Beet-Red And Nude

Beet-Red And Nude

Submitted by Brian on September 18th, 2017 at 12:35 PM

9/16/2017 – Michigan 29, Air Force 13 – 3-0

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also this happened [Eric Upchurch]

I have ceased being a person who gets seriously exercised about the shortcomings, real or imagined, of Michigan's coaching staff. I will get my grouse on when it's fourth and a half yard and Michigan punts, because if I tried to hold that in I would literally die. There's some stuff later in this post about giving the ball to the Hammering Panda on short yardage and how it's dumb and stupid not to. There will always be niggling details that grate.

But I'm not going to freak out because Michigan's offense is struggling. If my mentions, or Ace's, or poor damn Nick Baumgardner's are any indication the Air Force game was HONEYMOON OVER for a healthy section of Michigan's fanbase. No doubt Sam and Ira have just completed four hours of radio where 75% of the callers were spittle-flecked, nude, and beet-red, proclaiming manifestoes about the personal embarrassment they were caused when Michigan could not score an offensive touchdown in the first 59 minutes of a game against a Mountain West team.

And... eh. I mean, nobody sane could disagree with propositions up to and including "this offense is butt and probably going to cost Michigan any chance of silverware." I wish the offense was not butt, too. In previous years I might be nude and beet-red, writing a manifesto about how I suffered personal embarrassment when Fitz Toussaint ran 27 times for 27 yards.

I am not. I'm going to see how this works out.

I'd like to think this is because I am so good at looking at football that I know that Michigan's problems under Rich Rodriguez and Brady Hoke were clear, severe, and systemic coaching issues while Harbaugh's are not. To some extent this is probably true: Harbaugh has not switched his base defense midseason in a panic (twice!), or decided that "tackle over" was an offense instead of a gimmick, or continued inserting a quarterback without an ulnar nerve in the second half of an Ohio State game. The worst tactical issue he's had so far was the increasingly disappointing Pepcat package last year, which is a speeding ticket compared to the grand felonies perpetrated by Michigan's last two coaching staffs. Check that: three coaching staffs.

But I'm also extrapolating based on track record. There is an element of faith that Harbaugh engenders, because... uh... I mean, obviously? If you need numbers, here's Stanford, with Harbaugh in bold:

Team Year Record FEI S&P YPC YPA YPP
Stanford 2006 1-11 N/A 113 2.1 (118th) 6.3 N/A
Stanford 2007 4-8 61 83 3.0 (113th) 6 N/A
Stanford 2008 5-7 48 31 4.9 (20th) 6.4 (82nd) 59
Stanford 2009 8-5 1 6 5.2 (7th) 8.7 (7th) 9
Stanford 2010 12-1 5 3 5.2 (16th) 8.9 (10th) 13
Stanford 2011 11-2 6 8 5.3 (13th) 8.7 (7th) 6

Harbaugh embarked on a similar project at San Francisco. The 49ers were 25th in Football Outsider's DVOA fancystat the year before his arrival. They improved to 18th in year one and then had consecutive top ten years (fifth and eighth) before a dropoff in Harbaugh's final season under Jed York. That last season is the only one in Harbaugh's pre-Michigan coaching career where the offense isn't either taking a significant step forward or an elite or near-elite unit, and it's saddled with a bunch of confounding factors. (SF got hit with a blizzard of injuries that year, oh and the owner was trying to force out a guy who'd gone to three consecutive NFC Championship games because reasons.)

At Michigan he immediately took the dead thing that was the Brady Hoke offense and made it okay, leaping from 89th to 38th in S&P+. Last year plateaued largely because the starting QB inexplicably went in the tank in Iowa and then did something nasty to his shoulder.

If the late slide a year ago and early sputters from a team that lost seven starters is enough to overthrow Harbaugh's long career of mostly great offenses in your mind, please go away. Yes, there are problems. No, this isn't Lloyd Carr turning Tom Brady, David Terrell, Anthony Thomas, and four long-term NFL starters into the 60th-best offense in the country. Bitching about Harbaugh's offense makes no sense after two years of inventive game plans, plays I have to invent terms for after a decade of doing this, and mostly solid results despite Brady Hoke's abominable late offensive recruiting*.

This feels bad man. But put your damn clothes on and stick to not sports.

--------------------------

*[Deep breaths. Ready?

The only offensive recruit to even make it to year five from the 2013 class are Patrick Kugler and the fullbacks. De'Veon Smith and Jake Butt were productive and graduated. Da'Mario Jones, Csont'e York, Jaron Dukes, Dan Samuelson, Wyatt Shallman, Chris Fox, David Dawson, Kyle Bosch, Shane Morris, and Derrick Green all burned out without making any impact.

Hoke's miserable 2014 class has Speight, the starting QB, Mason Cole, Ian Bunting, and nobody else even contributing. Moe Ways, Juwann Bushell-Beatty, Freddy Canteen, Drake Harris are all gone or benched.

And literally the only offensive recruits Hoke left Harbaugh in the transition class were Alex Malzone, John Runyan Jr, and Grant Newsome. That is three recruiting years producing four starters.]

[After THE JUMP: but hey the defense though]

2016 Recruiting: Kekoa Crawford

2016 Recruiting: Kekoa Crawford

Submitted by Brian on July 5th, 2016 at 12:18 PM

Previously: Last year's profiles. S Josh Metellus, S Khaleke Hudson, CB David Long, CBLavert Hill, LB Elysee Mbem-Bosse, LB Devin Bush Jr., LB Devin Gil, LB Josh Uche, DE Ron Johnson, DT Michael Dwumfour, DT Rashan Gary, DE Carlo Kemp, OL Ben Bredeson, OL Michael Onwenu, OL Stephen Spanellis, TE Nick Eubanks, TE Sean McKeon, TE Devin Asiasi, WR Eddie McDoom, WR Nate Johnson.

       
Rancho Santa Margarita, CA – 6'2", 185
       

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Scout 4*, #134 overall
#23 WR
Rivals 4*, #129 overall
#26 WR, #20 CA
ESPN 4*, #179 overall
#22 WR, #20 CA
24/7 4*, #135 overall
#20 WR, #15 CA
Other Suitors UO, USC, ND, OU, Stanford, ASU
YMRMFSPA Jehu Chesson
Previously On MGoBlog Hello post from Ace.
Notes Twitter. Army AA. Nee Dylan Crawford.

Film

Junior:

Senior (starts at 1:00):

Way back in the long-long ago when Brady Hoke was still around, Michigan fans with an obsessive recruiting bent were hoping that Michigan would land a quartet of California stars: KJ Costello, Theo Howard, David Long, and Dylan Crawford. By the standards of recruiting expectations more than a year out from Signing Day, this actually turned out pretty well: Michigan locked down the latter two. Getting there was pretty hairy, with Long committing to Stanford early and Crawford looking like he'd head to Oregon for a couple weeks after the Ducks finally offered.

But before Crawford could pull the trigger on that Duck offer, though, a guy named Eddie McDoom did. Crawford committed to Michigan shortly afterwards; now Michigan has both. Jedd Fisch probably spent most of February with tented fingers, laughing ominously in his underground compound.

Crawford isn't a whole lot different than Johnson and McDoom. Most evaluations cite an advanced understanding of routes, excellent athleticism without crazy top-end speed, and technical adeptness. The term "polished" is frequently deployed. In October Michigan was apparently selling him on their lack of depth at slot receiver, which both McDoom and Johnson are also candidates to play. All three are also candidates on the outside.

Crawford has a few inches on his compatriots and is the most likely to be a full-time outside guy; all three can move inside or out depending on Michigan's need on any particular down.  ESPN:

very competitive speed and slippery elusiveness…  very shifty with wiggle and fluid change-of-direction to use at the top of stems into and out of breaks. … can get on the toes of defenders quickly to eat up cushion … knows how to use his feet, hips and burst to gain separation. …very adept at tracking the deep ball over the shoulder …reasonably wide catch radius …can make people miss, … may not just run by people [in college] like he routinely does at this level. … athletic and precise and has a good feel for the game.

247:

electric in and out of breaks. …quickness to separate …brings a lot to the table after the catch as an elusive player with good moves. …aggressive mentality as a blocker. He really takes pride in picking up a block… great toughness. … Kenny Stills type

Rivals:

…strong route runner where he cuts extraordinarily well and he does a great job setting up cornerbacks. The four-star is also exceptional at catching low passes by getting his hands under the ball and scooping it. Sometimes, he lets the ball get into his body, but most of the time Crawford rips it out of the air.

Scout:

…does everything well. …solid frame and is much stronger than he looks. …nice burst, is a polished route runner and has good top end speed. … natural pass catcher and always uses his hands rather than his body to make a play. He's also a smart kid and knows the game.

Son of a Coach:

very good speed and flashes some extra burst at times that a lot of other players don’t have. …  plays really hard. …  good hands and shows good body control on sideline catches. I would like to see him be more of a player that attacks the ball at its highest point … very good potential as a route runner and does a good job of selling double moves. Because he’s a better athlete than many of the players covering him, he sometimes will rely on just running by them and not running the crispest routes. 

Tim Sullivan:

…a good route-runner with outstanding hands… good short-area quickness …isn't a deep burner… his football savvy, vision, and quickness allow him to make big plays anyway.

Touch The Banner:

…does a good job of bursting off the line of scrimmage….can shake defenders in space. … deft route runner who does a good job of using head movement and jab steps to set up defensive backs. … shows the ability to work across the middle of the field without being affected by impending contact. … does not have many obvious weaknesses in his game.

While last bit is a theme repeated by a few different evaluations, there are some negative reports.

