Wednesday Recruitin' Welcomes Desmond Morgan

Wednesday Recruitin' Welcomes Desmond Morgan Comment Count

Tim December 15th, 2010 at 11:09 AM

Remember, all-time updates can be found on the 2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Board. If you have any recruiting tips or questions, you can e-mail them to me at [email protected] or tweet @varsityblue. For game updates on Wolverine commits, check out the Friday Night Lights series.

Desmond Morgan Goes Blue

Read the Hello: Desmond Morgan post for full details on the kid. He almost never smiles in pictures (at least ones on the internet), and more often looks ominous:

morgan.jpg

Fluff on Morgan's move to quarterback after only playing linebacker for his first three years. He's a well-rounded athlete, also playing hockey and lacrosse. The best part:

“Anything less than the playoffs would be very disappointing,” said Morgan, who has a 3.97 grade-point average. “There are a lot of great schools in the OK Red. I think the hard work in the offseason is going to pay off.”

Following the season, he was named to the All-Area First-Team defense, and captained it as Defensive Player of the Year:

“He knows where everybody is supposed to be. He makes the calls on defense and just his presence out there makes other guys around him better as well,” [West Ottawa Coach Jim] Caserta said. “… When you gameplan against us, you have to put at least a couple guys on him, and it makes the guys around him better.”

Opposing coaches were equally impressed:

“Desmond Morgan playing sideline to sideline, that kid can play at any college right now and I’ve admired that kid,” [Muskegon Coach Shane] Fairfield said after his team won 28-14. “That kid has inspired our defense, just watching him on film. He comes out here and runs like he’s Ironman. I’m glad our linebackers had a chance to play against him, because he made us grow up and realize how to play linebacker.”

Congratulations and welcome, Desmond.

Big... Thawed

Elsewhere in last weekend's visitors...

OH WR Darius Patton was "impressed" ($, info in header).

Though he visited last weekend, don't expect PA DT Rob Trudo to decommit from Syracuse ($, info in header).

MI DE/OL Anthony Zettel is ready to start thinking about a decision ($, info in header). Expect him to make his choice in early January.

LA CB James Richardson enjoyed himself at the "beyond amazing" event ($, info in header). He's currently an SMU commit, but he'll now consider Michigan.

Tom's Weekly Update has full reactions from OH WR Darius Patton, IL OL Chris Bryant, and LA CB James Richardson.

Prince Holloway, Come on Down?

hollowayprince.jpeg

FL Slot WR Prince Holloway is receiving an in-home visit from OL Coach Greg Frey later this month (the contact period ends next Monday), at which time his commitment status will be clarified. To recap, Holloway has said he's ready to commit to Michigan, joining his cousin, FL CB Commit Dallas Crawford, in the class.

Howeva, with MI RB/Slot Justice Hayes already in the class, I'm not sure if Holloway holds a committable offer at this time. Though MI WR Shawn Conway won't be a Wolverine next fall, Holloway, at 5-9, isn't really the prototype to fill the outside receiver position. He also has yet to achieve a qualifying score, and though it's possible for him to keep working toward that, Michigan's staff is probably leery of the risks after cases like Adrian Witty, Demar Dorsey, and Davion Rogers.

Within a week, we should have a much better idea of where Holloway stands with this coaching staff. Sam says on WTKA that he would already be committed to Michigan is not for a bit of a "slow-play."

Coaching Carousel Reopens Doors

PA CB Kyshoen Jarrett says he'll see who Pitt hires as a replacement before making any sudden decisions. If the new coach brings along a whole new, staff, it's more likely he'll decommit ($, info in header). However, he wants other coaches to know that he's available if they just wanna, you know, have a chat.

PA DE Desimon Green decommits from Pitt. He's heard from Michigan, as well.

MI CB Valdez Showers remains committed to Florida for now. Now that the Gators have hired Will Muschamp, he'll likely come to a decision on his commitment soon.

FL DT Tim Jernigan eliminated Michigan and USC last week (HT: Dreisbach1817), but with Meyer resigning at Florida and the Wolverines playing in a bowl game just an hour away from his hometown of Lake City, Florida, might MIchigan have a chance to change his mind?

KY LB Lamar Dawson isn't sure what to think about Florida now that Urban Meyer has retired. He no longer plans to visit this weekend ($, info in header). He's visiting Michigan in January.

Happy Trails

LA DT/OL Gregory Robinson commits to Auburn.

MD DT Darian Cooper has eliminated Michigan from consideration.

PA DE Myles Jackson committed to Rutgers.

OH LB Steven Daniels committed to Boston College.

GA S Avery Walls committed to Cal in the only painful recruiting loss in this week's update. Walls was actively recruiting for Michigan in the summer, but coaching uncertainty made it tough for him to pick the Wolverines, as he wants to enroll in January. (I'm not sure how it makes more sense to pick a school that went 5-7 and will be looking for a new coach soon, but whateva).

OH CB/Ath Tyler Williams committed to Akron.

Etc.

MI RB Thomas Rawls is serious with his recruitment.

He’ll take an official visit to Central Michigan — the school that first expressed interest — next weekend. Then it’s off to the University of Michigan the following week, with a stop due in Toledo sometime in January. Cincinnati is in the process of setting up a date as well, said Rawls.

When he reaches a decision, he'll hold a low-key press conference at his school. And should he receive a qualifying test score, don't be surprised if that choice is Michigan. More local fluff.

OH QB Cardale Jones and his teammate, OH WR Shane Wynn, didn't make it to Ann Arbor for the Big Chill. Jones, at least, will try to reschedule for later this winter.

NJ TE/QB Tanner McEvoy has a final four ($, info in header). Spoiler alert: Michigan is in it.

Michigan has offered OH TE/Ath Frank Clark, and they're now a co-favorite for the Cleveland Glenville prospect ($, info in headers). Perhaps his recruitment will have an effect on his teammate Cardale Jones.

NC WR/LB Kris Frost still wants to start out at wide receiver at whichever school he chooses. His coach says he'll be excellent at either:

[Butler Coach Mike] Newsome said, "He's great on both sides of the ball. He thinks he's a better receiver than linebacker. I think he's a better linebacker than receiver, but the thing that makes him so much better a football player is he's just got 'it.' He's got the other factor to him that I can't coach into him, and that factor that takes his game to a whole 'nother level. He's just got an intensity level that helps him be better than folks he faces."

That intensity and his physical gifts - Frost has a 35-inch vertical leap and has been timed at slightly less than 4.5 seconds in the 40-yard dash, for example - are what led more than 30 Division I colleges to offer him a scholarship.

Opposing coaches give the same level of praise:

South Mecklenburg coach James Martin said, "From a defensive standpoint, he completely understands the game. He understands formations. I've seen him make so many checks. He's one of the best linebackers I've seen since I've been coaching in Charlotte. On offense, when he gets out on the open with his hands and speed, he's a true threat."

Michigan can probably offer him much more opportunity at the wideout position, since Shawn Conway won't be in the class.

FL S Roderick Ryles, a teammate of FL RB Commit Dee Hart, will not attend Arkansas, because they don't need safeties. Michigan may be interested, though they didn't offer Ryles prior to his commitment to the Razorbacks.

JC defensive back Anthony Baskin visited Michigan last week.

The Wolverines are looking at Indiana decommit MI CB Raymon Taylor. He's a lifelong Wolverines fan, but Michigan has not yet offered.

PA LB/FB Nicholas Klass may walk on at Michigan ($, info in header).

MD CB Blake Countess is close to a decision ($, info in header).

Local fluff on an offer to CA K Connor Loftus.

2012

IL QB Robert Gregory was named First-Team All-State as an athlete.

Michigan is in the top five for MI RB Juwan Lewis.

MI CB Terry Richardson was named an Under Armour All-American.

Sam Webb's recruiting column last week covered a junior combine that took place over the weekend. Once the 2011 class is wrapped up, the Wolverines will start to show serious interest in some of these guys.

Comments

Wednesday Recruitin' Seeks Another RB

Wednesday Recruitin' Seeks Another RB Comment Count

Tim December 1st, 2010 at 1:09 PM

Remember, all-time updates can be found on the 2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Board. If you have any recruiting tips or questions, you can e-mail them to me at [email protected] or tweet @varsityblue. For game updates on Wolverine commits, check out the Friday Night Lights series.

