Maple City (MI) Glen Lake defensive end/linebacker Mike O'Brien will walk on at Michigan this fall. He was the Defensive Player of the Year in the Northwest Conference and First Team All-Region. Here's an article from January on his high school accomplishments.
Hello: 2013 DE/LB walk-on Mike O'Brien
Thanks for helping me end my day on a good note (Currently overseas). As usual thanks for all you bring to this Blog Brotha Magnus...
I fixed it for you.
Holy crap. I know people who went to that school. They drove 45 minutes to get there because it's in the tourist area up near Traverse City. I think they wear a maize and blue winged helmet already.
You were close, but i think they wear black and yellow.
black and yellow, black and yellow, black and yellow
This was in the 80s, before they had big walls surrounding the practice facilities. There was a field, probably where Schembechler Hall is now, covered with kids wearing their own helmets. The variety was great, including myriad variations of the winged helmet in all colors, even one that was green and white (!).
Anyway, of the ones in Glen Lake's league I think I like the Kingsley helmets the most:
My hometown and I used to work for the Record-Eagle.
The January 2013 article references his 4.0 GPA and interest in Princeton. Even with the Princeton football team interest in hm getting past the admissions committee is brutal.
Great to have him as a wolverine.
Mike and I have some mutual friends and he's a great guy. His older brother actually is already at Michigan. Both of them are great athletes and very nice guys.
Been bringing in some pretty decent walk-ons for 2013, especially instate
It brings some perspective on how good elite D1 talent is when "Defensive Player of the Year in the Northwest Conference and First Team All-Region" only gets you walk-on status.
It means that the run-of-the-mill 3* recruits that we all yawn about are still freaks of nature.
This is why I hate when we pick up a 3* and people refer to him as a class "filler". While its more likely a 4/5 will be successful, a 3* is still a freak athlete who will compete and possibly contribute.
I was 1st team all region in HS (in a smaller state, granted) and didn't get a sniff from anybody.
Then again, I wasn't that good. My best game just happened to be our only televised one. Voters are lazy.
The season stats for Glen Lake football's most recent season are here (LINK).
Included are O'Brien's personal stats, which include 43 tackles (6 assisted), 9 of which were tackles for loss for a total of 24 yards. It also lists 1 sack, 2 interceptions, 2 fumble recoveries and 2 pass breakups. The two interceptions were returned for a total of 46 yards and 1 TD.
Interestingly, it also lists some spot duty as a receiver - 4 catches for 33 yards.
Welcome to Michigan, Mike O'Brien!
Welcome to the Maize and Blue Mr. O'Brien.
May several B1G championships accompany you.
May our practice squad be better than your starters. Oh, yeah. (not saying he would only be practice squad).
Have watched him play numerous times and he is a phenomenal athlete. Really great kids and his dad was my teacher when I was younger. So proud of the young man and hope he sees the field, would not be surprised to see him move to a tight end role with his background as a great basketball player. We are a very small school and only send a D1 athlete out about once in a decade. Congrats!
Wasn't a recent Miss Basketball from that same HS? Did she end up in Division 1 athletics?
She and I graduated together, she went to MSU and ended up getting drafted by Chicago. She no longer plays in the WNBA and lives by me with her family.
Wow, I guess it wasn't that recent after all. That's what happens when we get older, I suppose.
Anyway, always cool to see some fellow northern Michiganders finding success and fulfilling their dreams.
I wonder if he eats at Art's Tavern.
Some of the best burgers in the universe. Two-for-one burgers from October to May on Monday nights.
Do we know a height and weight for him?
6'3", 210 lbs.
How's his pad level?
Is it me or is there a change not only in the type of walk-ons being asked to join but also what seems to be their general caliber as athletes? Can't say that I've followed this aspect of it in past years but is there something different here this season that could be part of the overall plan for the team? I know that walk-ons have to get accepted academically so the good grades don't jump out as much as what "seams" to be better talent in the high school level.
I don't see a big difference in walk-on athletes between now and past years. Michigan has always gotten some quality walk-ons who are all-league players in high school, all-region, etc. It's inevitable that some of those types of players won't be Division I or Division II scholarship athletes, but they can show up at Michigan to mostly be tackling dummies. You'll occasionally have a Jordan Kovacs type of player, but most walk-ons will either never see the field or they'll be special teamers exclusively.
I hope these guys have good careers at Michigan and enjoy their time, but in all likelihood, several of them probably won't last on the team longer than two or three years. A few will quit, a few will transfer, and a few will stick it out and maybe earn a scholarship down the road.
So far, I have:
Jack Wangler, WR
Greg Froelich, OL
Blaise Stearns, WR
J.J. McGrath, K
Garrett Moores, QB
Mike O'Brien, LB/DE
That's the list I have, too: