Ace - why did you (or Upchurch) blurr out the cross country patch on the varsity jacket?
Monday Recruitin' Pulls A Jordan
Today's recruiting roundup covers recruit reactions from the Northwestern game, the latest on Laquon Treadwell and Derrick Green, last weekend's high school football results, and more.
Permission To Unbuckle (For Now, At Least)
Michigan picked a good weekend for a dramatic victory, as several recruits were on hand to see the comeback against Northwestern. That included 2013 FL S Leon McQuay III, who was on his official visit; while McQuay's father told 247's Josh Newberg it was "a good trip," Michigan's top defensive target is staying mum on potential leaders ($):
While Michigan remains in the thick of it for McQuay III, he's not tipping his hand to his parents.
"We haven't spoke," McQuay II said. "He hasn't spoke about the visit to me or his mom...You know how it is"
The elder McQuay did say his son got a long look at the music school and was up until 2 am with the "two guys that play music on the team"—presumably Jack Kennedy and Joe Reynolds, aka JDK & Rey. Michigan appears to be right in the mix for McQuay, with USC and Florida State likely posing their biggest threat.
Tremendous reveals that the commitment watch this weekend was for 2014 UT DT Bryan Mone, who discussed the possibility of pledging on his visit but ultimately did not make the call. He did, however, tell Sam Webb that Michigan "feels like home" and is his current leader over Colorado and Utah ($). Mone had previously named both the Buffaloes and Utes as his favorite, so take this news with a grain of salt, but the Wolverines are in very good shape with the first prospect they offered in the class.
There's also a visit reaction at Tremendous from 2014 IL CB Parrker Westphal, who continues to refer to Michigan as "the standard" in his recruitment. Scout, meanwhile, had the Wesphal family in the WTKA studio for an interview, and his older brother Brandon—a junior linebacker at Illinois State—talked about helping Parrker get ahead of the curve (free article):
“It was probably eighth grade midgets and just seeing him running around on the field, his intensity and enthusiasm with everything,” said Brandon. “When I got to college I was teaching him stuff that I was learning so when he was in the eighth grade freshman year he was already like three years ahead of everybody else.”
“Ever since eighth grade it has just been a blast being able to watch him play and just do some things that I wouldn’t have thought he’d be able to do at that age, or any kid.”
Other recruits to keep an eye on from the weekend are four-star OH ATH Dareian Watkins, who said he was "sold on the program" during the Northwestern game, and MI TE Kyle Rachwal, who feels like he's "part of the family" and will be making his fifth(!) visit for a Michigan game next weekend. Neither prospect has an offer yet; if one comes for either, it appears likely they'll be in the class.
[Hit THE JUMP for the rest of the recruiting roundup.]
In Which Gene Chizik Claims Things He Probably Can't Claim
VA RB Derrick Green just took an official visit to Auburn, where he watched the Tigers drop to 0-7 in SEC play after a 38-0 loss to Georgia. Any concerns about the job security of head coach Gene Chizik? Nope, because Gene Chizik told him so ($):
Green, 6-foot and 220 pounds, said he’s not concerned with Tigers’ 2-8 record and neither is Auburn’s coaching staff.
“They’re not going nowhere,” Green said. “They said, ‘We plan to be here.’ That’s what they told me. They plan to be here and they’re not going anywhere.”
There was a change on Green's leaderboard, and surprisingly it involved neither Auburn nor Tennessee, where Derek Dooley is on his way out the door. According to ESPN's Dave Hooker, Green has dropped Virginia Tech in favor of Miami ($):
Green's scheduled official visit to Oregon on Nov. 16 has been postponed. He said he'll take the trip after the season. Green said he'd also like to take an official visit to Miami as well.
"Throughout this whole process, they've been recruiting me hard," Green said of the Hurricanes. "I've been talking to the running backs coach [Terry Richardson]. We've built a real good relationship. Looking at the running back position there, that's a plus. I feel like I could get a chance."
I think Michigan has the edge here by virtue of being the program consistently mentioned among Green's leaders that isn't on the verge of firing their coach (or at least strongly considering it), but he's obviously still pretty open at this point.
Meanwhile, IL WR Laquon Treadwell said something about Michigan not showing him as much attention as they had been to Josh Helmholdt after his playoff game last weekend, while Notre Dame is gaining favor with him ($). This isn't something I'd get too concerned about; it's an offhand comment after a game, with zero clarification about where either team stands in the big picture—catch him on a different weekend when he gets a couple more phone calls and it could be an entirely different story. This is why you follow recruiting on a day-to-day basis at your own peril.
Commitment Stat Roundup: Stribling Does Everything
Channing Stribling got all his scoring done in the first half of Butler's 55-26 victory over Independence on Friday. One half was enough:
In the first half, Stribling scored four times, and he did it three different ways.
He had an 82-yard interception return, a 31-yard pass reception, a 77-yard kick return and another 66-yard pass reception.
