...he going to get that offer? If not, who else are Nuss going to see in the coming weeks?
Thursday Recruitin' Monitors The Competition
Big Four, Little Ten?
Penn State had a heck of a day on Tuesday, beating out Ohio State—among many others—for four-star OT Sterling Jenkins, at one time the top tackle on Michigan's board, and four-star QB Brandon Wimbush. With 11 composite four-stars among their 15 total commits, James Franklin's program ranks behind only Alabama in the 2015 team recruiting rankings.
Given the circumstances, no school in the country is doing better on the recruiting trail than PSU right now, and they're doing so by dominating not only in-state recruiting, but the entire surrounding region—13 of their commits come from Pennsylvania or one of its bordering states. Michigan's had a fair amount of success in recent years recruiting in Pennsylvania, Maryland, New Jersey, and Virginia; with Franklin around, that success is going to be more difficult to replicate.
Meanwhile, Michigan State's on-field success is now translating to serious consideration from big-time prospects, and not just those from the Great Lakes State. Five-star WDE Jashon Cornell named the Spartans as his leader after visiting for the spring game, and he reiterated that stance in a free article by 247's Steve Wiltfong:
Cornell named the Spartans his leader following a visit to East Lansing for the spring game on April 26.
“I still feel the same way with them,” Cornell said. “They’ve had the best defense in the country the past three years,” Cornell said. “I’m trying to get better as a defensive player, and I feel Michigan State can help me become a better player and one of the best defensive players in the country.”
The Spartans aren’t the only contender for Cornell, who plans to make his college decision on Aug. 28, which coincides with the first day of school and his season opener.
“I have several schools in mind, UCLA, USC, Stanford, Michigan, Penn State, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oklahoma and Miami and Iowa,” Cornell reeled off.
With a relatively early decision planned, Cornell could very well end up a Spartan, and such a high-profile commitment could potentially impact the decisions of other top prospects—we've seen this effect right here at Michigan. As for the in-state battles, MSU continues to be a thorn in Michigan's side, as well; the most recent development is their offer of 2016 South Lake four-star Martell Pettaway, who told Allen Trieu the Spartans are the team to beat ($):
"They will be a very tough team to beat. They are number one now. They kept it real with me since day one and showed me a lot of love. At the moment, I am not committing. I'm going to wait it out and rack up offers then look at my decision but it will be hard for anyone to be over MSU since the were the first ones who did it and they were up there always."
These aren't fun developments, of course. Please don't shoot the messenger, especially since the other headlining recruiting news this week is...
Kinnel Gets Alabama Offer
...Nick Saban going after Michigan four-star safety commit Tyree Kinnel. The Tide offered him on Tuesday, though for now, Kinnel isn't wavering in his pledge to the Wolverines, per Scout's Dave Berk ($):
“An Alabama offer means a lot,” he said. “I think it would mean a lot to any kid in the country that plays football. That is a big offer, but as of right now, I’m still 100-percent Michigan.”
There's good and bad here. It's never fun when the specter of Alabama snake-oiling is present; on the other hand, the fact that Saban is showing that much interest is nice validation that Michigan's got themselves a very good prospect in the fold. For positivity's sake, here's to focusing on the latter part.
Rumor Drama, Part Whatever
After four-star Mike Weber visited Notre Dame, Scout published an article with a quote from the Cass Tech back intimating that Michigan was on the outside looking in when it came to his top schools ($):
"Right now I like Wisconsin, Michigan State, Ohio State and Notre Dame," Weber said. "I'm going to wait on a decision though because anything can happen and there's a lot of time left."
This caused something of a message board and social media firestorm, as these situations do. Weber took to Twitter to say he doesn't have a top four, and he talked to Brandon and further clarified the situation:
Mike Weber tells me he has no top 4 and "it's silly" that #Michigan isn't included among his favorites. He'll release a top group soon.
