Wednesday Recruitin' Is Big Chillin'

Wednesday Recruitin' Is Big Chillin'

Submitted by Tim on November 10th, 2010 at 10:21 AM

Remember, all-time updates can be found on the 2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Board. If you have any recruiting tips or questions, you can e-mail them to me at [email protected] or tweet @varsityblue. For game updates on Wolverine commits, check out the F riday Night Lights series.

(Five) Star Search!

jerniganarmy.jpg

The Gainesville Sun's Ed Aschoff gives the latest on a few prospects of mutual interest for the Wolverines and Gators. First, FL DT Tim Jernigan (at right):

Michigan, FSU, LSU and Alabama are all ahead of Florida... For now, the chances of him ending up at Florida seem to be slipping away more and more. This could all change if Florida turns around its season, so this one is not over.

...and also FL WR Sammy Watkins (recent Army All-American Bowl selection):

His favorites remain Clemson, Michigan and Miami. I think Clemson has the advantage in this one.

Both are mostly maintaining the status quo from the past couple weeks. Grant Redhead, high school coach of FL CB Dallas Crawford and Watkins, tells Tom that Michigan has a solid lead for Crawford, and that Michigan's finish to the season may have an impact on Watkins's feelings on the maize and blue. The two will set up their official to Ann Arbor soon (both of their previous visits have been unofficials). Jernigan was officially selected to the Army All-American Bowl. At his press conference, Jernigan talked a bit of recruiting:

"I grew up watching all of them," Jernigan said. "They kind of present some unique situations as far as depth-wise and great academic schools, especially Michigan, great academic school. Those are the things that really stood out to me... It is nice up there. I got time to hang out with Coach Rod and I got a chance to hang out with Denard and got to meet some of the guys around the program. Real good people, my type of people, small town guys."

That sounds downright glowing about Ann Arbor, but there are a few visits left before Timmy makes up his mind.

Rivals has rehashed their Top 100, and FL RB Commit Demetrius Hart has moved up to #17, the top 4-star on their list. Given his stats against some of the best competition in the country, there's nothing dude can do to get 5-star status except grow.

Visits

DC RB Malcolm Crockett visited Michigan for the Illinois game, as his coach tells Tom. He projects to either side of the ball at the next level, but Michigan is looking at him as a downhill-type runner and complement to Demetrius Hart. Crockett is a teammate of 2012 DC DT Eddie Goldman, whom Scout has already pegged as a 5-star for next year.

NJ TE Jack Tabb plans to visit Michigan for the Wisconsin game in a couple weeks as long as his high school playoff schedule doesn't interfere.

IL OL Chris Bryant has been out with a knee injury this season, but was expected to return to the lineup last weekend. He'll visit both Arizona and Michigan (Big Chill) early in December ($, info in header). A bit more on his junior teammate Robert Gregory below.

AZ OL Cyrus Hobbi is regularly hearing from Rich Rodriguez. Last week, Tom told us he's planning to set up an official to Ann Arbor.

LA DT Mickey Johnson is still considering a visit to Michigan ($, info in header).

PA DE Deion Barnes will take all 5 of his official visits, even if he falls in love with one of the schools he sees early. He looks at former teammate Je'Ron Stokes (now a Michigan sophomore) as one of his inspirations, a positive sign for the Wolverines.

With his senior season over, MI LB Desmond Morgan will now focus on recruiting ($, info in header). He tells Tom that he may officially visit Michigan for the Big Chill hockey game, and with no inside information, I wouldn't be surprised if he made a decision around that time.

Michigan has "turned up the heat" ($, info in header) on MD CB Blake Countess. According to Tom, that "heat" comes in the form of an official offer. Mike Farrell of Rivals said last week that the Wolverines may lead for Countess, a consensus 4-star prospect. Countess is setting up a visit with Michigan's coaches, possibly for The Big Chill.

Etc.

NC QB Marquise Williams is solidifying his pledge to North Carolina "as of right now", but he's still taking more visits.

MI WR DeAnthony Arnett was the infamous "mystery visitor" to Ann Arbor last weekend, and he seemed to enjoy the wide-open passing game ($, info in header). Coming off the heels of his trip to Michigan, he'll be making a decision tonight... but had some fun throwing fans for a loop last night.

Arnett has consistently stated that he's a Michigan fan, but that he had worries about not getting the ball in the Wolverines' offense. With that fear out of the way, Michigan may be a factor in his decision, but conventional wisdom has him picking Tennessee.

Happy Trails, MD Ath Darius Jennings, who has narrowed his list to 6 non-Michigan schools.

...In Walkon News

MI FB/LB Joey Kerridge "has future plans set" ($, info in header). His Scout profile now lists high interest in Michigan and no offers, so we can safely assume he plans to be a preferred walkon at Michigan.

2012

BennieConey1.jpg

FL QB Bennie Coney (at right), who holds a Michigan offer but was dismissed from his high school team, talks to a couple publications about his future. He say's he'll return to Plant City for his senior season, and has nothing but good things to say about his high school coach, and vice versa:

“Me and my coach, we’re good,” Coney said. “My coach is cool. We talk every day. We’ve still got our relationship...”

His coach has been in contact with college coaches to explain what happened and it’s doubtful that even a school like Notre Dame would view the incident as an infraction that would cause them to drop Coney from its radar. Coney is still interested in the Irish and, although they haven’t offered, they lead along with Florida State.

Since his coach is willing to vouch for him to college coaches, there's a chance Michigan may still be interested.

I brought up IL QB Robert Gregory last week, but in case you needed confirmation he's a good fit for Michigan... yeah, he is. ESPNChicago has him #3 in their Player of the Year rankings.

Mike Dyer of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports that Michigan is recruiting OH WR Dewayne Stanford.

OH OL Ryan Anderson visited Michigan a few weeks back ($, info in header).

In visit mini-news, I saw MI DT Dan O'Brien in the house with his dad at Friday's basketball exhibition against Saginaw Valley. His older brother, Patrick, hoops it up for the Cardinals.

OH LB Mason Monheim has visited Michigan already this fall, and is getting interest from a number of other Big Ten schools, including future member Nebraska. Orrville's defensive coordinator, Jason Haley, talks a bit about his game:

"Mason's right there with any we've had," Haley said. "He just has a knack for reading keys, and then getting from Point A to Point B. A lot of it is instincts, and watching film. He gets his read, then gets to the ball and makes plays... Across the board in college, you're not seeing that 6-3, 245-pound linebacker as often -- they're all looking for that hybrid guy who can run. Mason fits that mold."

At 6-1 210, Monheim could be a future bandit/spur type, or a guy who grows into a full-size linebacker.

Michigan is showing interest in NJ LB Jazzmar Clax, a lock for the all-name first team whether he ends up in Ann Arbor or not.

Wednesday Recruitin' Awaits the Dee-cision

Wednesday Recruitin' Awaits the Dee-cision

Submitted by Tim on September 29th, 2010 at 10:05 AM

[Ed: see what he did there?]

Remember, all-time updates can be found on the 2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Board. If you have any recruiting tips or questions, you can e-mail them to me at [email protected] or tweet @varsityblue. For game updates on Wolverine commits, check out the Friday Night Lights series.

Decision Time is Finally Here. Maybe.

WallsArmy.jpg

GA S Avery Walls has been named to the Army All-American game. His coach had plenty of good things to say about him too:

"Avery came to this school and just instantly was a great leader who showed great character," Gess said. "As far as him as a player, he just shuts down a whole side of the field because coaches won't throw or run that way. He also raises his teammates' level of play. He's a great representative of Eagle's Landing Christian and what they stand for."

He'll make a decision next month, after a couple visits to Oregon and Cal. Michigan was in great shape after his visit to Ann Arbor, and hopefully the Ducks and Bears do nothing to change that. Walls is an early-enrollment candidate.

If FL RB Demetrius Hart doesn't make his decision next week, it wouldn't be the first time he's changed his mind about an announcement timeframe. However, this is the most public he's been about when he'll pick his school. Hart is taking an official visit to Alabama this weekend. Tom hinted that Hart may take another unofficial visit in his weekly update, and I bet that would be to Michigan should he choose the Wolverines. It's still looking good here.

Assume the Position: D-Line

Michigan is hunting for at least one defensive tackle, and probably another defensive end. Who are some of the candidates?

FL DT Tim Jernigan will not decide until after his senior season. He's also started planning out some of his visits:

He said he plans on attending at least one game involving each of the schools, including the UF-Alabama game Oct. 2 in Tuscaloosa, Ala., the LSU-UF game in Gainesville on Oct. 9 and games at Michigan and USC.

That means no Michigan State game in Ann Arbor, leaving Iowa, Illinois and Wisconsin weekends. If his coach is right:

The biggest factor the coach said would play into Jernigan’s decision is playing time.

With a college-ready frame and skill set, Howard said Jernigan is going to likely attend the school that can provide him a chance to play early.

