Thursday Recruitin' Stocks Up On Snake Oil

Thursday Recruitin' Stocks Up On Snake Oil Comment Count

Ace January 22nd, 2015 at 3:00 PM

Zach Gentry: Eyes Off Texas?

In recent days, Texas has turned up the heat on their pursuit of 2015 five-star QB Kyler Murray, a Texas A&M commit, even getting him to take an unofficial visit to Austin.

What does this have to do with Michigan? Well, Texas already has a 2015 QB commit: 6'7", 230-pound NM four-star Zach Gentry, who pledged to the Longhorns last May and has turned down overtures from the likes of Alabama and Tennessee since. With Texas eyeing Murray, Jim Harbaugh visited Gentry in Albuquerque on Monday, and things are moving quickly. Gentry removed "committed to Texas" from his Twitter bio, and multiple outlets, including Wolverine247, report that he'll take an official visit to Ann Arbor this weekend.

Just like that, Michigan may very well be the favorite to end up with him:

What would the Wolverines be getting? Scout's free evaluation makes him sound like an ideal fit for a Harbaugh offense:

Gentry is an intriguing quarterback with NFL size but surprising mobility for a big man. He has a downfield arm and can make every throw but also shows the ability, when flushed out of the pocket, to run for positive yards. He looks to have a good feel in the pocket and doesn't panic when the rush comes at him. He can keep his eyes down the field and throws an accurate ball whether in or outside of the pocket-Biggins

The film backs that up; other than some mechanical issues with his delivery, there's little not to like there.

Jay Harbaugh checked out another under-the-radar QB, California prospect Anthony Gordon. Gordon, like McLane Carter, was very productive in high school on a title-winning team but hasn't generated much in the way of college interest or attention from the recruiting services.

[Hit THE JUMP for a couple impending announcements, a rundown of weekend official visitors, and much more.]


Monday Recruitin' Enrolls Early

Monday Recruitin' Enrolls Early Comment Count

Ace January 5th, 2015 at 1:58 PM

Two Down

Two 2015 commits are officially in: QB Alex Malzone and ATH Brian Cole enrolled at Michigan this week.. Given what should be an open, heated competition for the starting quarterback job next season, it's especially nice to get Malzone on campus early; while he won't be the favorite to land atop the depth chart, he's got the talent to make a run for it.

I've failed to mention this in the past couple roundups, but as you might expect, the recruits who stuck with Michigan through the turmoil of the last several months are very solid in their pledges now that Jim Harbaugh is in place. 2015 four-star S Tyree Kinnel, for instance, is back to recruiting for the Wolverines after previously considering a flip to Notre Dame, per MLive's Nick Baumgardner:

"Oh yeah I'm recruiting," Kinnel said. "I'm talking to (five-star corner) Marcus Lewis, (five-star corner) Iman Marshall, I've been texting four-star safety Shaun Crawford (a former Michigan pledge, currently a Notre Dame commit) a bit.

"And I'm still talking with Alex (Malzone), he's staying on top of everyone. He's giving me more names to keep texting. He's on top of everybody. We're trying to get this whole thing together, and I know (Michigan commit) Brian Cole has been recruiting like crazy, too. We're trying to finish this class strong."

Marshall is reportedly setting up an official visit, while Lewis is considering the same; unfortunately, there hasn't been much to indicate Crawford will reconsider Michigan.

In other news, Kinnel's senior highlight reel just posted on Hudl.

Several To Go

Surprise! Four-star CT TE Chris Clark's recruitment remains bizarre as all hell. Clark is down to Michigan and UCLA, and he's scheduled officials to Ann Arbor for January 16th and LA the following weekend, per 247's Steve Wiltfong.

Which program will land Clark is anybody's guess. He told 247's Tom Loy there's "a part of me that feels UCLA is going to be the place for me," naming UCLA as his leader even though he's never been to their campus. He's also yet to meet Jim Harbaugh in person, which could swing things the other way, and... well, you try to figure out the quotes he gave GBW's Kyle Bogenschutz ($):

Based on his previous verbal commitment to Michigan under Brady Hoke, Clark did admit that gives the Wolverines a slight edge down the stretch in his recruitment.

“I would say I think UCLA, right now, in terms of the opportunity, it’s better there,” Clark said. “But I’d say in terms of my comfort level and in terms of where I know more about, it would definitely be Michigan.

“But I think the opportunity is a little greater at UCLA from all the stuff I know now but I think in terms of where I probably feel more at home or where I feel more comfortable with, Michigan would have that advantage right now.”

Bogenschutz took that to mean Michigan holds the edge. I am the shrug emoticon.