— Brandon Brown (@CoachBrown3) May 6, 2014
While Michigan putting out multiple recent offers to fellow 2015 running backs—most recently, three-star Georgia RB/complete sentence Mikell Lands-Davis—suggests they're not in as strong a postion as they'd hoped with Weber and Damien Harris, the Wolverines certainly aren't out of the picture for either.
New Offer/Peak Highlight Video
Michigan's latest offer to a 2015 lineman went out to WA three-star OT Calvin Throckmorton, who told GBW's Kyle Bogenschutz he's considering a trip from the West Coast to check out Ann Arbor ($):
Just six weeks away from summer vacation, Throckmorton says he plans to utilize his down time to take visits, with a trip to Ann Arbor to see Michigan on his mind as well.
“I don’t think I could really do those really until probably July or sometime then,” Throckmorton said. “But I definitely want to try to get out there to those schools.”
More importantly, somebody set offensive lineman combine highlights to the instrumental from Dr. Dre's "Nothin' But A G Thang" (baaaaaaaby), which is delightfully incongruous.
George Campbell Update
According to an article by Scout's Chad Simmons, Michigan is still hotly pursuing former commit George Campbell ($):
A number of schools are working hard to show Campbell he is high on their list. "Florida, Auburn, UCLA, Michigan, LSU, and USC are recruiting me the hardest," said Campbell.
An article on Cambell by 247's Shea Dixon features... an entirely different, shorter list ($):
“(UCLA coach Taylor Mazzone), (Florida coach Joker Phillips), (Alabama coach Lane Kiffin) and (Florida State coach Lawrence Dawsey) have all probably been recruiting me the hardest,” Campbell said. “I haven’t been talking with a lot of coaches, though. My uncle does.
"I will start taking serious visits and checking out schools, and after summer, I want to at least cut it down to a lower amount of schools and focus on those schools. It’s just a matter of time to see what I want to do.”
Florida and, interestingly, UCLA are the two constants; the Gators are considered the odds-on favorite at the moment. With Michigan failing to earn a mention for a potential official or unofficial visit in either article, expectations for a re-commitment should be very low.
2016 Traverse City West OL Thiyo Lukusa recently visited campus and told GBW's Josh Newkirk that Michigan is "still up there on my list"; also, damn you, polar vortex ($):
Due to 13 snow days this winter, Lukusa says his school year has been extended to make up for lost school time..Which mean his school schedule goes right into Michigan’s football camp season. So as of right now, he says his possible camp visit is pending.
“If I can make it down there one of these days and chill, maybe I can throw the cleats on and the helmet on and work,” he said. “I’ll have the helmet and cleats in the back of my car at all times this summer.”
Michigan checks in at #14 in the ordered top 15 released by 2015 five-star dual-threat QB Torrance Gibson, who currently has Tennessee, Auburn, LSU, and Ohio State on top, in that order. While that doesn't look so good, Gibson told 247's Ryan Bartow($) that Michigan's low placement was due to the fact they haven't offered—and he fully expects one to come once Doug Nussmeier sees him throw—and he later told Steve Lorenz an offer would jump the Wolverines up his list considerably ($):
Gibson tells me a Michigan offer would put them in his top 7 and that he would visit Ann Arbor at some point before ending his recruiting process.
Steve believes, and I agree, that even with an offer Michigan would be a longshot, but getting Gibson on campus would be a nice start towards changing that. The Buckeyes, unfortunately, may be the team to beat once they get him on campus—Gibson said the reason they landed at #4 is because he hasn't had a chance to visit them yet.
I wonder if Malzone's height is an issue because he clearly has all the intangibles and is a proven winner. Recruiting services have him at around 6'1"-6'2". He looks short in his film too.
turns a lot of this around. Feels like we must see the Defense take a leap to very good.
A caller to WTKA asked Sam about the coaching changes this morning. Sam said the primary reason on the defensive side of the ball was because Mattison plans to be more aggressive, and to do that he needed to coach the LB's because they'll be so involved in the blitz packages.