A couple of grumbles about his hands seem to be based on a bad camp or day of practice; more complete evaluations are generally positive. There are a more durable concerns. He didn't blow people away at the Army game. This Rivals evaluation from the game is skeptical about Crawford's ability to be a deep threat:

247 moved him out of their top 100 because he "never really asserted himself" in 7-on-7 and in a separate section actually intended to praise him they noted that he was just "going through the motions" on the first two days of practice. Scout also noted he "wasn't active" in the morning of day one, though they said he did well in the afternoon section. Touch The Banner also notes that Crawford wasn't the most productive receiver on his team; 2017 Oklahoma commit Grant Calcaterra, who Michigan took a poke at early in the cycle, beat him out.

Like Johnson, Crawford's combine testing numbers are pretty righteous. He was one of the top performers at the Opening:

Dylan Crawford was one of 10 participants out of the 166 who tested to qualify for NIKE Football Rating Championship. At 6-1.5, 183 pounds, the athlete clocked a 4.45-40, 4.01 in the shuttle, jumped 37” in the vertical and threw the power ball 42’.

Crawford was just out of a walking boot and ran for the first time in a month when he put that on the board. FWIW, 247 had completely different numbers—worse 40, worse shuttle, better vertical and power ball—but either way, dude was one of the most athletic guys at a gathering of the top recruits in the country. He came in second in combine testing at a loaded Opening regional in Los Angeles as well; he'd win the WR MVP award after bringing in "numerous" deep balls that displayed "his ability to stretch the field." How this jibes with the consistent "he's fast but he's not that fast" above is unknown.

That 6'1.5" is also a positive. It's a rare recruit who ends up listed smaller than he actually is by the recruiting sites. Crawford is one of them. He grew a couple inches after he popped up on everyone's radar.

Crawford's ability as a blocker jumps out on tape. There was a brief mention above; it was echoed in more depth by other analysts. Son Of A Coach:

One of the most tenacious run blockers I’ve seen out of a someone considered a blue chip receiver prospect. He gets after it better than a lot of tight end recruits.

Touch The Banner:

Crawford displays some aggression toward defensive backs in the running game, and he can be a very effective blocker on the edge with crack blocks and stalk blocks.

Rivals took in one of his high school games—which is a rare opportunity to focus on guys when they don't get the ball—and came away similarly impressed:

not only willing to block, but also fiery when it came to the task. He said afterward he realizes receivers have to be well rounded at the next level and he has worked hard at making his presence felt even when the ball isn't in the air.

Our YMRMFSPA has proven that you don't have to be a huge guy to wreck tight ends, and you know that Harbaugh is going to prioritize guys who block with an enthusiasm unknown to mankind. This section also mitigates concerns you might have after those indifferent Army game reports that Crawford doesn't get after it. Crawford might not have put a huge priority on a slightly ridiculous All Star game; when he's put in an actual game he seeks to dominate his opposition.

Etc.:  Per Jedd Fisch, Crawford will go by his middle name at M. MGoBlue is still a little confused about this. Will wear #1. This scouting report from a guy covering the Army game is too ridiculous to put in the body of the post but also too ridiculous to ignore:

“As spicy as they come at the wide receiver position,” Herron said. “A guy who’s not one of these Calvin Johnson-types, he’s not, 230-40 pounds. He’s just over 6-foot, 180 but plays as though he’s the size of Megatron.”

Why Jehu Chesson? Chesson arrived as a wiry track star in need of a lot of polish who lacked recruiting hype. This isn't particularly close to Crawford, but the receiver Chesson turned into—a 6'3", 200-pound outside receiver and defensive back abattoir with the ability to stretch a ten yard pass into 30—is. Chesson has an inch or two on Crawford; Crawford arrives at Michigan much closer to his eventual ceiling.

Less recent comparables include Marcus Knight and Tai Streets, both lanky outside receivers with solid deep speed and reliable hands.

Guru Reliability: Exacting. Lock-step rankings, Army game appearance, heavily scouted high school. Some wobble in the scouting reports but not much really.

Variance: Low. A polished kid with a good frame and excellent off-field stuff.

Ceiling: High-minus. Doesn't appear to be Braylon but could be a solid #1 WR in college if he works out. I do give the sites' (slight) skepticism in this department credence since they saw him a lot and there seems to be broad agreement on this point.

General Excitement Level: High. Johnson/McDoom part III. Less likely to bust than either of those guys because of his size. Still like McDoom a bit better but it's splitting hairs.

Projection: Probably plays on the outside. Probably does not redshirt since Michigan needs to find two new outside receivers next year and there's enough uncertainty about Ways and Harris—more or less the only options with any experience—to play both Crawford and McDoom. I'd prefer at least one of the three WRs already profiled gets a redshirt, but it's hard to pick out who that might be.

Crawford will have a real shot at starting as early as next year; if his blocking translates to college that'll give him a leg up. At the very least he should be rotation piece. Things might get complicated in 2018 if Michigan does lock down Donovan Peoples-Jones and Nico Collins, either or both of whom could be the kind of talent who pushes through returning starters after an apprentice year. Crawford's ability to pop into the slot gives him the flexibility to stay on the field; it's likely that one of these slot/outside types does get pushed out of playing time. No idea who.

Monday Recruitin' Autodefenestrates

Monday Recruitin' Autodefenestrates

Submitted by Brian on January 11th, 2016 at 12:22 PM

Rashan Gary panic(!)

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There was a disturbance in the Force late last week that you may have felt. A full explanation is forthcoming because you better believe we're going full Kremlinology on NJ DE Rashan Gary's recruitment.

So: A couple of Ole Miss guys ballz'd Gary to the Rebels, which set off distressing rumbles from the wing of the Michigan fanbase that takes after Tweek. This was compounded when Chris Balas did the thing he frequently does where he furrows his brow at the $EC and makes grim noises about things going off the rails because people are cheating. That came just a couple days after his colleague Tim Sullivan said it would be "all but impossible" for anyone to catch up, went off like a bomb, and was deleted after a sorry-not-sorry apology didn't calm the Ann Arbor Torch & Pitchfork crowd.

In the aftermath both Scout and Rivals have reaffirmed their strong belief that Michigan leads for Gary. We're pretty good at the Crystal Ball stuff because we read between the lines, so here's my thinking. Who you talk to is as important as what you say. Rationale for Ole Miss ball flip:

The relationship the Ole Miss coaching staff has with Rashan's mother, Jennifer Coney, who is instrumental in his recruitment, is the predominant reason. It is very strong.

Okay. May be true. If it was true she might be talking to Ole Miss sites. But to my knowledge the ball-flipper's never talked to her. (After the Ole Miss official she talked to Wiltfong.) Instead it's Sam Webb who posts article after article featuring her thoughts on Gary's recruitment. One side has some vague second or third hand feelings. The other is talking to the horse's mouth. Don't panic. Crootin.

Gary visiting or not visiting or visiting

Michigan's going to have to fend off some schools, though. Gary has a line of coaches on the way in

"Dabo Swinney is coming, (Jim) Harbaugh is coming, (Gus) Malzahn is coming, (Nick) Saban is coming, Urban Meyer is coming," Gary's mother Jennifer Coney told NJ.com. "I don't know. There aren't enough days for everyone to come, but everybody wants to come and put their last pitch in."

…and a couple officials left. One is to USC, the other still undecided but maybe Clemson, and this is a bit of a twist:

"I'll probably take a couple non-officials to the three that I'm looking at, like a student of the day visit," said Gary. "So from there, after I take those visits, I should have a good idea of where I'm going."

That's not great news since it looked like Michigan was going to be the only school to get an unofficial. I'm a bit skeptical this tour is going to happen—a lot of recruits plan to do a bunch of stuff and then scale it back—and in fact as of yesterday that plan had been pared back. An Ole Miss Scout guy said there were no unofficials scheduled, even to Michigan, causing another round of fainting and autodefenestrations, but Gary's coach told TomVH that his visit schedule looked pretty good for Michigan:

Lorenz reiterates that he expects Gary along with teammates WR Donald Stewart, 2017 LB Drew Singleton, and maybe 2017 DT Corey Bolds on the 22nd. That is the most current intel. If he sticks to that we're golden.

But I learned how to spell it

Nobody really knows who leads for TX DE Levi Onwuzurike, but the previous roundup mentioned that various camps were split between his recruitment being a Michigan/Baylor battle and a Michigan/Washington battle. The implication there was obviously nice.

That appears to have been misplaced hope, as Steve Lorenz reports that Michigan "appears" to be out for Onwuzurike. That comes on the heels of a Washington 247 site interview with him—again, who you talk to is important. In it he says he's "80 percent sure" where he's going. I assume that's the Huskies*.

If Michigan is out for Onwuzurike attention turns to AZ DE Connor Murphy, FL DE Joshua Uche, and California teammates Devin Asiasi and Boss Tagaloa. Asiasi wants to play TE and Tagaloa is a DT, but Michigan already has a couple DEs in the class so like whatever man. Speaking of those guys…

*[Doubly annoying because I was going to sleuth the bad news based on "who you talk to" before Lorenz stole my thunder, such as it is. /shakes fist for various reasons]

Asiasi to visit like a Boss

Steve Lorenz reports that Asiasi has dropped his Alabama visit and will make it out to Ann Arbor for an official on the 22nd. So will Tagaloa, who named Michigan in a top five back in November. At the time Scout's Greg Biggins thought it was a UCLA-M battle, but that was before a USC offer came in.

Lorenz says Michigan has some optimism here. They do want to play together and Asiasi badly wants to play tight end; they're also NorCal guys familiar with Harbaugh's work with Stanford and the 49ers. Get the visit, see what happens. FWIW, USC gets the last word with both on the 29th.