That means Advantage: Michigan over all of his other contenders.

MI DE/OL Anthony Zettel gave raving reviews of his visit to Michigan State:

"It was an amazing game to be at," Zettel said. "I think that Michigan State is starting to become a very good team. I was able to have some small talk with a lot of the recruits at the game."

OK, maybe that's more "I was in attendance" than anything hugely positive for the Spartans. Scout's Allen Trieu explains to the Lansing State Journal:

Michigan looks like it could be the team to beat for Zettel, but the Spartans are in contention.

"He's been a life-long Michigan fan, and you just want to be able to stay in the game with him," Trieu said. "The fact that he hasn't committed to Michigan yet is a big thing for Michigan State."

At this point , when "not committed to Michigan quite yet" is the best thing you can say about State's recruitment of the kid, the Wolverines are looking good.

GA DE Ray Drew, Walls's buddy, wants to visit Ann Arbor:

"I would also like to go to Michigan to see the Big House. Every football player knows about that place... There are a lot of schools I would like to see before I decide on signing day.”

He says he's close to having all of his visits set up, so we should know soon when he'll be in the house. Drew won't make a decision until Signing Day.

The Others

MI RB Thomas Rawls is smashing Mark Ingram's Flint-area rushing records. If he can get his grades up, he could be a good addition to Michigan's class. At 5'10", 215, he's a differenet sort of back than Hart.

NJ TE Jack Tabb is taking an official visit to Iowa City this weekend ($, info in header), even though the Hawkeyes already have three (!) tight ends in this class. Michigan is in the running for one of his other visits, and he took a trip to Ann Arbor earlier this summer.

IL OL Chris Bryant, a recent visitor to Ann Arbor, has the Wolverines in his top 3/4 with Arizona, Stanford, and Illinois. From the tone of the article, Michigan is still on top.

KY LB Lamar Dawson has M in his final 7.

Dee Hart isn't the only Orlando Dr. Phillips guy with Michigan interest. It is highly unlikely that FL S HaSean Clinton-Dix will strongly consider Michigan anymore, but his fellow safety Roderick Ryles is looking for an offer.

Happy Trails

FL TE/DE Brandon Fulse has narrowed his list, and Michigan is no longer on it.

Happy Trails, FL DE Giorgio Newberry. He's committed to Florida State.

It appears as though VA CB Demetrious Nicholson is no longer planning to take a Michigan visit.

2012

FL QB Bennie Coney is holding a Michigan offer. It will be interesting to see what types of QBs Michigan goes after this season.

Just to clarify, Plant City is not the same Plant that 2011 OL Commit Tony Posada attends.

OH RB William Mahone is interested in Michigan, and attended a summer camp in Ann Arbor this summer. The Buckeyes already have two RB commits in 2012, so they won't be the competition.

As expected, MI DT Danny O'Brien received his verbal offer from Michigan at the Bowling Green game.

ESPN's Chris Pool reports that IL DT Tommy Schutt also holds a verbal offer from the Wolverines.

Also in attendance last Saturday was OH S Allen Gant. The son of former Wolverine Tony Gant (and nephew of Charles Woodson) plans to take his time making a decision.

Thursday Recruitin' Enjoyed UConn

Thursday Recruitin' Enjoyed UConn

Submitted by Tim on September 9th, 2010 at 10:26 AM

Remember, all-time updates can be found on the 2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Board. If you have any recruiting tips or questions, you can e-mail them to me at [email protected] or tweet @varsityblue. For game updates on Wolverine commits, check out the Friday Night Lights series.

The Afterglow

hartNFTC.JPGTom's weekly update had a quick rundown of how some prospects enjoyed the game. Most Michigan fans were expecting a commitment from FL RB Demetrius Hart (at right), so not landing him is a bit of a disappointment. Tom says Michigan still leads, and a commitment at the MSU or Iowa game is still a possibility. On Hart's teammate, FL S Ha'Sean Clinton-Dix:

Speaking with a few people about him makes me feel like he's pretty solid with Alabama. That's not to say that it would be impossible to sway him, it would just take quite a bit to do that. If Demetrius makes another trip up to Michigan and Ha'Sean were to come with him, there would be reason for excitement. I've been told that there may be some teammates (possibly former as well) trying to persuade him to go north.

Swinging Clinton-Dix would be huge for the Wolverines, and I'm willing to bet his former teammate talking up Michigan is one Ricardo Miller. Fluff on him. The Orlando Sentinel covers the visits of Hart, Clinton-Dix, and 2012 QB Nick Patti. No news other than "it was a little unseasonably cold." Patti has an early top 4 of Michigan, Oregon, North Carolina, and Florida State.

Click through to Tom's update to see reactions from OH WR AJ Jordan and MI OL/DE Anthony Zettel (who Rivals say was "impressed with U-M win" ($, info in header)), along with a few 2012 guys.

GA S Avery Walls said:

"The game was great, and the visit went great," he said... "This visit helped Michigan a lot. I'm going to be watching their next few games," he said.

MIchigan was already the presumed favorite, so if the Wolverines perform well over the next few games, a mid-October commitment is a possibility (he has west coast trips planned for the 2nd and 9th).

Tom also talked to 2012 OH DE Chris Wormley, who said Michigan's attention has picked up now that it's, you know, legal for them to give it. The visit helped Michigan in his recruitment.

Josh Helmholdt runs down some of the prospects who were in attendance in that one Detroit paper. Of note other than the known 2011 guys:

Flint Northern running back Thomas Rawls, Crockett linebacker Bilaal Collins and Lake Orion running back Marques Stevenson also attended the game.

The class of 2012 was also well represented. Notable prospects in attendance included Crockett quarterback Brian Blackburn and running back Marcellous McElrath; Catholic Central lineman Matthew Godin; Flint Powers defensive tackle Danny O’Brien; King running back Dennis Norfleet; Kenton, Ohio, quarterback Maty Mauk; Orchard Lake St. Mary’s linebacker James Ross; Cass Tech teammates Terry Richardson and Royce Jenkins Stone, and Toledo (Ohio) Whitmer defensive end Chris Wormley.

I also heard from a source on 2012 PA OL Tyler Alt:

Ty had a blast at the Mich game. Got chills walking out of the tunnel and the recpetion by the Mich fans was unbleiveable.

Good to see younger guys enjoying Michigan. If Rich Rod and Co. can put it together on the field this season, the 2012 class could be a special one.

On the other side of the fence, FL S Wayne Lyons is the only mutual prospect officially visiting South Bend for Michigan's game against the Irish.

Etc.

I won't put him back on the board just yet, but NC QB Marquise Williams says he'll decommit from the Tar Heels if the NCAA puts them on probation. If that comes to fruition, there's a chance he'd consider the Wolverines again, especially since he's still planning an official visit to Ann Arbor.

OH TE/LB Austin Traylor is still considering MIchigan ($, info in header).

FL DT Timmy Jernigan won't be announcing his decision at an All-Star game:

He'll probably trim his list to a final three schools by the midway point of his final prep football season. National Signing Day is Feb. 2.

"I hope by signing day, I am pretty sure I will have something figured out by then," Jernigan said. "Of course there is pressure but I am pretty sure I'll make the right decision."

No word on exactly when he plans to visit Ann Arbor, but he still plans to.

IL DE James Adeyanju does not have Michigan on his fall visits list. He took a trip to Ann Arbor this summer, and is still considering the Wolverines. Both Adeyanju and IL OL Chris Bryant will make decisions after their senior seasons.

Recruiting fluff on PA DE Deion Barnes. He'll make his selection at the Army Game (if invited), or at the end of his senior season. He also talks a bit about his game:

Once he gets to a college campus and in an enhanced weight lifting program, Barnes figures to fill out and become even stronger. For now, his quickness and instincts have proven him to be a natural at rushing the quarterback.

"My instincts and my experience, I would say those are my strengths," he said. "And I like to think of myself as probably one of the smartest guys on the field."

Michigan's efforts at both offensive line and defensive end will become much more clear when we figure out how the recruitments of Zettel and Bryant shake out.

KY LB Lamar Dawson has reportedly been selected to the Army All-American Bowl.

OH LB Sean Duggan breaks down his top five of BC, Wisconsin, Michigan, Virginia, and Duke. On the Wolverines:

Michigan- "Again they have great academics at Michigan. Football is big in Ann Arbor, which is great. The coaches there are great, and the tradition is huge."

All of his schools are academic powerhouses, so he's looking as much for a good education as he is for good football.

FL S LaQuentin Smith, (a teammate and friend of the Dr. Phillips guys), has added Michigan to his list of favorites. He plans to visit Michigan before making a final decision at the end of this month. His highlights:

Happy Trails

MD Ath Darius Jennings does not have Michigan in his top/final 10.

Re-removed NJ OL Keith Lumpkin, who is deciding between five non-Michigan schools soon.

