too. When Coach Rodriguez offered me, she started crying."
All of these visits could be big for Michigan. I would be very happy with pulling two out of the three from this list.
5'8, 190 lbs.
Everyone's favorite recruit to discuss and one of the most important in this class. Hart was recently at the Nike 7 on 7 tournament in Oregon. ESPN gives you a synopsis of how he did and how he keeps the media guessing.
I spoke to Hart's teammate, Roderick Ryles, the other day. Ryles told me that he and LaQuentin Smith are going up to Arkansas, while Demetrius Hart and (2012 QB) Nick Patti are coming up to Michigan this week. I also spoke with Hart, and he wasn't 100% sure the visit is going to happen:
I'm not sure we're coming up yet. I still have to figure it out. I think we are, but it's not final.
Hart came up earlier this year and planned a second trip for the Spring Game but could not make it. Even if he can't scrape together the cash and time to get up to Michigan for a second unofficial, his interest in making one is genuine and he will visit officially in the fall.
5'8, 156 lbs.
Sicklerville, New Jersey
Byrd is a (very) speedy slot guy who already has offers from Florida, West Virginia, Iowa, Pitt, South Carolina, and Nebraska, amongst others. Michigan doesn't have much of a need for tiny slots in this class, but I had an interesting conversation with Byrd the other day. He recently narrowed down his list to 7 top schools. I asked him if Michigan were to offer, would they be able to get back in it.
Yeah, I would consider them again. I really liked it when I went up there, so they would still have a chance.
This doesn't really matter right now because he doesn't have an offer from the Wolverines. If they miss out on a few wide receiver targets down the road they might look to Byrd.
- [Ed.: LA CB Darren Kitchen has gotten an offer from recruiter Fred Jackson. This is not an official written offer and can't be committed to until Rodriguez gets back from vacation and issues it. If and when that does occur, Kitchen has said straight out he will commit.]
Louisiana DB Daren Kitchen just told me that Fred Jackson, his recruiter, extended him a verbal offer. Rich Rodriguez is on vacation, so the written offer won't be in the mail until he gets back. Kitchen has been long saying that he wanted an offer from Michigan, and would commit once he gets one.
That is the same feeling he has today. He said, "I'll probably just commit right away, because that's the one I've been waiting for." Kitchen is a 3 star according to Rivals, and stands at 6-foot-1, and 172-pounds. He holds offers from Kansas, Memphis, Nebraska, and Stanford, as well.
I'm not sure the exact date of when RR gets back from vacation, but it will be soon. Look for his commitment to drop shortly after. I like Kitchen, I think he's a good addition to the class. He will be the third defensive back already, so we'll see how that plays out for the other recruits we're after, like Kyshoen Jarrett.
I can't find his highlight tape on YouTube, but you can go to his profile on one of the recruiting sites to watch it. I'm just trying to fill up the two hundred word minimum now, I don't really have anything else to say about him.
Jordan Walsh, out of Glen Ellyn, Illinois, is one of the top offensive line prospects in the country. He's the sixth best offensive guard, according to Rivals. Walsh has had interest in Michigan since his visit for Junior Day, and that interest is still growing. Here's his sophomore film (his junior film isn't on YouTube), then our conversation.
TOM: Let's start with where your interest in Michigan started from.
JORDAN: I was getting some mail from them, and then I got a junior day invite. I went up there, and they saw my film somewhere, and that's how they offered me. They offered me when I was up there. It was just amazing there, too. The trophy cases, the championships, the coaches were awesome, and Ann Arbor, the town was awesome. I really felt a lot of interest being there.
TOM: Was that where all of this stemmed from? Just from a visit?
JORDAN: Well, my mom always liked Michigan. She was a big Michigan football fan, and she told me when I was younger that I should go to Michigan. When we went there, I really liked it. She loved the junior day visit, too. When Coach Rodriguez offered me, she started crying. I guess my mom saying that all those years really got me interested initially. She's a fan of everybody now, though. She wants me to make my own decision, so she's a fan of everybody.
TOM: So is your Mom coming with you on any other visits then?
JORDAN: We might be coming back up to Michigan on the 13th (Tuesday). I really want to see the academic side and the support system they have. I want to check if I went there, if they would help me out. I have around a 3.7 GPA right now, so that's important to me. I'm not 100% sure if we're coming because I was talking with one of the (Michigan) coaches, and he gave us two dates. I'm not sure which date me and my mom are going to choose yet.
TOM: Do you have a top list right now, or are you looking to narrow it down?
JORDAN: I have a top eight. It's (in no order) Michigan, Iowa, MSU, Northwestern, LSU, USC, Vanderbilt, and Tennessee. To summarize them all, I felt comfortable with all of them. I'm interested in all of them, and I like all the coaches.
TOM: Do you know when you're going to make your decision then?
JORDAN: I don't really have a timeline set. I really just want to see everything I'm looking for. If I see and hear the stuff that I need to, then after that I'll make my decision. I don't really know when that will be.
TOM: For the fans that don't know too much about you, tell us who you are as a football player.
JORDAN: Some coaches say that I finish my blocks, and I'm nasty on the field. To be honest, I just love the game of football. I'll do anything a coach ask me to do. I block, so I obviously can't ask for the ball, or anything. The offensive line is a cool position. You don't really get the glory, or praise, but you get to hit a lot of people.