One potential hitch in the previous bullet point

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Allen's YMRMFSPA is 100% guaranteed to be Ian Bunting

Asiasi's official is set for the 22nd. MO TE Chase Allen is coming in the week prior, and Steve Wiltfong hears that Allen is a "huge, huge lean" to M. Presumably he will commit on the visit, occupying Michigan's final(?) tight end slot in the class.

This is good. Allen's picked up offers from Nebraska, Mizzou and Oklahoma State in addition to the back-to-back Michigan and FSU offers. He is under the radar because he split his time between basketball and football in high school, choosing AAU over football camps and the like. He's a high upside, high academic guy who Michigan seems eager to take.

But it does make you wonder if Michigan will still be in the running for Asiasi and potentially Tagaloa the week after. On the one hand, if there's a school in the country that can make good on TE promises it's Michigan, and they could take Asiasi as an ATH. On the other, at some point you can't cram more guys in the phonebooth.

Cram cram cram cram cram (brief pause) cram cram cram

Speaking of said phonebooth, Wiltfong also recently ballz'd NJ WR Donald Stewart to Michigan. Stewart is a Paramus guy who Michigan looked good for early and then faded for as people assumed he would go to Stanford. I and most other people had written him off entirely until he announced a Michigan official, also on the 22nd.

I can't imagine FL WR Pie Young and Stewart fit into the same class at this juncture unless there's unexpected attrition and have no idea who's preferred. Young just re-iterated that Michigan leads at the South Florida Express tryouts (he was a spectator) but it is possible that Young's spot is accounted for since Michigan just picked up two slot types in TN WR Nate Johnson and CA WR Dylan Crawford. He did just announce a suite of officials to USC, Louisville, and Tennessee. He is a NSD decision; that may result in Young finding there's no room in the phonebooth.

In yet further cram news, Wiltfong also believes Michigan has a "great shot" with PA ATH Khaleke Hudson; he would pick M if forced to make a CB pick. Penn State losing DC John Shoop to Tennessee at this late stage has got to help. As mentioned last week, I loved Hudson in the Semper Fi bowl and am pro-get-him.

cram cram cram cram

More crammin' with positive Long vibes

CA CB David Long continues to trend towards Michigan. Lorenz joins Wiltfong and Barton Simmons with a ballz in favor of M after doing the proverbial digging, and Sam's gut is all like yeah:

That isn't "he is going to commit" but it ain't bad; I interpret that to mean he is set on Michigan but he has that official to Washington left and people can change their minds.

If he even takes it, that is. Rivals's Blair Angulo joins the chorus of folks expecting Long to commit to Michigan, and he's hearing that might come in the next week. That would obviously preempt a Washington visit. Probably, anyway. Crootin and all.

Assumption on the situation: Long has decided on Michigan but wants to follow through with a visit he told Washington he would make. He is considering dropping it because it's a waste of time for everyone. If he does indeed go to Seattle then UW might have a shot, but this feels like an inverse Nauta.

Evans solid again

IN WR Chris Evans got a once-coveted OSU offer and for a moment there it looked like he was set to visit on the 15th and presumably flip, but he changed course and will stick with his commitment:

Wiltfong reports that Michigan is indeed bringing him in on offense while the OSU offer was as a defensive back.

Meanwhile other wobblers are status quo. We'll see what this weekend brings with visits.

Further Crawford evals

A bit more on CA WR commit Dylan Crawford, Michigan's prize from the Army game:

“Crawford has been very good this week,” Farrell said. “He catches everything, that’s the thing with him. I haven’t seen him really drop anything. He’s not the fastest, he’s not the biggest, but he’s a good technician. He’s a smart kid. He’ll fit right in with what Harbaugh wants to do because he’s a willing blocker as well. I think he’s a well-rounded receiver.”

He was mentioned as a top performer on Thursday:

He looked to go through the motions throughout much of the first two days of practice, but he took his game to new heights on day three. His effort really stood out today. He got free a lot during 7-on-7 and 11-on-11 and made sure to finish each run when the ball came his way.

Crawford is now qualifying his plan to take officials with an "if". None have actually been set. Even if those happen Michigan is very likely to hang on to Crawford, especially if Long commits with him.

2017 combine happens, articles are written

A caution: at this juncture a lot of out-of-state players have offers but have never been to Ann Arbor. Michigan might be their biggest offer right now. Meanwhile Michigan might have offered as a way to pique a kid's interest while they continue to evaluate a bunch of targets.

So even kids who say Michigan leads aren't that likely to end up in the class. Michigan might end up turning down the heat; they might pick up offers closer to home that are the ones they actually want. (In state or proximate is different, as they've been on campus and Michigan can and will take those prospects now.)

Anyway:

  • MI WR Donovan Peoples-Jones releases a top ten with Michigan in it. Fast forward to Signing Day for that guy.
  • TX DT Marvin Wilson has Michigan on his radar but a top four of LSU, FSU, USC, and Bama. Wilson is one of the top 2017 prospects in the country.
  • MO WR Jaevon McQuitty really really liked his Michigan offer, telling Brice Marich that he tried to tell his parents but he couldn't because he was "shaking too much." Tentatively plans to visit in March.
  • FL OL Cesar Ruiz says he's tight with "like five" Michigan commits in this class since he just relocated from New Jersey to play at IMG. Maintains no leaders and will take his time. PSU, M, and UNC may be a tentative top three.
  • FL WR/DB CJ Cotman tells Josh Henschke that Michigan is the school he's "really leaning on"(?) because he likes Harbaugh and Partridge a lot. Cotman has early offers from OSU, Oregon and FSU along with M and looks like he'll be a big-timer. Hopefully leaning on someone is good. Someone who is familiar with the rap music please tell me.
  • FL WR Joshua Palmer names Michigan his leader. Michigan is currently his biggest offer, as he's a three-star type at the moment. Moved from Canada to St. Thomas Acquinas in an effort to get recruited, so Michigan is closer to home than southern schools.
  • TX RB Kennedy Brooks names Washington and Michigan his leaders, thus continuing this weird recruiting rivalry we've got with UDub.

Etc.

VA LB Jaquan Yulee decommitted from Alabama and Michigan is "in the picture." We'll see if he sets an official. Webb says that Michigan State is in the picture with MI CB Lavert Hill, "not that Michigan State is now the favorite or anything." Still expect Hill to Michigan. In that vein, TX DT commit Jordan Elliott says “I think we are about to get about three more commits. Big time guys, DBs."

Balas says TX OL grad transfer Jake Raulerson is "trending" towards Michigan. He visits this weekend. As a grad transfer he can take his time deciding, especially if he needs to finish this semester at Texas.

Rivals reported that M had offered MD OL Stephen Spanellis, a Virginia commit and teammate of MD OL commit Devery Hamilton. Nobody else has confirmed that.

Hello: Dylan Crawford

Hello: Dylan Crawford

Submitted by Ace on January 9th, 2016 at 1:43 PM


[Isaiah Hole/247Sports]

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HELLO: DYLAN CRAWFORD

Michigan added another All-American to the class this afternoon when Rancho Santa Maragarita (CA) Catholic WR Dylan Crawford announced his pledge during the first quarter of the Army game. Crawford is the 24th commit in the 2016 class and the fourth at receiver, joinging Brad Hawkins, Nate Johnson, and Ahmir Mitchell (as well as ATH Chris Evans, who's expected to compete at the slot).

The Wolverines have long been at or near the top of the list for Crawford, and when fellow finalist Oregon filled up their receiver spots, it became apparent he'd choose Michigan. He's mentioned that he'd still like to take visits to Georgia, Miami, UCLA, and Washington; we'll see if that comes to pass now that he's a commit.

GURU RATINGS

Scout Rivals ESPN 247 247 Comp
4*, #24 WR,
#131 Ovr
4*, #25 WR,
#115 Ovr
4*, 82, #23 WR,
#179 Ovr
4*, 94, #21 WR,
#131 Ovr
4*, #20 WR,
#113 Ovr

Crawford's rankings are so consistent across the board that both his position and overall ranks on the 247 Composite are higher than those given to him by any of the four recruiting services.

He's been to enough camps that there's a close agreement on his size: the consensus is he's 6'1" and somewhere in the 185-pound range. He weighed in at 183 at The Opening in July.

SCOUTING

Crawford has been a frequent camp participant over the last couple years, so there's no shortage of scouting reports on him. Scout's Brandon Huffman pegged him as a national-level recruit back in the summer of 2014, when Crawford was one of the top underclassmen at the Oregon NFTC:

Crawford was neck-and-neck with [Trevon] Sidney, his good friend, for most of the afternoon, and the only thing that really separated them were just a couple of more acrobatic catches that Sidney made. But Crawford was just as consistent, just as explosive and just as polished as Sidney was. We've seen Crawford a ton this spring and this may have been the best we've seen him throughout. He's every bit the national recruit he's already become.

Crawford played his high school ball with Stanford QB commit and one-time Michigan target KJ Costello, and the pair were tough to stop on the 7-on-7 circuit. 247's Barton Simmons saw him as a versatile threat who can line up outside or in the slot after the Pylon 7-on-7 tourney. Rivals' Blair Angulo on the SoCal Elite tourney last March:

Crawford is one of Costello's favorite targets, everybody knows it, and not many people seem able to stop it. He's a strong route runner where he cuts extraordinarily well and he does a great job setting up cornerbacks. The four-star is also exceptional at catching low passes by getting his hands under the ball and scooping it. Sometimes, he lets the ball get into his body, but most of the time Crawford rips it out of the air and has proven time and again to be a top-notch receiver.

