Name: Jalen Bates
Position: Defensive End
Ht/Wt: 6'5" / 235 lbs.
Location: Kaplan – Kaplan, LA (2015)
Offers: Louisiana Tech, Louisiana-Lafayette, Michigan, Texas Tech
The Michigan coaches were burning the midnight oil on Tuesday night as Coach Jackson got on the phone with Louisiana native Jalen Bates to extend him a scholarship offer.
One of my coaches texted me the number for Coach Jackson because he watched my film and really wanted to talk to me. I called Coach Jackson and pretty much right off the jump he offered me. He said that he had just seen my film that day and was really impressed with it. After he offered he said they’d really like to try and get me up there for a camp or to see the campus. It was just like that.
Being a Louisiana kid and not hearing from Michigan until yesterday, I was curious to ask Jalen about his Michigan knowledge.
Well I have a cousin, Jonas Mouton, and he played football for Michigan. I believe he was an all-conference linebacker. So actually I know a little bit about Michigan. I definitely wouldn’t mind going up there and following in my cousins footsteps because he’s in the NFL now. Michigan is on a big stage and anybody would love to play on a stage like that so I’ll be considering them.
Bates is another one of these under-the-radar guys that the coaching staff seems to have identified early as his budding offer list contains just three other schools. LSU isn’t on his offer list as of yet but I asked Jalen if an in-state power like the Tigers is an offer he covets.
I actually didn’t grow up an LSU fan, I grew up a Ragin’ Cajun fan. I live close to the campus and I grew up watching them. They are a program on the rise right now. I’m just a fan of them more than LSU because I feel like sometimes people just go to LSU because of the name and because they are big. I’m not really a fan of LSU.
Even though Jalen seemed to like the idea of playing for a program like Michigan he was very apprehensive of playing and living that far away from home. He recognizes how different it would be moving from Louisiana to Michigan and that will be a big factor for him.
When I get ready to commit I just want the place to feel like my life. It has to feel like home, like a down-south type of hospitality. I don’t want it to be such a change that I’m miserable. I want it to feel like a family.
Jalen said that his recruitment is really starting to blow up so his summer plans are very fluid right now. He’d like to take some visits and check some places out, Michigan included, and continue to work on his technique, get faster, and put on good weight. Once his senior campaign starts he’ll likely commit either at a homecoming type of event or after his season is over.
5 – Trending Blue
4 – Solidly in a top 2-3
3 – Contender in a top 3-7
2 – Among large (8-15) group under consideration
1 – Let’s see if he visits before we talk
0 – Passing interest or none
This score is a little misleading as Bates only has four offers. He receives a vibe score of 3 by default but I’m not sure Michigan is a top 3-7 type of interest for him. With a family member recently playing at a high level at Michigan he may be inclined to check out Ann Arbor, but with the amount of emphasis he put on his southern roots and the fact that he needs a place to feel like home, I just don’t see Michigan getting serious consideration. Bates also flat out said that Louisiana-Lafayette was his leader and I’m not sure that will change. If his recruitment really does blow up he may be forced to look at other, more prestigious programs, but if not, he’s likely to stay close to home.