Mike Lantry, 1972
Just got back from vacation and read ToB's final recruiting post The Battle of Michigan (excellent read ToB BTW - I have learned much from you and Sam Webb about the instate recruiting drama.)
This got me thinking about the battles this year and I have to say...though the recruiting is not done...I'm not happy with Jordan Walsh and Ray Hamilton. Both had seemingly big time pulls to UofM and went the Ferentz way. Walsh's pull was somewhat anecdotal in that his mother teared up in RR's office but his academic goals were set high as well...Hamilton's dad played with RR, is a close bud of Jack Miller and is in a position of need for the team going forward. Both these guys have nice film. These two hurt. Not to mention Jeff Heuerman lost to OSU - whose dad I remember well from Crisler arena.
Lots to discuss here - but specifically - my take is twofold - the need to win and the need to involve the TE more in the offense.
It's not just about RR's future...it's also about the program. I understand losing Chris Norman to the coaching change and that waterfalling into losing Lawrence Thomas (which was news to me but somewhat consoling.) All three of the above guys (Walsh-Hamilton-Heuerman) saw the program up close and decided to go elsewhere. It's been said before - recruits have short memories and Mich needs wins to keep the franchise relevant. Was there more to these decisions than this? Mich is a far better school than Iowa - yet Jordan said they had more to offer??? an OL said that??? Beluga was good but not Steve Hutchinson good.
There was some talk last year about involving the TEs more in the passing game. I'm thinking specifically of the running paly that called for the TE to pull and seal the opposite DE/LB that Brian discussed in detail last year. We need good TEs even when we don't throw them the ball. It's hard to pitch these TEs without giving them more of a role. I'm assuming that is what is up with Hamilton and Heuerman.
Any insight would be appreciated. Obviously tl;dr worthy material...but the angst is real. It would be nice to hear my concern is unwarranted (which is not exactly my take on ToB's piece...)
Here's to big and early wins.
FL TE Jeff Heuerman has committed to Ohio State. He recently took a visit to Ann Arbor, then on to Notre Dame, and eventually made it over to Ohio State in the same trip.
The Ohio State pushed it over the top for him. He thought it was the perfect fit, and the perfect place for him to play.
Florida tight end Jeff Heuerman just left Ann Arbor, after an unofficial visit with his father. Heuerman was hoping to leave today with an offer from the Wolverines, and he got his wish.
“We just got out of a meeting with coach Rodriguez, and he gave me the offer,” said Jeff. “They told me that they’re going to come after me really hard, and they definitely want me at Michigan. I’m one of only three tight ends they’ve offered, so I know they like me, too.”
Heuerman’s father was a former academic All American on the Michigan basketball team, but isn’t trying to persuade him to choose his alma mater.
“My dad is pretty excited, but he’s not telling me to choose Michigan. He tells me what he thinks, but that’s about it,” Jeff told me.
Jeff doesn’t have a top list, and is actually on his way to Notre Dame today. He’ll be stopping by Purdue on Thursday, and Ohio State on Friday and Saturday. Despite his excitement about the Michigan offer, Heuerman hasn't sorted the schools out, yet.
“I don’t have any favorites yet, because I want to visit these other schools, too. I loved it up at Michigan, though. I will tell you that,” said Heuerman. “I’m graduating early, so I will be deciding sometime in the summer, and Michigan is in there. These coaches are really impressive. They’re not negative recruiting at all, and being honest with me about where I fit in the offense. I was very impressed, and I loved it up there.”
Jeff now holds offers from Michigan, Boston College, Maryland, Memphis, Purdue, Rutgers, South Carolina, Tennessee, West Virginia, and Wisconsin, among others.
2011 TE Jeff Heuerman from Naples, FL was just offered by Michigan. On the phone with him now, I will have more in a minute.