In addition to his route-running and catching radius, Crawford impressed Angulo with his big-play ability later in the camp season at the RCS Los Angeles:

The group of receivers was loaded, but Crawford managed to stick out once again with his ability to stretch the field. The four-star wideout made numerous plays deep, including a few leaping catches that appeared effortless. Crawford has a well-rounded repertoire that should make him one of the most productive players in the area once he regains eligibility this fall following his offseason transfer.

The returns haven't always been positive on the camp trail; Crawford has been a little quiet at a couple of the bigger events. 247 moved him down after The Opening despite great test results:

While Santa Margarita (Calif.) Catholic receiver Dylan Crawford put together strong testing numbers, making the Top 10 of the entire camp, he was quiet during the 7on7 portion and never really asserted himself. We still love Crawford's ability and athletic traits but he's dropped outside the Top100 until we see the production improve.

While this is on a limited sample, Rivals had him as a "stock down" guy after Monday's Army game practice because of issues hanging on to the football:

Physically the 6-foot-1, 175-pound Crawford was one of the most impressive looking wide receivers on the West. He has an easy, fluid stride and gets in and out of his breaks well. The issue Monday was Crawford fighting the football. Even easy passes with no defensive backs in the vicinity were being dropped, and priority No. 1 for a wide receiver is catching the football.

Crawford bounced back on Thursday, earning a top performer spot for the West squad from 247:

Strong performance from the California wide receiver. He looked to go through the motions throughout much of the first two days of practice, but he took his game to new heights on day three. His effort really stood out today. He got free a lot during 7-on-7 and 11-on-11 and made sure to finish each run when the ball came his way. That effort will help him find the field early next year, whether that’s at Michigan, USC, Oregon, Arizona State, Stanford, or another top program. 

ESPN really likes Crawford's route-running and doesn't seem too concerned with his hands:

Is very shifty with wiggle and fluid change-of-direction to use at the top of stems into and out of breaks. Comes off the ball rapidly and can get on the toes of defenders quickly to eat up cushion, attack alignment and get vertical. Wins a lot of deep routes with a step or so largely in part to proper technique. Is likely quicker than fast overall, but knows how to use his feet, hips and burst to gain separation.

Possesses efficient and reliable ball skills on both sides of the ball. Is very adept at tracking the deep ball over the shoulder. Shows good focus when contested. Has a reasonably wide catch radius to adjust to balls thrown outside of his frame. Transitions quickly after the tuck. Looks to be more comfortable plucking on the move than coming back to the football.

Rivals noted another strong aspect of Crawford's skill-set when Angulo scouted a Santa Margarita Catholic game in September:

Four-star wide receiver Dylan Crawford didn't have a big night as a pass catcher but he still left his mark, paving the way for some big runs with effective blocking on the edge. The Rivals250 prospect was not only willing to block, but also fiery when it came to the task. He said afterward he realizes receivers have to be well rounded at the next level and he has worked hard at making his presence felt even when the ball isn't in the air.

In a game where Angulo said Costello struggled to find a rhythm, Crawford still made an impact in a victory.

As long as his hands don't become an issue—and it sounds like his issues at Monday's Army practice were out of character—Crawford boasts all the skills necessary to make an early impact for Michigan as a slot receiver.

OFFERS

Crawford held offers from Arizona, Arizona State, Cal, Colorado, Hawaii, Illinois, Miami, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Oregon, Oregon State, SMU, Stanford, Tennessee, UCLA, USC, Utah, Washington, and Washington State—a great selection of West Coast offers with some strong national programs also involved.

HIGH SCHOOL

Crawford and Costello are far from alone as Santa Margarita Catholic prospects who've earned a spot on Power 5 programs. The school also produced current USC center Max Tuerk, former San Diego State and current Dallas Cowboys tight end Gavin Escobar, and ten other Power 5 signees since 2002, according to the Rivals database.

STATS

According to MaxPreps, Crawford caught 51 passes for 822 yards (16.1 YPC) and seven touchdowns in ten games as a senior.

FAKE 40 TIME

Crawford posted the fifth-best SPARQ score during initial testing at The Opening last summer despite some trying circumstances, per Scout's Greg Biggins:

Dylan Crawford was one of 10 participants out of the 166 who tested to qualify for NIKE Football Rating Championship. At 6-1.5, 183 pounds, the athlete clocked a 4.45-40, 4.01 in the shuttle, jumped 37” in the vertical and threw the power ball 42’.

“I just got out of a walking boot that I was in for three weeks too,” Crawford said during the event. “I wasn’t able to run at all for the last month, this was really the first time I was able to do it so I was definitely happy with how I did. I know I can run even faster too so it was very encouraging for me to make the top 10 out here.”

Crawford didn't quite perform as well in the finals, posting a 4.61 40 and a 4.23 shuttle, though he improved his power ball toss (44.5') and vertical leap (40.1"). Posting a zero-FAKE, electronically timed 4.45 40-yard dash coming off an injury is pretty darn impressive regardless, especially in combination with those other testing scores.

VIDEO

Mid-season senior highlights:

Full junior highlights:

Sophomore highlights can be found on his Hudl page.

PREDICTION BASED ON FLIMSY EVIDENCE

As the highest-ranked and most polished of Michigan's current receiver commits, Crawford appears to have the best chance to see the field as a freshman. Grant Perry is the only player on the roster who's seen snaps in the slot, where Crawford best projects. Crawford, Nate Johnson, and Chris Evans should battle with Perry for that job and perhaps some backup snaps if the coaches want to utilize the position more in 2016.

Crawford is also a candidate to compete on the outside when Jehu Chesson and Amara Darboh graduate after the 2016 season. With his skill and versatility, it's hard not to see him making an impact—and perhaps locking down a starting job—by his second year on campus.

UPSHOT FOR THE REST OF THE CLASS

With Signing Day less than a month away, Michigan has narrowed their focus to a small group of prospects to close out the class. While the class now stands at 24 commits out of a planned class of 27, a few more spots are expected to open up due to attrition from within the class. There's a slim, but non-zero, chance that Michigan adds a huge piece to the class later this afternoon in five-star GA TE Isaac Nauta, who's expected to choose Georgia but has indicated his final decision was much more difficult than many thought. He'll announce sometime during the fourth quarter of the Army game.

Other top targets include five-star DT Rashan Gary, four-star CB David Long, four-star CB Lavert Hill, four-star ATH Jordan Fuller, four-star WDE Levi Onwuzurike, four-star WDE Connor Murphy, four-star TE Devin Asiasi, four-star DT/OL Boss Tagaloa, four-star ILB Dontavoius Jackson, four-star TE Jacob Mathis, three-star ILB Jonathan Jones, three-star WR Pie Young, three-star OLB Khaleke Hudson, and three-star TE Chase Allen.

Here's the class as it currently stands:

Thursday Recrutin' Rings The Silent Alarm

Thursday Recrutin' Rings The Silent Alarm

Submitted by Brian on January 7th, 2016 at 1:16 PM

Ring the silent alarm

IN QB commit Brandon Peters tells Sam Webb that Michigan has two silent commitments on the West squad at the Army game. "Silent commits" are always a dubious notion, but they do work out frequently—FL LB Devin Bush Jr was a silent for months—and if one of those guys is announcing at the game itself that would be a good indicator indeed.

FWIW, Michigan is involved with these uncommitted players on the West squad: CA WR Dylan Crawford, MI CB Lavert Hill, CA CB David Long, MI WR Donnie Corley, and CA TE Devin Asiasi. Michigan has always seemed to trail for Corley and isn't even certain to get a visit from Asiasi so it would have to be two of the former three. Crawford seems the most likely since he's announcing at the game, has only officially visited Michigan and Oregon, and the Ducks reportedly do not have room.

Things look good for the two defensive backs but neither feels entirely certain right now. Long is down to Michigan and Washington; a mid-January official to UW looms. Long says Michigan will have an in-home with him just before his decision and that might give them "a little edge" in an interview with Brandon Brown.

Steve Wiltfong thinks it's a bigger edge as he recently ballz'd Long to Michigan after Long told him that he's "going to follow through with my schedule… but my mind is kind of made up." Webb also believes Michigan is "in the driver's seat." Long goes way back with Crawford and a couple of different articles have mentioned the attraction of playing together; our expectation is that they do in Ann Arbor.

Meanwhile Hill is officially not announcing at the Army game and will take a series of official visits in January before announcing on Signing Day. On the other hand, Corley told Eugene Hankerson that Hill has already made up his mind. So… yeah. Optimism on Hill has been off the charts for months; his desire to see a bunch of places in January reduces that somewhat. Still seems highly likely that Harbaugh and brother win out eventually.

Hopes not so much up for this one

GA TE Isaac Nauta's decision has been made. Apparently it was difficult.

Hopefully the difficulty there is "disappointing people close to me" instead of "passing up an opportunity to be a Harbaugh tight end." But probably not. Webb has an interview in which Nauta says a lot of great things about Michigan; despite that I think literally everyone expects Georgia is the pick.  He'll announce at the Army game.

Meanwhile, CA TE Devin Asiasi really wants to play on offense but didn't get to show much in that department for his high school team; he apparently Balled So Hard early at the Army game. Brandon Huffman was impressed:

Asiasi is a big tight end, 6-5, 265-ish, but can absolutely run and catch like a lighter tight end.  He's a smooth pass-catcher with a big catch radius, has soft hands, runs tremendous routes and looks natural playing the position.

Asiasi still maintains he will visit three schools not named Michigan in January—M is trying to get a midweek visit. That doesn't sound good but if the guy wants to be a tight end there's no better place. If he does end up visiting I'd give Michigan a good chance.

