It certainly helps in recruiting McDowell to have an attractive Michigan reporter in Chantel Jennings.
The nutty Michigan coverage isn't so much about Harbaugh as it is a signal to the Big Ten that Fox wants to party.
comes with your choice of hairstyles. gotta catch 'em all!
CA DE Joe Mathis (not that Joe Mathis) has long been presumed a USC lean, but after his on-again-off-again unofficial to Michigan actually came off on Friday he's talking very highly about the Wolverines. He went so far as to name Michigan his leader:
With a day to sleep on it, Joe Mathis tells me Michigan is his leader following yesterday's visit. Currently hanging out Khalid Hill and David Dawson.
Sam Webb [note all tweets have been translated from the twitterese as per usual]:
Joe Mathis said he got chills walking down the tunnel at Michigan Stadium yesterday. Mathis also said Michigan will be in his top 5 and he guaranteed an official visit to Ann Arbor in the fall.
Michigan OL commit David Dawson said he can't wait to get at Mathis on the field today, but will really recruit him off of it.
"It was beautiful. I really enjoyed myself since it was so nice," said Mathis. "I went down the tunnel (at the Big House) and got chills. It was crazy."
Though recruits typically are high on a school following a visit, there was no denying Mathis' enthusiasm for the program after getting to see it up close and personal. He did not commit over the weekend but certainly came close and had no trouble figuring out where the Wolverines fit into his list of top schools.
"I was going to (commit) but I said that would be selfish because I didn't see other schools," he said. "Michigan is number one on my list. I don't have a top five, it's Michigan and that's it. I did have a top five with USC but I was like, that's selfish of me because I didn't see other schools. Coming out here, my mom was saying it was going to be too cold out here but this is me. I love the coaches and this is me out here."
Mathis added that the visit was much better than recent unofficial trips to USC and UCLA as well.
Usual disclaimers about a long way to go apply. Mathis might be one of those kids who gets excited about everybody—he's already committed to and decommitted from($) Washington. Mathis is likely to back off in a couple weeks when USC/whoever guys get ahold of him and maintain neutrality into the fall. He's already told GBW($) that he doesn't have a top five yet but that when he names one Michigan will be on it, which is a bit less thrilling.
If Mathis continues to state Michigan as his leader over the next month, that is legit and it's time to get excited. He would be an excellent pickup as an SDE/three-tech—Mattison told him he'd be Michigan's Terrell Suggs—and could help corral five star safety/athlete Su'a Cravens, his cousin. Mathis and Cravens have already announced they will take a joint official visit to Michigan this fall.
Shane Morris and Jourdan Lewis via TomVH.
Ann Arbor's Concordia College hosted the Adidas Invitational (formerly known as Best of the Midwest, FWIW) over the weekend. Every recruiting service was there, as were a ton of Michigan commits and targets: Shane Morris, David Dawson, Joe Mathis, Malik McDowell, Kyle Bosch (just observing), and a bunch of rising juniors trying to get pub for 2014.
Aside from the Mathis stuff, the most notable developments over the weekened were strong performances from MI OL commit David Dawson and MI CB commit Jourdan Lewis. Dawson impressed with his weight—he's down to a svelte 280—and strength:
Michigan Top247 commit David Dawson dominates Joe Mathis in tire tug a war. Strong legs. Powerful. Dawson proved it was no fluke dominating Mathis again.
Mathis got the better of Dawson in a 1 v 1 later, FWIW. Since he's ticketed for guard I'll take that tradeoff. BONUS DAWSON-MATHIS TUG OF WAR TANTALIZING TIDBIT:
Joe Mathis and David Dawson just did a tug of war that Dawson won. One of the kids here said "you're gonna be on the same team anyway"
That's from Allen Trieu.
Lewis was even more impressive on both sides of the ball, blanketing a couple of high level receivers—ND commit James Onwualu and Big Ten-bound Kevin Gladney most prominently—at cornerback while impressing at receiver himself. Bryan Fischer:
Detroit (Mich.) cornerback Jourdan Lewis was Morris' favorite target as the versatile athlete played running back, wide receiver and defensive back in an impressive showing. He showed enough to be one of the top offensive and defensive players after several nifty catches on both sides of the ball, including a very nice snag along the sidelines with a defender draped all over him while running a route.
