Friday Recruitin' Goes Shirtless

Friday Recruitin' Goes Shirtless

Submitted by Ace on June 5th, 2015 at 2:02 PM

Summer of Harbaugh, Commence

Michigan's nine-day, ten-camp tour kicked off yesterday in Indianapolis, where Jim Harbaugh, sweatshirt tucked into khakis, instructed a group of campers that included quarterback commit Brandon Peters and RB/ATH targets Kiante Enis and Chris Evans. Here is what some of that instruction looked like, via MLive; you're going to want to pay close attention starting around the :30 mark:

Nick Baumgardner has an excellent recap of the day, which also features an amazing photo of Harbaugh and Peters. 247's Steve Wiltfong focused more on the evaluation side of things, and his look at the top performer from the camp may feature on this site again quite soon:

Indianapolis (Ind.) Ben Davis four-star running back Chris Evans typically leaves the field he played on as the best player and the same goes for this day.

Evans has speed, evident in him making the state finals in the 100-meter dash among other events, but it’s how fluid he is that impresses. The 5-foot-11, 186-pound Evans is so smooth changing direction. He’s an impact guy on the next level at running back, receiver, cornerback or safety.

At this particular camp, Evans was a cut above the rest through running back agility drills and in 1-on-1s it was easy for him to abuse the linebackers on the field. He’s sure-handed. Perhaps Evans best trait is his love for the game. If there is a football in the air, he’s typically performing at that particular camp.

Evans has confirmed to both Rivals and 247 that he'll announce on Saturday. Sam Webb indicates Michigan is recruiting him as a slot receiver, and Evans didn't hide his intentions much when talking about his upcoming decision with The Wolverine's Chris Balas ($):

Evans confirmed that he plans to announce Saturday now rather than wait, and though he wouldn't give a list, he did say Michigan was high on his list. 

"Academics," he said when asked the best part about his trip. "They were a big hit on academics first. Everything centered around that and what you do with that. That's the biggest part."

He said tradition and comfort level with the program and coaches would be the deciding factors in his decision, and it's clear U-M has emerged as a serious threat.

It'll be a surprise if Evans isn't a Wolverine this weekend.

Meanwhile, I've buried the lede: Michigan's first satellite camp immediately produced a commitment in Kiante Enis. There's a whole lot more on him in yesterday's Hello post. Since that went up, he clarified his positional future—somewhat, at least—to Scout's Anna Hickey ($):

Enis projects as an athlete at Michigan.

"They had me with the running backs today," Enis said. "I know they said come in as a running back first, and then receiver second and after that secondary."

After watching his film again, I think safety may represent Enis' best chance of seeing the field quickly, not only because of the depth on Michigan's roster, but his closing speed and willingness to lay a hit. That said, it could be hard to keep the ball out of his hands; I also liked his patience as a runner, which may help him stick at RB even though he doesn't fit the burly mold of a quintessential Harbaugh back.

Now the coaches are already on to camp the second, this one in Prattville, Alabama, home of incoming freshman Keith Washington and 2016 commit Kingston Davis. Davis gave Wolverine247 an update on his commitment status ($):

Since his commitment to Michigan, Davis has seen two major SEC offers from LSU and Florida. While a visit to LSU fell through last weekend, his current plan is to see both of those schools. He has no current plans as of now to return to Ann Arbor until the fall for an official visit. However, he maintains his commitment to the Wolverines.

"My commitment is solid," he said. "It would take something major for me to reconsider. There'd have to be a chance for a great education and a great opportunity to play early that would be better than what Michigan has to offer."

The good news is with the attention he's getting, I doubt Davis will remain a three-star for long; the flip side is Michigan will have to fend off some top programs, though if they can afford attrition from this class, it's at running back.

The highest-rated prospect at the Prattville camp, five-star AL SDE Marlon Davidson, is planning to make his way to Ann Arbor soon:

Getting Davidson on campus would be huge, though he's an Auburn legacy who most expect will end up there.



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Thursday Recruitin' Takes The Blame

Thursday Recruitin' Takes The Blame

Submitted by Ace on May 7th, 2015 at 2:02 PM

Hoosier Leader Now?

Michigan hosted a pair of four-star Indiana prospects on Monday, and it was well-known that the Wolverines were working from behind on each. Wide receiver Austin Mack, considered an Ohio State lean, forged a stronger connection with the new coaching staff, per Scout's Josh Newkirk ($):

"This visit really helped a lot," Mack said. "This is the second time I was able to get down and speak with the coaches and build that relationship. It definitely ranks them a lot higher in my eyes.

"Seeing how beneficial the education and the coaches are at Michigan. Knowing that the next few years they won't be losing like they have been. Success is going to come and it's definitely going to come from hard work. They have definitely moved up and are team to think about."