Paging one more defensive end

There's probably one spot left for a defensive end and three main possibilities for the spot.

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Onwuzurike Onwuzurike Onwuzurike

Depending on who you listen to, TX DE Levi Onwuzurike is either the top priority (247 and Scout) or an afterthought (Rivals). I'm fairly certain Onwuzurike is in fact the most wanted guy at the spot.

Webb gathers the opinions of a couple of Scout Texas guys, who both think Onwuzurike is a major talent (Scout has him ranked highest of any service) and think Onwuzurike is a Baylor-Michigan battle. This is good, because various other people think it's a Washington-Michigan battle, and when you're the one school amongst changing other schools you're in good shape.

If Onwuzurike does go with one of his other finalists Michigan will try to lock down either AZ DE Connor Murphy or FL DE Joshua Uche. Murphy is a Harbaugh guy after his brother made it to the NFL after passing through Harbaugh's Stanford program; Miami decommit Uche is a new offer made in the immediate aftermath of Don Brown's hire.

Murphy recently expressed frustration with a a bunch of coaching changes amongst the teams he's considering, which made it into an article at Oregon Live since the Ducks just demoted their DC back to LB coach and fired the LB coach—Murphy's primary recruiter—after blowing a 31-point lead in their bowl game.

And, well, yeah. Murphy's kind of a big deal. And the teams he's considering have been chaos on the defensive side. In addition to the Oregon moves, DJ Durkin left M, USC has no DC, and ASU is in flux after OC Mike Norvell became Memphis's head coach and started raiding the former staff.

Michigan at least has the Harbaugh connection and a settled staff, and the article asserts a thing I didn't know was a fact.

Arizona State, Michigan, Oregon, Stanford and USC could all still be in the mix for the dynamic defensive talent, although the Wolverines are seen as the leader given Murphy's strong family bond with Jim Harbaugh.

I put a ballz in for Murphy like a year ago but we've maintained it mostly because if we are right we get crazy points for it since it's so old—we have no real idea which way Murphy is leaning. Michigan does have a big advantage in coaching relationships despite the Durkin move. A 'Bama visit looms after Michigan's shot, though.

Not much is known about Uche's status. Miami apparently hasn't talked to him since Richt arrived and now he's uncertain if he's even on their board. He's got visits to Florida and Michigan scheduled and should be a Signing Day decision.

Elliott continues to impress

TX DT Jordan Elliott is consistently mentioned as one of the best players at the Army Bowl. Rivals:

From the beginning of the day, Elliott caught everyone's attention. His first step caused problems for interior linemen throughout the day. He was ready to play today and blew up play after play during team and inside drills. His lower body strength and quickness definitely stood out.

Scout:

Elliott has stood out more consistently on the defensive side of the ball than any other front seven player. …has done pretty much whatever he's wanted. He's big, explosive, and has experience playing multiple positions, though he's at his best as an even-front 3-technique tackle.

Meanwhile Steve Wiltfong called Elliott "an elite talent":

The country’s No. 7 defensive tackle according to 247Sports took several dominant reps, shoots the gap quickly and is a strong pass rusher from the interior. One of the more physically impressive guys on the field, Elliott is also one of the better athletes in small space with his quick first step.

Wiltfong would be surprised if he wasn't in the two deep "right away," which would in fact surprise me given the depth Michigan has coming back. I'm guessing Wiltfong isn't considering what Michigan brings back when he makes that statement; all the same that's impressive praise.

FWIW, Elliott again repeatedly shot down the idea he was anything but 100% solid to Michigan. He must be wondering how many times he has to say it by now.

Michael Onwenu is a mutant

Onwenu was one of the few to stay in front of Elliott

People usually don't come shaped like MI OL Michael Onwenu, who could not be weighed at the Army Bowl because the scale only goes up to 350. Unsurprisingly, there's "no question he was the strongest offensive lineman" at the Army Bowl, but when you put "perhaps the quickest" on top of that, as Wiltfong did, that's an impressive prospect. As a bonus, despite being a 6'3" guard Onwenu comes with tackle-length arms:

[Onwenu] had the biggest hands (11 inches) and second longest arms (35 inches) of any prospect in attendance.

If Onwenu works out he could really, really work out. He did impressive work against the best DT at the game—Elliott. Webb:

No one got past him, as he consistently stonewalled defenders at the line of scrimmage.  Onwenu won back to back reps versus Elliot, showing that once he gets his paws on a defender, they’re done.

"Paws" may be literal here.

Other Army Bowl reports

Reports are mixed for Michigan's other Army targets. Hill just missed ALPHA DOG status on day one according to 247. He's a "lockdown corner with elite feet, great speed and quicks," which makes him sound like a guy Hill talks to every day—Jourdan Lewis.

Crawford had a "decent" opening day according to Webb; 247 noted that he is a "polished receiver with great speed." Rivals hasn't said much about him, which usually means a guy holding steady.

IN QB Brandon Peters seems to be a notch behind the five stars at the event. Wiltfong:

Michigan commit Brandon Peters has a live, accurate arm and he also showed nice touch. He’ll be fun to watch develop in Ann Arbor as the Avon (Ind.) High talent continues to work on his fundamentals.

Webb was higher on his performance:

On Monday, he looked the part.  You could argue that no other quarterback was better than him.  Peters was impressive, showing off arm strength and accuracy. 

He doesn't have a say in the rankings, though.

Weeble wobblers are committed but visiting

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Nate Johnson stiffarms the dictionary all day bruh

Behold the most crootin quote of all time (ALL TIME):

“I’m committed to Michigan right now, so everyone knows I’m going to Michigan. If nothing changes, like decommitting, which I’m probably not gonna do, but we’ll see. Everyone will know that. If I decommit from Michigan, which I won’t, I’ll definitely hold off all the way until signing day.”

-TN WR commit(?) Nate Johnson

So. Despite having 23 commits, Michigan's class is still in considerable flux.  A number of recruits aren't hearing much from the staff, and a handful of other guys are doing the committed-but-visiting thing that sets your teeth to grating if you're the kind of person who occasionally screams "you mean FIGURATIVELY" at people saying they literally ate a horse. (Guilty.)

Anyway, those guys are:

  • TN WR Nate Johnson, who is visiting Miami, Vanderbilt, and Penn State. He says he is 100% committed, but… you saw the quote. None of those teams seem like particularly large threats. Johnson recently got a Virginia Tech offer as well, and… I mean… you saw the quote.
  • IN WR/DB Chris Evans got an Ohio State offer and will "official for sure" since OSU was the proverbial dream school. I bet a thousand dollars that if Evans flips Bill Kurelic compares him favorably to Kareem Walker even though they're completely different prospects.
  • CA WR Dylan Crawford isn't even committed yet but we should throw him in this bin since he also plans January visits to Miami, Washington, and Georgia plus an unofficial to UCLA.
  • FL DT Rashad Weaver has a Temple visit scheduled.
  • IN ATH Kiante Enis visited Indiana and says he hadn't heard much from Michigan a couple weeks back.
  • FL LB Devin Gil and FL S Josh Metellus took a trip to Colorado last month (so did Devin Bush, but he's already enrolled).
  • NJ WR Brad Hawkins and NJ DE Ron Johnson may visit North Carolina, South Carolina, or neither.

There are a couple other guys who may leave the class as well; Michigan is probably going to have a significant shuffle in the next few weeks. One that won't involve Jordan Elliott.

Your 2016 early enrollees are…

These gentlemen have already arrived on campus or will as soon as they're done with the Army game:

  • IN QB Brandon Peters
  • NJ RB Kareem Walker
  • AL RB Kingston Davis
  • NJ WR Ahmir Mitchell
  • MA TE Sean McKeon
  • CO DE Carlo Kemp
  • FL LB Devin Bush Jr.

All eyes will be on the tailbacks and Bush headed into the spring game.

2017 stuff

  • GA WR commit Jeremiah Holloman had a terrific Rising Stars camp: Jake Reuse, a Georgia reporter said he was "the most impressive offensive player at the practices," which included a lot of top 2017 kids in Georgia.
  • MI CB Ambry Thomas tells Steve Lorenz that things are "going really well" with Michigan and that he's planning on deciding this spring after a swing through various SEC schools. MSU, the crystal ball favorite, doesn't draw much mention.
  • MI S Jaylen Kelly-Powell is "slowing things down" and wants to visit Stanford, Duke, and UCLA; he was generally expected to drop for Michigan if he did indeed commit early. Michigan should still be in good shape since he goes to Cass and his parents are both alums. Given his list you know he's a high academic kid.
  • MI LB Antjuan Simmons is just across the street from the Big House and has "really built a strong bond" with 2017 commit Ja'Raymond Hall. Simmons intends on making all his officials even so.
  • MI WR KJ Hamler really wants an Oregon offer because he is small and fast as hell. He plans on camping there and it sounds like they're the real leader if they offer. Given what Ace saw this fall, I bet they do.
  • FL CB Stanford Samuels III goes to Flanagan HS, which you may be familiar with since three commits in this class are Flanagan kids. That gives Michigan an in, but he's a national recruit—Scout has him #15 overall in 2017—and he'll be a tough pull.
  • 2017 five-star TX S Jeffery Okudah put Michigan on his top ten list but says that Stanford and Ohio State are sticking out at the moment. He does plan a visit; early days for him.

Etc.

NJ WR Donald Stewart is still planning a visit on the 22nd. He hasn't heard about Stanford admission yet, which is a major hitch for his presumed leader. No idea if Michigan will have room for him, but he remains an option.