Three-star MI ATH John Kelly spoke to Harbaugh last week; he told Scout's Josh Newkirk that the new Michigan coach is "a real cool guy," and he's being recruiting as an athlete who can pick his position when he gets to campus ($). Kelly set up official visits to Tennessee and Minnesota later this month and plans to do the same for Michigan and Michigan State before a signing day decision.

[Hit THE JUMP for updates on several top 2015 targets as well as Harbaugh hire reactions from a handful of the best 2016 prospects in the country.]


Thursday Recruitin' Runs Down The Candidates

Thursday Recruitin' Runs Down The Candidates Comment Count

Ace January 1st, 2015 at 2:28 PM

If you missed it, Brian handled the recruiting primer for which needs Michigan should fill to finish out the 2015 class. Today's recruiting roundup will attempt to figure out which prospects are most likely to fill the ten or so remaining spots.


CT TE Chris Clark (4*, #2 TE, #80 Ovr. on 247 Composite): Clark, a former Michigan commit, consistently stated over the last few weeks that his interest in the Wolverines would rise significantly if Harbaugh took the job. He spoke with Harbaugh—whom he called the "LeBron James of coaching"—this week and told MLive's Nick Baumgardner it went very well:

"We kind of just talked about how he hopes Michigan turns into 'Tight End U,' and all the top tight ends he produced while he was at Stanford," said Clark, who will play in the Under Armour All-American Game on Friday. "I think six of them went on to the NFL. He said he thinks I could be a great leader for the class, and he's just hoping I'll be a part of it.

"He was a really cool guy, I liked him a lot."

Clark is now down to Michigan and UCLA, and I'd guess he ends up back in the fold.

MI ATH John Kelly (3*, #57 ATH): Kelly could play either running back or defensive back at the next level, though given Michigan's needs I'd guess he'll be recruited for defense. He spoke with Harbaugh within the last couple days and told 247's Steve Lorenz he was "really pumped" about the conversation ($). Even prior to that, he indicated Michigan was moving up his list ($):

"I would love to play for Coach Harbaugh," Kelly said. "I hear he's a tough coach. I'm looking to play for a coach that will try to squeeze out all of the talent and potential in me. His hiring is a great thing for Michigan as well. As long as he contacts me and my family, the chances of me playing at Michigan will definitely increase."

Michigan State is Michigan's chief competition, with Minnesota and Iowa also factoring in. Getting Kelly could help M's efforts in pulling in another major target: former RB commit and current OSU pledge Mike Weber, who's close friends with Kelly; they'd stated in the past they'd like to play together in college, and the Buckeyes aren't pursuing Kelly.

[Hit THE JUMP for probable visitors, other candidates, and the names you can scratch off the wish list.]


Monday Recruitin' Waits

Monday Recruitin' Waits Comment Count

Ace December 1st, 2014 at 1:15 PM

Goodbye: Mike Weber

As for his visit plans, per Rivals' Josh Helmholdt, we'll have to wait:

Since Detroit Cass Tech four-star running back Mike Weber de-committed from Michigan earlier this month, the question has been which schools will receive his official visits.

"Alabama, Ohio State and Michigan State is all I really know right now. I haven't decided on the other two," Weber said. "I haven't set them up yet. I still have to sit down with my parents and see which ones I should take and when. I think I will take at least two in December."

Michigan is still under consideration. Alabama, Georgia, and Notre Dame didn't wait long to offer Weber after his decommitment.

Tyree Kinnel Waits

From Sam Webb:

["]So I’m not too worried about if it Hoke is fired, what I’ll have to do.  I know I’ve got other scholarships to schools that said they would take me.  At the end the day I know I’ll be fine, so I’m just focused on the state championship right now with my team.”

That isn’t meant to suggest that the longtime Wolverine pledge is definitely headed elsewhere if the current coaching staff is removed.

“They would still be a school I consider,” he said.

Kinnel has no visits planned, yet.

Cole and Clark Wait

From Webb's latest in the Detroit News:

"As [Brian Cole's] daddy I'm telling you we're still evaluating everything. We're looking around, but we're still committed to Michigan."

"I'm just trying to get some other options in case the coaches I have a really good relationship with at Michigan end up going," [Chris Clark] told "And then I'll just have other options.

"I want to see what new coach they get -- if they get a new coach. I just really like my tight end coach at Michigan, Coach (Dan) Ferrigno. He's been with Coach Hoke for a while. If Coach Hoke goes, then he's going to go too."

Grant Newsome, Andrew David, Jon Runyan Jr., and Alex Malzone are solid, at least.

John Kelly, Uncommitted, Waits

Per 247's Steve Lorenz:

"I'm not really worried about that stuff," he said. "They will probably find a good replacement with whatever they do. I've heard about Jim Harbaugh. That would be a really big hire if they could get him. That would help a lot. Besides that, I'm just waiting and seeing. I'm in no hurry to make a decision right now and I'm not favoring any certain schools over another at this point."

