“I’m way more comfortable,” Gardner said. “Last year was my first year starting, and it was rough, a lot of ups and downs, a lot of adversity. A lot of adversity I fought through, and I feel like I did a really good job of never giving up, never giving up on myself and my teammates. I feel my teammates recognized that, and my coaches recognized that, and I feel like that will help me.”
Lo Wood, a teammate of Michigan commit Jeremy Gallon, is a cornerback prospect from the 2010 class who recently received an offer from Michigan. Now that his junior year is over, Lo has been working hard on improving for next year, working out 3 days a week, 4 hours a day on Saturdays. Michigan is high on Wood, and he's high on Michigan as well.
First some highlights, then the interview.
TOM: How did your junior year go, compared to how you wanted it to go?
LO: I did well. It was way better than my sophomore year. I improved on a lot of areas, and that’s really what I wanted to happen.
TOM: How do you think you did at the combine?
LO: I did well at the Army combine. I went against some new kids, so it was good to see how I would do against them.
TOM: Did you get a chance to meet anyone new, any recruits you've kept in contact with?
LO: Chris Beckman, the receiver. I talk to him, but that’s about it for new people.
TOM: I know you're already good friends with Ricardo Miller (2010 Michigan commit), what has he been saying to you?
LO: He’s just saying I need to hurry up and commit, and how much he loves Michigan. He’s been trying hard.
TOM: You're also teammates with current Michigan commit Jeremy Gallon, has he been talking to you at all about the process?
LO: No, Jeremy’s kind of quiet. He said they need more Florida kids at Michigan. I guess everyone in Florida is talking about Michigan, since they’re going there.
TOM: Who do you currently hold offers from?
LO: Michigan, Georgia Tech, FIU, Stanford, and Duke.
TOM: Do you have a leader right now?
LO: My leader is Michigan.
TOM: I know your family is involved in the process, what do they think, or say you should do?
LO: They just tell me to make sure it’s the right choice for me, they’re just letting me do the process myself. My dad does certain things for me so I can focus on school.
TOM: Do you have a timeline for how you see your recruitment going? Some guys like to wait; others just get it out of the way.
LO: We’re going to sit down and figure it out. We’re still waiting; we’re kind of waiting to see what happens at signing day, and make our decision from there.
TOM: What's your next step? Have you planned any visits yet?
LO: Sit back and relax for awhile, then we’re talking about taking some visits. Michigan will get a visit, we’re just not sure when yet.
TOM: What schools have you already seen, and what was the most impressive part of any of them?
LO: Florida, Georgia, and Michigan too. Michigan, just the atmosphere, the stadium, and the fans. I really liked how everyone knew who I was.
TOM: Describe what kind of player you are, what are you good at, and what do you need to improve on?
LO: I’m going to improve on tackling better, doing basic things, and little things in my coverage. I’m best at playing man to man coverage, and jamming.
TOM: What do you think about Greg Robinson becoming the new Defensive Coordinator?
LO: It’s great to hear that a good DC is coming. It sounds like he’s got great experience, and the fact that he’s won Super Bowls is pretty cool.
I noticed that too. I think kids like playing for a passionate fan base, makes 'im feel appreciated. Tom, excellent article. How do you think it looks for us with corners in the class of 2010 because honestly I am getting a little excited. If we can get this guy and Marv Robinson OMG! You know what, can you just give me your feel for the 2010 class overall.
If you have to ask twice it means that you didn't get it the first time.
How about an interview with Tampa dual-threat QB Christian Green? Said to be an "electric" player and he already has offers from Florida, Florida State, Miami, Michigan, and Tennessee among others. A post on Recruiting Planet had a quote from an article a few months back in which Green said Florida State and Michigan were his top two right now. I know all the talk around these parts is about getting Gardner, but what more can you dig up on Green?
Maybe I'm just being a foolish optimist (which, as a lifelong Wolverine fan, really doesn't come naturally) but it seems encouraging he's done a little homework on Robinson. Even if it's just from catching it on Sportscenter or the like, it's good to know he's paying attention to UM news.
Or I could be deluding himself and part of the recruiting pitch may have been "did we mention our new DC has Super Bowl rings?" But I'm going with happy thoughts.
Tom-- great work again in giving us a feel behind the names. I know you feel the appreciation with all the thanks in these threads, but there's something I've been keeping an eye on that deserves mentioning...
It's been very interesting to watch how the questions change from one student athlete to the next. Tom's touches the basics and has each kid respond to each one, but it's not just a standardized test approach... seems like you're trying to be mindful of each kid's stance and respectful of previous commitments, things like that. AND it seems like you're giving them things to think about when the phone hangs up.
If there's nothing else we've learned from television, it's that a good interview is only as good as the interviewer. Just wanted to say that it's been fun watching you do what you do in the name of Michigan football, and you seem to be getting better at it.
Thank you, I really appreciate that. This is something I enjoy doing. I tend to pull from past experiences and skill sets to develop questions.I also try to just think if I knew nothing what would I want to know. I try to respect their privacy, and keep things off the record that shouldn't be mentioned. I think that's part of why they open up to me more than others.
Dont get your hopes up! TWO WORDS!!!!!! SHAVODRICK BEAVER!!!!!!
For he is God's servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God's servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. RMS 13:4
Shavodrick Beaver situation was different because he didn't have anyone close that was on or coming onto the team. Lo would have Gallon, Miller, and possibly Robinson along with anyone he becomes friends with along the recruiting process. When you have a nice set of friends at the school before your freshman year even begins I doubt if he commits he would ever decommit barring huge coaching changes.