Monday Recruitin' Is Still In All Star Mode

Monday Recruitin' Is Still In All Star Mode

Submitted by Brian on January 4th, 2016 at 4:42 PM

All Star week part two

Dylan Crawford is a top-100-ish WR

UA is over (as is Semper Fi) and now it's on to the Army game. Multiple recruits of major interest plan to decide at the game. CA WR Dylan Crawford is definitely doing so. With Oregon full at wide receiver it's not even certain who Michigan is competing with in his recruitment. His only officials have been to Michigan and Oregon; he also lists Washington, Stanford, Miami, and UCLA. I guess UCLA could be an option since he must have taken an unofficial there at some point, but this looks like a slam dunk.

Meanwhile MI CB Lavert Hill's ever-shifting commitment plans briefly maybe probably shifted to an Army announcement:

“I’m not for sure,” Hill said at check-in Sunday. “I got to talk to my mom and see what she says about it. It’s kind of up to her.”

Hill said he's down to Michigan and Michigan State, and that he talks to Jourdan Lewis "probably every day." Then Clemson offered, Hill reset his announcement for Signing Day, and said he would visit Clemson.

Anyway… there was a brief flurry of Michigan State optimism based on the idea that Hill and MI WR Donnie Corley would be a package, but with Corley trending towards OSU that package is falling apart. If Hill did decide at the Army game it was only going one way, and that's to Ann Arbor. Clemson getting involved is a potential hitch, but I'd be surprised if they could overcome the longstanding relationships and brother angle.

Finally, FL TE Isaac Nauta is announcing at the game, and while the universe expects it to be Georgia he provides a glimmer of hope in an interview with the AJC:

“I fly home on Jan. 10 and gather up my stuff and go,” Nauta said, who added that the events of this week can factor into his decision. “I’ve got it down to two in my head and I’ll be able to make a decision sometime this week.”

It is likely that Alabama is the team that got cut since Nauta has filed enrollment paperwork with UGA and Michigan but not Alabama. Steve Lorenz also offers a sliver of hope; while cautioning that he still expect Georgia to be the pick he relates that people in the Michigan program think they've got "more than a puncher's chance."

This is very much a "so you're saying there's a chance" situation. Door isn't 100% closed yet.

The already committed

In addition to the not-yet-committed, Michigan also has a trio of committed fellows that we'll get a bunch more data on. Those gentlemen are TX DT Jordan Elliott, MI OL Michael Onwenu, and IN QB Brandon Peters. Onwenu is a physical marvel:

The scale didn't go high enough to weigh Onwenu. We'll call it 350+. But the MIchigan commit was really impressive in that he's not a sloppy big body and he has extremely long arms. In fact, though he's only 6-3, only one offensive lineman had longer arms than Onwenu.

Meanwhile Elliott was one of the most impressive players on the first day of practice.

Elliott must be poised for a move up in the Rivals rankings, as they currently have him a nondescript three star. All the other services have him much higher—he may be making a case to move up even there.

Elliott also offered up this spectacular quote about Jim Harbaugh:

"He's just a mystical person. He always looks at you in the eyes when he's talking and then he'll say things when he starts to look away. It's pretty funny. I've never described anybody as mystical before either."

Elliott got in a bit of a twitter tiff with EJ Holland and continues to insist his recruiting process is 100% done; unfortunately he believes that Michigan is not going to get TX LB Dontavious Jackson.

Signing Day Decisions

Michigan has never really been a school that does much on Signing Day: they'll pick up a few guys, generally lower-rated ones, but the kind of ESPNU I-commit-with-a-hat-and-maybe-a-dog thing has never been the way Michigan recruits.

Harbaugh is set to change that in a major way, as the following players are all planning on announcing on February 3rd:

  • NJ DE Rashan Gary, who you may have heard of. Michigan is a heavy favorite.
  • TX LB Dontavious Jackson, who maintains no leaders or top list. You can piece together an approximate picture of M, UCLA, FSU, Bama, Florida, and Texas. Jackson took officials to the first three, plans officials to Bama and UF, and is local to Texas. FSU may lead.
  • FL WR Pie Young, who has maintained Michigan as his leader for a while. Miami may be the nearest competitor but really who knows?
  • As mentioned, MI CB Lavert Hill is, at this instant, deciding to decide on Signing Day.
  • NJ S Jordan Fuller is packing almost his entire recruitment in the last month and could realistically go to any of his four finalists.
  • FL LB Jonathan Jones is more or less down to Michigan and Notre Dame.

In addition to those primary targets there will be six or seven guys announcing who Michigan might be involved with depending on how the class works out, including TX S Chris Brown, CA TE Devin Asiasi, CA DT Boss Tagaloa, and AZ DE Connor Murphy, plus a couple guys under the radar. Batten down the hatches.

Rashan versus MechaRashan

Would you like additional hype on NJ DE Rashan Gary? Probably? Okay.

Gary walked onto the field the first day of practice as the No. 1 rated player in the nation and he walked out off the field of the Citrus Bowl distancing himself and securing that spot atop of the rankings, where he will sit when they are updated for a final time before signing day in February.

Gary also landed a couple of made-up awards from Mike Farrell, including best motor

Gary has a non-stop motor and even if you play him right, he will push you back into the pocket no matter what. He was taking as many reps as he could in practice, he could have taken the head off the quarterback numerous times and he was nasty in the game. You can’t teach desire and drive and he has plenty of both to go along with impressive talent.

…and the most consistent player, along with the best player, period. ESPN concurs:

Gary possesses a wonderful combination of size, power and athleticism and maximizes those attributes with a high-effort style of play. … An impressive aspect of his game is his hand usage. That activity, combined with his strength and motor, can make him extremely difficult to keep blocked and that was evident in his performance throughout Saturday's game. …

In addition to his impressive physical attributes, Gary also conducted himself in a five-star manner off the field. Gary is as good a No. 1 overall prospect that there has been since we began with the recruiting nation player rankings, and long as he remains coachable and focused, all the tools are there for him to an impact player for whichever program he signs.

Along with the evals come a pile of Michigan folks re-asserting that the Wolverines are heavy favorites. You can read the Sam Webb version ("Michigan is the overwhelming favorite") or the Tim Sullivan version ("Michigan will be all-but impossible to beat"); I like 'em both.

Other UA evals

This column discussed WI OL commit Ben Bredeson's UA performances a bit on Friday; he seems like he'll maintain his current near five-star ranking. A bit more confirmation from Tim Sullivan:

While he has been a brick wall at tackle for his high school team, the likes of five-stars Rashan Gary and Marlon Davidson (both on his own team for practices) are a different animal, and he stood up well.

Scout's Josh Newkirk concurred, noting an "impressive week":

He showcased good feet and didn’t struggle with faster defensive ends throughout the week. While he might end up at offensive guard at Michigan, he proved that he is versatile enough to play on the outside. And looks the part of a player who can hit the field early on in his career.

You might pencil him in as a redshirt freshman starter in 2017, if you were so inclined.

FL LB commit Devin Bush Jr. didn't get a lot of chatter from national guys good or bad and seems likely to maintain his rankings but not move up. Sullivan:

He doesn’t look the part physically, just because he’s shorter than the other linebackers, but when drills go live, he immediately displays that size isn’t everything. He’s quicker than everybody else, and moves well. He was in the backfield a couple times during team drills, and one of his biggest assets – hitting like a ton of bricks – wasn’t on display with the practice not at full-speed.

Bush sounds like an excellent fit for a Don Brown defense. Brown likes his linebackers small, quick, and mean.

NJ RB Kareem Walker is the lone guy who is likely to take a rankings hit after the UA and Semper Fi games. Walker didn't have much opportunity to show what he can do since he was put behind a shaky offensive line trying to contest Gary, and PSU commit Miles Sanders performed better. Sam Webb:

…never saw much daylight between the tackles (none of the black team’s backs did because of the relentless d-line play led by Gary), and he was forced to bounce many of his carries to the outside. That just isn’t where his bread is buttered.  Walker is a downhill, one-cut, and go back… and that’s how he’ll be used in Ann Arbor.

A dollar says he'll drop to just outside the top 100 most places. 247 already has him there.

Semper Fi evals

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PA S Khaleke Hudson: DO WANT

Well, one: I watched the first half and change and came away very impressed with PA S Khaleke Hudson. Hudson displayed terrific closing speed, finished plays with a thump, and had multiple PBUs against wide receivers. Dude filled up the box score:

Khaleke Hudson had seven tackles, two tackles for loss, forced a fumble and had a game-high four pass breakups, with no other player having more than one in the game.

He is the kind of guy you get to replace a Jabrill Peppers—while he's not Peppers he ain't bad, either.

Hudson split his time at Semper Fi between safety and running back, impressing at both locations. He could fill out a bit and play linebacker. He veritably screams Harbaugh guy. Here's hoping Michigan goes after him full-steam.

Michigan's two commits in the game didn't do much. NJ DE Ron Johnson is linebacker sized and it showed; NJ WR Brad Hawkins was targeted once. Both showed very well in practice, however.

2. Ron Johnson: Right behind Jones on Friday was Johnson once again. The 6-foot-4, 228-pound is tenacious off the line, and he has the speed to get to the football that cannot be coached. The Michigan commitment has had some new things thrown at him this week, and he has adapted well, while showing a high football IQ.

5. Brad Hawkins: Most wide receivers play outside for their high school. When practice began, the coaches let them go to a spot and work. Hawkins went to the slot and has done well when the ball has come his way. He has done well catching short passes and on end-arounds, and the Michigan commitment is more fluid and sudden than many might think given his size, especially in tight spaces, where he used double moves to make defenders miss twice in a span of five plays Friday.

