According to Sam Webb, Will Campbell attended the last three Michigan home games and has not yet scheduled an official visit to another school. He still plans to enroll early.
Update 10/7: Linked to articles on MD LB Jelani Jenkins (video interview), SC S Devontae Holloman, TX S Craig Loston, MN WR Bryce McNeal, SC DE Sam Montgomery, MI DT Will Campbell, video of OH RB Fitzgerald Toussaint. Moved 2010 MI WR Jeremy Jackson to committed on the nonexistent 2010 board.
Editorial Opinion: A mostly quiet week. MD DE Jason Ankrah and MD CB Travis Hawkins visited for the Illinois game, and there are a number of articles up on the recruiting sites about their trips. Sounds like Michigan has a decent, not great, shot at both. 2010 MI WR Jeremy Jackson, son of running backs coach Fred Jackson, committed last week, too.
Oh: Recruiting board lives here.
Michigan's in on three five stars: MI DT Will Campbell is widely expected to recommit; LA WR Rueben Randle is regarded as a longshot, and MD LB Jelani Jenkins is a mystery. Here's Jenkins after a recent win over DeMatha:
The Washington Post took the opportunity provided by that ESPN2-televised game to write up a mondo article on Jenkins and the immense pressure he's put under by the recruiting process. If you really want to parse finely, this could be construed as good:
And then there's Jelani's father, Maurice Jenkins, the finely dressed entrepreneur whose background as both an artist and architect best qualifies him to manage the whole process. He leaned against the fence surrounding Good Counsel's field 20 minutes before kickoff against Paul VI and watched his son run through pregame drills.
Minutes earlier, he had met with coaches from Notre Dame and Maryland who had come to watch Jelani. Hours earlier, he had spoken to UCLA Coach Rick Neuheisel on the phone. Days earlier, he had chatted with a coach from Michigan, one of a handful of recruiters he said he's in touch with about once a week.
There is also more on The Matrix, the Jenkins family's highly elaborate school-measurement device:
In the following months, Maurice crafted a three-page matrix that reduced the recruiting chaos surrounding his son into a simple diagram. The columns list each school in nearly every division I-A conference. Programs that offer Jelani a scholarship are highlighted in yellow, which include nine Atlantic Coast Conference schools, six schools each from the Big Ten, Big East and Southeastern conferences, as well as four from the Pacific-10 and a pair from the Big 12. Notre Dame, an independent, also is highlighted.
The rows separate categories, such as diversity, U.S. News & World Report academic rankings, number of NFL draft picks in the past five years and graduation rates. "It gives us a snapshot of the things that are important to us," Maurice said of the matrix.
There is an engineer somewhere in that family, this I guarantee.
Earlier this year, MN WR commit Bryce McNeal announced he was still committed to Michigan but would take some visits, the hastily backed off that position. Now the visits are back on:
His recruiting could get interesting since he is committed to Michigan but still plans to take visits.
This obviously lowers the chances McNeal ends up signing with Michigan, but the announced visits are to Colorado and Minnesota… I'm not exactly writing him off.
FWIW, the rest of that mini-scouting report on McNeal:
ASSETS: Has excellent hands and change of direction. He also runs effortlessly after the catch.
AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT: He needs to be more aggressive and emotional, along with adding about 10 to 15 pounds.
MOST IMPRESSIVE PLAY: The first time he touched the ball was in the second quarter on a punt return of 25 yards and you could see he was just a natural running with the ball in his hands.
CONCLUSION: Even though he does not play in the highest level of football in Minnesota, you can still see a special athlete every time he catches a pass or returns a kickoff or punt.
How many more?
Varsity Blue wonders if the class is close to full…
With the recent commitment of Cass Tech's Thomas Gordon, it appears that the 2009 recruiting class is nearly full. Assuming William Campbell recommits to Michigan (which appears likely but certainly not set in stone), Michigan may save a couple slots for surprises from top prospects.
…but I say it isn't. My current count of open slots on the board is 20, and that's not counting a number of pretty obvious departures: a couple senior non-contributors with a fifth year of eligibility, some running back who finds himself on a depth chart behind up to nine others, and a certain tight end the coaching staff is fed up with. There will likely be another unexpected departure or two, bringing Michigan's total to around 25 and possibly even more.
Michigan has 18 commits at the moment. One man's semi-informed guess at the remainder of the class:
- Will Campbell.
- Two or three OL from the following list: Taylor Lewan, Quinton Washington, Travis Bond, and Chris Freeman.
- A third defensive end: Jason Ankrah, Sam Montgomery, Will Hill, or Mystery Recruit
- Another linebacker, hopefully Jelani Jenkins by maybe Mike Marry or Hawatha Bell.
- Two more defensive backs. Most likely: Vlad Emilien and some random corner. Also, the suddenly mysterious Dennis Thames is out there.
Helpful scouting-report type object on 2010 FL WR Ricardo Miller:
“The main thing that stands out about Ricardo is he is the best route runner I’ve seen in the entire state of Florida, which is impressive because we’ve got a lot of great receivers this year,” commented FlaVarsity.com publisher Michael Langston. “He reminds me a lot of (Mario) Manningham who used to be at Michigan.”
Suffuse yourself hey hey hey hey.
Seven minutes of Fitzgerald Toussaint highlights… NOW!
Etc.: SC DE Sam Montgomery still planning a visit.
I know I need to just "let go" but Illinois is still on my mind. It was mentioned that we just have bad players on defense and they are the same bad players that played for Lloyd. That may be true, but La Lafayette did not have the issues we had with Juice and the Ill offense, so there is something else not happening. Whether coaches arent getting thru to them, or the scheme is that bad which I do not think is it. Why do we continue to take bad angles, tackle poorly, and line up out of position? Maybe we have less talent and dumber kids than La Lafayette. Ok, I am done obsessing... for now.
we'd be taking 25 guys in this class, and every class for the foreseeable future. too much attrition: too many TEs, too many RBs, too many busts in upperclassmen (ie, adios 5th year back-ups).
Kid can run, and has some killer moves as well. The video definitely changes my impression of him-- I thought he was more of a power runner.
HOWEVER-- we see SO many of these HS tailback vids where the kid looks SO spectacular because he makes something out of nothing. That's incredibly entertaining and certainly has the Friday night WOW factor, but these 'make the impossible possible' moments just don't happen on Saturday. I'm all about McGuffie, but clearly he's shown you just don't walk in and start defying the laws of nature in the Big Ten.
So where will Toussaint fit into the stable next year? Could be a hell of a kickoff returner, but I think Rich is counting the days until he won't have to put any true freshmen anywhere NEAR the ball.