Assume The Position(s): Offense

rawls.jpeg

MI RB Thomas Rawls was the subject of last week's Sam Webb recruiting column in The Detroit News. He was super-productive in his senior year:

Despite sitting out two games with a high ankle sprain Rawls rushed for 1,585 yards and 19 touchdowns. His year was highlighted by a 344-yard rushing effort against Saginaw Heritage in Week 4 and a 396-yard rushing effort against Bay City Central in Week 5.

Scout's Allen Trieu breaks down his game:

"He is one of the toughest runners I've seen. He's very compact -- a bowling ball kind of kid who can break tackles and has a good burst. While most people see him as just an inside battering ram, I think he proved to me over the summer and the course of this year that he has legit breakaway speed. He's also very underrated as a receiver out of the backfield."

As long as he can nail a qualifying score on his standardized tests, it's likely he'll land a Michigan offer - and soon ($, info in header). It sounds like the Wolverines are a heavy favorite to land him should that happen:

Even if new suitors do come calling, they clearly will have a steep hill to climb. "I'm going to wink my eye a couple of times about this, but let's just say I'm thinking about staying close to home (to play college football)," he said.

With Justice Hayes coming in as a slot receiver, the Wolverines still have a bit of room in the class for another true running back - the "big back" complement to slashing Dee Hart - and Rawls could be that guy.

Elsewhere in running backs, FL RB DeVondrick Nealy still favors Michigan ($, info in header). His skill set is more on the Hart/Hayes end of the spectrum, so I'd be surprised if Michigan's coaches accepted a commitment from him.

Also on offense, Michigan is looking for a tight end. NJ TE Jack Tabb has narrowed his list to 6 ($, info in header), and will take just a couple more visits before coming to a decision, hopefully by Christmas. If he doesn't commit to the Wolverines, recent offeree OH TE Darien Bryant might get increased heat.

The Wolverines are also seeking another offensive lineman, with IL OL Chris Bryant the most likely option. Bryant is on the verge of an offer from Ohio State ($, info in header), and will announce a commitment in early January. Can the  Buckeyes catch up to his current favorites?

Player Breakdowns

Rivals has started rolling out their Position Superlative rankings (they've done the offense, and have only done D-line thus far on the other side of the ball). Michigan commits and targets feature:

I'll recap once more if Michigan targets and/or commits are ranked in the defensive back 7.

Elsewhere in evaluations, Poole1Dan passed along a first-hand report on MI RB Commit Justice Hayes:

Hayes is not a Big Ten caliber running back, at least not from what I saw in the Milford game. But as a slot receiver, he's pretty good. He displayed excellent body control on the 21 yard TD catch and could be dangerous in a Steve Breaston way on bubble screens. He could motion into the backfield and be a poor mans Percy Harvin (something Michigan has yet to deploy with any of their slots in the RichRod era). With his agility and vision, he might be Michigan's answer at punt returner, which has been a disaster ever since Breaston graduated.

As always, take one-game scouting reports with a grain of salt, but as this seems to corroborate a lot of what we've heard about Justice so far, it's worth paying attention to.

Upcoming Visits

Josh Helmholdt talks about the visit weekends coming up over the next two weeks, including a group of five this weekend:

Michigan will kick off its December official visit period with five official visitors this weekend. Commitments like Cass Tech cornerback Delonte Hollowell, Plymouth defensive end Brennen Beyer and Fremont (Ohio) Ross cornerback Greg Brown will be joined by uncommitted prospects Wayne Lyons of Ft. Lauderdale (Fla.) Dillard and Blake Countess of Owings Mills (Md.) Good Counsel.

Tom's weekly update touches on Lyons's visit. Helmholdt also mentions a host of prospects for the Big Chill:

Recruits who have already scheduled their official visits to coincide with the Big Chill include Chicago Simeon offensive lineman Chris Bryant; Cleveland Glenville teammates Cardale Jones and Shane Wynn; Holland West Ottawa linebacker Desmond Morgan; Winter Springs, Fla.; linebacker Ryan Petro, and West Branch Ogemaw Heights defensive end Anthony Zettel.

Tom will keep us updated on the latest as the weeks go on (including a January visit from top KY LB Lamar Dawson), so stay tuned.

Etc.

Josh Helmholdt says that OH CB Greg Brown and FL RB Dee Hart are the only currently-committed recruits planning to enroll early. Brown tells him:

"I'm just focusing on finishing my high school education next month and in those following couple weeks, I will be enrolling at Michigan to play ball for the Wolverines," Brown said. "I just can't wait to get in the Big House in front of those 110,000 fans and play some football."

As mentioned in yesterday's Friday Night Lights post, Hart will be formally invited to the US Army All-American Bowl tomorrow, so I'll have full coverage of the announcement next week.

There are several other prospects considering Michigan who are looking into early enrollment, including NC WR/LB Kris Frost and GA S Avery Walls, both participants in the Army All-American Game, who plan to announce their commitments at that time.

Tom's Weekly Update has a few pictures of TX LB Commit Kellen Jones alongside some former Michigan greats.

Happy Trails

We've been wondering is NC QB Marquise Williams would decommit from North Carolina, but if he does, it seems like Virginia Tech, not Michigan, will be his destination. He remains an unhappy-face on the recruiting board, but I won't remove him quite yet.

GA DE Ray Drew has narrowed to a final 6, not including Michigan.

OH LB Percy Johnson, an ex-pat from Michigan, has committed to Cincinnati.

2012

MD WR/S Deontay McManus has received a Michigan offer.

Comments

Wednesday Recruitin' Awaits the Dee-cision

Wednesday Recruitin' Awaits the Dee-cision Comment Count

Tim September 29th, 2010 at 10:05 AM

[Ed: see what he did there?]

Remember, all-time updates can be found on the 2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Board. If you have any recruiting tips or questions, you can e-mail them to me at [email protected] or tweet @varsityblue. For game updates on Wolverine commits, check out the Friday Night Lights series.

Decision Time is Finally Here. Maybe.

WallsArmy.jpg

GA S Avery Walls has been named to the Army All-American game. His coach had plenty of good things to say about him too:

"Avery came to this school and just instantly was a great leader who showed great character," Gess said. "As far as him as a player, he just shuts down a whole side of the field because coaches won't throw or run that way. He also raises his teammates' level of play. He's a great representative of Eagle's Landing Christian and what they stand for."

He'll make a decision next month, after a couple visits to Oregon and Cal. Michigan was in great shape after his visit to Ann Arbor, and hopefully the Ducks and Bears do nothing to change that. Walls is an early-enrollment candidate.

If FL RB Demetrius Hart doesn't make his decision next week, it wouldn't be the first time he's changed his mind about an announcement timeframe. However, this is the most public he's been about when he'll pick his school. Hart is taking an official visit to Alabama this weekend. Tom hinted that Hart may take another unofficial visit in his weekly update, and I bet that would be to Michigan should he choose the Wolverines. It's still looking good here.

Assume the Position: D-Line

Michigan is hunting for at least one defensive tackle, and probably another defensive end. Who are some of the candidates?

FL DT Tim Jernigan will not decide until after his senior season. He's also started planning out some of his visits:

He said he plans on attending at least one game involving each of the schools, including the UF-Alabama game Oct. 2 in Tuscaloosa, Ala., the LSU-UF game in Gainesville on Oct. 9 and games at Michigan and USC.

That means no Michigan State game in Ann Arbor, leaving Iowa, Illinois and Wisconsin weekends. If his coach is right:

The biggest factor the coach said would play into Jernigan’s decision is playing time.

With a college-ready frame and skill set, Howard said Jernigan is going to likely attend the school that can provide him a chance to play early.

That means Advantage: Michigan over all of his other contenders.

MI DE/OL Anthony Zettel gave raving reviews of his visit to Michigan State:

"It was an amazing game to be at," Zettel said. "I think that Michigan State is starting to become a very good team. I was able to have some small talk with a lot of the recruits at the game."