Michigan State and Minnesota are also under serious consideration; Kelly has also fielded recent offers from Iowa and Tennessee.

Auden Tate, After A "Great" Visit, Waits

Via Scout's Sam Webb and Amy Campbell:

“I’m a solid commit to FSU still,” Tate insisted.  “I’m just taking some visits… just making sure.”

That begs the question, did Michigan give him something to think about?

“I don’t know,” he replied.  “Kind of.”

Tate also visited Florida last weekend. They're waiting, too, but in a much different way.

Not Waiting: KLS, Garrett Taylor

Happy trails to Keisean Lucier-South, who committed to UCLA, and former M commit Garrett Taylor, who committed to Penn State.



Tuesday Recruitin' Doesn't Take A Bye

Tuesday Recruitin' Doesn't Take A Bye Comment Count

Ace November 18th, 2014 at 4:38 PM

Michigan Offers 2015 Corner

After decommitments left Michigan with Tyree Kinnel as their lone member of the 2015 class who projects to play in the secondary, further offers were inevitable. Afforded time by the bye week, the coaches came through with one to Long Beach (CA) Poly three-star Colin Samuel, per 247's Barton Simmons. The Wolverines weren't alone, however, as UCLA and Washington State offered Samuel yesterday; while Michigan should get serious interest, the Bruins offer looms large for a California prospect who'd previously gone under the radar.

Steve Lorenz posted an updated list of cornerback targets that's worth a read if you've got access to 247. Previous top targets Iman Marshall and Marcus Lewis are longshots at best at this point. Two more California prospects, three-stars Octavius Spencer and Malik Psalms, have each fielded Michigan interest with an offer as of yet; same goes for three-star Wake Forest commit Amari Henderson. I'd bet at least one of those three pulls in an offer before long.

The other defensive back recruit to watch is Oak Park's John Kelly, who got his coveted Michigan offer last month and is seriously considering the Wolverines after previously narrowing his recruitment to Michigan State and Minnesota. Kelly recently told Scout's Allen Trieu just how much that offer meant to him:

A lot of people might say, Michigan has not had a great year, why's he looking at them so hard? 
Michigan is a really prestigious school, and although the year is not going as planned, they're always going to pretty much be a dominant program, and another thing was, I've been getting recruited by those guys since like ninth grade, so for an offer to finally come was amazing. I still was happy. Even if they still went [winless] I would have been just as happy. 

Kelly will use his three official visits on Michigan, MSU, and Minnesota. According to Rivals' Josh Helmholdt, he's set the Minnesota official for December 12th, and while he hasn't set his official visits to the two in-state schools, he's got plans to hit campus in the very near future ($):

"With Michigan, I am going to be up at the game when they play Maryland (Nov. 22). That will probably be an unofficial," Kelly said. "I have been in contact with Coach (Chris) Singletary just about every week. It's really the connections and atmosphere up there."

It certainly wouldn't be a bad sign if Kelly takes a couple visits to Ann Arbor over the next month or so before making his decision.

[Hit THE JUMP for several new 2016 offers, the latest on Darrin Kirkland, and a couple of hoops updates.]


Tuesday Recruitin' Doesn't Look Back

Tuesday Recruitin' Doesn't Look Back Comment Count

Ace October 28th, 2014 at 4:04 PM

If you're here for the Brandon post, scroll down or click here.

Real Talk

TomVH posted a lengthy article in the wake of Garrett Taylor's decommitment in which he quotes several recruits—including Taylor, Chris Clark, and Thiyo Lukusa—discussing the impact of Michigan's poor season and the accompanying uncertainty on their recruitments. As you'd imagine, it's not a fun read ($):

"I wanted to be a part of a program that knows what it takes to win and the players and coaches develop that culture. I felt like Michigan lost that while watching them play," Taylor said. "As well as the fact that I felt like Michigan wouldn't put me in the best position to get to the next level after college, especially with the problems they've had in developing their players." 

Oof. Taylor will not be reconsidering Michigan as his recruitment moves forward, which... sounds about right.

Tom also posted a rundown of the commits he believes are likely to stick at Michigan despite the turmoil in his Big Ten roundup. With only nine commits left in the class, this should come as no surprise, but the list isn't a long one ($):

Quarterback Alex Malzone, offensive lineman Jon Runyan and kicker Andrew David are prospects who would likely stay committed no matter the coach, which is good for the future. Keeping Malzone will be a big deal as current quarterback Devin Gardner will be gone after this season. 


Outside of Malzone, Runyan, David and most likely Brian Cole, there is a chance most of the other commitments look elsewhere. 