“I was amazed,” Bulldogs coach Brian Hales said. “I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t. I just looked at his mom in the stands and stuck my hands up. She stuck her hands up, too, like ‘What’s happening?’
“It was like Michael Jordan hitting all those 3s in the first half. I haven’t been here to see all the great performances (by Bulldogs in the past), but to see one like this, it has to be right up there.”
Stribling's postgame quote is hilariously understated [emphasis mine]:
“I guess after awhile,” he said, “I was thinking it was my night. It was cool to play a game like that.”
Sure, I guess.
Photo by Denny Barnes, courtesy of the Shallman family
Catholic Central took home the regional title with a 28-7 win over Plymouth, and Wyatt Shallman's father passed along that he recorded seven tackles, two TFLs, a sack, and several QB hurries while also seeing the field sparingly on offense for the first time this season—he's been limited by a hamstring injury and playing exclusively at defensive end as a result.
Also winning an MHSAA regional title was Jourdan Lewis and Cass Tech, which beat Saline 21-14 on the strength of a 169-yard rushing performance by 2015 RB Mike Weber. Matt Pargoff has an interview and highlights of 2014 CB/WR Damon Webb from the game, as well.
In the Ohio state playoffs, Jake Butt hauled in two touchdown catches to lead Pickerington North to a regional semifinal win over Hilliard Darby, while Jaron Dukes caught a 23-yard TD of his own in a blowout win for Marion-Franklin. Mike McCray also came out with a win, leading Trotwood-Madison with 11 tackles (eight solo), forcing two fumbles (recovering one), and catching a 34-yard pass in a 27-20 victory over Winton Woods. Ross Douglas (42 yards on 13 carries) and Ben Gedeon (14 carries, 88 yards, one TD, one lost fumble) both bowed out of the playoffs [EDIT—I can't read, and Douglas's team, Avon, won and advanced; Gedeon's Hudson squad did in fact lose].
Gareon Conley to ESPN's Brad Bournival on taking visits ($, info in header): "I'm going to do it." So, yeah, that's happening.
I didn't edit the photo, but I'm assuming there's something in the way that's blurring the patch—no reason why Eric would do that.
There was something blocking it. I didn't edit that out.
Hey-a creepy, how's it feel to be that familiar with an 18 year-old that you know what patches he has on his jacket?
I'm really excited about Channing stribling, I think he has a huge upside
I think he has an ENORMOUS upside. I think the rankings he has on all scouting websites is disrespectful. I think he is a 4 star athlete if not a close 5. He clearly stands out from any and all of our recruits as far as skilled players, and the competition he goes against every game. I knew he was gonna be a sleeper so ive been following his stats and boy to they absolutely destroy any other recruit we have in the 2013 class. I think he more than fills in the spot of Gareon and if you ask me, i think he can start his freshman year. Just my opinion.
Good to hear they were up to 2am making some beats/music.
I wonder if Green enjoyed the throttling Georgia gave Auburn.
“They’re not going nowhere,” Green said. “They said, ‘We plan to be here.’ That’s what they told me. They plan to be here and they’re not going anywhere.”
And I plan on winning the lottery, but I think both Chizik and I are going to have bad news
Ace - a comment.
I suspect you don't follow this stuff, but McQuay had a Twitter conversation with Shane Morris today where he stated fans are not supposed to take pictures of recruits, or ask for autographs, things of that nature.
I only bring it up because of your pic on this article. It's the exact pic which caused McQuay's Twitter reaction.
Media members are well within their rights to take photos of visiting recruits at the game; Eric is credentialed to take photos, obviously. Understand that McQuay probably doesn't enjoy being photographed at games but Eric wasn't doing anything wrong taking that photo—The Wolverine puts together an entire gallery of recruit visitors for each home game.
Aren't you the person who used to say that you didn't care about recruiting? And now you're paying attention to what Leon McQuay III says on Twitter?
Whether McQuay likes it or not, fans will take pictures when he's in public. If he thinks they're "not supposed to," then he's confused.
I don't know the source of the rules jg2112 is referencing re: pictures with fans, but it seems sensible regarding fans (not journalists per se). We all likely remember this shady character (Charles Eric Waugh - convicted sex offender and all-around creepy guy) and his photos with recruits at OSU. I wonder if the Waugh incident has caused increased focus on this issue.
One question is how the heck you'd enforce such a rule. These kids are out in public, so short of putting them in a burqua (sp?) I think folks will be able to snap their pictures.
BTW, I'm guessing that the encounter with Ohio University's Rufus was merely Brutus's second worst memory on the field in recent years!
That guy still creeps me out.
One quick correction to your post Ace: Ross Douglas' Avon team beat Tiffin Columbian in the playoffs last Friday. They are still alive and face Toledo Central Catholic who has 2014 QB DeShone Kizer and 2013 DB and OSU commit Jayme Thompson.