Another interesting note, was that a year or two ago there was an assistant - the name escapes me - who was apparently helping coach the corners, informally. Raymon Taylor mentioned this guy helping him a lot, as did some other corners. This coach moved on the Redskins. Last year they didn't have anyone to devote as much time to the corners. So the Manning move was designed toward that prior set up, which was also what they saw with some NFL teams. Mallory will have his hands full making sure Wilson takes the next step at safety and finding the right guy to play beside him.
That's who you're thinking of, I believe.
then he's even more of a lost cause than originally thought now.
Who's our Bagman? He needs to step up here.
/s (I think).
both suffered embarassing scandals and coaching changes and came out better (Clearly Ohio has, and PSU likely has) than Michigan did in its first coaching change when Michigan knew for the entire 2008 season that Carr was retiring.
Of course the jury is still out whether Michigan's second coaching change will ultimately prove successfull with evidence pointing both ways. How nice would it be to see Hoke start winning championships so we can start to put to rest what has been for the most part a pretty crappy decade of football.
Goddamn did you nail it. Ohio State went out and bought literally the best coach in college football not named Saban. Penn State had Bill O Brien intern for two years and make radical improvements to the infrastructure of the outdated Penn State football program, before bringing in James Franklin with guns blazing.
Seamless transitions for both.
OSU had a great situation in that one of the most successful coaches in the country was out of work and had previously coached at OSU. That just worked out perfectly for them.
PSU is still pending. Let's not get ahead of ourselves yet there. They haven't played a game yet under Franklin, and just like Hoke, the honeymoon recruiting period only lasts if you win. Franklin has a Pat Fitzgerald-esque resume, so we can't yet say they got a great coach.
Meyer is a great coach and it makes sense OSU came out ahead with him; we all need to relax a bit about Franklin until we actually see him win on the field at PSU and, frankly, stay out of the police blotter. That situation at Vandy isn't getting any better as more information comes out, and it doesn't take a lot for that situation to turn toxic.
But yeah, UM hasn't had a good run in recent years. It sucks, and they are paying for it now. That said, this is still one of the winningest programs on a decade-by-decade basis; I have faith that we aren't entering some dark era of Michigan football as much as a blip.
Franklin took a hapless program at Vandy to three straight bowl games and went 6-7, 9-4 and 9-4.
And this was with very little talent.
And basically beat up on crappy OOC teams and the dregs of the SEC.
Again. he's probably a good coach. But people are acting like he has some amazing resume, when in fact it is based on a couple years of head coaching experience and he's bringing some baggage.
Wasn't the pitch for Hoke that he took bad teams and really turned them around? How is that different from what Franklin has done? Are people just concerned because Franklin appears to have no scruples and that doesn't appear to bother either the PSU faithful or the recruits?
It's all timing. A year or two later and Meyer would have been our coach (he had an out in his contract for Michigan, Notre Dame, and Ohio State). Then we would have loved him and still be calling whoever Ohio State's coach was a slimeball.
...the current crops of rising juniors and seniors have seen MSU win five of its last six games against Michigan, two Big Ten titles, and one Rose Bowl. And as Cornell says, they routinely produce one of the best defenses in the country.
Michigan can claim a Sugar Bowl victory and one win against MSU in the last six seasons. It makes sense that guys would gravitate to MSU. They were in grade school when Michigan owned the rivalry.
But after that Cam Newton+ Bag men article, can't help but think that "talk to uncle" = "getting paid".
Yes we need to win etc though.
is it just me or do recruiting post just keep getting more depressing each week. I gotta find something else to read.
I couldn't agree more! Everytime something new gets posted it's one of our rivals on the top of that list with UM on the outside looking in. From what I see either MGoBlog isn't posting our sure fire candidates or there aren't any.