The Distant Future. The Year 2012.

Fluff on MO WR Dorial Green-Beckham.

MI TE Matt Doneth is a prospect to keep an eye on ($, info in header).

LSU is the favorite for 2012 FL OL Nacho Garcia. There's still plenty of time for other schools to overtake the Tigers.

Michigan leads for MI LB Royce Jenkins-Stone ($, info in header). As noted above, he visited for the UConn game.

Michigan is recruiting PA S Okezie Alozie ($, info in header).

Thursday Recruitin' is GAME WEEK! WEEEE!

Thursday Recruitin' is GAME WEEK! WEEEE!

Submitted by Tim on September 2nd, 2010 at 10:29 AM

Remember, all-time updates can be found on the 2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Board. If you have any recruiting tips or questions, you can e-mail them to me at [email protected] or tweet @varsityblue.

UConn Visits

hartNFTC.JPGMichigan is expected to host a few official visitors this weekend, as well as a number of prospects hitting campus unofficially. Tom has a comprehensive list in the diaries, but some of the potential 2011 guys include:

  • FL RB Demetrius Hart (right). Webb fluff.
  • MI OL/DE Anthony Zettel
  • GA S Avery Walls
  • LA CB Daren Kitchen
  • MI OL Commit Jake Fisher
  • MI CB Commit Delonte Hollowell
  • MI DE Commit Brennen Beyer

Thins are always changing, so for the latest news (as well as a working list of 2012 prospects who plan to be in attendance), make sure to visit Tom's Diary.

On UMHoops, Dylan also runs down some of the basketball visitors for this weekend, including a familiar name in Glenn Robinson III.

Happy Trails

OH WR Darius Patton has narrowed his choices to West Virginia and Cincinnati.

NY/VA LB Antoine Pozniak has committed to South Florida. After showing initial interest in Michigan (including a visit to Ann Arbor), he seemed to fall off the map.

As expected, 2012 OH RB Warren Ball has selected Ohio State. The teammate of Chris Rock has been a Buckeye lean all along.

Another unsurprising 2012 commitment, as FL WR Avery Johnson will join his brother Patrick at LSU.

Linebackin'

Michigan and Auburn continue to lead for NC WR/LB Kris Frost ($, info in header).

Michigan makes the top 5 for OH LB Sean Duggan.

The Pittsburgh Tribune ranks a few linebacker prospects in the area, including #1 Branden Jackson:

A 6-foot-4, 225-pound senior, Jackson is ranked as the No. 9 outside linebacker in the country by Scout.com. Jackson's speed makes him a nightmare for quarterbacks and running backs. His ability to sprint into the backfield or smoothly cover potential receivers causes havoc for opposing offenses. Jackson has scholarship offers from about a dozen Division I schools, including North Carolina, Pitt and Texas Tech.

and #3 Armstead Williams:

A 6-3, 200-pound senior, Williams has the quickness and arm reach to drag down ball-carriers and bat down passes. Williams has a folder full of scholarship offers, including Maryland, Michigan and N.C. State. The Gator standout made it known he hopes to receive an offer from the Gators of Florida.

At this point, Jackson seems like a more realistic prospect for this class than Williams, but there's plenty of time remaining before February.

FL LB Gionni Paul has narrowed his list of schools ($, info in header), but that smaller group includes Michigan, which he expects to visit ($, info in header). I've added him to the recruiting board.

Other

IL OL Chris Bryant is waiting to see how some of his favorites start the 2010 season before making a decision ($, info in header). As Tom told us a couple weeks ago, that likely means that a strong start from the Wolverines leads to a commitment from Bryant.

OH TE Frank Clark has a few favorites in mind. California and UNC lead Michigan, UCLA, Eastern Michigan, and Toledo. Michigan is definitely looking for a TE in this class, so we'll see how hard they push for Clark.

Local fluff on FL DT Timmy Jernigan. Michigan is still in his top group of schools, and he'll eventually visit Ann Arbor:

He's down to five schools — Florida, Florida State, Alabama, Michigan and LSU. And two others schools — Miami and Georgia — are getting a little interest. Jernigan said he plans to take five official visits this fall in order to get a feel for schools during game days because wants to be able to interact with players in their natural environment.

He won't be making a decision anytime soon though:

Jernigan said he doesn't plan to make a decision until after his senior season and if not on National Signing Day, then very close to it. He claims to not have a leader, but admits that since eighth or ninth grade, Florida and FSU have jumped out "head first" for him.

We're all familiar with how well Michigan's coaching staff does with prospects (and especially parents) when they come on campus, so they should get a chance to sway Jernigan.

2012

This also applies to 2011, but Josh Helmholdt's recruiting column is more applicable to next year's recruiting class. Some schools are confused about the idiotic new NCAA rule that prohibits 2012 prospects from getting official offers until next fall.

MI WR Efe Scott-Emuakpor visited Michigan this summer, but it sounds like the East Lansing native is more focused on his hometown Spartans.

Sylvania Southview isn't just the home of OH S Allen Gant, but he has a couple teammates who are generating D-1 interest as well.

Tom Lemming's Second Season blog for the Chicago Sun-Times runs down some of Illinois's top junior prospects.

Thursday Recruitin' Sorts Out Visits

Thursday Recruitin' Sorts Out Visits

Submitted by Tim on August 19th, 2010 at 10:57 AM

Remember, all-time updates can be found on the 2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Board. If you have any recruiting tips or questions, you can e-mail them to me at [email protected] or tweet @varsityblue.

Trimming Lists, Planning Visits

melvingordon.jpg

WI RB Melvin Gordon (pictured at right, via the Kenosha News) may take an official visit to Michigan. It had previously seemed like the Wolverines were out of the running for Melvin, and this could be a sign that they definitely want a big back in this class.

Michigan is in FL RB Devondrick Nealy's top five ($, info in header). He's similar to FL RB Demetrius Hart, so if all goes well with Dee, I wouldn't expect Nealy to end up in this class.

NJ Slot WR Miles Shuler-Foster has a top 7 that includes Michigan. He seems to be one of only two slots (along with FL Slot WR Prince Holloway) that Michigan is pursuing. It's not a position of need, but Shuler's speed would be hard to turn down.

NJ TE Jack Tabb (who recently visited Ann Arbor) is ready to cut his list of more than 20 offers. Six schools, including Michigan, are guaranteed to make that cut, making up a de facto top six.

Last week, PA DE Deion Barnes named a top 5 ($, info in header) including Michigan. There might be another positive development in that recruitment, as Pitt, also in his top 5, picked up commitments from three defensive ends last week.

OH LB Sean Duggan has a top five that includes Michigan (along with Wisconsin, Boston College, Duke, and Virginia).

NJ S Sheldon Royster will try to visit Michigan before his senior season starts ($, info in header).

FL S Jonathan Aiken is considering a visit to Ann Arbor. Rutgers and UCLA sound like his top two. A Rivals header ($) is much higher on Michigan's chances, but I'll trust the neutral source.

LA CB Daren Kitchen, who has long favored Michigan, will take an official visit for the Connecticut game ($, info in header). If receives a commitable offer on that visit, he could drop for the Wolverines.

Happy Trails

PA DE Desimon Green committed to Pitt.

MD OL Donovan Smith has narrowed to a top 12 that does not include Michigan.

PA CB Kyshoen Jarrett committed to Pitt.

Other

TampaBay.com covered the commitment of Tony Posada last week:

Leaving the state was a major factor, Posada said, as was Michigan’s reputation of producing offensive linemen. Two weeks ago, Posada said his mind was “99 percent” made up.

“That day I walked outside and it felt like it was 100 degrees out and I told myself, ‘I want to go to the snow,’ ” Posada said. “And when you go to Michigan and they ask what did you play and you say offensive tackle, people say, ‘Man, you must be good to play tackle at Michigan.’ ”

It sounds like the staff is planning to play him at tackle, which means any more OL commits will probably come from guards.

Tom spoke with FL OL James Elliott following his Michigan visit, and Elliott had nothing but positive things to say:

JAMES: Man, that was the most amazing school I've ever seen in person... We actually stayed a little longer than expected just so we could see everything, and meet Coach Rodriguez. We didn't realize he was in Seattle, so we wanted to stay to meet him. We got to see practice and talk with him about the visit. It was just great.

He named Michigan his leader ($, info in header), so what's the next step for Elliott? He holds an offer, but not yet a committable (i.e. Rodriguez-issued) one. With a few good OL targets remaining on the board, Elliott may have to wait to see how things shake out before he receives one.

FL DT Tim Jernigan, who has Michigan in his top five, is also Facebook friends with a couple of Michigan's coaches.

Local Fluff on KY LB Lamar Dawson. He's a longshot for Michigan, but a good season on the field could turn a lot of top prospects' heads toward Ann Arbor.

crawford.jpg

FL WR/S Sammy Watkins and his teammate, CB/QB Dallas Crawford (pictured at right), are both very interested in Michigan still:

Watkins is still considering a long list of schools, but says he was very impressed during visits to Michigan and Clemson.

