Hello: Devin Funchess

Hello: Devin Funchess

Submitted by Tim on April 22nd, 2011 at 1:14 PM

Though Farmington Hill Harrison has traditionally been a Michigan State feeder, MI TE Devin Funchess has gone against the grain and committed to Michigan. He also told Tom he'll try to recruit his high-profile teammates to join the maize-and-blue fold.

INFORMATIVE PORTION

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GURU RATINGS

Scout Rivals ESPN 24/7 Sports
4*, #6 TE NR TE NR TE 4*, 90, NR TE

We start, as we always do, with the measurements. Usually Scout is the over-estimator in prospect height, but this time it's Rivals that breaks the 6-4 consensus to credit Funchess at all of 6-5. In the weight department, it's 24/7 Sports that's not in complete agreement with the other sites. They say he clocks in at 215 pounds, whereas the others agree he's 205.

Since none of the premium sites have evaluations of his game (for the record, 24/7 Sports has ranked 10 TEs without getting to Funchess), let's dive straight into the newspaper articles. Funchess was one third of a Sam Webb profile a couple months back:

"(Funchess) was a surprise to us," [FHH Coach John] Herrington admitted. "He played much better than I thought he would and he is really developing. He really has dedicated himself. As a JV player I didn't know if he was going to go that hard or not, but he has. He is going to be a great prospect when he puts on weight. He can be a tight end, an H-back, a split end. He has big hands. I'm not sure what he's going to run the 40 in, but I think he could be around 4.6 or 4.7."

Scout's Allen Trieu also chimed in for the article:

"Devin Funchess has super upside. He's tall, can run for a kid of that size and can go up and make spectacular catches. I'd like to see him add some weight and keep working on his consistency. I think he will do those things... I think they're all BCS level players and among the top 10-15 players in the state. They're very talented. I think all three have a chance to be impact guys in college."

UMGoBlog's Sean O'Connell talked to Funchess about his game:

"I am an explosive player that will go get the ball where ever you put it. I have to work on my speed and try to get it down."

Rather than worrying on his speed, he should worrying about adding good weight while maintaining what he has right now. There's also not a whole lot of talk about his hands, choosing rather to focus on size/speed combo.

OFFERS

On top of some MAC offers, Cincinnati, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan State, Missouri, Nebraska, and Virginia were schools that had unofficially offered Devin. That's not exactly a murderer's row, but Missouri, Michigan State, and Nebraska have all had some decent success in the recent past, and Virginia has put out some good tight ends.

STATS

All free sources seem to have fallen into the internet memory-hole, but according to Scout ($), he had 33 catches for about 800 yards as a junior. He was named Honorable Mention All-State, according to the Free Press's Tom Markowski. Going into the playoffs, he had 22 catches for 410 yards.

FAKE 40 TIME

According to his high school coach (quoted above), he's in the 4.6 to 4.7-second range in the 40-yard dash. For a 205-pound tight end, that's not too unrealistic. None of the premium sites have listed times. I'll dole out 2 FAKEs out of five.

VIDEO

Youtube highlights:

PREDICTION BASED ON FLIMSY EVIDENCE

Funchess is one skinny bro for a tight end. Of course, he has another year of high school to put on weight, but he'll probably enter college undersized for the position. I'm not sure if he's planning on enrolling early, but if he doesn't, it's unlikely he gets much playing time as a true freshman, barring a physical transformation in the next 16 months.

That means a likely redshirt (also giving him a year of separation from Chris Barnett - and possibly other 2011 prospects who could end up at the position), as he molds his body and learns the offense. Following that season, he'll work into the lineup - Brandon Moore will graduate following Devin's redshirt year - getting some time in 2-tight end sets.

As an upperclassman, Funchess strikes me as the type of guy who is definitely not a liability, and will become a solid role player. It's tough to see All-Big Ten potential when he has so much developing to do, but it's not out of the question.

UPSHOT FOR THE REST OF THE CLASS

Michigan's coaching staff continues the 2012 recruiting theme of landing two players at the same position group back-to-back, as they did on offensive line and at linebacker. If AJ Williams doesn't move to offensive line (a definite possibility), the coaching staff is probably done at the position. However, I think Williams does move down (or at least become a very different type of tight end), and there's still room in the class for Ron Thompson.

Going forward, Funchess could also help Michigan's case with his high school teammates Mario Ojemudia and Aaron Bubridge. The coaching staff has a need for wideouts, and Burbridge is one of the Midwest's best. Ojemudia is a DE/LB tweener, but the staff has shown a lot of interest in him.

The biggest needs for the remainder of the recruiting class are defensive linemen, a quarterback, a wideout, and maybe a safety or two.

Hellos: AJ Williams and Devin Funchess

Hellos: AJ Williams and Devin Funchess

Submitted by Tim on April 22nd, 2011 at 12:05 PM

I had commitment posts ready to go for these guys before my blogging software melted down and I lost all my drafts (recommendation: Mac users, avoid Ecto at all costs. All. Costs.), so full-fledged Hello posts for both commitments will be coming later this afternoon.

Muchas gracias for your patience. 

Wednesday Recruitin' Lacks Witty Subtitle

Wednesday Recruitin' Lacks Witty Subtitle

Submitted by Tim on March 2nd, 2011 at 9:34 AM

The 2012 Recruiting Board lives here in its current primitive state. Updates coming soon.

The Harrison Three

Farmington Hills Harrison's trio of WR Aaron Burbridge, DE Mario Ojemudia, and TE Devin Funchess got some press in last week's Detroit News recruiting column by Sam Webb. First, the skill breakdowns by Harrison's coach. On Burbridge (pictured at right):

burbridge.jpeg

"He has tremendous explosion and acceleration," stated Herrington. "He is one of those kids that has two gears. He can go out for a pass and it looks like it is overthrown, then suddenly he explodes on the ball. He is a very tough kid, a good blocker, and has great hands. He still has a ways to go in learning all his routes, but he can catch the ball just off his shoe tops, or he can go up and get it if it is way over his head like he did in the state finals."

Ojemudia:

"As far as his game, he has got to get some size. He's about 215-218. If he gets up to college and he gets up to 245, he'll just be amazing. He could be a hybrid. We've never played him (standing) up, but he's fast and he could play an outside linebacker. I think he is better down, but he's always wanted to play up as a linebacker, so we'll see."

Funchess:

"He is going to be a great prospect when he puts on weight. He can be a tight end, an H-back, a split end. He has big hands. I'm not sure what he's going to run the 40 in, but I think he could be around 4.6 or 4.7."

And the recruiting news:

The Spartans have a strong connection with Harrison thanks to decades of mining some of the school's most notable talent. They've placed Burbridge and Ojemudia high on their list of priorities, and the feeling is definitely mutual... The Wolverines' chances with Funchess seem more promising, but he stops short of naming them his favorite.

There is much more in the article, including quotes from the players, so be sure to check it out. In another article, Ojemudia didn't hesitate to name Michigan State his leader. He said Michigan has a lot of work to do if they want to catch up with the Spartans.

All Aboard the Offer Train!

NJ QB/Ath Devin Fuller was offered by Michigan last week ($, info in header). He's more Denard Robinson than Chad Henne, so it's possible the staff is looking at him on defense - though he told Tom he'll get a shot at QB.

He's included on the board, but I didn't mention him in last week's update: PA RB Greg Garmon received a Michigan offer last week ($, info in header).

WI RB Vonte Jackson has picked up a Michigan offer ($, info in header). He had teammates sign with Wisconsin and Michigan State last year.

NC TE/OL Mark Harrell holds a Michigan offer. He plans to visit Michigan soon, and claims to be wide open.

CO TE Evan Baylis was offered by Michigan.

PA OL JJ Denman picked up a Michigan offer ($, info in header). He's a 2-way player in high school, but colleges are only talking to him about offensive line. Notre Dame leads ($, info in header) for Denman.

Though he's an Ohio State commit, OH OL Kyle Kalis picked up a Michigan offer last week. He told Tom he's firm with the Buckeyes, but is willing to visit Ann Arbor with his teammates (TE Sam Grant, OL Tyler Orlosky, and DT Greg Kuhar) should the opportunity arise.

NC OL Brock Stadnik has received a Michigan offer.

Michigan has added an offer ($, info in header) for SC DT Martin Aiken.

NY DT Jarron Jones has a Michigan offer ($, info in header).

MD DT Ryan Watson picked up a Michigan offer ($). He's a former teammate of 2011 CB Commit Blake Countess.

TX DE Devonte Fields has picked up a Michigan offer.

MA LB Camren Williams has a Michigan offer ($, info in header).

TX LB Jeremiah Tshimanga talked to Tom about receiving a Michigan offer, and whether he'll make a trip to Ann Arbor this weekend. Tshimanga plans to be an early enrollee.