Johnson is a holy lock to redshirt given his size and Michigan's 2016 DL, but as a developmental guy he's promising. Similar to Mario Ojemudia.

2017 Items

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McCaffery is the #2 pro-style QB in 2017

Michigan's top target at QB in 2017 is CO QB Dylan McCaffery (yes that McCaffery), a 6'5" gentleman in the running for the top QB in the class. With Stanford focused on a couple of the other contenders for that crown, Michigan is increasingly perceived as the favorite. That perception got two major bumps over the last week.

First, Rivals' Blair Angulo reports that Michigan is the frontrunner for a commitment, "maybe even within the next few weeks." Then today Steve Lorenz put in a ballz for McCaffery to Michigan.

MI WR Donovan Peoples-Jones tells 247's Luke Stampini that Michigan and Ohio State are recruiting him hardest:

“The most, without naming any favorites, Michigan is recruiting me really hard, Ohio State is recruiting me really hard, probably those two,” Peoples-Jones told 247Sports. “I do have favorites. I’ll be releasing my top ten shortly.”

Michigan is hoping to keep the elite receiver in-state.

“They’re pretty much telling me they really want me. They had a lot of coaching staff changes, a lot of changes around the university, so pretty much going forward, I’m just looking for what they can do for me.”

Florida also gets a mention but Stampini is a UF reporter reporting for a UF site so that was likely prompted while M and OSU were brought up organically. Peoples-Jones also talked to Scout's Josh Henschke:

"They've always been pursuing me," Peoples-Jones said. "Nothing's changed like that, I was just ready to see what Harbaugh was going to do and he's doing some very special things."

He's positive but noncommittal throughout; his recruitment will take a while. Michigan seems to be trending positively. His dad is an alum, FWIW.

Etc.

247 says they'll be keeping an eye on IN QB commit Brandon Peters to see if they should issue a fifth star at the Army game. NJ S Jordan Fuller is down to M, OSU, PSU, and ND. He plans a visit to Ann Arbor on the 22nd. Anyone's guess as to where he's leaning. NJ WR commit Ahmir Mitchell will wear #2.

CA TE Devin Asiasi lists Michigan in his top five but has three officials scheduled over the next three weeks to other locations; he might get out to M mid-week. Never say never if that happens, I guess.

FL DE Joshua Uche got an offer a couple weeks ago and has set a visit for January 22nd. He's a generic three star but as a Miami decommit who is visiting Florida the week after he sees M he seems like a late riser.

Michigan offers 2017 AL LB Will Ignont. Ignont says he's wide open.

Monday Recruitin' Says Seeya

Monday Recruitin' Says Seeya

Submitted by Brian on December 21st, 2015 at 1:06 PM

Christmas week is usually a week off when not in the throes of a coaching search. Ace will cover the Bryant game Wednesday but don't expect much from the site until next week, when… yes… OSU UFR is due. Send whiskey.

Also check out alum96's generally accurate recruiting overview post.

Long officially back on the market

1698326[1]

FFS, Adidas

CA CB David Long made his all but inevitable decommit from Stanford a real thing, releasing a statement about it on Twitter. In said statement he named Michigan and Washington his leaders. He has a visit set to UW on January 15th, after which a decision should be forthcoming. Long's leaving the country right after.

On their end, Michigan has been confident since Long's official visit. On Washington's end, the UDub 247 mods are really really confident, one of them proclaiming a Long commit was "99.9%" likely a couple weeks back. The latest:

On the surface some within the recruiting circuit believe Long to Michigan is a very real possibility.

I wouldn't count on it.

They might be right here but even in a world populated almost entirely by homers the 247 Washington site stands out. Clint Brewster reports that Michigan's coaching staff is highly optimistic and that he's close to issuing his ballz for M. Meanwhile Scout's Greg Biggins, a West Coast guy:

At this point, this race looks like a tight one. Long loved the visit to Michigan back in October and we heard rumblings shortly after, that the Wolverines could actually get a quick commitment out of him.

Washington people are hearing similar things on their end, and 247 national guy Ryan Bartow put in a dawg ballz. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Tiebreaker: a visit right before a commitment is usually a big advantage for the guys who go last.

Dylan Crawford momentum shift?

CA WR Dylan Crawford was ticketed to Michigan, then "dream school" Oregon offered and Oregon mod types were really really confident, then Oregon picked up commits from FL WR Eddie McDoom(!) and flipped OSU commitment and TX WR/QB Tristen Wallace. (The Wallace commit is a rare instance of a kid deciding he doesn't want to play QB.)

Even so, Oregon loses a ton of WRs this year and they are a spread so probably room for Crawford [RECORD SCRATCH]

Dylan Crawford and Javon McKinley remain at large and frankly I think the Ducks will only take one. I'm not sure there's enough room to add Crawford and I think the Ducks would take McKinley if he wanted to come.

That's Justin Hopkins of the Oregon 247 site, who had previously been amongst the most gung-ho about Oregon's chances with Crawford. He reiterated that stance in another post as well. Sam Webb is hearing similar things.

You have to think that the lukewarm react to Crawford—waiting to offer so long and then maybe not even having him as a take at this juncture—would play into Michigan's hands. M has been after Crawford from the drop.

But what about TN WR commit Nate Johnson? And Pie Young? Where are all these spots going to come from? I don't know. Webb says Michigan would take both Young and Crawford, which 1) just about has to mean they're looking at NJ WRs Brad Hawkins and/or Ahmir Mitchell as safeties and 2) might mean someone currently in the class as a WR type is on the verge of a decommit.

IN ATH Kiante Enis, who said a week or so back that he hadn't heard from Michigan much since his commit and visited Indiana just before the dead period, would be a guy to watch. Enis hasn't taken an official to Michigan yet, and while that isn't a big deal absent other indicators… we have other indicators.

FWIW, we flipped our* Crystal Ballz on Crawford to Oregon based partially on the Duck optimism there and partially because our expectation was that Young would commit over the OSU weekend. Now we don't really know what to do. If you have a foggy prediction and someone commits they charge that against you, so we're keeping the Oregon pick until such time as we change it to Michigan because the air tastes like copper or whatever.

*[Ace and I collaborate on a single MGoBlog ballz.]

Don Brown reacts

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as noted on twitter, Don Brown looks like a NO NONSENSE COP who might have TAKEN THINGS TOO FAR THIS TIME

The reported hire of BC defensive coordinator Don Brown was evidently official enough for recruiting sites to ping various folks about their reactions yesterday. Generally the reaction is "dang."

Long:

MI CB LaVert Hill:

"Boston College was one of the top five defenses in the country," Hill said. "If they get him, I would be pretty good with that."

Hill, BTW, has set January officials to USC, MSU, and Miami. One of his infinite trips to campus this fall was his official to Michigan. Hill has long been regarded as a lock, but the defensive coordinator switch threw a wrench into those plans. M will have to fight for his signature to Signing Day, which is now the plan for both Hill and teammate MI WR Donnie Corley. Maybe. More about that later.

TX LB Dontavious Jackson broke out the mild swearing:

"It's a hell of a move," he told Wolverine247 on Sunday night. "Coach Harbaugh filled me in on what he will bring to the Michigan defense and I'm excited about it."

I am a bit spooked about both Hill and Long given the trajectories of their recruitment but on the other hand I'm feeling optimistic on Jackson based on little more than a hunch. Nobody has a good read on him except for default assumptions about Texas, and every day Strong gets closer to the Rich Rod end game that assumption looks shakier. See also: TX OL Jean Delance.

FL LB Jonathan Jones:

Jones remains a Michigan-ND battle in which Michigan is believed to have a slight edge.

BC ATH commit KJ Gray decommitted in the immediate aftermath and listed Michigan along with almost every D-I school on the East Coast and Wisconsin. Gray is a three star WR/CB who plans to set a bunch of officials in January and then decide. M has not been involved with him to date, but if Brown likes him and sees him as a CB they might bring him in if they think things might shake out where he has a spot. That would probably require both Long and Hill to head elsewhere.

Maybe not so much on the Corley/Hill thing though

Josh Helmholdt reports that Corley is trying to enroll early, which would obviously disrupt plans to commit with Hill. Michigan is probably on the outside with Corley and would definitely be if he does enroll early:

…he took his three official visits to Michigan State, Tennessee and Ohio State. "If the graduating early thing comes up, it will probably be (one of) those three schools because that's where I took my officials to and that's where I'm most comfortable with," Corley said.

To get in it Michigan needs an official visit; if Corley is still on the market in January they will get one. (So will Notre Dame.) If you are thinking that Corley has been on campus several times already and what is one vaguely more Official visit going to do… yeah. I don't think this one is ending up Michigan's way no matter when Corley enrolls.

Top X of the week

As Steve Lorenz mentioned, TX DE Levi Onwurzrike released a top four of Washington, Baylor, Michigan, and Other Team. That other team is Arizona State. Onwuzrike momentarily had a twitter bio that read "water your plants key to success watering plants," which is apparently a DJ Khaled reference since he is doing things I don't understand on a social network I don't participate in. Probably Snappagram. But anyway that was a good twitter bio.

MO TE Chase Allen reiterated to Brice Marich that Iowa State, Minnesota, and Michigan were his top three even after he got a Florida State offer. Allen is still playing high school basketball so visits are tricky for him:

“I have taken one visit to Minnesota, but it is hard to fit visits in with my basketball schedule,” said Allen. I got one scheduled for Iowa State in January, but I have talked with them about moving it, so we will see. Definitely, it is a priority of mine to get up to Michigan and check it out."

With the dead period lasting until January 13th he has a short window in which to figure things out. The combination of Jake Butt, academics, and Harbaugh has Allen's interest piqued.

