A Rumor, Dispatched
Track Meet 1, Touchdown Jesus 0
On Tuesday, a tweet appeared in my mentions, seemingly out of the blue, asking how long it would be until I wrote the "Goodbye" post for Shaun Crawford. This caused a great deal of confusion until I noticed the thread on The Wolverine's message board that discussed "slight rumblings" from Notre Dame posters that Crawford would visit for the Irish's spring game this weekend ($). That, of course, would be a bit of an issue with the Michigan coaches regarding his status as a commit.
While Tim Sullivan rightfully attached a healthy amount of skepticism to the rumor, noting Crawford is scheduled to run in a track meet in the Cleveland area on the day of ND's spring game, it wasn't debunked entirely. The internets, as they are wont to do, took it and ran. Well, for a bit.
247's Steve Lorenz left no room for speculation ($):
Shaun Crawford: Shaun has a track meet this weekend. He is not visiting Notre Dame.
Sam Webb also posted a thread on the GBW premium board stating Crawford's camp touched base with the coaches and said he isn't visiting South Bend ($).
In the interest of objectivity, I'll note that Crawford showed a great deal of interest in Notre Dame before his Michigan commitment, and back in December he considered visiting Ohio State before discussing the matter with U-M's coaching staff. Until he says so himself, the possibility that he wants to look around can't be eliminated; by that same token, I'll believe he's willing to risk his spot in the class to visit another school when a trip actually materializes.
[Hit THE JUMP for the latest on Jake Fruhmorgen, a big-time weekend visitor, 2015 quarterback targets, spring game visit reactions, and more.]
Fruhmorgen Deciding Today
Now that Sterling Jenkins has cut his list to Ohio State and Penn State, four-star FL OT Jake Fruhmorgen is the top offensive lineman on Michigan's board, but that probably won't last the afternoon. He's announcing his decision between Clemson, Alabama, and Michigan at 3:15, and the Tigers are the heavy favorite to land him—multiple outlets aren't even bothering to list U-M as a finalist.
If Fruhmorgen commits elsewhere—and it'd be a massive upset if he pledged to Michigan—then U-M's top target at tackle will be VA four-star Grant Newsome, who's slated to visit Ann Arbor within the next couple of weeks, per Steve Lorenz ($). The Wolverines have plenty of competition for Newsome, though they appear to be in good position with him.
Big-Time Weekend Visitor
247's Clint Brewster reported that four-star TN LB Joshua McMillon will take an visit to Michigan this weekend, staying both Friday and Saturday nights. His coach, according to the linked (free) article, is a Michigan alum; Alabama is currently considered the favorite to land the coveted linebacker prospect, however, and it'll take a good deal of work from the coaches to contend for his services.
Spring Game Visit Reactions
Four-star IL WR Miles Boykin was one of the top prospects on campus for the spring whatever-that-was, and he told Tim Sullivan that Michigan is still in the process of evaluating him ($):
"Basically we're just talking, not even about football," Boykin explained of his interaction with Mallory. "We're trying to build up the relationship. When I visited yesterday, he said that they really liked me on film and he's going to talk to the offensive coordinator and the receivers coach and the tight ends coach.
"I got to meet [Hecklinski and Ferrigno] at the game, and It was my first time really talking to those two. It was really nice; they're good guys. They're going to have a meeting Monday. They're going to talk about me there."
At 6'3", 215, Boykin is being recruited at both wide receiver and tight end depending on the program, and Sullivan said Monday's meeting was to determine which position Michigan would recruit him for, and if he should get an offer. Thus far, there's been no word of an offer, but given his talent and offer sheet I wouldn't be surprised if one goes out sooner or later.
Northville OL David Moorman has been a consistent presence on campus, and Michigan's stance on his recruitment has been just as consistent—on his visit, the coaches reiterated to Moorman that they'd like to see him at camp before an offer goes out, per GBW's Kyle Bogenschutz ($). Based on this quote, it seems fair to extrapolate that he'd jump on a Michigan offer if one came, and he's also planning for the distinct possibility that doesn't happen:
“Hopefully June comes along and either some coaches will tell me it’s not going to happen or some schools will tell me they’re going to offer me. So, hopefully by the end of June I can have a pretty good understanding of what offers I’m going to have and hopefully I can make my decision pretty fast over summer.”
Michigan also hosted three-star AZ QB Brian Lewerke, who told 247's Clint Brewster that the Wolverines would be among his leaders if they offered ($):
"The coaches said I'm one their top guys, they just want to wait a little longer before sending out an offer."
"Michigan would be in my top three of four schools if they offered. Michigan State, Michigan, Arizona State, and Florida are my top schools in no order."
Lewerke said prior to his visit that he'd like to make a decision within the next month. I've heard word that Michigan State may in fact be the team to beat after his recent visit there, with ASU also a serious contender. My best guess is he'll have committed elsewhere before Michigan is ready and willing to send out an offer.
More 2015 QB Updates
2015 offered QB David Sills told Scout's Greg Biggins that he still considers himself a USC commit, though he is "looking around," and Michigan is among the other programs standing out to him ($):
Over the last two weeks, Sills has visited Maryland, West Virginia, Penn State and also checked out Michigan last month.
“Michigan and Penn State really stood out to me,” Sills said. “I have two former teammates [Ed: Freddy Canteen and Brandon Watson] at Michigan so I have a nice support circle there and they’re recruiting me pretty good. I love the coaches at both schools and I had a great time at both places as well.
Visits to Alabama and Mississippi State are on tap for this weekend, and then Sills says he'd like to make a final decision in the summer before enrolling early at the school of his choice. Penn State, if they come through with an offer, appears to have some momentum here.
Meanwhile, Brother Rice QB Alex Malzone should know whether or not a Michigan offer is forthcoming pretty soon, and he told Rivals's Josh Helmholdt that he'll throw for several schools, U-M included, later this month ($):
"I plan on [April] 17th and 18th being days I throw for colleges," Malzone said. "There are going to be about 15 colleges that come to see me throw during the open period in April and early May."
Among the schools Malzone expects in to see him throw are Michigan, Michigan State, Penn State, Boston College, Vanderbilt, Tennessee, Kentucky, Minnesota and Indiana.
The coaches have long maintained that they'd like to see Malzone throw in person before extending him an offer. If one comes, the Wolverines would be the heavy favorite to land him.
In an article by Rivals's Adam Gorney, four-star CA WDE Keisean Lucier-South maintained that if he can't make it to Michigan in the summer, they'll be "seriously considered" for an official visit in the fall ($).
Not Michigan-related, but perhaps Pat Fitzgerald will rethink his stance on the player's union after seeing this quote from five-star WDE Jashon Cornell?
The prior visits to Evanston have intrigued Cornell, but his interest has been furthered by what is going on at the school recently.
"I was looking at them for awhile, but it's opened my eyes up because of all the new stuff they have been putting in that program," he said. "With the new football facilities they are building they are getting a private beachfront at the school. All of their facilities are getting upgraded right now. Just knowing that they are working on that union thing, that sounds like a cool thing."
Yes, the cynic in me truly believes that coaches could come around on player unionization when they realize it has the potential to be a dynamite recruiting tool.
If you missed it, Brandon posted updates on the board this week for 2016 QB Mikale Washington and 2017 RB Dylan Moses.