Wednesday Recruitin'

Wednesday Recruitin'

Submitted by Tim on October 14th, 2009 at 10:04 AM

This should be a mondo update, since there wasn't a true recruiting post last week. Brace yourself, and if you need some context, check out the 2010 Michigan Recruiting Board.

Happy Trails:

IA QB AJ Derby to Iowa, OH S Kurtis Drummond to MSU, CT LB Khairi Fortt committed to Penn State, MD LB Troy Gloster committed to West Virginia, FL DE Lynden Trail committed to Florida.

Get 'em Early

ESPN provides one of the fluffiest Devin Gardner articles humanly possible:

Putting a football in Devin Gardner's hands is like handing a master artist a paint brush and an empty canvas.

rise_gardner_300.jpg

It's your standard "lots of words with no information"-type article, other than mentioning that Gardner intends to enroll early at Michigan. Devin's gone back-and-forth about whether he wants to come in for the winter semester, but it appears his on-again, off-again relationship with that plan is in the on-again phase. 

Rich Rodriguez has mentioned that he doesn't want to see high schoolers miss out on their opportunity to play winter and spring sports in high school, but since Gardner is participating in the ESPNU/Under Armour All-American Bowl, a (terrible) MHSAA rule prevents him from playing sports afterward. He wouldn't be missing out on much other than the prom.

(Gardner photo by Tom Hauck for ESPN.com.)

In other potential early-enrolling athletes, I brought this up in yesterday's Friday Night Lights post, but TX RB Stephen Hopkins also plans to enroll early. That brings the unofficial list to the following:

  • MI QB Devin Gardner
  • TX RB Stephen Hopkins
  • MI WR Ricardo Miller
  • OH WR Jerald Robinson
  • OH OL Christian Pace
  • FL S Marvin Robinson

That's always subject to change. Back to Hopkins for a moment, though, as MGoReader Phil Sampson fills me in that the big game against Southlake Carroll should be available for listening on the internet at http://www.kkgmam.com/. The game takes place Friday at 7:30 CDT. Phil warns that if you tune in early, you'll be subjected to some bad music.

In the Army Now

MN OL Seantrel Henderson was officially selected to the Army All-American Bowl, which is probably the least shocking moment in human history. No mention of Michigan in the recruiting snippets, for what it's worth. That's a somewhat regular occurrence, though insider-y rumblings still say that he likes Michigan. For what it's worth, his friend MN Ath JD Pride committed to Minnesota, but says he won't pressure Seantrel to join him.

Elsewhere in Official Army Selections, WI P Commit Will Hagerup got the treatment on Thursday. Rivals AMP was there:

For the record, Hagerup mentions that he'll arrive in Ann Arbor over the summer, which is a good sign that he has no intention of enrolling early.

SO MUCH STUFF ABOUT VISITS

AZ S Marquis Flowers plans to visit Michigan "later this month." That will be for the Penn State game, obviously. More on Penn State visits in next week's recruiting update, of course.

CA S Sean Parker visited Cal for the USC game, and the only other visit he's sure about is Michigan. He's planning to wait out a decision, so if Michigan has a good season, there's definitely a chance to land him. Rivals insists that he has not committed to USC ($, info in header). "Hey, that thing that nobody believes? It's not true!"

Michigan continues to lead for PA CB/S Cullen Christian, despite his shiny new offer from Ohio State. He plans to visit Ann Arbor for the November 21st contest against the Buckeyes, and decide a couple days after. That timeline looks good for Michigan. JC Shurburtt has more:

"I am going to decide Nov. 24 during a press conference at my high school," Christian said. "Right now, my top two schools are Michigan and West Virginia. Every school has a shot, though, and things could change when I take my official visits."

"They were just my favorite team growing up as a kid," Christian said. "They gave me my first offer. They recruit me the hardest, and I just love Michigan."

Again, sounds like the Wolverines are entrenched as his leader. As for his teammate, PA S Brandon Ifill, things don't look nearly as rosy from a Michigan perspective. He favors Maryland and Pitt ($, info in header), and Rutgers is recruiting him the hardest. It's fair to say that Michigan would prefer to only get Christian out of this duo.

Most analysts assume that FL LB Christian Jones is a lock to Florida State, since he's a legacy and his brother plays there. Despite Michigan falling off his radar lately, the Wolverines are still in the mix for an official visit ($, info in header). ESPN confirms that Michigan is one of the contenders for an official visit. I'll believe it when I see it, since he's been completely forgotten about by Michigan fans.

FL CB Tony Grimes (who still favors Michigan, Ole Miss, and Wisconsin) will be taking his Michigan visit for the Ohio State game at the end of November. That's shaping up to be a blockbuster recruiting weekend, with CA RB/LB Anthony Barr visiting as well.

Dee Tees

mikethornton.jpg

Michigan is "still alive" with GA DT Mike Thornton ($, info in header), and he's considering the Wolverines  for one of his official visits ($, info in header). Sam Webb elaborates in the Detroit News:

Those skills caught the attention of Michigan assistant Jay Hopson last summer. The Wolverines' Peach State recruiter wasted little time making very clear the magnitude of his program's interest.

"He told me they were looking for a great defensive tackle and they found that in me," Thornton recalled. "They needed to see my academic work and they offered a day later, actually." ...

"I talked to coach Hopson last week," Thornton said. "I haven't watched them play yet, but I've been hearing good things about them. I'm still going to get up there (on a visit). I just don't know when yet. "

Talk about defensive tackles and whatnot.

PA DT Shariff Floyd probably won't visit North Carolina with one of his officials, and Michigan is one of the options to fill that slot, along with Ohio State. I would predict that Michigan gets that visit for the Ohio State game if the Wolverines continue their winning ways, and he hasn't decided on a school by that time. He remains a longshot.

MN DT Beau Allen is down to five finalists, all of whom will receive official visits. He's already been to Wisconsin, and he's still setting up trips to Notre Dame, Stanford, Minnesota, and Michigan.

2011

It looks like Michigan is on the outside looking in for FL OT Tyler Moore. He planned to announce a decision "very soon," and made it in favor of Nebraska. Brian, his dad, points out that a verbal commitment might not be a final decision, so he might not drop completely off the radar when he commits to one of those schools.

Sam Webb's "Dandy Dozen" - the top twelve instate recruits in the 2011 class in no particular order - are presented for your perusal, with relevant recruiting comments from the article following each recruit.

DeAnthony Arnett, WR, Saginaw, 6-0, 170, 4.51 - Offers from Michigan, Michigan State, Central Michigan and Tennessee already have come through for the talented youngster. Aside from taking a few visits to some of aforementioned schools, Arnett has made recruiting a back-burner issue.

Arnett is widely considered to be a Michigan lean, though he doesn't have any public favorites. When I talked to him in August, he said he was going to take his time with the recruiting process.

Justice Hayes, RB, Grand Blanc, 5-11, 185, 4.5 - Allen Trieu: "He grew up a Michigan State fan, but Northwestern is recruiting him hard and his teammate Tony Jones is committed there. Then you have Michigan, who fits his style of play and he has had good visits to. He is wide open right now."

Talky. Hayes recently spoke to Rivals' MichiganPreps, where he gave a similar picture of his recruitment, adding that he has one offer, from Iowa. It also included video:

...and back to the Webb article:

Delonte Hollowell, CB, Detroit Cass Tech, 5-9, 165, 4.5 - "Central Michigan and Michigan offered me," added Hollowell. "Iowa, Illinois, Michigan State -- a lot of schools have been sending mail. I'm going to try to go to an Iowa game and maybe an Illinois and Michigan State game. Michigan State has sent mail and I talked to the defensive backs coach, Coach (Harlan) Barnett."

Don't be too frightened by that last comment. Michigan is the leader for Hollowell, though "because I don't have any other offers except for Central Michigan" doesn't imply that the Wolverines have an iron grip.

Lawrence Thomas, LB, Detroit Renaissance, 6-4, 237, 4.65 - Trieu: "Michigan State is the team to beat, but I get the feeling a lot of schools from all over are about to turn up the heat on him."

Michigan recently extended an offer to Thomas ($, info in header), but are definitely playing from behind.

Willie Beavers, OT, Southfield Lathrup, 6-5, 327, 5.1

Bryan Bell, OT, Walled Lake Central, 6-5, 290, 5.0

Ashton Gaines, WR, Detroit Crockett, 5-11, 170, 4.6

Jamal Hosley, WR, Highland Park, 5-9, 160, 4.4

Taiwan Jones, LB/WR, Anchor Bay, 6-4, 200, 4.7

Willie Snead, WR, Muskegon Heights, 6-0, 180, 4.5

Dwight Trammer, LB, Inkster, 6-1, 225, 4.7

Anthony Zettel, OG, West Branch Ogemaw Heights, 6-3, 255, 4.9

I believe Bell grew up a Michigan fan, though the early word is that he hasn't heard a whole lot from the Wolverines. Willie Snead plays quarterback in high school, but projects as a WR/DB. Trammer is a teammate of Devin Gardner, and likes Michigan (Michigan might like him, too: I overheard Wolverines QB coach Rod Smith asking what number he was at a recent Inkster game). Anthony Zettel is considered a mortal lock to the maize and blue if they see him worthy of an offer.

Now that I've given you most of the interesting information from the article, I feel obligated to encourage you to check it out. Seriously, it's really good stuff.

deehartboone.jpg

FL RB Demetrius Hart is going to be a top prospect in the Sunshine State next year, probably ringing in around 4 stars. He's also considered a Michigan lock, though I have no idea why:

"Of course, they are my top team," Hart said. "I don't think I will commit now, but I will commit later to Michigan."

Nope, I haven't the slightest clue. Hart took in a Michigan game last year, and has set a visit for this season as well. I'd bet one of my kidneys that it's for either the Penn State or the Ohio State game, both of which are shaping up to be blockbuster recruiting events. Win plz. Hart is also a candidate for Orlando Sentinel Offensive Player of the Year, probably because he does stuff like this.

Yeah, it's totally time for a 2011 recruiting board. Look for it next week.

Etc.

As mentioned in last week's recruiting update, Michigan offered CA WR Kenny Stills. "Offered" DE RB Jamaal Jackson will decide after his senior season. CA CB Joshua Shaw will no longer visit Michigan. The Wolverines are pushing for a visit from SC CB John Fulton.

A 2011 Recruiting Primer

A 2011 Recruiting Primer

Submitted by Tim on August 10th, 2009 at 2:44 PM

With the 2010 class is mostly full, so it's time to take a look at some prospects of interest for next year's recruiting class. Several references are made to user likwid's diary on the top 75 instate prospects, which has a 2011 (and 2012!) watchlist for the truly obsessed. 

QB

Braxton_Miller_1Braxton Miller, 6-2 190 4.45, Huber Heights OH Wayne. Miller (seen at right) is guaranteed to be one of the top 2 or 3 players in Ohio for the 2011 class, but he's long been considered an Ohio State lock. Though his dad has said that Braxton won't play in an offense where the quarterback has to run around all the time, Miller attended Michigan's summer camp, so there's still a chance he might be interested in the Wolverines.

Christian LeMay, 6-3 200 4.49, Charlotte NC Butler. LeMay was also in attendance at Michigan's summer camp, with a number of his high school teammates. Butler is the alma mater of Michigan alum (and current Seattle Seahawk) Jamar Adams.

RB

Demetrius Hart, 5-9 175 4.35, Orlando FL Dr. Phillips. Hart is a lightning-quick running back who reminds many of a smoother Jeremy Gallon (video). He should be one of the top prospects in Florida, and already has an established relationship with Ricardo Miller. Hart has stated that he may commit to Michigan as soon as he receives an official offer. Michigan can extend one on September 1st.

Justice Hayes, 5-11 190 4.55, Grand Blanc MI Grand Blanc. Hayes is the top running back in the state of Michigan for the 2011 class. He's a bigger back than Hart, but Michigan has taken several backs in the past two classes, and may not need another. The teammate of 2010 Northwestern commit Tony Jones is on likwid’s 2011 Watchlist.

WR

DeAnthony Arnett, 6-0 170, Saginaw MI Saginaw. Arnett is a combo inside/outside receiver much akin to current Wolverine Je'Ron Stokes. He has quickness and top-end speed to go along with his solid hands. He already holds Michigan, Michigan State, and Eastern Michigan offers. He picked up a camp MVP award this fall; Allen Trieu on that:

"It is tough for underclassmen to take home that honor, but Arnett had an impressive day all-around," said Scout.com Midwest analyst Allen Trieu. "It all started with his 40-yard dash. He had sprained his ankle earlier in the week and even looked a little gimpy running his 40, yet his 4.51 was one of the top times on the day. He then followed that up with a 4.23 shuttle, which tied for tops on the day. In footwork drills the coaches consistently remarked at how smooth and quick out of his breaks he was. However, during one route, he let out a scream and said he felt something pop. After a few minutes and against the advice of his family members, he returned to the field saying he wanted MVP.

"In one-on-ones, his route running was impressive and his quickness allowed him to get off the line against some of the more physical defenders. He made a couple of great leaping grabs and drew some oohs and aahhs on several double moves where he left his man."

He will be one of the top 2011 players in-state; early rumors have him leaning to Michigan.

AJ Jordan, 6-3 190 4.41, Trotwood OH Trotwood-Madison. Jordan is the top wideout in Ohio, and a true split end. He's the former teammate of Michigan's Roundtree, Shaw, Moore combo, so the Wolverines have a good selling point. As with most Ohio prospects, he'll probably favor the Buckeyes if offered.

Tacoi Sumler, 5-8 160, Miami FL Gulliver Prep. Sumler is a tiny guy with great speed and moves. He'd be a perfect fit at the slot position in the Michigan offense.

TE

Kelvin Benjamin, 6-6 210, Belle Glade FL Glades Central. Benjamin is a tall wide receiver who might end up at tight end in college. He's from the muck, where Rich Rodriguez has recruited well in the past (think Pahokee). Michigan might be on the hunt for a tight end in 2011, and Benjamin's one of the best.

Taiwan Jones, 6-3 210, Anchor Bay, MI Anchor Bay. Jones is an athlete who could play a number of positions in college, but his skill set might be most dangerous at tight end. If the Wolverines land him, it could also be as a linebacker or defensive end.

OL

Tyler Moore, 6-5 280, Clearwater FL Countryside. Moore was one of the first 2011 prospects offered by Michigan. He is also expected to be one of the top tackle prospects in the nation:

According to Countryside coach John Davis, Florida offensive line coach Steve Addazio said Saturday that Moore could end up being the top offensive line prospect in the state for the Class of 2011 — perhaps even the best in the country.

"Coach Addazio told me (Saturday) that Tyler is probably the best 16-year-old offensive lineman he's ever seen," Davis said.

Unfortunately, he is a Nebraska legacy and has no real connection to Michigan.

Cyrus Kouandjio, 6-6 300, Hyattsville MD DeMatha. If the school sounds familiar, it's because Michigan offered several DeMatha prospects in the class of 2010, including Kouandjio's older brother, Arie. Cyrus is expected to be the better rospect.

Anthony Zettel, 6-3 260, West Branch MI Ogemaw Heights. An in-state guy who reportedly likes Michigan a lot. If he's good enough to earn an offer, he could end up in blue. He made likwid’s 2011 Watchlist. For more in-state prospects, check out the diary.

DT

Tim Jernigan, 6-3 270, Lake City FL Columbia. He's already been offered by a who's-who of bigtime football programs, including Michigan. Perhaps the top DT in 2011.

Jesse Hayes, 6-3 240, Cincinnati OH Moeller. A teammate of former Michigan target Marcus Rush (now an MSU commit). He's very light for a DT, but presumably still growing.

DE

Steve Miller, 6-4 230, Canton OH McKinley. One of the top 2-3 players in Ohio for the 2011 class. He's visited Michigan in the past, and the Wolverines are looking at his 2010 teammate Jewone Snow. If Michigan wants to return to the bigtime, they'll have to start beating Ohio State for good Ohio prospects.

Bryant Dubose, 6-4, 227, 4.91 Oakland Park FL Northeast. A strongside DE with a good frame, "BJ" is among Florida's top 2011 prospects. Michigan likes to recruit the sunshine state, and Dubose may be a beneficiary.

depriestLB

Trey DePriest, 6-2 225, Springfield OH South. Yet another top Ohio kid, but this one grew up a Michigan fan. Trey likes Michigan enough to wear a Wolverine shirt to Ohio State camp (seen at right), but the Buckeyes are on the top LB heavily, and there will be a battle for his services .

Lawrence Thomas, 6-3 210, Detroit MI Renaissance. Thomas is probably the top player in Michigan in the class of 2011. Unfortunately, he is leaning to Michigan State early. His recruitment will be a good chance to prove that Michigan does indeed recruit instate, however unlikely they are to actually land him. Remember, Renaissance's coach is the guy who said the way grad assistant Andre Criswell and punchy malcontent Carson Butler had been treated "hurt my heart."

Anthony Wallace, 6-2 210, Dallas TX Skyline. Tony Drake's teammate is one of the nation's top weakside linebackers in the class of 2011. He'll be hotly pursued by several national programs, and unless Michigan gets involved early, they may be out of luck.

S

Karlos Williams, 6-0 185 4.5, Davenport FL Ridge. Williams is an elite athlete who could play a number of positions in college, but his best upside is at safety. Michigan has already offered him, showing that he is of the highest priority to the coaching staff.

Sheroid Evans, 6-2 185 4.35, Sugarland TX Fort Bend Dulles. Evans is a super-speedy defensive back with good size. He plays at the alma mater of current Wolverines Troy Woolfolk, Brandon Herron, and Darryl Stonum.

CB

Greg Brown, 5-11 155 4.50, Fremont OH Ross. Brown has already been offered by Michigan, and favors the Wolverines. The multi-year summer camper is known for his physical play from the corner position. He hails from the alma mater of Charles Woodson, whose name you might recognize.

Doran Grant, 5-10 165 4.69, Akron OH St. Vincent-St. Mary. St. Vincent-St. Mary is a traditionally strong program (Maurice Clarett and LeBron James are notable alums), but Grant is still god enough that he was named the team's MVP as a freshman. He camped at Michigan in the summer of 2008.

Delonte Hollowell, 5-9 160, Detroit MI Cass Tech. Cass Tech is a Michigan pipeline, and Hollowell is the school's top 2011 player. He's a little corner in the mold of Boubacar Cissoko or Dior Mathis, so Michigan would probably want to take a taller guy to complement him. Hollowell (and many others not listed here, so check it out) is on likwid’s 2011 in-state watchlist.