Happy Trails

TX LB Peter Jinkens wasn't expecting a Texas offer, so he was open to plenty of schools. HOWEVA, a Texas offer ended Jinkens's recruitment.

Etc.

Elsewhere in potential package deals, Irish Sports Daily employs a record number of one-sentence paragraphs to cover the recruitment of MI LBs James Ross, Royce Jenkins Stone, and Laron Taylor, and CB Terry Richardson:

“When we were little, we wanted to play together, but we know how difficult that may be,” said Ross. “If it works out, it does and that would be great, but we probably won’t make our decisions based off what somebody else does.”

Ross has received a Notre Dame offer, and Richardson got not only Notre Dame, but also Ohio State ($, info in headers).

It's possible that OH QB Maty Mauk will commit to Notre Dame - as soon as he can get on campus.

OH WR Corey Smith has added some bigtime offers lately, including Georgia and Tennessee ($, info in header). He also picked up Notre Dame, as did his teammate, Jarrod Wilson ($, info in header).

CA WR Bryce Treggs holds a Michigan offer, but he doesn't mention the Wolverines and seems to be close to a decision. Cal and Notre Dame are the leaders.

According to Rivals, CA TE Taylor McNamara was close to committing to Ohio State early in the process, but now plans to wait before making a decision. Miami (YTM) and USC are also near the top for him.

IN TE Pierre Aka wants to major in nuclear engineering and has a top 4 of Stanford, Michigan, Northwestern, and Penn State. Though he doesn't hold any offers, he's in contact with Michigan's staff.

IL OL Dan Voltz has made his first cut, and the lucky schools are Auburn, Alabama, Michigan, Michigan State, Iowa, Wisconsin, Notre Dame, and Northwestern. He seems to be really high on Notre Dame following a visit to South Bend. Voltz's junior highlight:

OH OL Taylor Decker received his Michigan offer a while back, and will visit Ann Arbor soon ($, info in header). He also received an offer from Notre Dame, his favorite ($, info in header). Now that the Irish are an option, they may be hard to beat.

FL OL John Theus is leaning toward mostly SEC and ACC schools.

Michigan is in the hunt for WA OL Zach Banner. His coach:

"Michigan is back in with Hoke, going back to the big road graders," Miller said. "Getting the offer from Michigan last week was really exciting for Zach."

The 6-9 behemoth is one of the country's top linemen.

UMGoBlog's Sean O'Connell talked with OH OL Kyle Dodson, who says he grew up a Buckeye fan, but that he's "very interested" in Michigan.

It's not exactly news, but MLive's Kyle Warber expands on Tennesee's lead for MI DT Danny O'Brien:

"I love everything about Tennessee," O'Brien said. "The playing time they have to offer is outstanding. I think they are also on the rise in the SEC and in the nation. If I went to another top school I would probably have to sit for a year. Also, the atmosphere of an SEC team is awesome. I have been to the Big House and everything, and it's great, but it didn't compare to the atmosphere of an SEC game."

His recruiter under the previous staff was Flint-area expert Fred Jackson, and he also had a relationship with Chris Singletary. Both are still around, and O'Brien's family has its share of Michigan fans, so the Wolverines have a chance to swing him. For what it's worth, Rivals says Michigan "may be gaining steam" ($, info in header).

CA DT Aziz Shittu talked to Rivals last week about his Michigan offer:

The more offers Shittu receives the more he’s thinking about delaying his decision but he still could end it if the right situation suits him. “If Michigan ends up being in my top five or my top seven, whatever I make when I make it, if I can’t get out there on an unofficial visit then I’ll definitely take an official visit to see what’s up there,” Shittu said.

He had been considering an early commitment to Stanford, so waiting on a decision is a good thing for the Wolverines. The Cardinal are his favorite ($, info in header).

OH DE Ifeadi Odenigbo attended junior days at Notre Dame and Ohio State over the weekend. He picked up an offer from Notre Dame while he was in South Bend.

OH DE Tom Strobel was also in Columbus, and picked up an Ohio State offer of his own. His quotes seem fairly gushing:

"It was an amazing experience and Coach Tressel is such a great person. It was so nice to sit down with him and just talk. Not even about football, but about my family and Mentor and school and everything. It was a really good day. This has all been very humbling. I am fortunate to be in this position and to get the kind of attention I have received."

He claims that the Buckeyes do not lead, but it certainly sounds like they have an edge. He plans to decide before his senior season.

OH DE Adolphus Washington plans to announce a decision at the Under Armour All-American game.