FL TE Isaac Nauta has a final three of UGA, Michigan, and Alabama. The former two are generally thought to be the main contenders. With the Allen offer and Jacob Eason recommit to UGA, things seem to be trending to the Bulldogs.

PA LB Khaleke Hudson has a final four of Pitt, PSU, UCLA, and Michigan. They get the last visit, that on January 15th.

This week in someone loves Nate Johnson

Tim Sullivan catches up with TN WR commit Nate Johnson's high school coach for a quote that will definitely make it in his recruiting profile:

"He's a terrific route-runner, number one. He's great in space, knows how to get separation, knows how to get open, knows how to recognize coverages. His hands were the best I've ever coached."

More in a meaty article at the link.

Revenge for whoever that guy was ten years ago

"Went to bed a Wolverine and woke up a Seminole" became infamous when some dude we all thought was going to commit ended up at FSU and people tried to save face. Travis Johnson? Was that his name?

/googles

Yes. First round pick in 2005.

/shakes fist at nothing in particular

Anyway, revenge is served so cold that nobody involved is still around and only me and like three other insane people will enjoy this, but enjoy this they shall:

Last Wednesday it was Top247 linebacker Devin Bush Jr., an FSU legacy, that announced he would be a Wolverine. He looked destined for the Maize and Blue for much of the process but a late charge by Florida State and Auburn made things a little foggy at the end.

Then on Thursday, the nation’s No. 2 running back in Kareem Walker chose Michigan, going back and forth between the Wolverines and Seminoles on the last day. One source tells 247Sports that Walker went to bed a Nole and by the time he announced early in the afternoon he was back to the Wolverines.

Walker turned down a compelling offer to sign up for the winged helmet, and Michigan won a recruitment they have generally seen turn against them in the past.

Happy Trails

TX DT Chris Daniels committed to Oklahoma, as expected. MI LB David Reese went with Florida after his decommit.

Going to be really interesting to see how that latter works out. I cannot recall the last instate three-star to get the kind of out of state offers Reese did. Valdez Showers, who ended up doing not much at Florida, is the last guy I recall getting a big time offer without Michigan showing much interest—despite the commit here I think that's a fair thing to say about Reese. Hope Michigan didn't make a mistake here.

Etc.

AZ DE Connor Murphy is planning January visits. USC and Michigan were known; he is now thinking about Alabama as well. Murphy took a November visit to Oregon. He's injured but says he heals "like the Wolverine," which is probably not as telling as you want it to be.

Five star 2017 FL DE Josh Kaindoh is originally from Baltimore (he is one of those IMG dudes) and tells the PSU Rivals site that schools of interest are PSU, M, MSU, OSU, ND, and Maryland since Durkin was his contact at M. PSU is an early leader; sounds like Michigan is likely to be playing with or against Kaindoh.

FL LB commit Devin Bush likes the Brown hire as well. MI K Quinn Nordin sets officials to M, PSU, and Baylor. Still very technically a PSU commit.

Michigan just offered FL DE Joshua Uche, a Miami decommit.

Thursday Recruitin' Gets Bad Info

Thursday Recruitin' Gets Bad Info

Submitted by Ace on December 10th, 2015 at 2:13 PM

Attrition, Expected and... Not So Expected

In a move that should surprise no one, three-star in-state ILB David Reese announced his decommitment from Michigan yesterday so he can find a program that will allow him to enroll early:

The coaches assuredly saw that coming. That wasn't the case with the decommitment of three-star CA QB/ATH Victor Viramontes over the weekend, per 247's Clint Brewster ($):

The de-commitment came as a huge surprise to Michigan as coach John Baxter just saw Viramontes and reported back to Harbaugh that the visit went extremely well.

We have been told that Viramontes was given bad information from a member of his camp that Michigan wouldn’t give him a shot at quarterback and he would immediately be a fullback or linebacker, which is completely false.

'Crootin!

Sam Webb discussed the Viramontes situation extensively on his radio show Monday; alum96 was kind enough to write up a summary on the board that's well worth reading. The upshot: while Michigan wasn't expecting Viramontes to leave the class, they don't consider him a must-get—they'll continue to pursue him but at this point there are other uncommitted prospects who are higher priorities.

[Hit THE JUMP for the rest of the roundup.]

Tuesday Recruitin' Moves Up

Tuesday Recruitin' Moves Up

Submitted by Ace on October 20th, 2015 at 2:16 PM

Visit Reaction: M Leads For Jackson

While the game itself didn't have the desired outcome, last weekend proved to be a good one for Michigan's recruiting efforts. Four big-time official visitors took in the game and the Wolverines look to have a great shot with at least three of them.

Top-100 CA ATH Lamar Jackson, who could be a corner or safety at Michigan, told 247's Steve Lorenz that the Wolverines now lead after his official ($):

"Yeah, I'd say Michigan leads," he said. "The Michigan experience kind of spoke for itself. The atmosphere at the game was incredible, the academics at Michigan are great and I learned a lot about the program, the players and the leadership of Coach Harbaugh was really impressive to me. I wasn't sure heading into the visit because it's a long ways away and I was not familiar with the weather, but the visit definitely changed my mind on things."

Michigan is clearly in great shape. This was Jackson's fourth official and he hasn't scheduled his fifth; while many considered USC the odds-on favorite, he has no plans to see them on an unofficial before announcing his decision at the Under Armour game.

Five-star GA TE Isaac Nauta is right up there with Rashan Gary as the top overall target on the board, and he told Scout's Chad Simmons he was "very surprised" by how much he liked Michigan ($):

"Coach Harbaugh told me and showed me that there is a both, a need for me, and a want for me at Michigan.  We looked at film, we had a talk, and I saw a lot.  at the end of the visit, I was just surprised more than anything else.  

"I just did not expect it to be that way.  My mind about Michigan has definitely been changed."

Lorenz chatted with us on MGoRadio yesterday and said the visit couldn't have gone much better; that said, he also thinks Nauta still ends up at Georgia, though Michigan has made this a tough decision. Nauta plans to announce at the Army All-American Game.

Top-100 WR Dylan Crawford spoke to Rivals' Adam Gorney after his official visit and discussed his potential role at Michigan ($):

"I really like how it went," Crawford said. "I could see myself fitting in there. I feel like I could play there. I like the coaching staff and obviously the Michigan education is solid and the networking there is unreal. "They don't really have a slot player who could take the fly sweep. They were showing me all the footage about how they have to bring Jabrill (Peppers) on offense to do the bubble screen routes and stuff like that. They said if I was there they wouldn't need to do that."

After talking to a couple sources close to Crawford's recruitment, Lorenz put in a Crystal Ball pick for Michigan ($). One team to watch is Oregon; they haven't offered Crawford yet and could become a major factor if they do.

Finally, after taking officials to both Notre Dame and Michigan, top-100 CB David Long told Scout's Greg Biggins he isn't certain about his Stanford commitment:

"I think there's still some question if they want me more  for receiver or corner," Long said. "Notre Dame and Michigan both are recruiting me 100% for corner but I think that's still in question a little with Stanford.

"I'm still committed but I'm also thinking about maybe opening things up a little to make sure I'm doing the right thing. It's such a huge decision and I want to make sure I'm 100% comfortable with it. You can't go wrong with Stanford and I know that but I just want to be totally sure about this."

Long said he "got a little better vibe and felt more comfortable at Michigan" compared to Notre Dame. He's still a Stanford commit and the other California schools will be in the mix as well.

[Hit THE JUMP for the rest of the roundup.]

Friday Recruitin' Is Already Happening

Friday Recruitin' Is Already Happening

Submitted by Ace on October 16th, 2015 at 5:59 PM

MSU Visitors: Biggest Recruiting Weekend Of The Fall

Well, I hadn't even started this post before Michigan got a commitment this weekend. Three-star GA RB Kurt Taylor is the newest member of the 2017 class; here's a short post on him for now, and he'll get the full Hello treatment on Sunday.

As for the rest of this weekend's visitors, 247's Steve Lorenz has the full list posted for free. Some highlights follow.

Official visitors:

  • Five-star GA TE Isaac Nauta is arguably the most important recruit left on Michigan's board—yes, perhaps even including Rashan Gary—and this weekend's visit will give the Wolverines a chance to push past home squad Georgia.
  • Four-star CA WR Dylan Crawford hasn't let on much about his recruitment, but 247 national analyst Steve Wiltfong recently put in a Crystal Ball pick to Michigan.
  • Four-star CA ATH Lamar Jackson was ticketed for USC by most; with that program in a state of disarray, the door is open for another school to make a move.
  • Four-star CA CB David Long is a Stanford commit but Michigan appears to have a real shot regardless.

Unofficial visitors:

  • Penn State commits Lavert Hill (four-star Detroit King CB) and Quinn Nordin (top-ranked Rockford kicker) will be two to keep an close eye on this weekend, especially Nordin. Hill's teammate Donnie Corley (four-star WR) is also expected to be in attendance.
  • Four-star 2017 CO QB Dylan McCaffrey, Michigan's top target at the position in the class, will be on campus. With Stanford, where his father Ed went and brother Christian currently stars, coming off a blowout of UCLA, Michigan might need to make a statement.
  • Several members of the Pipeline 9, including five-star Cass Tech WR Donovan Peoples-Jones, are expected to be there.
  • Three-star 2017 Ann Arbor Pioneer OLB Antjuan Simmons could be in line for an offer; his recruitment has blown up lately.

There are plenty more at the link above. This is a huge recruiting weekend for Michigan. That probably didn't need to be said.

[Hit THE JUMP for the rest of the roundup.]