and... i like them? I think I like them.
There is a great free article by Chris Balas over at Rivals entitled M is for Momentum. While the article doesn't cover a whole lot of new ground, there are some great quotes, and a good analysis of the future for Michigan in both football and basketball. One prep coach quips,
"If they can get 11 wins out of a group without a single consensus All-Big Ten player, think about what they're going to do with even more talent," one prep coach told TheWolverine.com recently.
Rivals recruiting analyst Mike Farrell says of Michigan's haul,
"I've never seen anything like this. . . it's Texas territory," Farrell said in comparing U-M to the Longhorns, notorious for cleaning up early. "This is something new. It's pretty remarkable. I think they got the right guys on campus and that they really know the kids they are recruiting. . . . Michigan has done everything right, from the way they handled last year's recruiting class to this year's. That's why they're so successful. Brady Hoke is a stand-up guy - not a flashy recruiter, but a guy who just gets the job done. It will be interesting to watch where Michigan and Ohio State finish this year."
Balas also gives props to Beilein and the basketball team, saying
The Wolverines are contending with a single four-star prospect in the top six of the rotation (though in fairness, freshman point guard Trey Burke, now a Big Ten player of the year candidate, obviously should have been).
That changes in the years to come - the part about doing it without highly regarded prep talent, that is. U-M has invested money to put its basketball facilities on par with some of the nation's best, and kids have noticed that and Michigan's success under Beilein.
And we're not done yet. Balas notes that Michigan is seriously in the running for a bunch of four and five star recruits, listing at least six more football players ranked in the top 100 juniors, along with highly ranked basketball recruits.
In terms of having such a successful football, basketball, and hockey team, concurrently, there may be no precedent, at Michigan or any other school, at any other time. Michigan truly may be entering a golden age. Between the coaching, the facilities, and the players themselves, Michigan could scarcely be in a better place. I envy those of you who are current students. Don't take for granted how good you have it now.