Crawford says he'll wait until the end of the season to make a decision, but lists Michigan, LSU, Miami, Wake Forest, North Carolina, and West Virginia as his leaders right now.

Watkins plans to announce a top 5 before his season, and then put recruiting on the back burner for a while. Crawford was willing to go on the record and say the Wolverines stand atop his list. Landing him would help Michigan with Watkins.

MI CB Valdez Showers will announce a decision next week. The Wolverines are in his top four ($, info in header), along with Michigan State, Northwestern, and Florida. Though Showers grew up a Michigan fan, I don't think they're the favorite to land him at this time.

For more on several prospects, including GA S Avery Walls, check out Tom's weekly recruiting update.

The Distant Future. The Year 2016(!)

A physically imposing offensive lineman from Illinois grew up loving Michigan:

Swenson’s dream school is Michigan, but he also has his priorities straight. “The first thing is to get a good education,” Swenson said. “I want to go to a good school and play football. I’d like to study engineering or business.”

The issue? Kid's not even in high school yet. Erik Swenson's recruitment is a long way off, but assuming we all survive Mayan apocalypse, he's one to keep an eye on in the future.

tonygant.jpeg

In slightly-less-distant news, 2012 OH S Allen Gant (at right) is the latest prospect profiled by Sam Webb in the Detroit News.

Said Allen, "Before I just didn't have a very good idea of what Rich Rod and his staff were about, but after (the visit) I feel a lot more comfortable with them. I know that they're interested in me. They're on my radar with all the other schools that were recruiting me."

Gant is the son of former Wolverine Tony Gant, but he grew up a fan of the Buckeyes.

Wednesday Recruitin' 6-9-10

Wednesday Recruitin' 6-9-10

Submitted by Tim on June 9th, 2010 at 11:09 AM

2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Board.

Assume The Position: Quarterback

With a few targets coming off the board over the past couple weeks (most recently FL QB Teddy Bridgewater, who was never actually offered), we have a little more clarity on what the coaching staff will do with the quarterback position in this recruiting class. First things first: It's obvious that they want one. I don't think they'll be freaking out if they don't land a signal-caller, but they're aiming for one. This might mean a position switch for 2010 commit Conelius Jones earlier than fans expected.

First, let's take a look at offered prospects who remain on the board:

marquise.jpg

NC QB Marquise Williams (pictured at right)

6-3, 215, 4.7 [Video]

NR Rivals, 4* (#17 QB) Scout, 4* 79 (#13 QB) ESPN, #25 Overall (#5 QB) Tom Lemming.

Williams may be the best system fit for Michigan among the offered guys, and the Wolverines are in his top group, guaranteed an official visit. North Carolina seems to be the strongest competition at this point. He plans a Michigan official visit for the MSU game.

OH QB Cardale Jones

6-5, 220, 4.9 [Video]

NR Rivals, 3* (#31 QB) Scout, 3* 79 (#17 QB) ESPN.

Though, as a Glenville product, he is probably inclined to pick Ohio State, he told Tom that he actually grew up a Michigan fan. He also couldn't play QB in Columbus:

The Buckeyes are done at QB for 2011. The Buckeyes may end up adding Glenville's Cardale Jones to this recruiting class, but if they do it won't be as a quarterback.

He has many options outside of Michigan (including the Spartans, and even Penn State), so no Buckeye offer doesn't necessarily push him toward Ann Arbor.

FL QB Jerrard Randall

6-2, 190, 4.5 [Video]

4* 5.8 Rivals, 3* (#19 QB) Scout, 4* 80 (#8 QB) ESPN.

Randall, a teammate of FL WR Curt Evans and S Jonathan Aiken, is one of the longer shots among the guys already holding offers, along with Hundley. The Chaminade-Madonna trio seems to be very hot-and-cold on Michigan - and they all appear to like Ohio State much more than the Wolverines. It seems, however, that Columbus is not longer an option for Randall.

AZ QB Brett Hundley

6-4, 210, 4.7 [Video]

4* 5.8 (#216 Overall) Rivals, 4* (#5 QB) Scout, 4* 81 (#5 QB) ESPN, #40 Overall (#4 QB) Sporting News.

I hadn't realized he's an Arizona legacy. He's more of an athletic pocket guy than a true dual-threat, but he can move. Michigan will have to fight with a number of top programs for his signature, especially West Coast teams.

...And then there are a few guys who aren't holding offers, but could be receiving one down the road, including FL QB Kevin Sousa, who's been openly hoping for one.

Receivin'

Last week, Sam Webb talked wide receiver recruiting in the Detroit News, and this week he follows that up with a look at three more prospects looking to fill that second outside spot in the Michigan recruiting class. We'll start with OH WR Devin Smith:

"Smith shows all the things you want from a young receiver projected to become a big-time player," said Scout.com Ohio analyst Dave Berk. "It's the deep routes where Smith can really excel, as he's got the quickness to elude and accelerate with a burst to separate from a defender and release deep." ...

"Most of the college coaches have told me they like the way I come off the ball, the way I use my explosiveness and quickness," he told Scout.com. "My route running is pretty good. Most of all, the way I attack the football in the air (is really good). I make sure that thing is mine and only mine. I'll fight any defensive back for the football."

jajuanstory.jpg

The former teammate of JT Turner plans to take all of his official visits before coming to a final decision. Moving along to FL WR Ja'Juan Story (at right):

"The first thing that jumps out at you about Story is the way he's built," said Scout.com Florida analyst Mike Bakas. "At 6-4 and close to 200 pounds already, he has the look of a major Division I receiver right now. He's a mismatch nightmare at this level because of his size. Unfortunately for him, his team doesn't throw the ball a whole lot, so he really hasn't been able to dominate games at this level like his talent level indicates. He's a playmaker, though, who has found other ways to make a difference. He's not a speed burner, but is plenty fast enough and has good enough ball skills to be a major BCS-caliber prospect."

Story wants to major in sports medicine, which should help Michigan out. Webb also had a Story update on GoBlueWolverine, and Michigan is "gaining ground" ($, info in header). Finally, SC WR Hakeem Flowers is also a candidate for that spot:

"Physically, Hakeem Flowers has all the tools to be a top-flight prospect," said Scout.com South Carolina analyst Kerry Fair. "College coaches will love his height and athleticism. Hakeem is also a track star and he shows that speed on the football field as well, especially considering his long stride and top end speed."

Flowers hopes to get to Ann Arbor over the summer.

Happy Trails

...The Receivin' category segues nicely into Happy Trails, as one of the fine young gentlemen featured in last week's receiver update is now off the board.

MI WR DeAnthony Arnett has released a top six without Michigan, and says he will now consider only seven schools, including USC, Cal, Oklahoma, MSU, Tennessee, Iowa, and seventh-place Miami (Yes That Miami). Arnett told Tom that he likes Michigan, but thinks the only college spread that will get him to the NFL is found in Norman, Oklahoma. Percy Harvin and Arrelious Benn couldn't be reached for comment. For the whole scoop, check out DeAnthony Arnett Top 6.

OH QB Braxton Miller's commitment to Ohio State doesn't mean that OH LB Trey DePriest is necessarily bound for the Buckeyes as well. Still, he missed the last several UM recruiting events, and has narrowed his list to Ohio State, Alabama, and Florida.

A number of prospects come off the board because they committed to other schools:

Some of this stuff will help with paring down the list to 70 or so serious prospects.

Future Visits, Near And Far

AZ OL Andre Yruretagoyena has scheduled his Michigan official visit ($, info in header), and according to The Wolverine Blog, that will be for the Michigan State game. Though Michigan has a number of factors working in its favor for his recruitment (including his closeness to Taylor Lewan, and the fact that he likes playing in the cold), it's not all sunshine and roses - Andre likes the Pac-10 the most.

OH OL Ryan Kelly plans to visit Michigan again this summer, according to a VolNation article.

Ryan has already been active with visits, and has several more planned for this summer. “Well I’m 20 minutes from Cincinnati so distance wise that one works out. I will visit Alabama, Tennessee, Florida, and Florida State all within a month period. I’m also hoping to go to Michigan again as well. I’ve already visited Purdue, Indiana, Louisville, Cincinnati, Michigan, Notre Dame, Tennessee, and Alabama.”

Michigan is the only school that he's already visited that is in for a repeat trip, which is a positive sign. The Under Armour All-American hopes to commit before his senior year, but is not set on that timeframe.

FL DT Tim Jernigan is still mentioning Michigan in his top group, and says he wants to visit Ann Arbor sometime this summer.


Spring game: Tim Jernigan interview from Michael Langston on Vimeo.

Rod Smith and Rich Rodriguez are his primary contacts in Ann Arbor.

PA DE Desimon Green, who has been close to an offer for a while, received that offer last week. He plans to use an official visit to check out Ann Arbor during the football season.

OH LB Sean Duggan grew up a Wisconsin fan ($, info in header). According to Tom, he'll visit Michigan this week.

Last week, we learned that GA CB Avery Walls plans to take an official visit to Michigan. A midseason commitment ($, info in header) would keep the Wolverines fresh in his mind at decision time.

Other

IN RB Remound Wright has picked up a verbal Michigan offer, and plans a summer decision ($, info in header). There's an MGoBoard thread with a little more info on him, including the tidbit that his dad is a Michigan fan, from Indiana Wolverine.

justicehayesespn.jpg

ESPN.com's Steve Wiltfong embarks on an in-depth profile of MI RB Justice Hayes (pictured at right), comparing him to another Flint-area running back - reigning Heisman winner Mark Ingram. His top list is surprising, given that he'd recently seemed to cool on Michigan:

Four years later, the 5-foot-10, 180-pound Hayes is one of the most sought-after recruiting targets in the Midwest. Iowa, Michigan, Notre Dame and Tennessee make up the four-star prospect's top four, with Michigan State and Northwestern still strongly in the mix.

I wonder whether the author of the article inadvertently switched the Spartans and Wolverines. However, since the Wolverines may be strongly back in the picture, let's take a look at his game:

"The way he starts and stops is phenomenal," said Delaney, who has been at Grand Blanc for 18 seasons. "He makes people miss with that side-to-side stuff, and he goes from stop to full speed very quickly. But probably the best thing is his hands out of the backfield. He catches the ball better than any kid I've ever had out of the backfield, and that includes Mark Ingram, who had great hands. Justice runs great routes out of the backfield, and hardly ever drops the ball."

I still think Hayes will only end up in Michigan's class if FL RB Demetrius Hart opts to go elsewhere.

CA WR Desman Carter is hearing from Michigan.

NJ Ath/WR Miles Shuler now holds a Florida offer. He is also the second-fastest high schooler in New Jersey history.

Michigan, Pitt, and Florida are the favorites for NJ TE Taques Franklin (H/T On the Banks).

I added (unoffered) MI TE Nate Dreslinski, who impressed at Michigan's camp and seems to be interested in the Wolverines.

Michigan leads for MI OL Anthony Zettel ($, info in header), but his Penn State offer came through late last week, so that might shake up his leaderboard. He told ESPN he wants to visit the remainder of his top six schools that he hasn't yet seen. He won the State Championship in shotput over the weekend.

MI OL Jake Fisher is starting to gain some D-1 interest. He reportedly impressed at Michigan's Elite Camp, so keep an eye on him.

SC DT Phillip Dukes plans to visit Michigan. The Wolverines currently stand in about his #6 spot.

Though there are some positive signs for Michigan in the recruitment of NC LB Kris Frost, he's still visiting Auburn on what seems like a regular basis ($, info in header).

MD S/WR Brandon Phelps has apparently been offered by Michigan, to go along with tenders from the likes of LSU, Notre Dame, and Alabama.

Etc.

MI WR Commit Shawn Conway may have trouble being eligible to play high school ball this fall (NOOOOOOOOOOO nearby Friday Night Lights roadtrips jeopardized!), because of a residency issue. Due to a family issue, his high school coach at Seaholm has become his guardian. However, said coach lives outside the Seaholm district, in Clarkston. Conway, then, would have to play for Clarkston - except he would have to sit out the fall semester due to transferring schools. I'll have more on Conway coming soon.

Tom's new weekly recruiting update features AZ OL Andre Yruretagoyena, LA DT Mickey Johnson, MI LB Ed Davis, IN LB Nick Temple, and FL OL Tony Posada. Check it out to get the latest on those prospects.

2012

OH RB William Mahone "came away extremely impressed" with Michigan ($, info in header) after hitting campus for the Wolverines' Elite Camp over the weekend.

Wednesday Recruitin' 6-2-10

Wednesday Recruitin' 6-2-10

Submitted by Tim on June 2nd, 2010 at 3:07 PM

The 2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Board is your place for all-time updates. One important note before we get into individual prospects. Coach Rodriguez recently said the coaching staff will narrow its focus from about 150 offered prospects to "around 70" players. This may make me a little more comfortable removing guys that are less-discussed. The Michigan Elite Camp is this weekend, so that will provide a little clarity as well.

Chris Rock Goes Blue

chris-rock-desales

Michigan gained a commitment from OH DE Chris Rock over the weekend (not the comedian). Unsurprisingly, the local papers in Columbus didn't pick up on the story, but Magnus breaks down his game on Touch the Banner:

To be honest, I'm not enamored with Rock. A large part of that is due to the fact that his highlight film is full of offensive linemen completely forgetting to block him. I find it difficult to get excited about a player who accrues a bunch of sacks while barreling unimpeded into the offensive backfield...

My biggest issue with Rock is that he stands straight up on the snap. He's able to push around weaker players when playing so high, but if he tried to push around a 310 lb. Big Ten tackle like that, Rock would get tossed around like a rag doll. He doesn't use his hands well to shed blocks, and he also finds himself losing contain a little too frequently. He has decent speed for a 250-pounder, so he can make up for his poor fundamentals at times. But some of his habits are less than ideal.

For more on Rock, read the Hello: Chris Rock post.

Happy Trails

We transition from good news right into stuff not so positive, as a few prospects are coming off the board:

Assume The Position: Wide Receiver

I did one of these a few weeks ago (for tight end), and with the amount of information available this week, it's time to take a closer look at the wide receiver position.

Michigan currently has one wide receiver commit, in Shawn Conway out of Birmingham Seaholm High School. Conway is a big outside leaper with great hands, in the mold of Braylon Edwards (though likely not as good, he probably won't have a case of the dropsies on easy balls, either). With the numbers of offers and visits taking place, it's clear that the Wolverines want one more outside guy, and maybe a slot receiver if they can find an elite one.

Fortunately for us, Sam Webb's weekly column in the Detroit News focused on on the wideout position last week, and ran down a few of the Wolverines' top targets. I don't intend to steal Sam's thunder by blockquoting too much of his article, but since the News evilly (and idiotically - good luck finding people to pay for it) puts its articles behind a paywall after a week, I'll be a little more liberal. Please click through to make up for it.

watkinsvisit.jpg

Sammy Watkins (at right):

"Sammy Watkins is the total package as a WR prospect," said Scout.com Florida analyst Geoff Vogt. "He can flat run, has incredibly light feet which allows him to make players miss in the open field, and a body to be that prototype 6-3, 215-pounder down the road.

"I have watched him snare balls thrown as bullets down the middle of the field and he will just leisurely catch them with one hand. He has elite hands. He runs very clean routes and understands how to get separation.

"While I view him as a WR prospect, Sammy could easily be a big-time safety if he chose to go that route."

Michigan, Miami (YTM), and Florida are his top 3. DeAnthony Arnett:

The second-rated prospect in the state dominated opponents in seven-on-seven competitions throughout the winter and spring thanks to his precise route-running and impressive quickness.

"It seems like every camp DeAnthony goes to, he kills it," said Scout.com Midwest analyst Allen Trieu. "He continued to impress with his route-running, hands, and ball skills at the Michigan Football Showcase. He made the play of the tournament when he went up between two defenders and made an outstanding catch to win a game. Arnett continues to move up in our eyes and has proven to be one of the very best in country."

If Michigan has a good season, the Wolverines will probably get back into the mix for Arnett. Theyr'e currently on the outside looking in. AJ Jordan:

"One of the top players in Ohio in his class," his Scout.com profile reads. "Also ranked one of the top 4 hurdlers in the nation. A smooth route runner with a great burst, he can make plays anywhere on the field and makes defenses game-plan against him."

On the recruiting roundup, Sam said Michigan is "definitely in the driver's seat" for Jordan. He'll decide earlier than the other two guys. Those are the three hottest prospects from a Michigan perspective, but there are a few more on the radar should all of these fall through. Michigan also has its eye on a few sot receivers, including NJ ATH Miles Shuler - though Northwestern leads ($, info in header - and MD ATH Darius Jennings.

New Rankin's

Scout has had their 2011 prospects rankings out for a while, but the other two sites are slowly-but-surely releasing theirs. Both ESPN and Rivals now have the top recruits ranked, with neither site having any Michigan commits in their top group, but a number of Michigan targets. Some of those are longshots - FL DT Timmy Jernigan, who lists Michigan in his top 6, would still surprise everyone if he left the state of Florida - but many are realistic options. Magnus has a breakdown of Rivals's list. Top 100 lists were also released by the Sporting News and Tom Lemming.

Recruiting Quick Hits

You may remember that NC QB Marquise Williams recently named Michigan among his top three schools, before trimming his list to a final five. He's now made his decision timeline public, as he plans to commit to a school in October ($, info in header). He'll visit Ann Arbor for the Michigan State game on October 9th, so the Wolverines will be fresh in his mind when he makes a decision. I'll go into a little more depth on the QB recruiting situation next week.