GA DE Jordan Watkins has been blowing up lately, with offers from the likes of LSU, Florida, and Georgia, but he's still looking forward to hearing from Michigan. He's going to try to make a visit sometime, and says the Wolverines were "definitely a front runner" at the beginning of his recruiting process.

FL S Deon Bush wants to take a Michigan visit ($, info in header).

Wednesday Recruitin' Sets the Scene

Wednesday Recruitin' Sets the Scene

Submitted by Tim on February 16th, 2011 at 11:04 AM

We're onto the 2012 class, eh? How many scholarships does Michigan have to give? What's the breakdown on commits at different positions? Who are likely options at some of those positions? All that and more inside Wednesday Recruitin'!

The Numbers and Positions

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Take a gander at the Depth Chart by Class, and you'll see there are 83 scholarship players on the 2011 football roster (including Jordan Kovacs as a scholarship player). That means there are two open slots for the 2012 class.

In addition, Michigan will have 15 scholarship players see their eligibility expire following the 2011 season - Shaw, Hemingway, Stonum, Odoms, Grady, Koger, Huyge, Molk, Martin, Van Bergen, Watson, Herron, Fitzgerald, Woolfolk and Williams. Whether or not Mike Williams sticks around for his fifth year doesn't affect the 2012 class because he's gone after this season either way.

Altogether, that means our operating number for the 2012 class starts at 17, before there's any roster attrition. Assuming a couple players ultimately leave the team for any reason (unrenewed fifth years, early NFL entry, etc.), we'll peg the starting number at 19.

Without going into too much (boring) detail, Michigan needs by position are approximately as follows:

  • QB: 1
  • RB: 1
  • WR: 2
  • Slot: 0
  • TE: 1-2
  • OT: 2
  • OG: 1-2
  • OC: 0
  • DT: 2
  • DE: 2
  • LB: 2
  • S: 2
  • CB: 1

If you want the nitty-gritty, you can peruse the Depth Chart by Class. In next week's recruiting update, I'll run down all the prospects Michigan has offered once more, and hopefully a recruiting board will be operational by then. After that, recruiting updates should be back to normal.

BH OfferBlitz

Don't get the reference? Acquaint yourself here and here.

Michigan decided to go on an offer blitz shortly after last week's recruiting update went up (great timing, guys!). Among the newly-offered prospects are:

Cass Tech teammates LB Royce Jenkins-Stone and CB Terry Richardson received offers ($, info in headers) from Michigan's staff on Wednesday. Richardson is turning into a serious bigtime prospect. Already holding an offer from Bama, USC entered the mix last week. Jenkins-Stone is planning to make an early commitment (HT: Mgomember LarryHarrison), and is getting bigtime offers of his own.

Unsatisfied with offering only one set of teammates on Wednesday, the Wolverines went up the road to Farmington Hills, giving offers to Harrison WR Aaron Burbridge, TE Devin Funchess, and DE Mario Ojemudia ($, info in header). FHH has been a Michigan State feeder lately, so it remains to be seen if Brady Hoke and Co. can steal any of these prospects away from the Spartans. 24/7 Sports fluff on the Harrison guys, and Burbridge tells them he's "always been a State fan."

OH QB Maty Mauk received a Michigan offer. He told Tom that he plans to make it up to Ann Arbor within the next couple weeks. As the younger brother of former Cincinnati QB Ben Mauk, most assume Notre Dame's Brian Kelly should be able to land him.

Michigan has offered NC RB Keith Marshall, who is likely to be among the top prospects in the nation. His highlight reel is a sight to behold:

CA WRs Derrick Woods and Malik Gilmore have both received Michigan offers.

MI TE Ron Thompson was offered by his favorite school ($, info in headers).

CA TE Taylor McNamara has received an offer.

IL OL Dan Voltz was offered by the Wolverines and plans to make an early decision ($, info in header).

The Wolverines have offered CA OL Kyle Murphy, according to a local paper.

AZ OL Andrus Peat (younger brother of 2011 Nebraska signee Todd Peat) received a Michigan offer this week. He should be one of the nation's top offensive linemen in this class.

IL DT Tommy Schutt has a Michigan offer ($, info in header).

sevonpittman.jpg

OH DE Se'Von Pittman received an offer from Michigan last week, along with the likes of Ohio State and Michigan State.

“He is wide open,” [McKinley coach Ron] Johnson said. “There are a lot of different things he’s interested in. He’s going to go through the whole process and really get to meet guys. There are a lot of new staffs involved; guys he’ll want to meet and get to know. I just hope they go where they want to be, and where they’re going to have a chance for a good career.”