Complicating matters is the fact that Malzone, Cole, Clark, Darrin Kirkland, and Mike Weber have all at one point or another stated an intention to enroll in December; if Michigan's coaching situation isn't resolved by then, it would put those recruits in a tough spot.

[Hit THE JUMP for Michigan's latest 2015 offeree—a recruit who might actually come, even!]


Thursday Recruitin' Makes Empty, Creepy Promises

Thursday Recruitin' Makes Empty, Creepy Promises Comment Count

Ace September 18th, 2014 at 1:09 PM

KLS Update: Another Contender Emerges

Michigan and UCLA have long been the top contenders for five-star CA WDE/OLB Keisean Lucier-South. After Lucier-South's first official visit, however, there appears to be more competition, per Rivals' Adam Gorney ($):

"From that visit, I was really surprised with Oklahoma and I really like them," Lucier-South said. "I just love how they work the team. I love the program. The players said the coaches are all for the players and they care about the players first and it's just like a big family.

"The whole town cares about the football team. I really like that. Oklahoma is doing great right now. I'm not going to say who my leader is but they're improving and they're doing a great job."

KLS's primary recruiter at Oklahoma is Jerry Montgomery, whom you may remember as the former Michigan D-line coach. While that would add a cruel twist if KLS ends up in Norman, U-M still gets their opportunity to impress on their own official visit when the five-star comes to Ann Arbor for the Penn State game.

[Hit THE JUMP for updates on Thiyo Lukusa's upcoming decision, new 2016 OL offers, a potential late in-state offer, and Wake Forest taking the photoshop recruiting game to creepy new lows.]


Future Blue Originals: 2014 Prep Kickoff Classic

Future Blue Originals: 2014 Prep Kickoff Classic Comment Count

Ace September 2nd, 2014 at 4:28 PM

Mike Weber [Photo: Dave Nasternak/MGoBlog]

Yes, FBO is back after being mostly absent last year; if you're unfamiliar, this is the series in which I go to high school games involving Michigan commits/targets, get some video, and provide my best attempt at a scouting report. Helping me this year is MGoRightHandMan Dave Nasternak, who took all the photos and video for us at Friday's Prep Kickoff Classic at Wayne State.

The two featured games this week are Southfield vs. Orchard Lake St. Mary's and Cass Tech vs. Oak Park; despite our two spare batteries, the camera started running out of juice during the late game, so I've only included highlights from Cass Tech's offense for that one. Show? On with it.

Southfield vs. Orchard Lake St. Mary's

Overview: OLSM pulled out a 21-19 victory thanks to a big-time performance from soph. QB Kanye Harris (21-36, 303 yards, 3 TD, 1 INT) and long touchdowns by senior MSU commit Tyson Smith (60-yard receiving TD) and sophomore WR Kahlee "KJ" Hamler (47-yard punt return TD). Despite being at a major size disadvantage up front, OLSM dominated Southfield in the trenches, leaving no room to run for four-star 2016 RB Matt Falcon (5 carries, 5 yards), who missed a decent portion of the game with an apparent ankle injury.

[Hit THE JUMP for video highlights and scouting reports on Mike Weber, Josh Ross, Lavert Hill, Matt Falcon, and several others.]


Future Blue Originals: De La Salle vs. Pioneer And Prep Kickoff Classic

Future Blue Originals: De La Salle vs. Pioneer And Prep Kickoff Classic Comment Count

Ace August 28th, 2012 at 3:30 PM

It was a marathon opening weekend of high school football; Shane Morris and Warren De La Salle overcame early struggles to soundly defeat Pioneer on Friday night, then Saturday featured four marquee matchups in the Prep Kickoff Classic at Wayne State headlined by a heavyweight tilt between Division I state champs Cass Tech and Division II state champs Brother Rice.

A note before I move along to the scouting portion: Yes, there was a shooting scare on Saturday night. It's remarkably unfortunate that a fight between a couple of idiots—in which someone threatened to pull a gun and caused a panic, though the police say no gun was present—has marred what was otherwise a stellar event. Kurt Kosmowski, Marty Dobek, and the whole Detroit Sports Commission crew put a ton of effort into pulling together 12 high school teams over two days, giving these young athletes a chance to play at a college stadium in front of nearly 10,000 people. The DSC has announced that they'll once again hold the Prep Kickoff Classic at Wayne State next year; while I hope they beef up security a bit, I'm also confident that they'll once again put together a first-rate football showcase.

[UPDATE: I got clarification of what actually went on from Tim. There was an argument that caused the first rush of people running to avoid the confrontation, and officials stopped the game since people ran onto the field. The fight continued in another area of the concourse soon after, and this unfortunately coincided with fireworks at nearby Comerica Park, which people mistook for gunshots. There was no gun present. Apologies if there was any misunderstanding about the situation.]

With that out of the way, let's get to the recap of all the action after THE JUMP.