FL RB Demetrius Hart tore it up in Dr. Phillips's 41-7 spring game victory over East Ridge, to the tune of four touchdowns. Video is available, courtesy of the Orlando Sentinel:

Yay Demetrius and all that.

According to Cincinnati recruiting guru Mike Dyer, OH TE Benson Browne plans to visit Michigan this summer. My educated guess will be that he's coming in for camp to try for an offer. He currently holds them from West Virginia, Kansas, Louisville, Minnesota, Miami (Not That Miami) and Central Michigan.

Despite recently receiving a Michigan offer, OH TE Nick Vannett does not have UM in his top group. He's going to start taking trips soon, and wants to have a decision made by July.

FL OL Tony Posada will visit Michigan this summer ($, info in header). He also spoke to ESPN last week (video), mentioning Michigan first, and in his "big ones" category. He claims to be open at this time.

Though their class is starting to fill up, the Buckeyes will hold a spot open for IN DT/OL Joel Hale ($, info in header). It's unclear if Michigan is a player in his recruitment.

MGoBoard's very own Magnus breaks down the game of MD DT Vincent Croce on Touch The Banner:

Strengths: Listed at 5.17 but seemingly plays faster. Ability to chase some players from sideline to sideline. Relentless pass rusher. Very aggressive tackler. Strong upper body. Uses hands well to deliver good initial shock and shed blockers. Good initial surge off the line. Relatively lean frame

Weaknesses: Not a natural knee bender. Stands too high. May get overpowered by strong run-blocking guards. Played significant time at linebacker, which may stunt growth as defensive lineman.

Projection: Could be a solid rotation player as early as second year in program

His weaknesses are mostly technique-based, which could be worked on with college coaching. I also think playing DT only part-time may have led to some of that, and playing LB in high school actually means he has more upside than is shown on film.

GA DT Gabe Wright might officially visit Michigan:

“I’ll probably take all of my unofficial visits to schools that I can drive to and my officials to schools far away,” he says. “I will probably take official visits to schools like Miami, Michigan and maybe USC or UCLA. Also, I might visit Oregon State. It will be late before I make my decision.”

Taking an official would be a good sign for Michigan's chances to land him.

PA LB/DE Desimon Green will officially visit Michigan State, Texas Tech and Pitt, along with a couple other schools to be named later. He gave a slightly different top schools list to Tom, and is expecting a Michigan offer later this week.

TX LB Kellen Jones has picked up a Michigan offer, and called it "a dream come true" ($, info in header). THat sounds very promising should the Wolverines press him for a commitment.

Tom talked to OH LB Sean Duggan, who has Michigan in his top 5. However, it sounds like Notre Dame is a heavy favorite as long as they don't wait too long to offer. The Spartans offered him a couple days ago.

GA CB Avery Walls plans to visit Michigan at some point ($, info in header).

Tom also has (positive) updates on VA LB Corey Marshall, FL DE Giorgio Newberry, and NC LB Kris Frost, among others. Check out his post for the full info.

2012 Note

Michigan Sports Zone talked with NJ CB/RB Solomon Simpkins, and he mentioned that he has early interest in Michigan.

Wednesday Recruitin' 5-12-10

Wednesday Recruitin' 5-12-10

Submitted by Tim on May 12th, 2010 at 11:19 AM

As always, the 2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Board lives here.

spiffyevans.jpg

Suspicious Packages

Recruiting multiple players from the same school (Trotwood-Madison, Pahokee) has been a go-to strategy for this recruiting staff, and that trend looks to continue in the 2011 recruiting haul.

The latest pair comes from Florida's Hollywood Chaminade high school, in FL WR Curt "Spiffy" Evans (pictured at right) and S Jonathan Aiken. Their teammate, QB Jerrard Randall, also has Michigan interest. Though we knew about Aiken's offer last week, Evans received one at the same time:

I opened mine first and they were identical envelopes so I was like “Whoa!”. I gave him the letter and he was like “Man you’re big time, you got Michigan!”.

The pair might visit this summer, though it sounds like Michigan might be window dressing, at least for Evans:

I want to talk to the coach and find out what day they would want me up there and basically go from there. We’re going up to camp at Ohio State and Notre Dame so we might be able to get up there then...

One of my personal favorites now, well two really, are Vanderbilt and Alabama just because of where I’m from and because I’ve been talking to Vanderbilt a whole lot. Plus their academics really impress me. But these offers like from Michigan, I push them in front of some of the smaller schools just because of who they are.

Though Aiken seems to be playing a similar tune:

I mean, if I can get that one, that means I can get more. So I’m just seeing what I can do to get the biggest schools. Michigan is one of the biggest but now I’m starting to hear from schools on the west coast like UCLA. So I’m just trying to see what else I can get.

Their interest seemed much more genuine when Evans talked to Tom last week:

TOM: Since all of you have Michigan offers, have you talked about going to school together?

SPIFFY: Yeah, we’ve talked about it. If it happens, it would be nice, but it’s not something we’re really trying to do. All three of us are going to take an official to Michigan, though. We already decided that. We actually might try to drive up to Michigan for a summer camp, too [Evans also told SoFlaFootball that a Michigan camp visit is definite.]...

TOM: Yeah, it sounds like Michigan might have a good chance then?

SPIFFY: Michigan has a real good chance. I need to get to know the coaches, and see how that progresses, and see the campus. But, yeah, they have a good chance. I actually talked to Denard Robinson a little while ago. I know him, I’m not really good friends with him, but he was telling me how great it is up there, and that was cool to hear from a Florida kid.

And the same deal when Tom spoke with Aiken (right):jonathanaiken.jpg

"Me and Spiffy were both excited about Michigan. I watch Michigan all the time on TV, and I think it would be great to play in that maize and blue. I'm probably going to wait until signing day, just to make sure everything's right. Curt and I want to go to the same school, too, so that's a good opportunity for us."

Side note:

"I read MGoBlog all the time, actually."

:swoons:

In another potential package deal that we're already familiar with, FL WR Sammy Watkins will reveal a public top 10 soon. It is expected to include Michigan, as both he and FL DB/Ath Dallas Crawford are high on the Wolverines following their spring game visit. I wouldn't get your hopes up just yet on both, though.

OH OL Aundrey Walker is the subject of the latest Sam Webb column in The Detroit News. Walker on his game:

"I'm 6-6, 355, and I'm a mean streaker," he said with a laugh. "I like to dog people -- pancake people, lay on top of them, and talk. That's what I do! Blow people off the ball, drive them down the field 20 yards, and then slam them! That's what I do (laughing). That's what God created. I learned from the cradle. My father was a football player. He was a mean-streaker too. I've just got the attitude to be a dog."

And Scout.com's Bill Greene on Walker:

"Walker is a mauler on the football field, and while his technique might need work, there is no doubting his physical ability," Greene said. "He plays hard and he comes off the ball with a nasty attitude looking to dominate his opponent. Off the field, he is well-spoken, intelligent and a leader. It's no wonder he has schools across the country chasing after him."

Walker admits to loving the Buckeyes in the article, unsurprising for a recruit out of Cleveland Glenville. He'll also wait until the end of the process to make a selection, and though it's likely he'll pick OSU, he's at least giving Michigan more of a chance than Glenville guys have in the recent past. MGoBoard's Magnus evaluates Walker's teammate, OH QB Cardale Jones, on Touch the Banner. [Ed: Dude, Walker isn't coming here.]

And for less-positive package deal news, it appears as though LA S Renaldo Thomas and LA OL Trai Turner may be coming off the board soon. Though Turner has mentioned wanting to visit Michigan, Thomas is expected to commit to LSU this week, and one of his teammates ($, info in header) will probably join him. All signs point to that being Turner. No impending decision is expected for the third St. Augustine prospect with a Michigan offer, LA OL Jonah Austin.

General Stuff

Michigan is in good shape with NC QB Marquise Williams. The Scout article linked is available for free, and reveals that Williams has a top 3 of North Carolina, Michigan, and Notre Dame.

The Michigan staff has offered NJ RB Savon Huggins, On The Banks tells us. Huggins recently came in for some fluff from Matt Kinnear of Nittany Nation:savonhuggins.jpg

Savon did well enough last fall to rush for 1,544 yards (7.3 yards per carry) and 22 touchdowns.

"He's sort of a bigger Silas Redd," said Mike Farrell of Rivals.com. "He doesn't have the same feet but definitely a little more size and is a little stronger. He also has a knack about him balance-wise, he's really hard to bring down. He's like Marcus Lattimore because he does everything well but also has a knack for bouncing off tackles and gaining three, four yards every time."