One of those places is Michigan. The Wolverines hired Brady Hoke to replace Rich Rodriguez. Hoke is from Ohio and seems to be making a renewed commitment to battling the Buckeyes in their backyard

Despite what his coach says, Pittman (pictured) is widely considered to be a heavy lean to the Buckeyes, and would be an excellent pull for Brady Hoke and Co.

WI LB Vince Biegel, who Tom says was offered Wednesday. Scout says he has three standouts ($, info in header), and considering the article was written by Sam Webb, smart money says Michigan is one of them. Biegel is a Mormon, but he says BYU doesn't have an advantage in his recruitment - although his father played there.

Other Updates

Michigan's new coaching staff is still interested in FL QB Bennie Coney. As mentioned in the fall, he didn't play football this season due to a disciplinary issue, but is still on good terms with his head coach.

Michigan State has offered and leads for OH RB William Mahone ($, info in header).

CA WR Bryce Treggs is hoping for a Michigan offer.

PA OL Tyler Alt impressed at the Army Combine ($, info in header). Tom talked to him this week, and it sounds like Tyler really wants a Michigan offer - as either an offensive or defensive lineman.

FL OL Cody Waldrop is hoping for a Michigan offer.

Michigan was "a childhood favorite" for IN DT Sheldon Day ($, info in header).

Tom gets an update from the coach of PA DE Noah Spence, who is one of the top prospects in the Keystone State:

"We'll try to get [Noah's highlight film] out in the next couple days, we'll email it to every program in the country probably next week," said Head Coach Jeff Weachter. "Michigan hasn't gotten it yet, but I'd imagine they will offer once they do, everyone else has."

Spence's father is researching every school in-depth, so Michigan's hire of Greg Mattison is certain to help the Wolverines. Mattison is also acquaintances with Spence's head coach.

Michigan's interest in OH DE Tom Strobel has "intensified" ($, info in header). He holds a Michigan offer.

OR DE Alex Balducci sent Michigan his film, and may get an offer soon.

Though he hasn't been offered yet, NJ S/LB DJ Singleton is expecting one from the Wolverines soon. Miami and Rutgers have already sent offers.

IN Ath David Perkins is interested in hearing from Michigan.

Tom's Weekly Update has a metric ton of information, and with limited space, I'm just going to link it and say read the whole thing. If you need more prodding, there's an update on LEVITICUS PAYNE within.

Visitors

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IL OL Jordan Diamond is the subject of this week's Sam Webb column in the Detroit News:

"I'm most definitely still a fan of Michigan. No doubt about it -- Michigan is Michigan. I still enjoy watching those guys play. I'm in the process of getting some old film from Michigan. I'm really excited... We talk about (going to the same school) all the time," Diamond said of he and [2011 MIchigan Commit Chris] Bryant.

Scout's Alen Trieu says he's a borderline 5-star entering his junior season. Diamond would be a great and for Brady Hoke's staff. He's certainly no lock, but a visit this weekend could be a great start to building a lead. Despite being on-campus, he will not participate in the Best of the Midwest...

Speaking of which, it's not a University-sponsored event, but the Al Glick Fieldhouse will again serve as the venue for the Best of the Midwest Showcase this Sunday (last year it was called the Michigan Football Showcase). Allen Trieu breaks down the linemen who will participate. In similar news, New Level Athletics will be hosting a 7-on-7 Tournament in Ann Arbor again this summer. SI.com's Andy Staples explores how such tournaments are changing football recruiting in that article.

Both of the above-linked events provide an opportunity for prospects to experience Michigan's campus, even if the coaches can't use them as recruiting visits.

Happy Trails

AZ QB Connor Brewer left the board last week, as he committed to Texas, and now another prospect - this one already holding an offer - is off the table. FL RB Matt Jones committed to Florida.

Etc.

Rivals releases their initial 250 to Watch, and Touch the Banner breaks down which guys might have Michigan interest. Maxpreps's Top 10 includes a couple Michigan targets. 2011 Commit Frank Clark wants to reopen a Michigan pipeline to Cleveland Glenville ($, info in header). Ohio State recruiting guru Duane Long says "Hoke ain't no Joke." Dr. Saturday breaks down 2011 recruiting geographically. Fox Sports's Dave Dye runs down the 2011 class. SBNation Pittsburgh has a semi-novel idea with a Penn State offer matrix, so I ask you: would anyone be interested if I repeated that for Michigan?