When Onwualu managed to beat Lewis deep it was enough of a rarity to draw comment. That's a good weekend. Multiple observers named Lewis one of the top two performers at the camp along with IN LB Jaylon Smith, who Michigan is unfortunately going to have to face at either OSU or ND. Josh Helmholdt didn't do so explicitly but in Rivals' (free) recap of the Invitational it's again Smith and Lewis getting top billing.
Lewis seems in line for a bump to consensus-four-star territory. Dawson should maintain his current rankings, but it seems like recruiting sites are now looking at him as a guard. That will hamper moves further upward.
Everyone's after 2014 MI DE Malik McDowell early and for good reason: he is a 6'6", 260-275 pound monster with Michigan and Ohio State offers already and his plan is to make a decision during his junior year. Get to it or miss out. Here's McDowell talking to ESPN's Chantel Jennings:
I'm surprised they can get Jennings in the same frame with that guy.
Anyway, the key passage in that video comes after Jennings asks McDowell why he'd like to get the decision out of the way so early:
MCDOWELL: It's really my dad, he said that he can't commit until my junior year.
JENNINGS: If it was up to you, you'd commit earlier?
MCDOWELL: Yeah, to a school that I would really like to go to.
JENNINGS: Any idea what that school would be?
MCDOWELL: Um… no.
Wink wink, nudge nudge, say no more. McDowell grew up a Michigan fan and an early decision usually goes in favor of the team he's most comfortable with. AFAIK he's only taken unofficials to Michigan so far. He does plan on taking in spring games at Michigan and Michigan State.
MI QB Shane Morris showed up and was Shane Morris:
The 6-3, 190-pound lefty ... bounced back from an up-and-down performance at the Dallas Elite 11 tryout in a big way. His arm strength is well-known, but his accuracy was picture-perfect the entire afternoon, and he showed more ability to put touch on passes than he has at times in the past. Although it seems unlikely, Morris might have raised his stock even higher than it already was.
The accuracy issues that Morris dealt with at the Dallas Elite 11 camp did not recur.
The top 2013 sleeper($) to come out of the camp was OH LB Jerome Lane, a 6'3", 217 pound kid out of Akron who seems destined for outside linebacker in college. He clocked an impressive 4.47 and caught everyone's eye. He's planning to hit up a bunch of school camps over the summer and see what happens. If things fall through with EJ Levenberry (about whom more below) he could be a guy to keep an eye on.
Meanwhile, Dawson said he thought IL OL commit Logan Tuley-Tillman was a "done deal" to transfer to Cass Tech but Cass HC Thomas Wilcher threw cold water on that by saying he is "not optimistic." Cass is a magnet school but they can only recruit within the Detroit school system, so if Tuley-Tillman moves closer to Ann Arbor the Technicians won't be an option.
In news about uncommitted guys, Shane Morris said his "top recruiting priority" is IL RB Ty Isaac and "he thinks things are going well."
Morris and Dawson finished 1-2 on Helmholdt's list of top offensive performers($) at Adidas. 2015 Cass QB Jayru Campbell was 8th, "one of the most consistently accurate" passers on the day and better than 2014 Chance Stewart, 10th. Lewis is second on his defensive list with Mathis 4th, McDowell 5th, and Cass DT Kenton Gibbs 7th. Smith took top honors and a sleeper CB out of Fort Wayne named Tyvel Jemison was the interloper at third. Gibbs seems to be making a move($):
This was the best single performance we have seen from Gibbs in more than a half dozen times seeing him. The 6-3, 285-pound defensive tackle was quick and powerful in the one-on-ones and played with more discipline than we had seen from him in the past. He found it easy going in the one-on-ones, handing offensive lineman after offensive lineman defeats. Gibbs has always had the potential, and he now appears closer to realizing it.
He'll be the number one guy to watch for an offer at Michigan's summer camp.
And an important update on a 2015 recruit from TomVH($):
QB Jay'ru Campbell's hair is feathered and lethal.
Zoom! Note that he is finishing in front of a dude with dreadlocks.
AZ WR Devon Allen is a name that keeps popping up, and for good reason:
Devon Allen of Brophy College Prep (Phoenix, Ariz.) is Superman.
What else can you call the junior who dazzled the standing room only crowd at the 45th Arcadia Invitational after he won a total of five gold medals — four in a four-hour span Saturday night?
All he did was set state records in winning the 110-meter high hurdles in 13.52 seconds and the 300-meter intermediates in 36.39, capture the 200 dash by the slimmest of margins at 21.10 — all this after warming up by running a leg on the Broncos' 4x100 relay team that clocked a glittering 41.15.