"I've been talking to all of the coaches, saying, 'Why is Savon No. 1 your charts?' The most popular answer is that while one (tailback) may have speed and one may have power, they say Savon, more than the others, has a very uncanny sense of balance, and they say that's something you can't teach. He'll run past you, run over you and run around you, and his yards after contact are ridiculous."

That's some serious love from analysts. It's not clear how in-the-mix for Huggins Michigan actually is, but he won't make a decision until February, so there's plenty of time before we find out. Check out his sophomore and junior highlights to see what the coaches are apparently drooling over.

FL RB Demetrius Hart's on-again, off-again impending commit to the Wolverines may be in an off-again phase, as Tom shares that he might not be able to make it up for the BBQ. Still, he's expected to eventually join Michigan, prompting Alabama writers to sound like a snubbed lover:

Originally, he was expected to bring teammate Dee Hart, a standout running back, to Alabama with him, but it appears as though Michigan will somehow track down Hart. Apparently there is some family relations within the program extending way back before his high school years. For most Alabama fans this could serve as a sigh of relief. Dee is an impressive player in his own right, however I think the Tide has their sights set elsewhere.

"I don't know what he sees in those losers. Whatever, we weren't that into him, anyway." Nice try, bro.

Michigan has offered NC TE Drew Owens ($, info in header). It's clear that they definitely want a tight end in this class unless they're looking at all of these offered guys as potential position switchers.

I missed this when it happened over a week ago, but it now appears as though IL DE/LB James Adeyanju has received a Michigan offer. Tom briefly mentioned him in his look at defensive line recruiting as an unoffered prospect. Adeyanju's brother, Victor, played at Indiana and is now in the NFL with the St. Louis Rams.

NC LB Kris Frost tells Tom he's "still loving Michigan." Our contacts in North Carolina tell mgoblog that Frost is a heavy Michigan lean, but will extend the recruiting process to get all the perks.

In The Army Now

The US Army All-American Bowl sent out a wave of "nominations" recently, including not only a number of Michigan targets, but also a couple commits. OH CB Greg Brown has now received a nomination, and we already knew MI CB Delonte Hollowell had already been invited to participate. Speaking of Hollowell, he has an updated junior highlight reel:

400 nominations to the game went out last week, so we'll hold off on reporting every single guy who has Michigan interest until that number is pared down a bit. Most of the top guys that Michigan is pursuing have been invited (or are already committed to ESPN's game).

Top 6 Lists

This normally wouldn't get its own header, but an oddly high number of prospects have released lists of exactly six schools, so here goes:

MI OL Anthony Zettel has a top 6, which I'll assume consists of Michigan, Michigan State, Iowa, and a couple other schools.

Michigan remains in OH CB Doran Grant's top 6 (formerly a top 7).

MI RB Justice Hayes has a top 6, including Michigan.

One of the nation's top defensive linemen, FL DT Tim Jernigan, has Michigan in a top 6 along with Florida (the presumed favorite), Alabama, Florida State, LSU, and Southern Cal. He says all those schools are even, and they're the only ones that he's still considering.

Etc.

Michigan is not in the top three of FL WR Ja'juan Story, but Tom says they're in the top 10. PA DE Shawn Oakman has to choose whether to play basketball or football at the next level. Michigan is showing interest in PA RB/LB Brandon Cottom, but hasn't yet offered ($, info in header). Some Michigan targets impressed at the ESPN RISE camp at Ohio State. The Skyline Chili Ohio Crosstown Showdown (where Paul and I saw Terry Talbott's Huber Heights Wayne team play last year) has announced its schedule for 2010. No current Michigan commits are playing. Michigan coaches drop in on OH WR Devin Smith ($, info in header). AZ OL Andre Yruretagoyena is still thinking about Michigan ($, info in header).

Wednesday Recruitin' (On Thursday)

Wednesday Recruitin' (On Thursday)

Submitted by Tim on February 11th, 2010 at 10:58 AM

Recruiting Boards:

Latwan on the Table

latwan.jpg

Aside from MN OL Seantrel Henderson, the most notable 2010 prospect to not sign a letter of intent so far is OH S Latwan Anderson. The message boards are all abuzz with the final list of schools he's considering: USC, West Virginia, Ohio State, and... Michigan?

He doesn't currently hold a committable offer, and wouldn't get one unless he were to visit campus. Even then, it's a question of whether there is room in the class for another prospect, and whether Rich Rodriguez is willing to take a second behavioral risk after last week's Dorsey-gate.

Anderson is visiting USC soon, and we'll se if Michigan makes an effort to get him on campus. Until he takes a visit, Michigan's chance with him is holding steady at zero.

Walkons? Walkons.

Though the 2010 class is wrapped up (barring any late surprises like Anderson), news about preferred walkons is just starting to come to the forefront.

MI WR Baquer Sayed will join the Wolverines as preferred walkon, despite garnering offers from MAC schools and interest from some BCS programs. Last winter, the Detroit News profiled him, and here's a breakdown of his game from Scout.com's Allen Trieu:

“I think, as a high school receiver, Sayed could be the best in the state. [College] Prospect wise, [Jeremy] Jackson brings a little more size and Banks brings a little more explosiveness. However, I think Sayed has the best ball skills of the three.”

Sayed is the crown jewel of the walkon class so far, garnering three stars from Rivals.

MI K Jeremy Ross will walk on in Ann Arbor:

Two Pioneer players also plan to walk-on college programs in the fall. Jeremy Ross, a first-team AP Division 1 kicker, at Michigan and Omari Robinson, an offensive lineman, at Grand Valley State.

Ross was a 1st-Team All-State selection as a senior. The Big House Blog recently talked to Jeremy about coming to Ann Arbor.

esterline.jpg

MI TE Dylan Esterline from Blissfield (pictured at right) will join Michigan in the fall, as either a tight end or defensive end:

“(Being a walk-on) will make me go up there with a little bit of an extra fire,” said Esterline, who had 21 catches for 384 yards and four touchdowns last fall for Blissfield. “I know it’s going to be a challenge. The coaches are really good with walk-ons. Coach (Rich) Rodriguez was a walk-on at West Virginia and has a place in his heart for them.”

That quote also gives a pretty good indication of the importance Rich Rodriguez puts on the walkon program.

Tate Forcier's former teammate, CA LB Quintin Tucker, has been planning to walk on in Ann Arbor for quite some time now, and made it official ($, info in header) shortly after Signing Day. Like Sayed, he held some small-time offers, but chose to pay his own way in Ann Arbor instead. He played DE in high school, but has size more suited to the linebacker position. If he can get a little faster, that's probably where he'll play in Ann Arbor. Highlights:

This is definitely not a comprehensive list of preferred walkons, and we'll continue bringing updates as they become available.

2011

This should be a somewhat-hectic update, since 2011 prospects were neglected last week due to Signing Day 2010. Things should calm down again in the next couple weeks, and the 2011 recruiting primer is coming soon.

Scout and Rivals recently released their top 150 and top 250 watchlists, respectively. When there's not such an information overload, I'll take a look at where Michigan prospects fall on the list.

OH QB Braxton Miller does not have Michigan in his top 5:

In addition to Ohio State, Alabama and Florida, Miller said he was also seriously considering Georgia and Notre Dame right now.

The Wolverines are a longshot for him, but he'll remain on the board until he starts trimming down the list. In the 2011 recruiting prospectus, I'll give a little more clarity on Michigan's needs at QB in the class.

I removed SC QB Everett Golson, who committed to North Carolina.

The Wolverines have offered MI RB Justice Hayes ($, info in header). Though he grew up a Spartans fan, the Michigan offensive system is a better fit for his skill set. It will be interesting to see how that plays out in his recruitment.

Michigan is showing interest in FL WR Sammy Watkins, from South Fort Myers high school. Other schools that have been in to see Watkins include Ohio State, USC, Florida, LSU and a number of other high-profile schools. The 6-2, 190-pounder runs a 4.5-second 40-yard dash, and will be a top prospect nationally.

Michigan has offered IL WR DaVaris Daniels, the son of former NFLer Phillip Daniels.

Though he's been thought of as a Michigan lean for quite some time, MI WR DeAnthony Arnett has the Wolverines outside his top 3. USC, Notre Dame, and State lead, with the Wolverines in a group of 5 following that top group. Tom says not to read too much into it yet.

Midnight Maize, perhaps best known for their photoshop work on MGoBoard, recently interviewed AZ OL Andre Yruretagoyena (hell of a name, that), who holds a Michigan offer. Yrure… Yrureta… that guy attends Chapparal, the same school that provided Michigan with Craig Roh and Taylor Lewan last year. Greatest hits:

I'm planning on taking a visit to Michigan ASAP and Taylor said he'd be my host or whatever. I'm really looking forward to it because Michigan is my favorite school with Oregon.

Nastyness, finishes blocks, fast, technically sound, good pass blocking, strong punch, wide base. Everyone can always improve but I'd like to get a lot stronger, and faster. I didn't let up a sack this season but I'd still like to get better at pass blocking, and keeping a wider base when I run block."

