Great job, Ace on keeping us all informed and providing rea-time updates.
this week in unintentionally grim-sounding recruiting headlines
So... that happened. Let's just start right in, shall we?
I was tipped off about the impending Kyle Bosch commitment on Friday evening, so I pre-wrote the "Hello" post, called it a night, and felt like I was ahead of the game.
At 3:20 pm on Saturday, I got this message from Heiko: "LOL your job." I would get the same message again 24 hours later. Over the course of 48 hours, I ended up writing eight commitment posts: Kyle Bosch, Wyatt Shallman, Jourdan Lewis, David Dawson, Chris Fox, Taco Charlton, Jake Butt, and Logan Tuley-Tillman. I no longer have the words to describe what went down—though the progressively more slap-happy tone of my posts as the weekend wore on serves this purpose well—so luckily other people wrote stuff, too.
Maize n Brew's Zach Travis discussed the implications of the weekend haul and compared it to Texas's ritual Junior Day bonanza:
That is eight four-star recruits all considered to be in the top-200 to Rivals.com, two linemen with a realistic chance of moving up to five-star range, and one of the best single day hauls outside of Texas's annual Junior Day Commitment Extravaganza.
Michigan, to my knowledge, has never had a six-commit day or an eight-commit weekend—at least in the documented internet recruiting era*—and Texas came up with exactly zero commits on their Junior Day this year. We need a new benchmark, though I think "That Weekend in February of 2012" is now it. Rivals.com's Mike Farrell utilizes the same comparison, mostly because there isn't anything else to equate this to:
"I've never seen anything like this—it's Texas territory," Farrell said in comparing U-M to the Longhorns, notorious for cleaning up early. "This is something new. It's pretty remarkable. I think they got the right guys on campus and that they really know the kids they are recruiting. They've got a good feel for kids who might be ready to pop - that said, they still did a good job to actually get them to jump on board.
"Got the right guys on campus" is probably in reference to Hoke, Mattison, et al, but it could just as easily refer to Shane Morris, whose role as a recruiter is clearly having a huge affect. Morris was the subject of an Angelique Chengelis profile today centering around his efforts as a pitchman:
The affable, congenial Morris has taken hold of the social media and works Twitter and Facebook, sending messages to potential future Wolverines. He makes calls, sends texts and emails, helping to secure commitments from the best high school players with whom he'll be teammates at Michigan.
"Oh, definitely. Hope so," Morris said enthusiastically when asked if he has impacted the Wolverines' recruiting. "I'm definitely recruiting all the time. We want to win national championships at Michigan and we're going to need the best players in the nation to do that."
Anyone who is on Twitter is likely aware of Morris's dogged recruiting efforts, and Taco Charlton took to the social media platform last night to relay his story of how he came to commit:
— Taco Charlton (@thekidTC33) February 21, 2012
I'll give Farrell the last word from an article hyping up the upcoming recruiting battles between Michigan and Ohio State, who all of a sudden find themselves playing catch-up despite having a five-star and three four-stars in the fold (the rest of the B1G—four total commits, period):
"Urban Meyer's the Axl Rose of recruiting," Farrell said. "He's the rock star. Brady Hoke is not out there like that. He's not the same type of guy. He's an old-school, shoot-it-straight guy. But he's obviously getting the job done at an equal level. With these two, recruiting will be fun because they're unlike each other. That's going to make things very interesting. They each have different approaches to things. It's going to be a great battle.''
Let's hope Florida was Meyer's Appetite for Destruction, and we'll now spend a decade waiting for Chinese Democracy before realizing we don't care anymore. Alright, there's no way that's how things will turn out, but one can hope.
*The six listed by Rivals for one day in 2003 did not actually happen that way; I think they were just catching up and didn't specify the exact dates. Seth, who probably summed up my weekend better than anyone, has the correct listing.
The fallout from this weekend spills over into a second section because it deserves as much. Steve Wiltfong caught up with both Kyle Bosch and David Dawson in the aftermath of their commitments to get their thoughts on why they committed, and both are well worth a read. Here's Bosch, who had this gem [emphasis mine]:
At the beginning of the day, I started to hint that I was going to commit. I told Coach Borges maybe next month I could see myself commit. Then the director of player personnel Coach Singletary came over to me and I said maybe next week. I then went in the bathroom and talked to my mom on the phone and we talked about it, Michigan State and Stanford. It came down to academics. I have a ton of respect for Michigan State and Stanford. I think they’re both outstanding schools, but it came down to academics. Michigan is the right place for me.