Those hurdles numbers are second nationally this year. The last guy to win three events at the Arcadia Invitational—described by ESPN as "the country's biggest in-season high school track meet"—was Xavier Carter, who you may remember as a five-star LSU recruit who ditched football to run track professionally. Devon Allen is fast.
Michigan has an offer out to him as a receiver. If he commits prepare for the perpetual, not-very-accurate Ed McCaffery comparisons.
Michigan fans have been expecting a commit from EJ Levenberry for a while now, with his visit to this weekend's spring game the expected point in time. Get out your Lee Corso head because not so fast, my friend($):
Virginia linebacker E.J. Levenberry Jr. spent a week in Tallahassee to learn more about Florida State.
Even if that was a spring break diversion, I don't think I've ever heard of a week-long visit. In that article Levenberry says his time down there "helped FSU a lot" and that they're now tied with Michigan at the top of his leaderboard. That actually seems good since the full-court press with FSU couldn't vault them into the lead.
Levenberry's still coming up this weekend and has no set decision date. According to the article, it "may happen in the summer." If Levenberry escapes Ann Arbor without making a commitment it's time to consider him a guy who Michigan may get instead of will get.
Ohio State is backing off PA WR Robert Foster, one of the top ten kids in the country, for off-field reasons. This should clear up why Michigan didn't so much as bat its eyes at a five star at a position of need inside the footprint. OSU insider types are also not very confident about their chances with MD DT Henry Poggi, which would leave Michigan alone atop his leaderboard if accurate.
NJ DT Greg Webb commits to Penn State, another good get for BOB and another step away from the Ten Year War II meme—PSU is just about keeping pace with Michigan and OSU so far. That one hurts Michigan because he seemed like their best shot at a highly-rated NT. At least he went to PSU instead of OSU. Kenton Gibbs is happy with that development. He'll camp in an effort to get that NT scholarship.
2014 MO OL Andy Bauer is Michigan's first miss in that recruiting class. He's off the board to Missouri. I suspect Michigan will survive.
OH WR Kevin Gladney was calling Michigan a slight leader a month or so ago but omitted all mention of Michigan($) in a recent a interview with Trieu. He does mention visits to Nebraska and MSU plus interest in OSU despite a lack of interest. Writing is on the wall there.
Michigan was never after MI OL Cameron Dillard but since he just committed to Florida now seems like a good time to note that there must be a dearth of linemen in the South for Michigan to be going up against Alabama so often for their OL and for Florida(!) to offer MI OL/DL Poet Thomas before anyone other than EMU and pick up Dillard… who didn't even have an MSU offer. Instead MSU grabbed a guy from Texas. Very strange.
Dillard is the first Michigan player to leave the state for an SEC power without even token resistance from the in-state schools… ever? It might be ever. Certainly since I've been following recruiting.
Finally, DC CB Devin Butler committed to ND over PSU and M. I'm not sure Michigan has room (or need) for a third corner in the class anyway.
Michigan offers HI DT Scott Pagano, who wants to decide by August 10th. That's a hell of an unofficial visit schedule if true.
Ed-Ace: Michigan handed out two other offers recently. OH CB Ross Douglas, a Penn State commit who previously visited Ann Arbor without an offer, now has one in hand. With Butler and Tre Bell committing elsewhere, it's possible the Douglas offer is a sign that the coaches still want a third corner in the class if there's room. The coaches also offered 2014 NC OL Bentley Spain, joining North Carolina, N.C. State, and South Carolina.
Tom Lemming also released his initial 2013 top 100, and Magnus has the full breakdown over at TTB.
It certainly helps in recruiting McDowell to have an attractive Michigan reporter in Chantel Jennings.
Here at Michigan, we try to treat women as intellectual beings rather than dangling them in front of recruits as sex objects (like the ESS EEE SEE does)
She sho is purty tho.
we should compare devon allen to tim dwight or wes welker. maybe even david eckstein.
Don't forget Jordy Nelson
EDIT: Joe Jurevicius too
I see him as more of a hybrid of Wayne Chrebet, Cris Collinsworth, Steve Largent, and Randy Vataha.
Jordan Shipley. Would like to come up with a bi-racial comparison....ummm... Darius Heyward-Bey?
I personally see a lot of John Stockton in the kid.