There aren't any and the one we might have(Malzone) can't get an offer to save his life. That said this is a small class and the coaches did say they were shifting to a later close strategy.
Can you elaborate more on the later close strategy? What does that mean exactly and when did they say this?
They knew we were bored on National Signing Day and wanted to keep us entertained.
What could be more entertaining than striking out on our hot prospects out of the blue to Ole Miss and Kentucky on NSD?
I've never seen the recruiting updates this depressing. It's pretty sad. They have to put a stop to this now. They have to take away the ability for their biggest rivals to negatively recruit against them. Meaning kick their asses in their place next year. Which is something Michigan has been completely inept at for a long time now.
In regards to Penn State it seems like they're on high right now with the coaching change, the upcoming end of sanctions, and the young talent already in place. They're going to be tough to recruit and play against for years to come, but it's always been that way. They've always have good talent and coaching. Let's wait and see how good Franklin is before we get our panties in a bunch. I'll always be thrilled when they beat out Ohio for a big time recruit because I hate Ohio with a passion and Penn St. doesn't scare me.
I will add about Franklin that the guy was 11-13 in the SEC over three years, and it's not a murderer's row in those 11 wins. I'm not saying he's a bad coach or anything, but he strikes me as a good recruiter but I'm not sold he's going to be a great coach.
I think you're understating how bad Vanderbilt was at football before James Franklin got there.
The last time a coach at Vanderbilt had two winning seasons during his tenure, it was the 50's.
Oh, I recognize that it was Vandy. But at the same time, I'm not ready to crown him a superstar quite yet. Meyer has earned that designation; Franklin will probably be good at PSU, but he's not spotless and there have been lots of coaches who looked like they had a rocket strapped to their butt and then it blew up when the stakes got bigger.
I agree. The list of teams Franklin beat is impressive considering he was at Vandy, but it's not like he was taking down LSU and Bama.
Yeah. I absolutely agree that 9 wins are impressive anywhere, but especially at Vandy. That said, beating Kentucky, Ole Miss a couple of times, Tennessee a couple of times, etc. isn't amazing, and when he left that was the complaint you heard from SEC fans - he beat up on the bad teams, but nobody knows if he can coach a team that can take that next step even if the talent is there.
Man, how did Franklin get the PSU bag men setup so quickly?
I seem to remember a team nearby with a quick recruiting turnaround.
I'm going to go read about global warming or something to cheer myself up. Yikes.
Down vote me if you want; I'm beginning to wonder about Coach Nussmeier's impact on recruiting. We dropped Big Al for him at the start of the year, and everyone thought recruits on offense would want to play for they guy who did THAT with Alabama's offense the last few years. (And breathed a sigh of relief we would not have to live through a season of a questionable OC on the hot seat.)
Since that time, we've had two 5-stars decomit, at least in part because they expected to play for Big Al. To my knowledge we have not picked up a single high-profile commitment on offense since we hired Nuss. Recruitniks, please, Please, PLEASE tell me I have overlooked someone (I'm begging you). We could not even land a graduate-transfer player who ACTUALLY PLAYED FOR NUSS at Alabama to cover a historic lack of depth at a key position.
We have a number of well-regarded QB recruits, some of whom are begging for a Michigan offer, go unoffered allegedly because Nuss hasn't "seen them throw yet." (Memo, they have this new-fangled invention called "film" that let's you evaluate a player without having to be physically present yourself. Granted, some think it's a passing fad, but it might just come in handy for the moment.) We keep chasing guys who are not seriously considering us, and who haven't/won't commit to us; a "near miss" on the top QB before he committed to UCLA is the closest we've come. We're losing ground on realistic QB recruits because we think we can get a guy who will not play for us. The only bright spot is that we have pretty good depth at QB with guys who were 5-stars as high schoolers.
