TomVH: An Interview with LB Camren Williams

TomVH: An Interview with LB Camren Williams

Submitted by TomVH on March 4th, 2011 at 1:28 PM

Catholic Memorial High School in Massachusetts is the home to linebacker Camren Williams (6'2", 215 lbs) and his teammate athlete Armani Reeves (5'11", 185 lbs). The defensive pair are best friends and have both received an offer from Michigan. I'll have more from Armani on Monday, but I caught up with Camren to talk about Michigan and his recruitment overall. Here's some film from Camren at a U Conn camp, and you can see his full highlights here.

TOM: Your teammate Armani [Reeves] said you both were coming up on March 26th, is that date set?

CAMREN: Yeah, I think it's the 26th. It's either that or the 19th.

TOM: When it comes to your recruitment, with both you and Armani, I know you're really good friends but are you guys trying to pick the same school? Are you trying to be a package deal?

CAMREN: We're trying to be separate in our decision, because not all schools would be good for both of us. We're totally different kids with different majors and different positions. My favorite school might not be the best for Armani, and the other way around so we would like to, but it may not happen. 

TOM: Where are you at right now with the process? Do you have a top list yet?

CAMREN: It's really down to five schools, Michigan, Wake Forest, North Carolina, Penn State, and Maryland in no order.

TOM: Is that a final list, or could that change?

CAMREN: It may change, but I want to make my decision by June so those are probably the schools that I'll focus on here on out. Depending on maybe some other schools that offer, that's my top five.

TOM: With that being said, since you want to decide so soon where does Michigan stack up in that top list?

CAMREN: I really like Michigan. That's where my dad is originally from, and that's the school I've always been rooting for since I was born because my dad is such a huge fan. It's a great school with big time Big Ten football so I'm extremely interested.

TOM: With this upcoming visit to Michigan, I'm assuming that you're going to be trying to get to know the coaches better, but what else?

CAMREN: Yeah, I hope to do that on my visit. I talk to Coach Mallory sometimes, but other than that I haven't really talked to any other [Michigan] coaches. I want to go to a high academic school that fits my major well, with a position coach that I relate really well with, and a head coach with a good vision on where he wants to bring his program in the future. I also want a school with a big time program where I have the ability to play early.

TOM: Do you already know what you want to major in? With all that being said, do you think that Michigan has a good chance at landing you?

CAMREN: I want to major in kinesiology, and Michigan has a good chance. Academics are huge for me, which Michigan obviously has. They also play big time football and that's the school I've always watched growing up. It all depends on how I like the campus and the people and all that, but I'm definitely interested.

Ohio DE comments on Michigan's academic reputation

Ohio DE comments on Michigan's academic reputation

Submitted by Ponypie on March 4th, 2011 at 1:14 PM

From a Detroit News/Sam Webb article on Ohio DE Tom Strobel. An amazing expression of how people from that place are kept in woeful ignorance:

Strobel has yet to assess the respective depth charts in Ann Arbor and East Lansing. He is still at the "getting to know you" stage with both programs. "I didn't know (Michigan) was such a high academic school," he said. "Originally, I thought they were just like the other version of Ohio State. I had no idea that their academics were that high and that really made me look higher upon them. As far as Michigan, I really don't know that much about them.

From The Detroit News:… Strobel

Strobel also contended that everyone in Ohio favors TUOS.

Fortunately, he has had his eyes opened, and may yet obtain his freedom.

Favorite M vs. MSU Moment

Favorite M vs. MSU Moment

Submitted by brewandbluesaturdays on March 4th, 2011 at 9:00 AM

So, I was thinking, with the big "Clash at Crisler" (see what I did there), looming on Saturday, I thought it would be interesting to share the MgoCommunities favorite Michigan vs. MSU moments. Whether that moment is in football, basketball, hockey, etc..doesnt matter.

For me that moment had to have been, in 2003 watching Chris Perry rush 51 times for 221yds, in East Lansing. I remember sitting in the upper section behind the Michigan sideline surrounded by Sparty fans who looked just like the Sparty defense, getting beat-up and warn down all the way to the very end. It was the only time I've been to a game in East Lansing to see Michigan pull out the W. So, walking out of there being able to give the big F U to sparty fans was a wonderful moment for me, especially since I grew up in the greater Lansing area and all of my friends from the area are die-hard sparties.

Let the recollections begin...

Emmert open to football playoff

Emmert open to football playoff

Submitted by Jon06 on March 4th, 2011 at 12:15 AM

I don't see this posted on the board (does the search function allow you to sort things by date some way I'm not seeing?), although in wonderful WWL fashion it's about something Emmert said 2 days ago. Basically he's down with a playoff if the universities want it, which is kind of like saying nothing, but in a good way. (After reporting that, the article veers into a list of 1-2 sentence paragraphs about credibility issues for the NCAA, but at least the sentences are mostly run-ons so they make long-ish one sentence paragraphs.)