OK, maybe that's more "I was in attendance" than anything hugely positive for the Spartans. Scout's Allen Trieu explains to the Lansing State Journal:

Michigan looks like it could be the team to beat for Zettel, but the Spartans are in contention.

"He's been a life-long Michigan fan, and you just want to be able to stay in the game with him," Trieu said. "The fact that he hasn't committed to Michigan yet is a big thing for Michigan State."

At this point , when "not committed to Michigan quite yet" is the best thing you can say about State's recruitment of the kid, the Wolverines are looking good.

GA DE Ray Drew, Walls's buddy, wants to visit Ann Arbor:

"I would also like to go to Michigan to see the Big House. Every football player knows about that place... There are a lot of schools I would like to see before I decide on signing day.”

He says he's close to having all of his visits set up, so we should know soon when he'll be in the house. Drew won't make a decision until Signing Day.

The Others

MI RB Thomas Rawls is smashing Mark Ingram's Flint-area rushing records. If he can get his grades up, he could be a good addition to Michigan's class. At 5'10", 215, he's a differenet sort of back than Hart.

NJ TE Jack Tabb is taking an official visit to Iowa City this weekend ($, info in header), even though the Hawkeyes already have three (!) tight ends in this class. Michigan is in the running for one of his other visits, and he took a trip to Ann Arbor earlier this summer.

IL OL Chris Bryant, a recent visitor to Ann Arbor, has the Wolverines in his top 3/4 with Arizona, Stanford, and Illinois. From the tone of the article, Michigan is still on top.

KY LB Lamar Dawson has M in his final 7.

Dee Hart isn't the only Orlando Dr. Phillips guy with Michigan interest. It is highly unlikely that FL S HaSean Clinton-Dix will strongly consider Michigan anymore, but his fellow safety Roderick Ryles is looking for an offer.

Happy Trails

FL TE/DE Brandon Fulse has narrowed his list, and Michigan is no longer on it.

Happy Trails, FL DE Giorgio Newberry. He's committed to Florida State.

It appears as though VA CB Demetrious Nicholson is no longer planning to take a Michigan visit.

2012

FL QB Bennie Coney is holding a Michigan offer. It will be interesting to see what types of QBs Michigan goes after this season.

Just to clarify, Plant City is not the same Plant that 2011 OL Commit Tony Posada attends.

OH RB William Mahone is interested in Michigan, and attended a summer camp in Ann Arbor this summer. The Buckeyes already have two RB commits in 2012, so they won't be the competition.

As expected, MI DT Danny O'Brien received his verbal offer from Michigan at the Bowling Green game.

ESPN's Chris Pool reports that IL DT Tommy Schutt also holds a verbal offer from the Wolverines.

Also in attendance last Saturday was OH S Allen Gant. The son of former Wolverine Tony Gant (and nephew of Charles Woodson) plans to take his time making a decision.

Comments

Thursday Recruitin' Enjoyed UConn

Thursday Recruitin' Enjoyed UConn Comment Count

Tim September 9th, 2010 at 10:26 AM

Remember, all-time updates can be found on the 2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Board. If you have any recruiting tips or questions, you can e-mail them to me at [email protected] or tweet @varsityblue. For game updates on Wolverine commits, check out the Friday Night Lights series.

The Afterglow

hartNFTC.JPGTom's weekly update had a quick rundown of how some prospects enjoyed the game. Most Michigan fans were expecting a commitment from FL RB Demetrius Hart (at right), so not landing him is a bit of a disappointment. Tom says Michigan still leads, and a commitment at the MSU or Iowa game is still a possibility. On Hart's teammate, FL S Ha'Sean Clinton-Dix:

Speaking with a few people about him makes me feel like he's pretty solid with Alabama. That's not to say that it would be impossible to sway him, it would just take quite a bit to do that. If Demetrius makes another trip up to Michigan and Ha'Sean were to come with him, there would be reason for excitement. I've been told that there may be some teammates (possibly former as well) trying to persuade him to go north.

Swinging Clinton-Dix would be huge for the Wolverines, and I'm willing to bet his former teammate talking up Michigan is one Ricardo Miller. Fluff on him. The Orlando Sentinel covers the visits of Hart, Clinton-Dix, and 2012 QB Nick Patti. No news other than "it was a little unseasonably cold." Patti has an early top 4 of Michigan, Oregon, North Carolina, and Florida State.

Click through to Tom's update to see reactions from OH WR AJ Jordan and MI OL/DE Anthony Zettel (who Rivals say was "impressed with U-M win" ($, info in header)), along with a few 2012 guys.

GA S Avery Walls said:

"The game was great, and the visit went great," he said... "This visit helped Michigan a lot. I'm going to be watching their next few games," he said.

MIchigan was already the presumed favorite, so if the Wolverines perform well over the next few games, a mid-October commitment is a possibility (he has west coast trips planned for the 2nd and 9th).

Tom also talked to 2012 OH DE Chris Wormley, who said Michigan's attention has picked up now that it's, you know, legal for them to give it. The visit helped Michigan in his recruitment.

Josh Helmholdt runs down some of the prospects who were in attendance in that one Detroit paper. Of note other than the known 2011 guys:

Flint Northern running back Thomas Rawls, Crockett linebacker Bilaal Collins and Lake Orion running back Marques Stevenson also attended the game.

The class of 2012 was also well represented. Notable prospects in attendance included Crockett quarterback Brian Blackburn and running back Marcellous McElrath; Catholic Central lineman Matthew Godin; Flint Powers defensive tackle Danny O’Brien; King running back Dennis Norfleet; Kenton, Ohio, quarterback Maty Mauk; Orchard Lake St. Mary’s linebacker James Ross; Cass Tech teammates Terry Richardson and Royce Jenkins Stone, and Toledo (Ohio) Whitmer defensive end Chris Wormley.

I also heard from a source on 2012 PA OL Tyler Alt:

Ty had a blast at the Mich game. Got chills walking out of the tunnel and the recpetion by the Mich fans was unbleiveable.

Good to see younger guys enjoying Michigan. If Rich Rod and Co. can put it together on the field this season, the 2012 class could be a special one.

On the other side of the fence, FL S Wayne Lyons is the only mutual prospect officially visiting South Bend for Michigan's game against the Irish.

Etc.

I won't put him back on the board just yet, but NC QB Marquise Williams says he'll decommit from the Tar Heels if the NCAA puts them on probation. If that comes to fruition, there's a chance he'd consider the Wolverines again, especially since he's still planning an official visit to Ann Arbor.

OH TE/LB Austin Traylor is still considering MIchigan ($, info in header).

FL DT Timmy Jernigan won't be announcing his decision at an All-Star game:

He'll probably trim his list to a final three schools by the midway point of his final prep football season. National Signing Day is Feb. 2.

"I hope by signing day, I am pretty sure I will have something figured out by then," Jernigan said. "Of course there is pressure but I am pretty sure I'll make the right decision."

No word on exactly when he plans to visit Ann Arbor, but he still plans to.

IL DE James Adeyanju does not have Michigan on his fall visits list. He took a trip to Ann Arbor this summer, and is still considering the Wolverines. Both Adeyanju and IL OL Chris Bryant will make decisions after their senior seasons.

Recruiting fluff on PA DE Deion Barnes. He'll make his selection at the Army Game (if invited), or at the end of his senior season. He also talks a bit about his game:

Once he gets to a college campus and in an enhanced weight lifting program, Barnes figures to fill out and become even stronger. For now, his quickness and instincts have proven him to be a natural at rushing the quarterback.

"My instincts and my experience, I would say those are my strengths," he said. "And I like to think of myself as probably one of the smartest guys on the field."

Michigan's efforts at both offensive line and defensive end will become much more clear when we figure out how the recruitments of Zettel and Bryant shake out.

KY LB Lamar Dawson has reportedly been selected to the Army All-American Bowl.

OH LB Sean Duggan breaks down his top five of BC, Wisconsin, Michigan, Virginia, and Duke. On the Wolverines:

Michigan- "Again they have great academics at Michigan. Football is big in Ann Arbor, which is great. The coaches there are great, and the tradition is huge."

