Recruiting Board Updated
Update 3/21: Linked to articles on NC DB Robert Blanton, NJ LB JB Fitzgerald (lol). Noted that GA DT Omar Hunter has his offer now. (woot) Moved MI OL Dann O'Neill to committed. Added IL RB Jason Ford, NJ LB Brendan Beal. Removed OH TE Kyle Rudolph (dropped us), OH LB Devoe Torrence (OSU). Moved PA DT Lucas Nix to OT, where he's getting recruited by a lot of schools. If he ends up here OT is a much more logical place for him to play.
Editorial Opinion: Lost in this weekend's Amaker firing, at least here, was the commitment of instate OT Dann O'Neill, which was expected sooner or later but is still nice to have given last year's fiasco. O'Neill seems like a solid four star at this point, a guy closer to the top 100 than three-star status. At 6'7", he's a tackle. Michigan has now locked up two of the top three prospects in the state. (The third is DCD RB Jonas Gray, who Michigan still hasn't offered, though Florida has. Gators lead...
Jonas Gray: Received a UF offer and almost committed. UF leads. Holds offers from Michigan State, Florida, Minnesota, Illinois and Colorado.
...or do they?
Jonas Gray: Now says Michigan State and UF are his top 2 of the teams who have offered.
Gray's offer list is surpassingly weird: CU, Illinois, MSU, Minnesota, and frickin' Florida. The only confirmed RB offers I've found are to CA's Darrell Scott and the incomparable Sam McGuffie. Wonder what the holdup is?)
Anyway: O'Neill is a hugely important pickup and the first of what should be a five or six guy OL class. And he's a tackle. Three cheers for all that.
Omar Hunter, the guy from Georgia who was so darn excited about Michigan a few weeks ago, has his offer. GBW claims we are the favorite:
He has numerous offers, but U-M has offered now and is his fav.
There's an opening on the DL all of a sudden.
Robert Blanton's Michigan quote in this Scout article is priceless:
"Michigan was my first offer," he said. "It was my sophomore year. I've been there two times. I attended their camp last summer and got to meet Coach (Lloyd) Carr and talk with him for a while. We went into his office and he showed me his custom-made putting green he has. I couldn't believe it. Then he told me I had the offer. That was great. I really like everything about Michigan. They have won more than any other team in college football...they dominate. I like that."
We have a lockdown on any and all recruits who want to play putt-putt in the head coaches' office. Pimpin' Lloyd Carr aside, Michigan must really want Blanton to offer him as a sophomore. He's from Jamar Adams' school and we've got a good shot at him, but he's playing it close to the vest.
(Is this further evidence to throw on the Charlie Weis is a Enormous Tool pile?
He asked me how I'd feel if I got an offer from Notre Dame. I told him it would be amazing, I would love to get an offer. Then he said 'okay you do.'
I just can't envision that going down. "Son, how would it feel to get an offer from Notre Dame?" ...as if he expects the recruit to break down and start blubbering as if his life's one true goal had been accomplished. I'm pretty sure I would regard Weis with the same scorn no matter where he coached, but could he coach anywhere other than Notre Dame? "Son... how would it feel to get an offer from Purdue?" Yeah. Not so good.)
JB Fitzgerald has us in his top three:
"I can't say I have a strong favorite or favorites," said Fitzgerald, who reports a 4.7 forty time. "I want to see what each school has to offer before I rule anyone out. Right now, I'd say I like Rutgers, Michigan and USC. If I got an offer from the Trojans, that might change things a little bit.
"I took an unofficial to Michigan the second week of February," he said. "I liked the program a lot. They really showed off their tradition....how much of a part of life it is to them. I got to sit down with Coach (Lloyd) Carr for 20 minutes and that's when I got the offer. Then he sat with me and my dad at the basketball game that night. I can't say enough about what a great guy he is. He is so down-to-earth and easy to talk to. All the coaches are like that there."
"Easy to talk to"... some Detroit beatwriters might like to contest that description. Fitzgerald goes on to talk about USC in an alarming fashion. Trojans haven't offered but if they do I think they become solid favorites.
We lead for NY S Brendan Smith, though slightly:
"I grew up following Michigan," Smith said. "I just love their style of play. They are a fast-paced team and they know how to control the game. They also have really good academics and are well respected in both football and academics.
"They are the only school that has told me what position they want me for," he said. "They are saying safety. Everybody else is telling me that I'm an athlete."
JB Shugarts has a telling quote:
They are reconstructing their facilities and the campus is really nice," he said. "The program is really family-oriented and I like that coach Jim Tressel will be around for a long time."
Dollars to donuts our competition is hammering the Carr retirement thing into the ground... what an odd thing to say unless someone else isn't going to be around a long time. It's a valid thing to bring up; we just have to hope that the other attractions of Michigan can bring classes good enough to keep us afloat until Ron English becomes head coach and turns us into an OMG shirtless beacon on a hill.