"The University of Illinois is also in turmoil. The university sports an Interim Chancellor, an Interim Athletic Director, and an Interim Football Coach; the game will be played at Soldier Field, making this an Illini Interim Home Game."
"There's a certain level of confidence and composure he brings to the court," said sophomore forward Aubrey Dawkins, who played the bulk of his minutes as a freshman while LeVert sat on the end of the bench in a sweat suit. "When you know you have a player like that on your team of that caliber, it's just like, we're in his hands and he can do a lot of things for this team. It's a comfort. It's nice."
"I just really wanted to see him in a game and I loved what I saw," Beilein said. "He was active. He's got a motor. He's got some things he's got to work on. He doesn't have the strength to (play) the way he'd like to in the Big Ten yet, but that's what we're going to work on in-between (games) without inhibiting his ability to play the next game."
2013 offensive lineman Steven Elmer (6'6", 297 lbs) has already seen his recruitment heat up. His offers first started with Mississippi State, Wisconsin, and Michigan State, and recently Michigan jumped on board with an early offer. Elmer will be in contention for the top prospect spot in the state of Michigan, but should also undoubtedly be among the top recruits in the country for his class. I caught up with his father to expand more on what's been happening. Here's Steven's film and what his father had to say.
TOM: Looks like Steven is starting to get more attention now, and I know the Mississippi State offer seems a little odd, but where do you think this is all stemming from?
MR. ELMER: Mississippi State was out of the blue, they said they've watched videos and YouTube stuff. They've seen the articles people wrote and his combine numbers and they liked what they saw. They contacted our high school coach and told him and we're still kind of surprised. We went down to South Carolina and we thought they'd be interested, but we didn't really have contact with Mississippi State.
TOM: I know all of this is early, but do you think you'll try to make it down to a Mississippi State over the summer?
MR. ELMER: We already had what camp we were going to planned which were Wisconsin, Michigan, Michigan State, Notre Dame, and maybe Western Michigan.
TOM: When did all of the hype start for him, or when did you really think he has a chance to be a big time athlete?
MR. ELMER: I didn't really know what we had until we went to Notre Dame's camp last year. Michigan's camp a couple years ago was with all different coaches and everyone got to look at you. We went there for that reason and all these coaches were talking to us and he was only in 9th grade. They were talking about how good his hips were and his hands, and it was stuff that I didn't even think about then. Then we started sending out YouTube videos, combine numbers, and just throwing stuff out there.
TOM: This early interest now kind of gives you guys some leverage as far as what you want to look at. Do you know yet what the criteria will be for choosing a school?
MR. ELMER: We have to have a great school first and foremost. He has a 4.3 GPA so we have to find him a good school, could be Ivy league, could be a place like Michigan. When he decides what he wants to study he'll look into that. We're looking out for him and our other children too, he's helping us develop for our other children when it's their turn. I actually study this stuff more than I should, the rosters, the positions they have on the team, who they signed for 2010 and 2011. I'm not really concerned with the 2012 commits because I think he can play with those kids.
TOM: So you have watched who each school is recruiting and who they've signed recently?
MR. ELMER: I do look at who they're signing and all that. For Michigan as far as tackles I think it looks good for a kid coming in. I crunched the numbers for 25 schools and Michigan came out number one and Wisconsin was right behind them. The numbers were based on a formula I put together.
TOM: I think it's out there, pretty much everywhere now, that your wife is a Michigan State grad. What schools did you all root for when Steven was growing up?
MR. ELMER: We're more of a fan of individuals. My wife went to MSU so we always had some allegiance to them. Being a catholic family we always had Notre Dame stuff, but we're not really big fans of any one program. I hadn't been down to U of M since the year I was trying to get in there to play football. We hadn't thought too much about football and when Steven got old enough I was trying to get him to watch football. That was when Rodriguez was there, but it's totally different now. This recruiting class is pretty phenomenal and Ohio State is falling apart so this is a good time for Michigan.