Mack told Newkirk that he has no leader heading into his June 7th decision; the general consensus, however, is that Michigan made a move but still has ground to make up on the Buckeyes.

That's also the case with defensive end Auston Robertson and Michigan State, though Michigan managed to replace another rival in his top three, per ESPN's TomVH ($):

“I don’t really have a relationship like that with Ohio State anymore, so why keep them in the top three,” he said. “So now it’s Michigan State, Notre Dame and Michigan."

Robertson admits the Wolverines have some ground to make up on the other two schools on the list, but says he will give them a shot to do so. 

Robertson wants his mother to visit each of his top three schools before he also decides on June 7th, so while Michigan still needs to make a push, they should get that opportunity.

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Monday Recruitin' Plays It Coy

Monday Recruitin' Plays It Coy

Submitted by Ace on April 13th, 2015 at 12:10 PM

Quick note: I'm taking the rest of this week off. Since many have asked, my health is in a good place right now, and a week of relaxation should only help in that regard. Thanks to all who've asked about me, and I'll be back next week.

Michigan In Top Groups For Kelly, Okwara

A couple highly ranked targets on defense announced top groups that included Michigan this week. Five-star CA OLB Caleb Kelly included the Wolverines in a powerhouse-packed unordered top ten: Cal, Notre Dame, Alabama, USC, UCLA, Oklahoma, Florida State, Oregon, Michigan, and LSU. Kelly took an unofficial to Ann Arbor last month that went well, putting Michigan in position to potentially secure an official visit; Oklahoma currently holds the lead on his Crystal Ball.

Four-star NC WDE Julian Okwara named Michigan to his final five alongside Clemson, Georgia, Notre Dame, and Ole Miss. Okwara will make his decision on April 30th, and all signs point to Notre Dame, where his older brother Romeo is a senior defensive lineman.

Meanwhile, after four-star MD OG Terrance Davis said some very encouraging things about Michigan immediately following his spring game weekend visit, he flat-out told Rivals' Adam Friedman at a Rivals camp in Richmond that the Wolverines lead in his recruitment ($):

Rivals250 offensive lineman Terrance Davis recently visited Michigan and he is also going to visit Ohio State in the near future. As of now the Wolverines are Davis' favorite, but Alabama, Florida State, Georgia, Maryland, Penn State, UCLA, Tennessee and Arkansas are all also in the mix. Davis wants to take official visits to Michigan, UCLA, Georgia and Maryland.

Getting Davis back on campus for an official visit would be a great sign.

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Thursday Recruitin' Makes Dated Ska Reference

Thursday Recruitin' Makes Dated Ska Reference

Submitted by Ace on March 5th, 2015 at 1:07 PM

Offered: Mighty Mighty Boss T.

FIRE UP THE NOTY SIREN. Michigan has offered top-100 CA DT Boss Tagaloa, per 247's Steve Lorenz ($):

"It's really a surreal feeling to get the opportunity to play for [Harbaugh]," Tagaloa said. "When I got the offer, I guess I couldn't really put it into words how I felt. It's just been a really great blessing to have all of these opportunities. Not that long ago, I was watching Coach Harbaugh coach my favorite team and now I could possibly play for him in college. That's a really cool feeling."

Tagaloa is a longtime teammate of top TE target Devin Asiasi, who he says is "like a brother" to him; they plan to take their official visits together and could very well end up at the same school. Both plan to take most of their official visits after the season and commit on Signing Day, so this recruitment will play out over the long haul.

Because this is how Michigan operates now, that wasn't the end of offers going out to California prospects last week. Top-100 CB Trevon Sidney told GBW's Josh Newkirk he'd like to visit Ann Arbor this summer after adding an offer ($). He said USC, UCLA, Washington, and Notre Dame are the schools going after him the hardest.

Three-star CA WDE Bryson Young only had three offers heading into the week—Colorado State, Fresno State, and Oregon State—before Michigan jumped into the fray and made a major impression, per Sam Webb ($):

“I was not expecting Michigan to look at me.  They’re a great school and I never would have thought that they looked over here for players.  It was a complete shock.” ...

“(Talking to Harbaugh) was one of those (things) I’ll never forget.  That was amazing.  I did not expect that at all.  Talking to a coach from Michigan is fantastic enough, and talking to Harbaugh that was just unexpected.  I’ll never forget that.  That was great.”

Young said he's "definitely" considering Michigan now and he's looking to set up a visit. He may still be a tough pull from California—UCLA offered yesterday, and Young called USC his "dream school" while discussing the Michigan offer. The Trojans haven't offered yet, but if they do—which seems likely—they'll be the prohibitive favorite.

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