Those of you still smarting from Josh Garnett's decision to go to Stanford will find that especially cathartic. The only thing that could make that quote better would be if Jim Harbaugh was still coaching the Cardinal.
I guess I got the order wrong when putting up Dawson's and Lewis's commitment posts, because it sounds like the offensive lineman beat his teammate by a matter of seconds:
I talked to my mom about if Michigan offered me, would I commit on the spot. She was okay with it. She liked it for the academics, and the academics came before the football.
We were talking to Coach Hoke and he offered me. I looked at my mom and then looked at him and I told him I’d like to commit. He asked me if I was serious, and he jumped up and started yelling. He shook my hand and gave my mom a hug, gave me a hug. Everyone was screaming and it didn’t make it any better when J (Jourdan Lewis) walked in and said he was committing too. It was a great feeling yesterday.
Given Hoke's propensity for screaming and hugging when a recruit commits in person, I'm kindly requesting that the next player who plans on doing this records the whole thing on their smartphone. I imagine it's a sight to behold. Speaking of Hoke, he apparently doesn't sleep, because by the time Jake Butt committed on Sunday, he was in Florida schmoozing with some bigwig donors:
Before offering his pledge the Pickerington North star decided to travel home and mull things over just a little bit more, but that he was close to making his choice was likely evident to all. Even so, that didn’t stop his future coaches from reacting to the news like they had received the surprise of the year.
“I actually told Coach Hoke, Coach Borges, and Coach Ferrigno and they were all really excited," Butt stated. “Coach Hoke was down in Florida talking to some boosters for the university, and he just let out a big scream when he heard it. (Laughter) They all said I made their night and they can’t be happier for me. This is really great.”
I wonder if Hoke had any voice left by the time Tuley-Tillman committed. Given that he can barely talk after games, I have to imagine the weekend was hell on his larynx.
Ethan Pocic—one of just two weekend visitors to not commit, along with Rod Crayton—reportedly enjoyed his visit and said Michigan "went up in [his] view." ($, info in header). There was a false Twitter report out there that he had named a top three that didn't include Michigan, but Pocic soundly denied doing so.
That wasn't all on the weekend, by the way. Michigan also managed to pick up a couple of preferred walk-on for 2012, both long-snappers. Saline's Taybor Pepper—the #7 long-snapper in the 2012 class on Chris Sailer Kicking—actually jumped the gun and committed on Thursday. Fenton's Tyler Tokarsky announced his commitment via Twitter yesterday. Both links contain video and more info on a couple of guys who will hopefully remain anonymous barring a Jareth Glanda moment.
Prepare for a massive bulleted list, as Michigan has sent out a ton of offers in the last week. These are in no particular order, just how my tabs happened to show up:
As you can see, the Wolverines are heavily targeting the top talent in California, a likely product of Brady Hoke's connections there from his time at San Diego State. That offer list is also littered with prospects from the Rivals250, as Michigan is able to focus on blue-chip players with a small class that's now already halfway full. We'll see how judicious they are with their offers moving forward; three players—Donovan Munger, De'Niro Laster, and Ross Douglas—visited on Monday and did not get offers extended. Tight end Jacob Matuska, who does hold an offer, also was on campus yesterday.
Several players have expressed interest in visiting lately, and a couple of them are quite noteworthy. Five-star CA S/LB Su'a Cravens told Scout that Michigan will get one of his five official visits, in large part due to his relationship with Hoke dating back to his days with the Aztecs ($, info in header). Two blue-chip prospects from Good Counsel in Maryland will visit for the April 14th spring game in five-star corner Kendall Fuller and four-star linebacker Dorian O'Daniel. Four-star WR Robert Foster has confirmed that he'll visit Michigan State next weekend, and it's a possibility that he'll swing by Ann Arbor as well. Richmond (VA) Hermitage RB Derrick Green, the #64 prospect on Rivals, will visit Ann Arbor this weekend ($, info in header).