Rivals250 to watch 2012: A Brief Analysis

Rivals250 to watch 2012: A Brief Analysis

Submitted by Bodogblog on March 3rd, 2011 at 11:03 PM

A few weeks ago there was a post that talked about the myth of SEC speed, and the larger issue of player quality among the different US regions.  I don't know that I agreed with the article linked in that post, but it did bring up some interesting points.  When I reviewed the Rivals250 watch list for 2012 , I had this in mind and began analyzing player location.  Of course I didn't come up with anything other than very crude conclusions re. that particular issue, but I did find the exercise more generally informative about recruiting as a whole.  I'll present it here, with the understanding that many similar analyses have likely been completed in the past, and those much better in findings and scope.

First up - where do they come from?  Well, that's Texas, Florida, and California, and you knew that.  The top 15 states in terms of the most R250 players:

        #  State
       35  TX
       33  FL
       31  CA
       15  GA
       14  OH
       10  LA
         9  MD
         8  PA
         8  NC
         8  AL
         7  AZ
         7  NJ
         7  IL
         6  MI
         6  WA
  • TX, FL, CA, GA, and LA together hold nearly half of the preliminary 250, with 124 athletes
  • The Top 15 states, which you'll notice includes MI, hold 82% of the R250
  • There are 34 states represented by the R250, and 19 of them have 5 or fewer players
  • 16 states are not represented at all.  Many of those are smaller states or Alaska, but some surprises: Kansas, West Virginia, Connecticut, and our new B1G member Nebraska have no players in the R250
  • Iowa, Oregon, and Wisconsin each have 1 player
  • Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Indiana (home of ND, Purdue, and IU) have 2 players
  • New York also has only 2 players - it's hardly the empire state for football, despite having an enormous population.  There are probably answers to those player quality questions here, which likely involve player development and the popularity of football in the area.  But this is just speculation.

In terms of which conference the players belong to, I made some crude assumptions: players play at home, and states are split according to popular custom.  Re. the latter, the example would be MI and OH are 100% B1G states, but PA is 2/3 B1G and 1/3 BEAST (for Penn State and Pitt respectively).  FLA is 2/3 ACC and 1/3 SEC, to recognize MYTM, FSU, and UF.  Yes it's simplistic.  It's also hard to do it any other way. 

SEC            57
PAC10            50
ACC            47
B1G            38
B12            28
BEAST            12
OTHER            18
*B1G = 15% of total

So yes the SEC RULZ.  They get there by taking 1/3 of FLA (11 players), and all of GA (15), LA (10), and AL (8).  The PAC10 comes in second by virture of CA, AZ, and WA.  ACC is third?  That's what 2/3 of FLA, plus MD (and their 4 OLGC players) and NC will get you.  B1G is fourth, more in a bit.  B12 is fifth, made up almost entirely of 2/3 of TX (the other 1/3 went to OTHER), plus 3 kids from MO and 2 from OK.  The B12 is Texas in every way it can be anything.  BEAST is hopeless, but that's a pretty good abbreviation eh? 
The B1G is made up of OH, PA, IL, and MI.  Michigan isn't in a terrible position, but with B1G regions making up just 15% of the total, needs to be in FL, TX, and CA to be a national power.  ND has nothing in IN and does just fine.  

What about the position breadowns? 

QBs  22
RBs  22
WRs  36
TEs  7
OL  39
DTs  20
DEs  31
LBs  23
DBs  23
ATH  27

Not sure how this compares to previous years, but the good news is that there are 39 OL and 36 WRs - two positions of need next year.  DEs are also very deep - OH has six alone (and that doesn't include Pharaoh Brown or Odenigbo).  But also very few DTs or TEs.  MI has only one of either, and unfortunately O'Brien looks to be vexed by the orange sun and questionable head coaching strategies of UT.  OH has neither a DT nor TE, and only one each of LB, OL, and DB.  We'd like to keep all of the MI guys who represent, yo:

Kelby Latta OL Battle Creek, MIHarper Creek
Danny O'Brien DT Flint, MIPowers Catholic
Royce Jenkins-Stone LB Detroit, MICass Tech
James Ross LB Orchard Lake, MISt. Mary's
Efe Scott-Emuakpor WR East Lansing, MIEast Lansing
Terry Richardson DB Detroit, MICass Tech


Height   Weight
6'9"  2   300+  17
6'8"  2   290s  10
6'7"  8   280s  12
6'6"  16   270s  12
6'5"  24   260s  9
6'4"  35   250s  11
6'3"  34   240s  6
6'2"  49   230s  10
6'1"  24   220s  19
6'0"  22   210s  16
5'11"  15   200s  21
5'10"  9   190s  33
5'9"  6   180s  37
5'8"  3   170s  22
5'7"  1   160s  12
  250   150s  3
*216>6'0" (86%)     250
      *128 <200s (51%)
  • 86% of the R250 are 6'0" or taller - marry a big girl
  • 51% of the R250 are in the 200s or lighter, surprisingly - it's OK to marry a thin girl
  • Want a 300+ pounder?  There are only 17 in the country right now (though they may grow over the year): 11 OL and 6 DTs - not enough of you are marrying big enough girls

No grand conclusions, but some interesting info.  I haz spreadsheet, so questions are welcome.  The data at Rivals is easy to copy and paste into Excel.  I'll probably update this when it changes from watch list to the actual R250.  Go Blue and that is all

Vernon Gholston fails at something other than class

Vernon Gholston fails at something other than class

Submitted by Arsenal Fan on March 3rd, 2011 at 7:42 PM

This is my first post, but I thought this information was too good to pass up.  The title says it all, Vernon Gholston can't reach the easiest contract trigger ever.…

Also, I did not know how to embed the link so I am unsure if this will work.