Ross Douglas and Avon knocked Toledo Catholic Central out of the playoffs last year.
Another interesting Michigan-Ohio St. commit showdown next week when Jaron Dukes and Marion Frankilin take on OSU commit Darron Lee and New Albany.
...obviously a lot of very good players. But rolling through the state playoffs with a sophomore quarterback. A tenth-grader.
to be fair, a sophomore with an Alabama offer.
Also to be fair, Alabama offers twice as many kids as a lot of top programs, and they do it early.
I could be wrong, but wasn't Michigan among the highest for scholarship offers last year?
It goes up and down from year to year. Last year was only 134 offerees. previous 3 classes we averaged around 192, 2 seasons prior around 122.
Big deal. That same sophomore won CT a state title last year as a (doing some quick math in my head)...freshman. Kid's good.
Cass won the state playoffs last year with the same QB. Obvs then a freshman.
...is rolling through the state playoffs with a freshman quarterback.
This isn't the first time he has said that Michigan wasn't the team recruiting him the hardest. About a month ago he mentioned the Oklahoma and OK State were the schools recruiting him the hardest. Nothing that has happened in the last 4-5 months has indicated the Michigan is the leader. It's extremely rare that a recuit uses all five of his officials and then commits to a team he didn't take an official to. We might be better off lowering our expectations for a Treadwell commitment because at this point it seems more like a long shot.
I would say in general when a recruit goes through a 2 year recruiting process and norrows his schools from 10 to 5. to 3 etcetera... and then starts opening up his recruitment again that doesn't bode well for his original finalists. It probably means he is looking for something or a feeling he hasn't found yet in his final schools and therefore opening up his recruitment again. That's why I don't feel great about Green either, although the fact that he came in for an official makes me a bit more optimistic.
Michigan is rarely mentioned by any recruits as "recruiting the hardest." I try not to be a homer, but I generally think that these coaches are a) typically up-front but not pushy with recruits and b) following the rules. There have been guys who were upset with Michigan coaches for not contacting them at times when it was illegal for coaches to contact recruits.
My guess is that Michigan's coaches are still contacting him, but they're not begging him to come to Ann Arbor as much as some of these other schools. I can't really picture Hoke, Mattison, or Borges sitting there and begging kids to come to their school. That just doesn't really fit their style.
Wish they'd put someone on staff to do the begging, then, if it means more 5* recruits. Wouldnt that be preferable to not begging and not landing those top kids?
Or does that mean that we'd prefer kids that don't want to be begged? Or are you saying that in the so-called begging, coaches are promising things (playing time, women, $) that are coaches will not promise?
Some kids appreciate a coach being honest and up front, witness the last two recruiting classes. Other kids prefer the Lane Kiffin, Ed O used-car-salesman approach. Treadwell knows the deal, he will be the highest rated recruit at the position coming in with a top ranked QB, we seem to have held a spot open for him a lot longer than most others and was probably our top target at the position. If he doesn't want to come he won't come, no amount of 'begging' will change that. Either A) He doesn't want to come and is looking for an excuse. B) Still interested but likes the attention and he says things to get people talking, or something in between. Either way he is waiting till signing day or UAA to announce.
Considering we have one 5-star in this class (Shane Morris) and another potential (Derrick Green), along with a cadre of 4-stars and a top-five recruiting class, I'm not sure that hiring a beggar would be that helpful. These coaches are doing just fine the way they are.
(and I am not saying Treadwell is one of them) then perhaps we need to think twice.
I'd much rather we recruit kids who want to play for Michigan, or form whom Michigan is a top football option and academics matter, or who prefer straight forward recruiting versus begging.
That said, if I were a 5 star who the Michigan coaches will hold a spot for, I would want the free visits to top programs in parts of the country I maybe haven't been to, just to be sure.
Bottom line: it appears the coaching staff want talented good kids who are committed. Begging increases your risk of self centered, Pryor-like recruits. Besides, this is Michigan Fergodsakes!
I appreciate that approach by the coaches. I was just trying to gain perspective. Not sure how that was "trolling," though.
I attended the Auburn-Georgia game and the pre-game buzz was low. AU fans were negative before the kickoff. Yes, the atmosphere was energetic (warm weather, rivalry game, heavy cocktails flowing, eagle flight) and then the game started. Fans were leaving in Q2 and the UGA fans dominated the scene in Q3 and Q4. Recruits looked absolutely bored by Q3.
Green is being politically safe with his responses.
Not sure if things have change since 06, but the Music School was located on North Campus and looked kinda gloomy to me. Hope McQuay doesn't mind that
I don't think it's gloomy at all. It's a pretty cool building. It's not super glitzy or anything, but it sort of fits most of the University of Michigan. Some of the new buildings on North Campus are shiny, and they're not far from the School of Music.
but they will be doing a significant renovation and expansion over the next few years (23 million dollars worth) which will put it on the level of pretty much any of its competition.