And don't tell me it's a 7 loss season, and all will be well if we can get to 10 wins this year. We're losing out to UCLA (no one's idea of Alabama West), a school still ineligible for post-season games (Penn State), and nonspecific "let me see if a bigger, better deal comes along before I commit" schools. I'm not reaching for my torch or my pitchfork just yet, but thus far, Coach Nussmeier has been all hat and no handle on the recruiting trail.
Please, I beg you, make me look like an idiot. I'd dearly love to be 100% wrong on this.
The Bama center couldn't come here because of graduate admissions.
As for the decommits, Campbell wasn't going to last anyway. That leaves Harris, who decomitted in part because of Borges. If the tradeoff for a pro-style OC with a history of elite offenses, who is revamping the Michigan offense, is to lose one RB recruit I'm more than fine with it. Never again will I sit through a game as shittly called as the Penn State game last year. I was in a rage that entire game.
not gaining admission? People have said this without any attibution or link. If it is just conjecture then I frankly don't buy it
Recruiting is not the reason we switched OCs, so wait until the season before you bemoan the switch.
OCs? I'm just curious as to your opinion.
Mostly because no one here knows "the reason".
don't think it takes a rocket scientist to guess why Big Al got let go but incase i'm wrong I'll bite. It probably had smoething to do with the worst rushing offense in school history and an offense that seemed to go backwards with time. I don't think recruiting had anything to do with it and if it did...i'd think even less of DB and BH than I did before.
At least in my scenario I can give them credit for recognizing a glaring problem and attempting to fix it despite being friends with the guy.
I'm sure the fact that we sucked at offense has something to do with it
Yes, this is my line of thinking as well. Borges was never going to be a good recruiter, so him not recruiting well isn't why he got fired. Him not coaching well is most likely the reason here.
youre right, votes still out on nussmeier. but nussmeier cannot be blamed for 27/27 or negative yardage game totals, etc nor can he be blamed just yet for the devastating impact last season has had on recruiting. and unfortunately hokes D cannot remain blameless either given some poor outings and late collapses, and while mattison shares some of the burden, mattison owns pretty decent track record while hoke most certainly does not. its incredible gardner and the O can break some um records and post half decent #s over past 2 yrs with such awful overall results. im not plugged into um football offices so im not sure how much of the train wreck on O hoke must own, but ultimately hes the captain so it falls on him (including disasters like repeatedly signing off on the hours and weeks of practice spent on tackle-over nonsense and then not scrapping immediately after negative plays pile up)...its still anyones guess outside of schembechler whether hoke insists on heavy formations despite poor personnel and repeatedly running straight into a wall...though my guess is much of it trickles down. but its been bad all around and the timing could not have been worse in this media-heavy age as spartans continue historic, program changing run and osu rolls off 23-straight Ws or so...not on nussmeier. and all this garbage will just continue wafting around the program until they can jump on tv this fall and attempt to put it to rest. im not shocked in the least that nussmeier has not pulled in any elite O recruits yet...he walked into a total tire fire and had to initially juggle the road/phone calls while evaluating his new roster, watching countless hours of tape and trying to piece together a functioning O out of like 10 frosh or soph OL along with 0 TEs/ backs who can be trusted to block...not easy...he can only chirp so much and only sell a dream to kids looking to buy....the past 10+ years have really hurt this program, the worst of which seemed like a nail in coffin last year, and every step backwards further buries the programs image and washes away the dreams and return-to-glory platitudes hokes been preaching. to lay any of that on nussmeier is outrageous. no coach dead or alive (and without sacks full of cash) could have reeled campbell and harris right back in ...they witnessed disaster after disaster last fall either in person or on national tv and grew up watching osu or wisc or whoever smack um in the mouth on way to rings and thats tough to see as a commit with very legit nfl aspirations
I would recommend hitting the enter button a few times when you have some free time....
Your number of paragraph breaks is in inverse proportion to your wisdom.