This interview took place before Steven camped at Michigan. You can see the quotes from Mr. Elmer after camp in the Weekly Update, which is here.
That's what I would've thought, as that seems to be important to a recruit. But he was talking a lot about the class we're bringing in. I can't help but think getting Peat and/or Kalis would hurt our chances with Elmer in that sense.
I didn't get that at all. He said he wasn't worried about the 2012 kids because he thinks Elmer can play with those kids (and from all accounts at camps, Elmer can play with those kids). If he thinks Elmer is good enough to play with the kids we're taking now then I definitely want him, because he'll be a freakin' beast with another year on him. I think our lack of upperclassman OL depth will help us a lot with Elmer. Apparently he doesn't think it's too tough to beat out kids a year above him (plus, a lot of them will redshirt).
Denard has spent the offseason working really hard and smiling at people.
I also love the fact that he developed a formula for determining position depth. Seems like a great fit for UM, with the kid's strong academic background. The dad sounds really sharp, so they won't be fooled by any recruiting non-sense some schools like to use.
Wow great interview Tom his dad seems like a very good parent and an overall nice guy. I like the comment about OSU falling apart. I love that he mentioned academics being very important and that his son has a 4.3. I like even more that he is such a great football player and would consider going to an IVY league school because it proves that academics really are important to them. However my favorite thing about this article is that Michigan comes out #1 in a formula he created with Wisconsin being #2. I was a little concerned when he talked about incoming classes at tackle even though he said he isn't as worried about 2012 kids just because we will have a very solid 2012 OL class. The fact that Wisconsin is #2 proves to me that draft stock and other things are weighted more heavily than the possibility of early playing time because otherwise Wisconsin wouldn't finish in 2nd out of any 25 schools.
Look forward to seeing this kid and his family learn more about Michigan and hopefully he ends up being another huge piece to join Morris.
I agree with what you said about pro potential and program strength being more important than immediate playing time. And having other quality O-Linemen to practice with can only make you better. As far as ivy league goes, if I was going to pick a football ivy, it'd be Stanford (obviously), but you certainly can't go wrong with Michigan (afterall, Harvard is the Michigan of the East).
Denard has spent the offseason working really hard and smiling at people.
... are the kind of people we want at Michigan. Great sensibilities and a son who is a smart and talented athlete. We know Steven can play football -- and Michigan is about to return to being an NFL pipeline for O-linemen -- but what's wonderful about him being a high achiever in the classroom is that he'll be one of the athletes who takes full advantage of the great academic programs Michigan offers. I hope they hit it off with Coach Hoke and the rest of the coaches, because the Elmers are perfect for Michigan.
I've followed the site for some time, but my first post...
I live in Midland and the town is chock full of PhD chemical engineers and the like. Not sure if Mr. Elmer is one, but it doesn't surprise me that a person here would develop an algorithm to predict a fit on the offensive line.
My son knows Steven Elmer from school, they were in the same Spanish class last year in a very rigorous academic curriculum. I asked him, "this kid must be pretty big" and my son said, "oh yeah, he is very big." If Steven wants a great academic and althletic program, he can't go wrong with Michigan.
That's great that you're researching the academic institution since that is what gives Steven the tools to succeed outside of a rather short football career. The success of UM alumni is phenomenal and they are respected by prestigious and high caliber companies everywhere. I know this first hand.
The UM football tradition is rich and will afford Steven a unique experience that few schools can match and instantly connects him with a line of successful contemporaries and predecessors. Finally, the new coaching staff offers years of experience in both collegiate and professional sports, a history of excellent instruction and building relationships with players, and they will intently watch over Steven's character development.
We'd love to have you and Steven be a part of something special here at UM. Best wishes to his future.
"Oh what a tangled web we weave, when first we practise to deceive! " Sir Walter Scott, and tweeted by Jim Harbaugh