This list is completely arbitrary and not a genuine analysis of the relative merits of state fossils.
Thursday Recruiting' Looks Around
Today's recruiting roundup covers Gareon Conley's decommitment, the candidates to fill the final few spots in the '13 class, and more.
Conley Decommits: Is He Still An Option?
In a move months in the making, Gareon Conley has decommitted from Michigan($, info in header) after visiting Ohio State last weekend, in accordance with the no-visit policy of Brady Hoke. While not a crippling blow to Michigan's recruiting class—three cornerbacks remain in the fold in Ross Douglas, Jourdan Lewis, and Channing Stribling—the loss of Conley removes one of the more dynamic athletes among the commits.
While similar situations with Pharaoh Brown and David Dawson resulted in Michigan no longer pursuing either prospect, TomVH reports (above link) that the Wolverines will continue to recruit Conley—likely because Conley was up-front about his intentions to visit other schools and stayed in communication with the coaches, unlike Brown or Dawson. It's likely that the battle for Conley's services comes down to Michigan and Ohio State; while Conley has serious interest in Oregon, the Ducks have yet to offer and it doesn't appear that one is coming.
I think Michigan still has a pretty good shot here. In the immediate aftermath of the Ohio State visit, Conley said he was still 100% committed to Michigan, and multiple reports stated that he left the game early and hardly interacted with other Buckeye recruits. While Ohio State will get a serious look, expect Michigan to be in it until the very end for Conley, especially since he could get a shot at receiver for the Wolverines as well.
[Hit THE JUMP for the latest on two new O-line targets, a rundown of the available 2013 options, and more.]
Conley's decommitment leaves Michigan with three open spots given an expected class size of 25; that requires a small amount of attrition from the current roster, which is usually a given. Let's take a look at the candidates for the last few spots:
IL WR Laquon Treadwell: You're quite familiar with Treadwell at this point. Michigan was his long-time leader but has fallen behind Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, and Ole Miss in recent weeks. If Treadwell doesn't take another visit to Ann Arbor, that spells trouble; if he does, the Wolverines could climb back to the top.
VA RB Derrick Green: Again, you know Green's situation. Michigan appears to be in good shape after a pair from Green's top group—Auburn and Tennessee—fired their head coaches, but he's still not naming leaders. He told Mike Farrell($) this week that he's in "wait-and-see mode" until Auburn and Tennessee announce new coaching staffs. He's also planning to visit Oregon, Ole Miss, and Miami (YTM), so this one is far from over.
FL S Leon McQuay III: The third remaining target in the five-star neighborhood, McQuay may actually be the most likely to end up at Michigan. The biggest competition for the Wolverines may be Vanderbilt at this point, what with USC's small class—not to mention Lane Kiffin's ever-warming seat—and Florida State losing defensive coordinator
Mike Mark Stoops, who took the head coaching job at Kentucky. Oregon is also involved here, but they don't have McQuay's desired music major, which is perhaps his most important factor in a prospective school.
AZ OL Kenny Lacy: Lacy, a UCLA commit, was offered this week by Michigan, per Tim Sullivan ($). He'll take an official visit to Ann Arbor on December 14th, so there's serious mutual interest. At 6'6", 270, Lacy could slot in at right tackle or either guard spot.
CA OL Cameron Hunt: This is a very similar situation to Lacy's. Hunt is committed to Cal, which just fired coach Jeff Tedford, and Michigan came through with an offer this week ($, info in header). Hunt will also take his official visit on December 14th; of the O-line recruits left on the board, he's the one who seems most likely to join the class, both due to his positive quotes about Michigan—getting the offer was "unreal," according to the linked Todd Worly article above—and the current situation at Cal. Hunt would likely end up at guard should he join the class.
MD OL Na'Ty Rodgers: Michigan has yet to offer Rodgers, but there's still serious interest in the four-star guard, and Scout's Brian Dohn reports that he's also set up an official for December 14th ($). Rodgers has long maintained South Carolina as his leader, so the Wolverines could be fighting an uphill battle—we'll see if a potential offer changes that outlook at all.
OH CB Reon Dawson: Dawson, a Trotwood-Madison teammate of commit Mike McCray, is a soft commit to Illinois who's still looking around. He joined McCray on a visit for the Iowa game, and while he doesn't have an offer, Michigan's coaches have been in regular contact. If Conley ends up going elsewhere, Dawson could become an option to fill his spot.
FL S James Crawford: Crawford's named has come up in recent weeks. While he plays high school ball at Florida powerhouse St. Thomas Aquinas, there's a major Michigan connection: his uncle is none other than Charles Woodson. Crawford doesn't boast a ton of offers at this point, but Tremendous reports that he'll get a visit on Friday from Jerry Montgomery, and if a Wolverine offers comes things could move quickly.
OH CB Jaleel Hytchye: Hytchye has visited campus a couple times, most recently for the Northwestern game, but has yet to receive an offer. He's got a decent offer list and could get a late look if Michigan's other options fall through.
OH RB Godwin Igwebuike: Igwebuike is teammates at Pickerington North with commit Jake Butt and was named first-team All-Ohio this week. I got to see the Northwestern commit in person this year and I think he'd be a more-than-worthy backup plan should Michigan not land Green—he's very adept both as a runner and receiver out of the backfield. Michigan has been in contact and Igwebuike visited a game with Butt earlier this fall.
MI LB Jon Reschke: The Michigan State commit and Spartan legacy got a Michigan offer seemingly out of left field this month—I'm honestly surprised the four-star didn't earn one much earlier in the process. According to Josh Helmholdt($), Reschke is firm in his MSU commitment and won't entertain other offers, however, so he doesn't appear to be an option.
This may be going out on a limb, but I think Michigan rounds out its class with McQuay, Hunt, and one of their backup plans—I'd love to see Igwebuike end up in the class if the Wolverines can't land Green. There's also a distinct possibility that Conley re-commits down the road, and in the event Michigan doesn't get Treadwell he could very well end up at receiver, where he was a huge big-play threat for Massillon Washington this fall.
The Ohio all-state squads announced this week are littered with Michigan commits and targets. Conley (end), Jake Butt (TE), junior target Nathaniel Devers (OL), Igwebuike (RB), Taco Charlton (DL), and Ben Gedeon (LB) earned Division I first-team honors. Wolverine commits swept Division II player of the year awards, with DeVeon Smith earning offensive and Mike McCray defensive honors; they were joined on the first team by Ross Douglas, who earned his mention at running back.
247 released senior highlights of Henry Poggi:
Michigan is mentioned as one of the suitors for QB Nick Montana, son of Joe, who's looking to move back to FBS play after transferring from Washington to Mount San Antonio CC when he couldn't earn the starting job. The Wolverines haven't taken a JuCo transfer since LB Austin Panter in 2007, and before him WR Russell Shaw in 1996. If there's a position on the roster that needs an influx of depth, however, it's quarterback, especially since the presence of Shane Morris could scare off major 2014 talents from coming to Ann Arbor.