If we're using David Eckstein, then we have to use Will Rhymes. His scrappy tool is a hard 80 (on a scout scale of 20-80)
He reminds me of John Stockton.
With that in mind there can only be one good White guy comparison...... Don Beebe
he used to play for the Eagles, supposedly ran a 4.21 40?
Kevin Curtis I think.
This guy reminds me of a rich man's Kevin Curtis, but with a dash of Ricky Proehl's grit and a pinch of Mike Furrey's old-schoolness.
Minus the skiing...
He's such a work horse. A real gym rat.
I hope Devon Allen stays in the spotlight, the Reggie Cleveland All-Stars need some new blood.
Desmond Morgan would be a great mentor for him.
I dont think Douglas offer was recent. He said on twitter that he got it on the day of his PSU commitment
Douglas tweeted this on april 4th
Glad to hear Shane's #1 recruiting target is Ty Isaac. You go Shane.
Still can't believe we're already talking about 2014 and 2015 recruits. Crazy (in a good way).
going to Michigan
Is there any sense about Levenberry's timetable. I have heard a number of outlets express that nothing will be decided until the All-Star games in January, but there seems to be a sense of optimism about him pulling the trigger this weekend. Is this based on anything from the Levenberry camp, or mere hope that he will get things over with sooner than later?
Pretty sure Levenberry's camp has maintained the All-American/January timetable. Given the week-long visit to FSU, it sounds like this is far from over; I'd be surprised if he pulls the trigger this weekend.
I'd be happy to be wrong, of course.
Maybe Morris' accuracy was just a comfort and nerves thing? Long flight to Dallas, playing in front of NFL QBs, it can get to you. He was so mad at himself after that camp. And now he gets just a 45 min. trip Ann Arbor and gets to spend time with a bunch of his future teammates, it had to be way easier.
Put him in a comfort zone early on which has to help his rhythm. The fact that he's able to link with your other recruits so early will be interesting to watch going forward. Have to imagine it will pay dividends.
Being the QB in front of 115,000 fans and a national TV audience at the Big House has zero pressure.
Or is he already out of surgery and back to work?
Brian had this one ready to go. There's one more pre-written post from him that will go up later today. After that, you guys are stuck with me, Heiko, and Seth for the week.
Is he the son (or relative) of SEND IT IN JEROME!!! Lane from Pittsburgh basketball?
Wikipedia says he lives in Akron....
Yes, that's his dad.
Of course he got chills, it's farken cold outside.
for white wide receivers
The infamous "gator arm" debacle...
potentially look at Lewis as both a reciever and a corner? Or will they likely just stick with him at corner?
In my opinion, his size and skill set translates way better to corner than receiver. His coverage skills are very strong. I could see him potentially contributing as a return man, though.
I thought he mentioned that the coaches might give him the opportunity to play some offense.
I think he could have fit in very well as a slot receiver for Rodriguez, but I'm not sure that Borges/Hoke would utilize him if he were to play receiver. He's probably better off playing corner at Michigan.
I'm sorry that saying she's attractive is seen as a sex symbol and making her unintelligent. If I were a recruit, I would love to be interviewed by someone as pretty as her.
Here at Michigan, we're often sanctimonious.
I agree. It's not like your comment was "What's that blonde bimbo doing on my football blog" or something like that. You just said she's attractive.
Which she is. She's effin' hot, and there's nothing wrong with me saying it.
Stringfellow should take us far into the Tournament (Name of the Year Tournament). Hope he goes blue eventually.
While I'm sorry to hear Foster is having off the field issues, I'm certainly glad this 5* WR won't end up in Columbus. It's a little surprising since Urban was a part time parole officer at Florida.
who knows. Maybe he learned a lesson at Florida.
Foster seems like an odd character (like many top WRs). He even tweeted an apology to OSU fans for his behavior. Like Brian said, it helps explain the relative lack of interest from us, PSU and ND.
Is it at all possible—and ethical for that matter—for us to take Devon Allen, but give him a track scholarship. I'm guessing that the track coaches would be ecstatic to have him on their squad (2nd best hurdler in the nation is pretty good), and it'd free up a football scholarship. Is there any way that could work out?
If a scholarship athlete plays football, that counts as a football scholarship, so that wouldn't work. Otherwise, teams would abuse that loophole, especially in the south and out west where there are more elite college track programs.
Devon Allen is really f-ing fast. A lot of times we say, "He's fast, but not Denard fast." Allen is, by all accounts, Denard fast.
Make it so.