Today I was able to talk with 2014 Lineman Malik McDowell of Detroit. This past weekend he attended the Midwest Elite Big Man Camp and was named the top perfromer out of all the juniors and sophomores there. He told me, amoung other things that he is visiting Michigan this week. Here is what I learned from Malik.
I won't post a link, but I just talked with Dymonte Thomas about a week or so after Eleven Warriors posted a short interview with him in which the consensus seemed to be that Urb's golden touch will bring Dymonte home to the Buckeyes. In short, it's nothing to worry about. He said he'd visit Columbus only to see Brionte and his brother, who is also a student at Ohio. When I asked him about Meyer/Dunn and their potential influences, his message was simple: They have no impact on me
I only posted this just in case some people caught the 11w interview and were a little concerned.
Feb. 13, 2012
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- The 2012 University of Michigan Spring Football Weekend promises to be an action-packed two days (April 14-15) of athletic competition for sports fans of all kinds. The 2012 Mott Spring Football Scrimmage sponsored by PNC Bank anchors the weekend festivities along with the inaugural men's lacrosse match-up with Ohio State immediately following the football scrimmage.
Team 133 will take the field for its annual spring scrimmage at noon EST on Saturday, April 14. Prior to the football team's debut, the Victors Classic Alumni Flag Football Game will be held at 10 a.m. inside the Big House.
Following the football scrimmage at 2:30 p.m. will be the "Battle in the Big House," which pits Michigan's first-year varsity men's lacrosse team against Ohio State.
Admission to all of the events Saturday at Michigan Stadium is free to the public. Fans can make a donation of choice to C.S. Mott Children's Hospital upon entering the gates of Michigan Stadium.
Both the spring football scrimmage and the lacrosse game with Ohio State will be televised live on the Big Ten Network. In between the action, the BTN will conduct interviews with players and head football coach Brady Hoke.
Also on Saturday, the women's rowing team will host a dual against Oregon State at 9 a.m. on Belleville Lake and the men's tennis team will hit the Varsity Tennis Center courts against Nebraska at noon.
The following day, Sunday, April 15, brings the Big House Big Heart charity run to Michigan Stadium. The event includes a 10K race, a 5K race and a one-mile race to raise funds for a variety of charities. Racing starts at 9 a.m. from the Big House and ends at the 50-yard line. Further information is available at www.thebighousebigheart.com.
Also on Sunday, the Michigan men's tennis program will entertain Iowa at noon at the Varsity Tennis Center and the Michigan softball team will host a 1 p.m. doubleheader against rival Michigan State at the Wilpon Complex, home of Alumni Field.
Could happen as soon as 2013-2014. ESPN has the article here.
The newly named league would have a membership in 2013-14 of: UNLV, New Mexico, Wyoming, Colorado State and Air Force, Hawaii (in football only), Southern Miss, Tulsa, Marshall, Rice, UTEP, UAB, Tulane and East Carolina.
They do plan on having a divisional/regional setup for ease of travel and what-not, so at least there's that.
It is pretty rare that I would post on another school's football facility, however Mr. Dooley at Tennessee did catch my eye with his "multi-level thunderdome of power" description, including the fact it has a MMA ring. Dooley seems to have jumped the shark, the boat pulling him and landed somewhere on land with that comment.
Tennessee football players should thank God that Barwis is not their S&C coach since I imagine things would get scary. I am all for wow factor, I just don't see the wisdom of giving young and very large individuals who often possess a bit of mean streak along with their competitiveness (I mean, they play football) access to a fighting ring. Well now that I think of it, might be good for Sparty to cut down on student beatdowns by channeling that energy internally. Hollis will probably be raising money for one next week.
St. Paul (MN) Cretin-Derham Hall ATH James Onwualu recently picked up a Michigan offer as the Wolverines joined Iowa, Michigan State, Minnesota, Northwestern, Notre Dame, Purdue, and Stanford among schools to extend him a scholarship. I interviewed Onwualu back in January, before receiving his offer, and recently got the chance to talk to him again now that his recruitment is quickly picking up steam. Onwualu told me prior to the interview that he planned on graduating early, so we discusses his accelerated timeline, new offers, and more:
ACE: You just got your Michigan offer recently. Who have you been talking to from Michigan and what was your reaction to getting the offer?