It's true. Things are looking bad for the Michigan football program right now. Hoke doesn't seem to be up to the job, based on the three years he has turned in. 2011 is looking like more and more of a fluke. If I'm the AD, he's got one more year - this one, 2014 - and without 9-3 or better, perhaps 8-4 if it includes a win in The Game, then he's out.
Getting pasted by PSU on the recruiting trails is a bad, bad sign. I know, everyone but one team is getting beat by PSU right now on the 2015 trail. But not as badly as we are. This is embarrassing, frankly. This is Michigan, fergodsakes, and if _this_ is really Michigan, then fergodsakes we've got to do something to change it.
And not playing well! 2013 was an awful season to pre 2008 Michigan standards. If Hoke loses another 4 or 5 games this season then our recruiting will suffer even more. Hoke will be on the hot seat for 2015 and major recruits will not want to play for a team on a downward spiral facing a potential change in HC and staff. I'm hoping Hoke can save a sinking ship and win 9 or 10 games this season. But if the OL turns out to be another tire fire, then Hoke chances of making through 2015 will look quite dim. I'm starting to think Hoke needs to go if he loses more than four games and/or the team never progresses through the year. I don't want to wait around through 2015 expecting a B1G championship that may never occur.
And don't tell me it's a 7 loss season
It's a 7 loss season.
It has created uncertainty around the program and the future of this coaching staff. it's not really about Nuss one way or the other. His presence is a net positive, but the fact that he is here at all and the way he came here adds to the element of uncertainty surrounding the program.
Top recruits have other choices. They don't have to take a flyer on a program under a cloud. A successful season will go a long way toward resolving the uncertainty issue.
Hoke was selling hope in the first couple of years and Franklin is doing the samething. Meyers is selling performance and now Datonio has started doing the same thing. Unfortunately, Hoke is running out of stuff to sell.
Hoke squeezed out alot from that 11 win season. Two years worth of really good classes. But yeah, I think UM got piled on by the competition on the recruiting trail.
Yep, almost every coach at a major program gets a first year bump due to the hope/change momentum - Hoke got this in the 2012 class. He also had the Ravens Mattison effect to help sell defense recruiting.
As others have pointed out most teenagers today have not seen UM be special in any way - there was 1 season (2011) in their lives and two (2006) if you want to go back when they were still in elementary school. To their perception MSU is better at football, having had three 11 win seasons out of the last 4, and beating UM almost every year they have been a teenager. And just won a Rose Bowl and now regularly field top 10 defenses yearly.
And we won't even bother comparing OSU's results the past 10 years which aside from Alabama are probably the 2nd best in the nation. Plus Urban walks into a recruit's house with 2 NC rings on his fingers. If any recruit is serious about UM and OSU all Meyer has to do is slide across the table a side by side comparison of the past 15 years of the programs W-L and bowl appearances... and sit quietly.
I hate to say this but the way I think of it now UM is sort of where PSU has been recruiting pre sanctions but without JoePa... look we were a glorious program once, let's go talk to your dad about it shall we; he remembers the mid/late 90s, right about when you were born in fact. Or ND pre Kelly who can at least walk into recruits houses and say we were in the NC game 2 years ago.... those ND coaches were selling tradition and the Holtz era... and trying to avoid the mediocre product on the field. That's UM right now. While programs like Wisconsin, MSU and OSU can roll in and say things like "you watched TV last year right? Or the last 5 years?"
Even with this situation UM is still getting a high enough quality of player that IF COMBINED with top end coaching would get very good results. So it is not an excuse - Wisconsin has been doing this with top 30 classes, Stanford some years has been ranked in the 40s and 50s and MSU rarely gets a top 20 class - 2013 and 2014 will be their highest ranking classes (presuming the momentum carries in 2014, they are in for some veyr high level recruits like Larry Scott, Cornell, etc). So they have done it with systems and coaching with recruiting classes worse than UM is getting, so for all the woe is me there is still no excuse unless UM's recruiting falls to the 40s annually. Which it won't.