All of his schools are academic powerhouses, so he's looking as much for a good education as he is for good football.

FL S LaQuentin Smith, (a teammate and friend of the Dr. Phillips guys), has added Michigan to his list of favorites. He plans to visit Michigan before making a final decision at the end of this month. His highlights:

Happy Trails

MD Ath Darius Jennings does not have Michigan in his top/final 10.

Re-removed NJ OL Keith Lumpkin, who is deciding between five non-Michigan schools soon.

The Distant Future. The Year 2012.

Fluff on MO WR Dorial Green-Beckham.

MI TE Matt Doneth is a prospect to keep an eye on ($, info in header).

LSU is the favorite for 2012 FL OL Nacho Garcia. There's still plenty of time for other schools to overtake the Tigers.

Michigan leads for MI LB Royce Jenkins-Stone ($, info in header). As noted above, he visited for the UConn game.

Michigan is recruiting PA S Okezie Alozie ($, info in header).

Comments

Thursday Recruitin' is READY FOR SOME FOOTBAW

Thursday Recruitin' is READY FOR SOME FOOTBAW Comment Count

Tim August 26th, 2010 at 3:25 PM

Remember, all-time updates can be found on the 2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Board. If you have any recruiting tips or questions, you can e-mail them to me at [email protected] or tweet @varsityblue.

Visits

Since next week's Thursday Recruitin' is the last one(!) before actual football(!), I'll devote a good portion of it to a visitor list for the UConn game. Of course, there's no harm in looking ahead, right?

hartNFTC.JPG

FL RB Demetrius Hart (at right) is expected to make it in for UConn (along with either the Michigan State or Iowa game). Will he be able to convince his buddy, Alabama Commit S Ha'Sean Clinton-Dix to join him? (Sounds like it).

GA S Avery Walls has named four of the schools that he'll officially visit. Michigan, Tennessee, Cal, and Oregon are the lucky few, and he's trying to schedule a fifth. The Michigan visit is next week.

LA CB Daren Kitchen will make his official visit for the UConn game ($, info in header). He's on commitment watch if a written offer comes through.

Tom has compiled a more comprehensive list, including a number of unofficial visitors from the classes of 2011 and 2012.

Non-UConn related, NJ S Sheldon Royster might try to visit Michigan before the end of the month ($, info in header). Seeing as how the month ends in five days, he'd have to get that over with very soon.

In less certain visit news, a couple guys are "maybes" on making it to Ann Arbor this fall.

OH OL Aundrey Walker has named three official visit destinations: Michigan State, Ohio State, and USC. The Spartans and Trojans seem to be the two teams giving Ohio State the biggest challenge. Michigan is a longshot for him at this point. [Ed: Glenville guy so obvs.]

FL CB/S Jonathan Aiken is starting to set his official visits, and Michigan should be one of those:

“Nothing is really set in stone, but there’s really a couple I really plan on taking which is Rutgers and UCLA,” said Aiken. “Once I get my schedule from my coach, I can probably go ahead and set them two in stone, because those are two I really plan on taking. There are a couple others, I might go to Michigan.”

It doesn't sound like he's high on the Wolverines, and he's planning to make a commitment in the early fall. If he does come to Ann Arbor, the Wolverines might secure his commitment, but otherwise don't hold your breath (H/T On the Banks).

CA CB/Ath DeAnthony Thomas, a USC commit, has talked about visiting other schools, including Michigan. However, it's not the Wolverines (or even the Trojans) that he's favoring:

Thomas who is nicknamed the "Black Mamba" is the top CB in the country. He was considered a lock to USC but now lists Washington and UCLA as his favorites.

We'll have to wait and see if Rich Rodriguez offers Thomas.

Pruning Lists, Taking Tests, Graduating Early

NJ QB/TE Tanner McEvoy is narrowing his list to ten schools. Once he gives his turndowns to the coaches of teams that aren't making the cut, he'll make the list public. I would be surprised if Michigan makes the cut (H/T On the Banks).

MI RB Thomas Rawls, is trying to up his ACT score, and takes it again in September. He speaks with Fred Jackson regularly, and it sounds ike Michigan will offer once he gets qualified.

His film is impressive, and he could be the big back complement in this class if everything works out academically. Rawls is in a similar situation to MI DT Damon Knox, whose impressive film could net him an offer with improvement in the classroom.

IL OL Chris Bryant is the latest profilee of Sam Webb in the Detroit News. The upshot:

"Signing day was my goal, but with everyone committing so early and everything it is hard to say (that a choice will be held off that long). Once I set my top schools and they start filling up, I'm going to have to go ahead and decide out of my top schools which one I'm going to...

"(The Michigan coaches) were telling me that I'm definitely one of the top guys on their recruiting list," he said. "If it ever came down to the point where they were just running out of spots or had one spot left, they said that they would definitely get in contact with me and let me know.

If Michigan pushes for a commitment at some point, they're likely to get one.

MD DT Darian Cooper has narrowed his list to seven schools, including Michigan. He won't plan any official visits until he is down to five schools.

NC Ath Kris Frost tells Tom that he plans to graduate early from high school. If he commits to Michigan, look for a January enrollment.

Happy Trails

WI RB Melvin Gordon committed to Iowa.

IN OL Nick Martin committed to Kentucky.

FL OL Max Lang committed to South Florida.

MI TE Ben McCord committed to Ball State. He wasn't willing to wait around for higher-caliber offers, it seems.

FL DE/DT/OT Giorgio Newberry is planning official visits to LSU, Tennessee, Notre Dame, and Clemson. He doesn't mention Michigan in the article, and another one says he's down to a final list without the Wolverines, so happy trails it is.

SC DE Gerald Dixon has trimmed his list to South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, Auburn, and Wake Forest.

MI CB Valdez Showers committed to Florida yesterday. Michigan State and Michigan were the runners-up, though he said he always wanted to get out of the state.

2012

FL QB Nick Patti won the Golden Gun Accuracy Challenge at the Las Vegas Elite 11 camp.

abrahamgarcia.JPG

FL OL Abraham "Nacho" Garcia (at right) is interested in a few schools early in the process:

I like Wisconsin, Michigan and UM too,” Garcia said. “I’ve read up on the Big 10 and I have friends that are going there. I have friends that are going to a bunch of schools."

With LSU, Florida, and Ohio State also on the radar, it sounds like he has bigtime early interest. He wants to be the top recruit in the class of 2012, thanks to his run blocking skills:

"Abe is the kind of guy that can be the cornerstone of your team," Harriot said. "He's a strong force, he's the anchor of our line. We know we can go to his side whenever we need a first down or a touchdown."

Keep an eye on Garcia for next year's class.

OH DE Chris Wormley attended Michigan's Fan Day on Sunday.

Comments

Thursday Recruitin' Sorts Out Visits

Thursday Recruitin' Sorts Out Visits Comment Count

Tim August 19th, 2010 at 10:57 AM

Remember, all-time updates can be found on the 2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Board. If you have any recruiting tips or questions, you can e-mail them to me at [email protected] or tweet @varsityblue.

Trimming Lists, Planning Visits

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WI RB Melvin Gordon (pictured at right, via the Kenosha News) may take an official visit to Michigan. It had previously seemed like the Wolverines were out of the running for Melvin, and this could be a sign that they definitely want a big back in this class.

Michigan is in FL RB Devondrick Nealy's top five ($, info in header). He's similar to FL RB Demetrius Hart, so if all goes well with Dee, I wouldn't expect Nealy to end up in this class.

NJ Slot WR Miles Shuler-Foster has a top 7 that includes Michigan. He seems to be one of only two slots (along with FL Slot WR Prince Holloway) that Michigan is pursuing. It's not a position of need, but Shuler's speed would be hard to turn down.

NJ TE Jack Tabb (who recently visited Ann Arbor) is ready to cut his list of more than 20 offers. Six schools, including Michigan, are guaranteed to make that cut, making up a de facto top six.

Last week, PA DE Deion Barnes named a top 5 ($, info in header) including Michigan. There might be another positive development in that recruitment, as Pitt, also in his top 5, picked up commitments from three defensive ends last week.

OH LB Sean Duggan has a top five that includes Michigan (along with Wisconsin, Boston College, Duke, and Virginia).

NJ S Sheldon Royster will try to visit Michigan before his senior season starts ($, info in header).

FL S Jonathan Aiken is considering a visit to Ann Arbor. Rutgers and UCLA sound like his top two. A Rivals header ($) is much higher on Michigan's chances, but I'll trust the neutral source.

LA CB Daren Kitchen, who has long favored Michigan, will take an official visit for the Connecticut game ($, info in header). If receives a commitable offer on that visit, he could drop for the Wolverines.

Happy Trails

PA DE Desimon Green committed to Pitt.

MD OL Donovan Smith has narrowed to a top 12 that does not include Michigan.

PA CB Kyshoen Jarrett committed to Pitt.

Other

TampaBay.com covered the commitment of Tony Posada last week:

Leaving the state was a major factor, Posada said, as was Michigan’s reputation of producing offensive linemen. Two weeks ago, Posada said his mind was “99 percent” made up.

“That day I walked outside and it felt like it was 100 degrees out and I told myself, ‘I want to go to the snow,’ ” Posada said. “And when you go to Michigan and they ask what did you play and you say offensive tackle, people say, ‘Man, you must be good to play tackle at Michigan.’ ”

It sounds like the staff is planning to play him at tackle, which means any more OL commits will probably come from guards.

Tom spoke with FL OL James Elliott following his Michigan visit, and Elliott had nothing but positive things to say:

JAMES: Man, that was the most amazing school I've ever seen in person... We actually stayed a little longer than expected just so we could see everything, and meet Coach Rodriguez. We didn't realize he was in Seattle, so we wanted to stay to meet him. We got to see practice and talk with him about the visit. It was just great.

He named Michigan his leader ($, info in header), so what's the next step for Elliott? He holds an offer, but not yet a committable (i.e. Rodriguez-issued) one. With a few good OL targets remaining on the board, Elliott may have to wait to see how things shake out before he receives one.

FL DT Tim Jernigan, who has Michigan in his top five, is also Facebook friends with a couple of Michigan's coaches.

Local Fluff on KY LB Lamar Dawson. He's a longshot for Michigan, but a good season on the field could turn a lot of top prospects' heads toward Ann Arbor.

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FL WR/S Sammy Watkins and his teammate, CB/QB Dallas Crawford (pictured at right), are both very interested in Michigan still:

Watkins is still considering a long list of schools, but says he was very impressed during visits to Michigan and Clemson.

Crawford says he'll wait until the end of the season to make a decision, but lists Michigan, LSU, Miami, Wake Forest, North Carolina, and West Virginia as his leaders right now.

Watkins plans to announce a top 5 before his season, and then put recruiting on the back burner for a while. Crawford was willing to go on the record and say the Wolverines stand atop his list. Landing him would help Michigan with Watkins.

MI CB Valdez Showers will announce a decision next week. The Wolverines are in his top four ($, info in header), along with Michigan State, Northwestern, and Florida. Though Showers grew up a Michigan fan, I don't think they're the favorite to land him at this time.

For more on several prospects, including GA S Avery Walls, check out Tom's weekly recruiting update.

The Distant Future. The Year 2016(!)

A physically imposing offensive lineman from Illinois grew up loving Michigan:

Swenson’s dream school is Michigan, but he also has his priorities straight. “The first thing is to get a good education,” Swenson said. “I want to go to a good school and play football. I’d like to study engineering or business.”

The issue? Kid's not even in high school yet. Erik Swenson's recruitment is a long way off, but assuming we all survive Mayan apocalypse, he's one to keep an eye on in the future.

tonygant.jpeg

In slightly-less-distant news, 2012 OH S Allen Gant (at right) is the latest prospect profiled by Sam Webb in the Detroit News.

Said Allen, "Before I just didn't have a very good idea of what Rich Rod and his staff were about, but after (the visit) I feel a lot more comfortable with them. I know that they're interested in me. They're on my radar with all the other schools that were recruiting me."

Gant is the son of former Wolverine Tony Gant, but he grew up a fan of the Buckeyes.

Comments

Thursday Recruitin' Welcomes Kellen Jones

Thursday Recruitin' Welcomes Kellen Jones Comment Count

Tim August 5th, 2010 at 1:02 PM

Remember that you can check out the 2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Board for the updates over time.

Kellen Jones Goes Blue

TX LB Kellen Jones has been moved to committed. For some details on his game, check out Hello: Kellen Jones. Tom interviewed Kellen shortly after his commitment:

"We were in Coach Rodriguez' office, and my family was in there with me. I told Coach that I was committing, and my whole family broke into the Michigan fight song. My Dad, Uncle, me, everybody was singing the fight song. Coach Rodriguez laughed and said he had never seen that before. He was shocked."

He also told Tom about getting to see the Big House. For video evidence, you can see a Youtube video that a family member (I presume) uploaded. I'll warn you in advance that it's not particularly interesting:

Other outlets have covered Jones's commitment as well. Check out breakdowns from GBMWolverine:

He is an outstanding blitzer, shows excellent timing getting to the ball, and has a nice closing burst. Kellen will need to improve his scraping and coverage skills.

The Wolverine Blog:

[T]he thing that jumps out at me about Jones is his playmaking ability and athleticism. He uses his speed and quickness to get into the backfield, and has a great nose for the football once he’s in position to make a play

Jones takes a bit of pressure off linebacker recruiting, though there are still a couple spots open in the class.

Happy Trails

Happy Trails from the future for FL S LaQuentin Smith? He's close to a decision, and Michigan gets no mention other than as one of his offers. I'll leave him on the board until we have a better idea how the Dr. Phillips recruits shake out. His teammate, fellow safety Roderick Ryles, has committed to Arkansas, but will visit other schools ($, info in header).

More Updates

Rivals' Michael Langston caught up with FL RB Demetrius Hart at Gridiron Kings, and Dee talked about Michigan and Alabama, his decision timeframe, and what other Florida players he finds impressive:

That decision could come as early as the UConn game, and it's encouraging to hear how much he gushes about his friendship with current Wolverine Ricardo Miller. Brice's Recruiting has the highlights from Hart's performance at Gridiron Kings.

OH WR AJ Jordan has pushed back his timeframe for making a final decision ($, info in header). He's planning to announce a favorites list soon, and Michigan is likely to be on it.

Added FL WR Quinta Funderburk. He's a possibility for Michigan's second receiver spot in the class, and according to MGoRecruit, Michigan is in his final five, along with Arkansas, West Virginia, Penn State, and Florida.

FL Slot WR Prince Holloway wants to take an official to Michigan ($, info in header). He's the only true slot receiver Michigan has given an offer, to the best of my recollection.

NJ TE Jack Tabb was offered by Michigan last week, and promptly made a visit to Ann Arbor. Following the visit, Michigan moved into his top group ($, info in header). Tabb was under the radar until recently, as he didn't put up big stats his junior year.

FL OL Tony Posada will be announcing his decision August 11th at 4:30. Michigan USF, Missouri, and Texas Tech are his finalists.

Michigan: "I have been talking with Michigan about their offense. It's the kind of offense I would like to play in and I am used to playing in. I know things haven't been the best up there but they have been recruiting well and I think this team is ready. They are close and this will be their breakout year."

Prevailing wisdom had been that he'd pick the Wolverines, but South Florida has made a strong push lately. Keep an eye out next Wednesday to see if Hello: Tony Posada comes to fruition.

Added NJ OL Josue Matias. I'd seen a few semi-credible reports of a Michigan offer, and now it seems legit. He's still wide open, and plans to make a commitment in December.

Kentucky-oriented fluff on IN OL Nick Martin, who recently visited campus ($, info in header). The offensive tackle plans to narrow his list within a couple weeks, and make a decision shortly thereafter.

Rivals says OH LB/DE Austin Traylor is a similar player to recently-departed Ed Davis, and briefly breaks down his game:

Traylor can play a hybrid defensive end/linebacker role in a 3-4 defense... With Traylor’s unique skills, Ohio’s defensive coordinator can switch formations without having to change personnel much

Traylor told Tom that's he'll narrow his list soon, and Tom thinks Michigan will make that list.