JAMES: I've mainly been talking to Coach Mattison, but also talking to Coach Hoke. Obviously that's a big offer for me, a big-time school. They're really making a lot of different changes and really coming up as a program. It's a huge offer for me. I was excited.
ACE: What's your impression of Michigan as a school and a football program?
JAMES: I think they're one of the best in the nation, personally. I think that their academics are extremely high, their business school ranks high, which means a lot to me. Also their alumni base ... is huge. Then I think everybody pretty much knows what their football traditions are, what they look to in every season.
ACE: You pulled in a few other offers recently. What other schools are showing interest in you now and how do the schools stack up in terms of your interest?
JAMES: I haven't really made a list of where I'm going to go yet, I haven't come up with a top ten list or anything. I'm just kind of pulling everything in. But Notre Dame continues to show a lot of interest, Stanford, Florida, Ohio State, Texas, a lot of big schools have been showing a lot of interest. I'm just keeping it open right now.
ACE: Do you have any plans in terms of taking visits to schools now that you've got offers coming in?
JAMES: Yeah. I'll definitely go up to Michigan. I haven't gone out there before so it'd be good to go out there. I'll probably go back down to Florida and go down to Stanford, possibly.
ACE: Coming from Cretin-Derham, that's a school that's obviously produced a lot of football talent. Do you ever talk to some of the guys who have gone D-I from there and got an impression of what going through the recruiting process is like?
JAMES: Yeah. Actually, [former Heisman winner] Chris Weinke is one of the guys who's kinda guided me through this whole thing, along with [former Notre Dame receiver] Mike Floyd, and also [Baltimore Ravens Pro-Bowl center] Matt Birk. Oh yeah, and also [Denver Broncos offensive tackle] Ryan Harris. Having people like that around me, it really helps being able to manage the schools and balance out what the coaches are actually saying and what I actually want in my future.
ACE: I know you did the Army All-American combine, but do you have any more plans for doing training or camps over the summer?
JAMES: Probably not. I train seven days a week with the best trainer in the nation, Ted Johnson. I don't really find the need to go to any more camps. I think that I can really start focusing in on what I want to do in college. I'm looking to be committed here so I'm going to be spending a lot of time with the school that I'm going to.
ACE: The last time I talked to you, you said you were looking to commit in the spring, and you mentioned the possibility of graduating early. Is that timeline still holding true right now for you?
JAMES: Yeah, as of right now, I think so. It may be pushed back a little bit into the summer, but as of right now, I think I'm going to get it done with and start focusing on what I have to do, like I said.
ACE: In terms of focusing, in terms of improving on the football field, what do you think are your strongest qualities on the football field as a player right now, and what are you looking to improve as you work towards the next level?
JAMES: I think the main thing I'm good at is really making a play after the catch. That's probably just because of my base in playing running back, being versatile all over the field. I really think that I'm going to start working on—there's so many different styles of play around the nation—just learning different styles of DBs and just getting more experience.
ACE: What position did Michigan offer you for? I know you're listed as an athlete. Do you know what position you'd play if you decided on Michigan?
JAMES: Well, as of right now, they just have me offered as an athlete. We haven't really talked position-wise. Since I've been talking to Mattison a lot of people assume I'm going to be playing safety or corner, but as of right now I don't really know.
ACE: Do you have a preference in terms of where you fit best on the field? Do you prefer offense or defense?
JAMES: I don't know, it could change. Next year I'm going to be all over. We've got a really good running back, [2014 RB] Blake Banham, who's going to be playing next year, so I'm not going to playing as much running back. We've also got a safety, [2014 S] Tim Gordon, so we're going to have to see, I might be playing corner and receiver.
ACE: Going away from the football field, what's one thing you want people to know about you that has nothing to do with football?
JAMES: That's a tough question. I'd say I like going and watching my friends play sports, like Cortez Tillman, I don't know if you've heard of him, but he plays basketball at my school, so I like going and watching him on the weekends.
Thanks to James for taking the time to do the interview. He made sure to tell me before we ended that I should be keeping an eye on his class of 2014 teammates—he sounds like a great guy to have alongside you on the team.