Oregon paid pair with ties to recruits

Oregon paid pair with ties to recruits

Submitted by pasadenablue on March 3rd, 2011 at 7:39 PM


Apparently, they paid 28k+ to people assocated with recruits...


Money shot:

According to State of Oregon expenditure records, the university paid $25,000 to Will Lyles of Complete Scouting Services in Houston, and $3,745 to Baron Flenory of New Level Athletics. Lyles is a former athletic trainer who recently was serving as a mentor to highly touted Ducks running back recruit Lache Seastrunk. Meanwhile, Flenory runs the Badger Sports Elite 7-on-7 football camps which have featured several celebrated Ducks signees including running back DeAnthony Thomas, defensive back Cliff Harris, defensive back Dior Mathis and wideout Tacoi Sumler. Flenory had a personal training relationship with recent Ducks signee Anthony Wallace.

If true, this is some bad joojoo for the ducks.



As it turns out, this isn't the first puff of smoke regarding these two characters.

That was posted 3 months ago!

TomVH: DE Ifeadi Odenigbo Update

TomVH: DE Ifeadi Odenigbo Update

Submitted by TomVH on March 3rd, 2011 at 3:57 PM

Ohio DE Ifeadi Odenigbo has become a coveted prospect now with over 11 offers from programs across the country, and he says he's ready to start making some moves.

I'm going to start taking my visits in June; I'll visit a whole bunch of them. Michigan, Michigan State will be in there, I'm not exactly sure all of them I need to talk to my parents. 

Once the visits are over with they will give Ifeadi a clearer picture of who is on top for him, and he should have a top list narrowed down.

I should have a top 5 or top 3 after that. Right now I'm leaning towards Stanford, Ohio State, Northwestern, and Notre Dame but that could change with these visits. Any school has a chance. 

So Michigan is out of the top group for the moment, which could end up not meaning a whole lot come late June. They'll get their shot to make their way into his final list and he says they have a good chance to do that. 

TomVH: Update on Good Counsel Prospects

TomVH: Update on Good Counsel Prospects

Submitted by TomVH on March 3rd, 2011 at 1:51 PM

Good Counsel High School in Maryland produces top prospect after top prospect year in and year out. Michigan signed one of them last year in DB Blake Countess, and they're targeting a few of his teammates for 2012. I spoke with assistant coach Kevin McFadden today about his athletes, and where they're at in the process. "Michigan has a shot, all the kids are open right now. They're all just thankful that they have the opportunity with all these programs. They're trying to concentrate on the academic side of everything, so when the time comes they have everything in order," said Coach McFadden.

Stefon DiggsThe Michigan coaches have targeted and offered DB Stefon Diggs, RB Wes Brown, DE Ryan Watson, and OL Mike Madaras so far from Good Counsel. "Wes is probably one of the most sought after running backs in the country. He has a ton of offers, he's a leader, and his work ethic is good," he said. "Wes is going to be a rags to riches story. He takes the game serious, and it's all about creating an outlet for his family. He's a very responsible kid, and even more focused on academics now more than ever." Coach McFadden is also confident that Michigan will be interested in a few more of his players once he sends their film. "We have a couple other kids Michigan should offer, we have DL Rod Chungong (6'3", 240 lbs),  2013 DB Kendall Fuller (6'0", 175 lbs), and 2013 DB Kirk Garner (5'10", 165 lbs) that will get some looks from Michigan," he said.

The fact that Michigan did sign Blake Countess may end up helping them, but it's no guarantee according to the coach. "Blake's been talking to them about Michigan, but he knows just like it was for him, it's their decision. I'm sure he's been saying stuff about Michigan, but he understands what they have to do," said McFadden. Having coached so many prospects, and for a number of years Coach McFadden has also built relationships with fellow coaches that may help Michigan in the future. "Me and Urban Meyer played together at Cincinnati, that's my guy. He and Mattison coached together, and Mattison is one of my mentors in the business and the game. We kindled that relationship years ago, and we stumbled upon each other again when he came through to recruit Blake," he said. Again, the hiring of Greg Mattison and his track record has been validated from the outside.

McFadden has coached his fair share of athletes, some of which are now competing to make it to the NFL. Despite the amount of talent that he's seen, he thinks this batch is just as good. "These kids are NFL kids, they're good. They're right up there with some of the best kids we've had. They've seen the kids before them, and the appropriate measures they've had to put in place with academics, perseverance, and they've seen the outcome with those other guys. The success of the other kids has really prepared them for everything," he said. As far as what's next for this group, Coach McFadden says they will take a few trips during the spring, and try to get everything in order for the summer.