VA LBs Travis Hughes and Curtis Grant are both "considering" Michigan, but neither is likely to become a Wolverine any time soon. Grant did talk to Sam Webb about Michigan ($, info in header), so maybe he more interest than it seems.

Local fluff on FL S Wayne Lyons. Michigan is in his final 14, and he'll announce at the Army All-American game.

Lyons, who raised his GPA entering his senior year to a 5.0 by getting straight A's in every one of his classes except Biology (one of his classes at BCC), doesn't need anyone to put a positive spin on anything he does.

Sounds like he'll be a great asset on and off the field to whichever program he ultimately chooses.

averywalls.jpgGA S Avery Walls has transferred high schools to seek out a christian-oriented education. Michigan still has a great shot at landing him, but he's no longer playing for Wolverines in high school (as he had been at Union Grove, pictured to the right).

MI CB Valdez Showers has announced a top 6 of Florida, Michigan State, Michigan, Northwestern, Auburn, and Iowa, in no particular order. He plans to make a decision at the end of August.

Local fluff on PA LB Branden Jackson and PA DT Delvon Simmons. Simmons doesn't mention the Wolverines among the schools he intend to visit, and the Wolverines have a much better chance with Jackson.

2012

MI DT Danny O'Brien grew up an Ohio State fan, mostly to rib his older brother:

"I've always loved Ohio State," O'Brien said. "I was a Michigan fan when I was really young. Me and Pat had a little rivalry. He'd go for Michigan and I went to Ohio State. We'd always talk trash to each other during games. Pat and I could never like the same teams."

That doesn't seem like the most deep-seated fandom in the world, and Michigan is reportedly among his early favorites. He's already holding a Tennessee offer, so he's likely to be a big-time prospect down the road.

Comments

Thursday Recruitin'

Thursday Recruitin' Comment Count

Tim July 29th, 2010 at 11:19 AM

Don't forget, The 2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Board is your headquarters for recruiting updates.

Your Weekly Breathless Dee Hart Update

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The Gridiron Kings event in Florida last weekend brought out a ton of big-name talent, including top Michigan target FL RB Demetrius Hart (with an enormous HT to MGoShoe, who was all over this topic). ESPN's Jamie Newberg:

Hart, a small and compact running back who is ultraquick and explosive, was impressive in each game for the Southeast. He made a ton of big plays and some great catches.

"It was a couple of great days," Hart said. "I think the key was that we, as a team, bonded early. I was just happy I got to contribute the way I did."

The Orlando Sentinel says:

Hart, who earlier in pool play had nine receptions in one game for 99 yards and six receptions for 91 yards in another, had a 15-yard touchdown reception in the championship game.

Hart merely fell in SoFlaFootball's "Other Players to Catch My Eye" category:

Running back Dee Hart (Dr. Phillips) excels catching the ball out of the backfield and has some shake to him with the ball in his hands. I can see him being very versatile running back lining up both in the backfield and in the slot at the next level.

For more on Hart's performances, check out MGoShoe's stream-of-Twitter-consciousness on mgoboard. In recruiting updates, Hart has now dropped Auburn from consideration, and is willing to go on the record that Michigan leads for his services. A neutral party putting that in writing is a big deal:

"I would say Michigan is 75 percent," Hart said. Leaving the possibility that he might commit to Alabama at 25 percent. "I like the area at Michigan," Hart said. "You know I'm from Florida, so I've never really had all four seasons and I like that. I like the fans. They have a great fan base up there. They also have great programs up there, like their business program and that's what I want to go into is business management."

A decision on his visit for the UConn or Iowa/Michigan State is possible. Dee was recently interviewed by local news. The most important quote:

"Football means the most. Girls gonna come and go, but football, that's something forever. Football; hands down."

So I guess that's what Rich Rodriguez means when he says he wants guys who "love football." Dee also gives a shoutout to FL QB commit Kevin Sousa in the interview.

Other Camp and Combine News

A bunch of other targets, some of them surprising, were also in attendance. FL S Karlos Williams may visit Michigan, potentially with Hart (and Clinton-Dix?!), which would be a major coup for the Wolverines. FL S HaSean Clinton-Dix still maintains that he is solid to Bama:

"Still 100 percent. I'm committed to that," he said. "I respect the fact they still recruit me and I give them my full attention when they call. You never know what can happen and I might need something back on."

Though Clinton-Dix says he's solid, you never know what can happen if you get these kids on campus. MI WR DeAnthony Arnett, who has dropped Michigan, also impressed at Gridirion Kings.

In other camp/combine/competition news, Florida's annual Friday Night Lights summer camp happened over the weekend as well. FL QB Commit Kevin Sousa showed up to compete, and the Gainesville Sun's Edward Aschoff says he looked good:

Yeah he looked real sharp liked him a lot RT @varsityblue @EdAschoffGSUN Did you see#Michigan commit Kevin Sousa at FNL? How did he look?

Victors_Valiant and Scout.com's Chad Simmons also liked Sousa's performance. VV noted that his footwork was good, and Simmons said he threw some good passes.

Visits and Decisions

MI RB Justice Hayes announces tomorrow at 11am, as I told you in last week's Recruitin' post. Michigan and Notre Dame are the top contenders, but I think he'll pick the Irish.

IL OL Chris Bryant had a positive visit to Ann Arbor over the weekend, as he told Tom. Tom predicts that a commitment may be coming soon, so keep an eye out for Hello: Christ Bryant. IN OL Nick Martin was on campus at the same time, though no commitment is expected.

FL OL Tony Posada should be announcing a college choice soon, along with his teammate, FL QB Phillip Ely, and possibly FL RB James Wilder.  Posada blew off FNL camp last weekend, and the Gators picked up a couple linemen, so the Florida offer that he covets won't come. Michigan should to be Tony's choice:

The word is you really like Michigan.

They're one of my top four but I haven't made my final decision on them yet. Right now, until about two weeks from now, it's going to be an open game, an open game for anyone.

He claims to be open-ish, but his preference for Michigan shines through.

In upcoming visit news, TX LB Kellen Jones should be hitting campus this weekend. He's a top Michigan linebacker target, and a lifelong fan. If the visit goes well, there's a chance he'll commit to the maize-and-blue. Either way, he'll make a commitment before September.

Etc.

conway.jpg The Oakland Press's Kosmo says that MI WR Commit Shawn Conway's Seaholm team should be vastly improved this year - if he's eligible to play. Hopefully he'll get to play some high school ball for the Maples this fall. Brian talked a bit about Conway (and his disciplinary issue this spring) yesterday.

FL WR/S Sammy Watkins has been spending lots of time at Clemson lately, but he's still feelin' the Wolverines:

[Watkins's coach Grant Redhead] expects Watkins to take his official visits from the group of Clemson, Miami, Florida, LSU, Alabama and Michigan. "I know he loved Michigan when he went up there. I’m thinking mid season he’ll commit. He’ll probably take at least three officials to his favorites. If not mid-season, then after the season."

An official visit before his decision would be a very good thing, especially if the Wolverines can get his teammate, FL CB Dallas Crawford, in town at the same time.

Michigan is in the top two for FL WR Prince Holloway ($, info in header).

Local fluff on PA OL Paul Gaughan, who Michigan has looked at.

Michigan has offered NJ OL Josue Matias.

GA S Avery Walls enjoyed his Michigan visit a while back, and now, thanks to California Golden Blogs, we know how much:

"Yes sir, because I'm talking to a couple players that are being recruited by Michigan, like Avery Walls. I've had a chance to befriend him. We've been talking about them and he's been talking about how Michigan is a place I need to check out, and maybe set up an official with him so we can get up there at the same time. We're good friends now and we talk on the phone. He's trying to recruit me there I guess (laughing)."

That's elite GA DE Ray Drew. It sounds like Avery Walls is likely to end up in this class as long as the year goes according to plan, and he'll do everything in his power to get some other top prospects to commit. Drew said he'll be receptive to Walls's overtures should he commit to Michigan (H/T touchdown chad henne).

I've added FL LB Ramik Wilson to the board, as GBW finds him relevant enough to post his Youtube highlight:

He's a run-stuffer, but he doesn't look his listed 6-3, 220 on the tape.

I forgot to mention this last week, but according to ESPN, CA CB/RB DeAnthony Thomas, a USC commit, plans to visit Michigan and Ohio State. Tom confirmed that he'll take on official if Rich Rodriguez offers, and once you get a kid on campus etc etc.

VA CB Demetrious Nicholson holds a Michigan offer.

Mini-Happy Trails

Though he said last week that he hasn't eliminated any schools, SC DE Gerald Dixon wants to stay in the Southeast.

FL WR Tacoi Sumler narrowed to a top 5 that does not include Michigan and then picked Oregon.

2012

Dorial Green-Beckham isn't the only wide receiver Michigan's looking at in Missouri. MO WR Jehu Chesson is also "high on Michigan" ($, info in header).

Local fluff on MI OL Kelby Latta, who already holds offers from Michigan State and Wisconsin.

MI CB Terry Richardson has received offers from Alabama and LSU ($, info in header). The hometown Wolverines have yet to offer the Cass Tech prospect, because he didn't make it to Michigan's summer camp. Once the coaches get the chance to evaluate some junior film, don't be surprised if he get an offer.

Comments

Thursday Recruitin' Feels Commits a-Coming

Thursday Recruitin' Feels Commits a-Coming Comment Count

Tim July 15th, 2010 at 11:37 AM

Remember, the Michigan Football Recruiting Board holds all the info you need.

Tournaments, Visits, Decisions. Oh My!

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FL RB Dee Hart and his Dr. Phillips teammates participated in the Nike 7ON tournament last weekend, and though the team results weren't the best, Dee tore it up:

Hart was easily the best player on the field for Dr. Phillips and when the team seemed out of sorts to start the competition, he stepped up to make some key plays.

That's an extremely positive review, the type that Michigan fans are used to seeing by now. That, along with Dr. Phillips's fourth place finish, earned Hart a spot on the all-tournament team, and the Orlando Sentinel explains why:

"One play sums up Hart's style of play: He caught the ball for a short gain and put a swift move on a linebacker and then sprinted toward the middle of the field to gain some separation. When two defensive backs came to meet him he side-stepped them and they collided as he ran past for an even bigger gain. Hart is electric with the ball in his hands and he can catch coming out of the backfield.'

Craig Haubert points out that he's great at going up to get the ball, despite his smaller stature. Here's a bit of recruiting fluff on Hart and his teammate FL S HaSean Clinton-Dix. Hart is also cryptic in his recruiting interviews, though reporters still haven't realized that he just wants to be left alone. He'll be in Ann Arbor today with 2012 FL QB Nick Patti.

AZ OL Cyrus Hobbi was in Ann Arbor this week ($, info in header). He told Tom that he really enjoyed the visit.

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Tom talked to IL OL Jordan Walsh (pictured at right) prior to his Michigan visit this past Tuesday, and this week's Detroit News column by Sam Webb has the latest:

"It went well," said Walsh of his one-on-one time with Michigan's head coach. "We talked a lot about (different) stuff, and not always about football. He told me about the new additions to the Big House, the town, and everything. I like him. I guess you could say he's different from how he is portrayed. He's a really cool, laid-back person. He's always smiling, and the way he talks about things, you kind of just feel good talking to him."

Walsh, who grew up a Michigan fan, plans to make a pre-season decision. He is down to eight schools, including Michigan, conference mates Michigan State, Iowa, and Northwestern, and a pair each from the PAC-10 and SEC in the Los Angeles schools and the Tennessee schools.

MI OL Jake Fisher has made up his mind between Michigan and Michigan State, and will be announcing very soon. I hope Michigan State blogs didn't bother preparing Hello: Jake Fisher posts in advance.

LA CB Daren Kitchen has been openly lobbying for a Michigan offer, going so far as to say he'd commit to the Wolverines on the spot. According to Tom, he's not only been offered, but also upheld his pledge to accept. Rich Rodriguez recently returned from vacation, so we'll have to see if that offer becomes committable. If so, look for a Hello: Daren Kitchen post i the near future.

Happy Trails

Happy Trails, NC QB Marquise Williams. After the commitment of FL QB Kevin Sousa, it was clear that Michigan's staff knew Williams was heading elsewhere, now it's just been made official—he'll be a Tar Heel.

Michigan is not mentioned in a Rivals article about PA DE Desimon Green, who "knows where he wants to go." He's still on the board, but close to a Happy Trails moment.

Adios, FL LB AJ Johnson. He's narrowed his list to three, and Michigan is nowhere to be found.

Paring It Down

LA DT Mickey Johnson is down to a final five schools:

“UCLA, Nebraska, Michigan, Tennessee, and LSU are my final 5 in that order. I’m going to take 4 official visits, I won’t take one to LSU since it’s so close. I may enter a 5th visit down the line but we’ll see. I’m up to over 40 total offers right now so it’s been tough to narrow them down.”

Here's Johnson in action during his junior season:

Johnson is probably Michigan's last best hope for a high profile nose tackle in this class, though he maintains that UCLA and Nebraska have a healthy lead on the other three schools.

PA DE Deion Barnes plans to narrow his list to four or five schools by the start of his high school season.

GA S Avery Walls has a top 11, which includes Michigan. He plans to visit Virginia and Oregon, the only schools on the list that he hasn't seen yet, before making his mid-season decision. Remember, he spoke glowingly of Ann Arbor when he came through last month.

FL S Wayne Lyons has cut his list to 14 schools ($, info in header). Phil Kornblut shares the contents:

He announced a cut down list of 14 Saturday night that included the Gamecocks, Auburn, Florida, Florida State, LSU, Miami, Michigan, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Ole Miss, Stanford, Vanderbilt, UCLA and South Florida.

Michigan hadn't seemed too involved in Lyons's recruitment, but we'll see if interest increases now that it's obviously mutual. From the same article, Michigan is in a top 9 for FL S/WR Sammy Watkins. Clemson and Miami are his top two.

Michigan is in the final eight for OH CB Doran Grant. Ohio State and Michigan State (where his dad played) are still the presumed favorites.

Etc.

FL RB DeVondrick Nealy has a Michigan offer and the Wolverines are in his top five. He's likely a backup plan if Demetrius Hart doesn't end up in Ann Arbor.

OH WR AJ Jordan is up to 21 offers. He'll also make a return trip to Ann Arbor:

"I'm visiting Illinois, Wisconsin, Purdue, Indiana and Michigan this summer and hopefully I'll be able to make a decision before the start of the season.

He's been to Ann Arbor a couple times, so Michigan is likely near the top of his list. At this time, I think most people expect him to be Michigan's second outside wideout in this class. Here's his junior video, for those who are interested.

MI OL Anthony Zettel won't decide until after at least one official visit, to Iowa ($, info in header). Even just that header mentions that Michigan and Michigan State have a big lead on the field.

The Oakland Press's Scott Burnstein obviously turned on his BROTASTIC filter before writing this article about MI CB Valdez Showers:

Then summertime hit and with the increase in temperature, the Eagles very own, "REIGN MAN," caught red-hot fire and proceeded to BLOW UP like DA BOMB he is.

So, uh, yeah. Not really sure how I should react to that.

PA CB/S Dondi Kirby tore his ACL at Michigan's camp ($, info in header), and will miss his senior year of football.

Michigan is giving attention to OH CB Roger Williamson ($, info in header). I've added him to the board.

The Distant Future. The Year 2012.

nickpatti.jpg

As mentioned above, FL QB Nick Patti (right) is in town this weekend with his 2011 teammate, FL RB Dee Hart. Though he's a little guy, the Orlando Sentinel still points out that he's one heck of a QB:

"[H]e's going to make some school happy. He has a big arm, is smart and capable and was one of the better quarterbacks at the event."

Patti, just a junior, is heading into his first full season as the starting QB at Dr. Phillips. He recently won the Golden Gun award for accuracy, hitting all eight targets at the Las Vegas Elite 11 camp.

Offers, much less a commitment, for Patti are a long way off, but keep him in the back of your mind.

Michigan has picked up a couple players from Columbus St. Francis DeSales in the past couple years (Patrick Omameh in 2008, Chris Rock in 2011), so don't be surprised if they go after OH RB Warren Ball, who should be one of the Midwest's top running backs. Alas, they'll have to fight Ohio State if they want to land him.

SC WR Dorial Green, who holds a Michigan offer, will be a big-time recruit next year:

He helped lead the Hornets to a Class 5 basketball state championship. He also closed his sophomore year by winning two state titles, including the 100 meters, at the track and field championships.

Projections will have him as one of the most highly regarded national football recruits of the Class of 2012. The top programs in the country will be offering to Green, who is 6-foot-5.

The rest of the article is of the variety "his Rivals profile says he's interested in...," so take it with a grain of salt.

Comments

Thursday Recruitin' Asks Who Is Next

Thursday Recruitin' Asks Who Is Next Comment Count

Tim July 8th, 2010 at 11:23 AM

As a reminder, recruiting updates are saved for posterity on the 2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Board.

About To Drop?

jakefisher.jpeg

FL OL Tony Posada may be getting close to a Florida offer ($, info in header). He just needs to lose 10 pounds and the Gators have promised he'll receive one. [Ed: Or that could be a slow-play and Florida isn't going to offer.] Florida was his childhood favorite, so that could dampen his Michigan lean. Posada and MI OL Jake Fisher (pictured at right) are both deciding soon.

If one or both of them pick(s) Michigan, that would be a fine start to Michigan's offensive line haul in the class. The Wolverines are the favorite for both, but Fisher plans to check out Michigan State once more before making a decision, and Posada is searching for that Florida offer.

Much, much more on their ability to play football if they commit.

Tops In State

Scout has released its Top 80 List for the state of Michigan. The Top 10, and other recruits of interest (or who might be at some point):

  • 1 LB Lawrence Thomas (MSU Commit)
  • 2 WR DeAnthony Arnett
  • 3 DE Brennen Beter (Michigan Commit)
  • 4 OL/DE Anthony Zettel
  • 5 RB Justice Hayes
  • 6 OL Jake Fisher
  • 7 CB Valdez Showers
  • 8 RB Onaje Miller (MSU Commit)
  • 9 LB Ed Davis
  • 10 CB Delonte Hollowell (Michigan Commit)
  • 11 WR Shawn Conway (Michigan Commit)
  • 13 RB Thomas Rawls
  • 16 LB Taiwan Jones (Michigan State Commit)
  • 21 DE Damon Knox
  • 22 TE Ben McCord
  • 35 TE Nate Dreslinski
  • 46 FB Joey Kerridge
  • 59 RB DaShawn Bell
  • 66 LB Dwight Trammer
  • 73 OL Bryan Bell
  • 74 OL Willie Beavers

Right now, it appears as though Michigan State has the slight edge in-state, but the Wolverines have a good chance to close out strong.

In the same vein, Sam Webb's weekly Detroit News column runs down a few of the top guys in the state who are uncommitted. The main prospects of interest in that story are OL Jake Fisher and LB Ed Davis, but it sounds like RB Thomas Rawls could pick up a Michigan offer somewhere down the line.

Scott Burnstein of the Oakland Press runs down a couple in-state sleepers who impressed at Michigan's summer camp.

Assume The Position: Tight End

The times, they have changed since I last broke down tight end recruiting. With the number of offers Michigan's coaching staff has out at the position, I think it's pretty clear that they want one in this class (though they could be offering some guys with the intention of moving them to the defensive side of the ball).

The biggest recent news is OH TE Ray Hamilton's commitment to Iowa. Michigan had appeared to be very strong in his recruitment until he joined the Hawkeyes' class of 2011. Though his commitment seems firm, his dad's connection to Rich Rodriguez could help Michigan stay in the picture with a good season.

SC TE Jerrell Adams seems to have a Michigan offer, and the Wolverines are definitely in the picture ($, info in header). He's definitely a possibility for the spot.

NJ TE Taques Franklin has legit Michigan interest, and plans to take an official visit. However, a little birdie tells me that he has some work to do in the classroom to ensure that he will qualify to play at the next level.

NJ TE/QB Tanner McEvoy (maybe intent on being a QB?), NC TE Drew Owens, FL TE Brandon Fulse, and OH TE Austin Traylor and are guys that Michigan tossed an offer to, and haven't seemed to talk about the Wolverines too much since. I'll assume they're pseudo-longshots.

Happy Trails

Happy trails, NY QB Ashton Broyld. Though he's visited Michigan, he's not hearing from the Wolverines.

Happy trails, NJ RB Savon Huggins, who released a Top/Final 10 list without Michigan.

Happy trails to FL LB Kent Turene. For whatever reason, the staff never offered Turene, even as it became clear that Demar Dorsey's former teammate was going to wind up as a big time prospect. With adequate time to evaluate him (and obvious hints that he was interested in Michigan), I'll trust their opinion in not offering him. He's now committed to USC.

As predicted last week, OH S Ron Tanner picked Ohio State on Friday. Check out Rivals's video, in which he puts on a Michigan hat before actually picking the Bucks. OMG PUNK'D.

Etc.

NC QB Marquise Williams is still planning to decide soon ($, info in header). Michigan was already slipping, and the commitment of FL QB Kevin Sousa is another indication that he won't put on the maize and blue cap.

As The Demetrius Turns... FL RB Demetrius Hart still has Michigan and Auburn on top. Those two and Alabama are still the main contenders for his services. He's considering multiple Michigan visits this fall, and there's no reason to believe the Wolverines have slipped.

OH WR AJ Jordan plans to trim his list soon ($, info in header). Jordan is probably the hottest prospect on Michigan's board at wide receiver, as most expect him to end up donning the winged helmet. AJ should commit before the season starts, and could join his former teammates (Roy Roundtree et al) in Ann Arbor.

MI WR Willie Snead hasn't been hearing much from Michigan, but is getting attention from... Florida? I wonder if things will pick up with the local schools. If not, he'll slip right of the ol' recruiting board.

Though some Michigan fans have been expecting an early decision from MI OL Anthony Zettel, he tells ESPN that's not going to happen. He's considering a couple official visits, mainly to check out Penn State and Iowa (and maybe UCLA), schools on his favorites list that he hasn't had a chance to see. The Wolverines and Spartans still have a healthy lead on the rest of the field. Zettel seems like one of the many prospects that Michigan should land as long as they start the season strong.

Shoutout to MGoUser JC3 who brought this to my attention: IL OL Chris Bryant recently received a Big Ten offer ($, info in header), and Tom confirmed via Twitter that it was from the Wolverines . He'd been openly campaigning for such an offer, so does that mean he might join Michigan's class? He won't decide for a while, but the Wolverines are probably near the top of his list.

curtisgrant.jpg

Though this local fluff on VA LB Curtis Grant (pictured at right) doesn't mention Michigan, it does say he's planning to take his time making a decision - and he has interest across the country.

In came Grant, a freshman who had played sparingly up to that point in the season for Richmond-based Hermitage. On the conversion attempt, Highland Springs' quarterback rolled to his right and stopped before attempting to catch Hermitage's defense by surprise with a pass back across the field. Grant batted the pass down to negate the threat.

"I was like 'Wow, the first play we send him in and he makes an impact play'" Kane said. "From then on, he was not afraid of competition. He just went out there and played. That was pretty special for a kid of that age — a ninth-grader coming into a playoff game to replace a senior."

Yay fun anecdote. VolNation doesn't mention a Michigan visit, but I think he's planning to take one in August.

PA CB Kyshoen Jarrett has released a top/final 9, with Michigan, Illinois, MSU, UConn, Penn State, Pitt, Stanford, Virginia, and Wisconsin. He plans to trim again in about a month, and take a few official visits before coming to a decision.

TomVH's weekly update has all the latest news on AZ OL Cyrus Hobbi, FL OL Tony Posada, GA S Avery Walls, and a couple more prospects. Check it out for the news. Speaking of Walls, he comes in for some local fluff. He genuinely enjoyed his Ann Arbor visit, and the coaches will be all over this top safety.

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