Unfortunately, it can't all be sunshine and lollipops, as some players either named top groups that exluded Michigan or committed elsewhere. Five-star FL OT Laremy Tunsil named a top two of Florida and Georgia ($, info in header). Four-star VA DE Jonathan Allen named Alabama as his favorite after receiving an offer ($, info in header). Four-star VA safety Tim Harris named a top two of Virginia and Virginia Tech, though he expressed interest in visiting both Michigan and Ohio State ($, info in header). Louisville (KY) Trinity CB Ryan White named a top two of Louisville and Illinois, and his teammate, DE Jason Hatcher, has also expressed strong interest in the Cardinals.
We wish happy trails to four recruits: Dallas (TX) Jesuit WR Jake Oliver committed to Texas, while his teammate, OL J.J. Gustafson, committed to Texas A&M. Vorhees (NJ) Eastern CB Eli Woodard pledged to the Buckeyes. While he didn't hold an offer, Birmingham Brother Rice LB Johnny Reshke will likely be one the top 2013 prospects in the state, and he committed to MSU last week.
Quickly: Sam Webb profiles RB Deveon Smith—whose recruitment will likely come down to Michigan and Ohio State, and says it's "50-50" between the schools regarding his favorite right now—in his most recent DetNews column. Wiltfong recaps the Best of the Midwest combine, which featured five-star linebacker Jaylon Smith—the event's MVP—as well as linebacker Tim Kimbrough, defensive end Elijah Daniel, and several potential Michigan targets. Allen Trieu scouts last week's Elite Big Man Camp in Wixom—ND commit Steven Elmer, Cass Tech junior DT Kenton Gibbs, and 2014 Detroit Loyola DE Malik McDowell are mentioned as standouts ($).
Great job, Ace on keeping us all informed and providing rea-time updates.
Ace, how come we haven't offered Cameron Dillard? He had the body to play center.
I don't know the exact reason, but it's not because the coaches haven't had the chance to evaluate him. They clearly have other players on the board—four of whom have now committed—who they regard more highly. Also, David Dawson has the body to play center, and he's expressed a willingness to do so.
I Stillman don't know how this happened. I got married 2/18/12 and for e first time since I can't remember I didn't check MGoBlog for 2 days. I remember waking up Saturday wanting to check but not having time and then wishing the Michigan Gods would send us a recruit as a wedding gift. Holy shit, this is the most amazing day ever. I still can't believe this happened on the day I got married....
Dude, you need to get married more often.
I am hoping for three, super high end recruits: 1 each at WR, DT, RB, CB. Add in another Widout, another interior lineman, a Defensive end, and a d-back, and we'll be coasting. the other 3-5 spots can be gravy (I wouldn't mind a 3 star, developmental QB type that usually ends up somwhere like BGSU).
i am sure someone has pointed out that hatting someone is no big deal, right?
That Week in February of 2012 = TWiF12
I second that notion TWiF12, if only I had the skills of Lil Scrappy (F.I.L.A. anyone?)
Yes. I appreciate the effort.
WTF? He picks up a few PSU decommits and it now a rock star. Would Ohio have a top ten class if PSU didn't crumble?
I think you skipped over one very important point when thinking about Urban "Meijer."
He's not a rock star because he picked up a few PSU decommits.
He picked up a few PSU decommits because he's a rock star (and because Jerry Sandusky did naughty things).
And he became a rock star by winning two national championships and coaching/recruiting one of the most beloved college athletes in the form of Tim Tebow.
Love him or hate him, he's one of the biggest names in college football.
+1 ... I've seen stuff on other sites dismissing Meyer as a flash-in-the-pan coach. That's nonsense. He's a coach to be properly respected for his success.
That said, I do think there was a degree of "rock-starness" going on this first year with OSU. How that settles down into the year-after-year pattern we have yet to see.
But talk of Meyer folding like a tent under the pressure of the Big Ten (such as I've seen in posts on other sites) is just misplaced wishful thinking.
Has Ty Isaac said when he'd like to have his recruitment wrapped up by? So hoping for him and Treadwell to commit soon. One would think that offensive skill players should be easy to come by with the OL and QB we have for the future.
The foundation Michigan has laid out.
Top tier QB, two classes of top tier OL...
What top tier RB and WR wouldn't want to commit to that?
How does Isaac compare to Deveon Smith? Magnus?
Deveon Smith is more of an inside, straight-ahead runner. He's shorter, more compact, and more powerful.
There are a lot of questions about Isaac's running style (upright) and toughness.
Isaac is much more heavily recruited, so I guess he's considered to be better. I'm not sure I believe it, though. If it were up to me, I might take Smith over Isaac.
who is faster?
Coach Jackson would be the best one to ask for that...
Which bear is best?
I don't know what Smith's 40 time is, but Isaac claims a 4.45. I would guess Isaac is a little faster, but Smith isn't slow.
Nothing on Wyatt? I want to hear more from him like what the coaches told him on how they will use him and how he committed. I feel like he is being forgotten. Maybe I'm just being a homer because he is from my hometown and no one comes out of that town.
"No one comes out of that town."
There are premium articles, but this post was long enough as is and I didn't have one up when I went to write it—doing reaction stuff from all eight guys would've been overkill and this would've gone up sometime in June. As for how he'll be used, he's coming in as a tailback. That's been repeated over and over during his recruitment, and was also part of his commitment post, which is linked in this post.
Allen Trieu says "right now, it looks like Jaron Dukes and Laquon Treadwell are the ones most in play", when asked about WRs Michigan is looking at... Isn't Jaron Dukes, at 6'5, more of a TE than a WR, cause if he were a true WR at 6'5, one would think he'd be ranked higher. Oh, and do we only take two WRs ?
Dukes isn't ranked very high because he's kind of slow.
I would have liked two deep threats myself.
I'd imagine that if we got two WR commits and there was a top guy out there who wanted to sign with us, we'd take him. A lot of people see us taking three receivers in this class.
As far as deep threats, I don't know if they all need to be burners. Both of the guys we took in 2012 are deep threats, and I'd be OK with taking a 6'5" posession receiver in this class. Having a guy who's 6'5" who can split out wide is a big weapon, even if he can't run a 4.4.
What would Treadwell and Dukes commitments do to our chances for Foster? Are the coaches only looking for 2 WR? Does it depend on attrition? What's the story? For whatever reason I have latched on to Foster as my pipe dream of the year, and if he's willing to visit MSU, he might not be as much of a long shot as I thought.
Don't hold your breath for Foster. There are several teams out in front of Michigan for his services.
Excellent Chinese Democracy reference. We know that Urb is not kick ass Axl.
We've got everything you want
My honey knows how to bake
ready to play the minute he steps on campus. Thats because he's been spending so much time at training camp (cucamonga!)
As far as NCAA is concerned, how much can current players recruit? I know Morris is recruiting like a fiend via social media now. But is that considered a violation once he's officially on the team?
or just an oral commit?
The general rule is that current players can recruit those kids if they have a pre-existing relationship. For example, Delonte Hollowell can talk to Terry Richardson at will because they used to be teammates. Devin Gardner calling up, say, Gunner Kiel would have been a violation.
I know Su'a Cravens says we will get an official visit, anyone know the likelihood of him going blue? (yes I know this is not an excact science)
33.333%....repeating of course....
I think the kid will either stay out west or go to Texas. I think he will eventually become an OLB.
I think the kid will either stay out west or go to Texas. I think he will eventually become an OLB.
Hmm SDSU == California recruits, Ball State == Ohio recruits. It's too bad he didn't stop at Baylor and Central Florida before he got here. We'd already have this class locked up by now.
Ace, nice Illmatic reference and great writeup.
an afghan whigs reference? aren't you too young for that, or is this some sort of 90's revival shit the kids are into these days.
As Jim Lahey pointed out above, it's a Nas reference. I was alive when Illmatic dropped in '94, though I'll admit I wasn't exactly rushing to Tower Records to pick it up as a six-year-old.
so the part about 90's revival was not really wrong.
stupid me, that song actually name checks Nas
Why would any elite RBs go to Ohio after they signed DunnBall.
...just tell him "hey, isn't that Coach Borges over there...?"
At this point, I can't believe we have to worry about adding a top shelf RB. With the OL class the last two years along with the lack of big-time young RBs, I think we'll have some very nice options. My hunch is they'll be so good that we take two more RBs.
class is beast and it's not even full yet.GO BLUE!!!