Yruretagoyena (That's going to be fun to type all the time...) plans to decide after his season. Craig Roh's dad posted a little info on the Scout free board:

Talked to a chaparral parent who saw him play all last year and said he is a stud. Started playing late and the light bulb "went on" during the season. Expect great things from him....and this guy knows how to evaluate players. We should have a good shot at him with Craig and Taylor both knowing him. the Chaparral to Michigan pipeline for the top kids should be pretty strong.

Take it FWIW.

OH OL Aundrey Walker, a product of Ted Ginn Sr.'s Glenville program, now holds an offer from the Wolverines. As per usual, it will be tough to break the scarlet fence around that high school.

Rivals is high on MI OL Anthony Zettel after he impressed at the BadgerSports Lineman Challenge. They also mention that the Wolverines are the team to beat for Anthony. Check out the link for a breakdown of his performance; Zettel is in Rivals's initial 250 watch list.

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FL DT Tim Jernigan (pictured at right) is among the top prospects nationally, and though he's almost certainly ticketed for Gainesville, Michigan is in his top 5:

Michigan — "I met some of the coaches. It seems like a pretty good program. It's a place I'd like to look into more."

It sounds like he wants to visit, and anytime the coaches can get a kid on campus, there's a chance. The monstrous defensive line haul the Gators brought in last year might help challengers with Jernugan, as well.

Michigan (and Boston College and Nebraska) offered OH DT Kevin Williams from Toledo:

"I'm very interested in all three," Williams said. "I'm also interested in Notre Dame, Florida State and Ohio State. At this time I really don't have a favorite. All the schools are great."

MGoBlog's own TomVH interviewed Williams, who will make an early decision, and is currently high on the Wolverines. Check out the interview for all the details.

According to MGoBlog's own TomVH, Michigan leads for OH DE Robert Mincey, even though he hasn't received an offer yet.

Michigan offered MI DE Brennen Beyer. This is sort of old news, but I've been focusing on the 2010 class over the past couple weeks, so it hasn't found its way into a recruiting update yet. Beyer is expected at Michigan's junior day on the 20th, and may make an early decision.

TX DE Nathan Hughes is also holding an offer from the Wolverines, though he'll be a tough pull. Texas is expected to offer this weekend, which could result in a commitment. Hughes does come from the same high school as Terrence Robinson and Mark Ortmann.

Rich Rodriguez traveled to Springfield High School a couple weeks ago to drop in on OH LB Trey DePriest:

The business of football recruiting — and don’t be fooled, this is a business — is in full swing, and high-profile college coaches from across the country wanted to make sure Trey DePriest knew they were in town.

Trey is a huge priority in the class of 2011, and I believe he's planning to attend the next Michigan junior day (more on that as the February 20th date approaches). A little additional fluffy stuff and a troubling development in his recruitment from the same article:

DePriest is a 6-foot-2, 220-pound junior linebacker with terrific football instincts, natural speed and strength and a handshake that rivals the strongest grip. He’s 16 years old and he bench-pressed 185 pounds 28 times at a recent combine.

That’s not all these colleges see, though. His grades are good, and he’s kept a level head throughout this process. He’s visiting Alabama this weekend with assistant coach John Cupps.

That was a couple weekends ago.

When Michigan dropped in to Boyd Anderson High School before Signing Day, they were looking not only at Demar Dorsey, but also his 2011 teammate, FL LB Kent Turene. I've added him to the recruiting board, and you can check out his film from SoFlaFootball at the link. Tom has an interview with Turene coming up today.

Though Tyler Moore holds a Michigan offer, he has committed to Nebraska, where his father played (and where he'll enroll early). However, that hasn't stopped Michigan from showing interest in his teammate, FL S Alex Dixon.

The headlines make it pretty obvious, but Michigan is at or near the top of the list for two Ohio prospects. OL Brandon Jackson "has Michigan high," and Michigan might lead for ATH Rico Butler, given that headlines asking questions on recruiting sites are almost always answered with "yes." Both articles are $, but the money shots are in the titles.

TN QB/slot/DB/ATH Jabriel Washington holds a Michigan offer, according to Tom. No word on what position Michigan's coaches would like to see him play, but his film is impressive on both sides of the ball:

I don't even know where to put the kid on the recruiting board for now. I guess QB, until we get further clarity where the coaches want him.

Wednesday Recruitin'

Wednesday Recruitin'

Submitted by Tim on November 25th, 2009 at 1:13 PM

Cullen Christian Goes Blue

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As everyone has been expecting for some time now, PA CB Cullen Christian picked the Wolverines yesterday, adding a much-needed defensive back to the class of 2010. The announcement itself had been planned for weeks, and although it took a little longer than expected, the result is unsurprising. Local article. (Christian image via the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette).

For the record, The US Army All-American Bowl will select a player from Penn Hills next week. Christian and WR/S Brandon Ifill have both been nominated, and I'd imagine Christian is the choice as he is rated better by every recruiting service. And since there wasn't room for it yesterday, here's part 2 of Cullen's junior highlight video:

Who Will Fill the Class?

With Christian's commitment and the news that 2009 FL CB Adrian Witty will join the team this winter, there are only a few more spots available in the 2010 recruiting class. Next week's recruitin' update will be an overview-type post, but for now, let's look at a few of the guys who are still possibilities.

FL WR Kenny Shaw has narrowed his list to Michigan, Tennessee, Florida, and Florida State, with Georgia having an outside shot at him. He will announce his decision on Signing Day. [Source: ESPN, though they've apparently made it their corporate mission to not get a single inbound link, so whatever]. Florida State is still on top, but Michigan may have moved into second after an enjoyable visit ($, info in header/speculation).

CA WR Kenny Stills, one of the many visitors to the M/OSU game, will announce his final decision on December 1st. Michigan is probably on the outside in this one, but at least we'll know soon, right?

TX DT Jatashun Beachum enjoyed his Michigan visit, but it sounds as though he's unlikely to decommit from Arkansas. This is a disappointment, since it sounded before the Michigan visit like a decommitment from the Hogs was basically just a formality. Further updates coming as that situation develops.

MD LB Josh Furman has narrowed his list to two, with a decision date set ($, info in header). The narrowing is news, but he's been planning to announce at the Maryland Crab Bowl for some time, and there's been no indication of a change there. No word on the final two, but Michigan and Virginia Tech were announced as his leaders last week, so it's probably them... and Scout confirms all the information in one convenient header.

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CA S Sean Parker told MGoBlog's own Tom VanHaaren that he plans to officially visit Michigan. Rivals confirms. Parker was supposed to be a heavy Notre Dame lean, but recent events are obviously concerning.

CA S/LB Tony Jefferson enjoyed his Michigan visit, but not even the afterglow is enough to move the Wolverines into his top 2. UCLA and Oklahoma are still on top for him, and he's going to "consider [Michigan] the rest of the way." Not the most promising update in the world. (Jefferson pictured at right via the Detroit News).

[Update: News article does say that "ESPN speculates he will choose the Wolverines," but that's contradicted by the direct quotes linked above and should be taken with a grain of salt.]

Recent Michigan offeree OH S Ray Vinopal is named 1st-team all-District. He was in the house for Michigan's loss to Ohio state. Despite the result, he enjoyed the visit.

FL CB Tony Grimes and DE Clarence Murphy both enjoyed their visit to Ann Arbor, and I think the headline "Michigan on Top in Hollywood Hills" ($, info in header) is a pretty good indication of where the Wolverines stand with both prospects. Rivals confirms ($, info in header) for Murphy.

[your editor dips in for a moment…]

Gut Feelings

For what it's worth, on Monday's WTKA recruiting roundup, Sam Webb said he had a "gut feeling" on four players: Christian, Grimes, Murphy and Furman. For those unfamiliar, Webb's gut is the place he puts information about silent commitments. Christian has already dropped and Grimes and Murphy are a formality; if Webb is right about Furman and that potential rule change those four guys would close out the class.

Snake-Oiling The Irish?

The last time Notre Dame switched coaches, Michigan pirated away DE Jeremy Van Alstyne and CB/S Brandon Harrison from Ty Willingham's last class. Weis has been crushing Michigan's head in recruiting since he was hired. So can Michigan repeat the feat when Weis is fired two seconds after this weekend's game against Stanford ends?

Probably not. There are two kids in the class that Michigan finished second for, but FL CBs Lo Wood and Spencer Boyd are generic three-star sorts and Michigan isn't going to throw one of their generic three-star cornerbacks overboard, or pass up on Grimes, for them. Notre Dame's got a couple of good linebacker commits but they're both from North Carolina and had no interest in Michigan before they committed. Five-star CO DE Chris Martin has been a soft commitment for a while but he's had no interest in Michigan and Weis's firing isn't likely to sprout any. Michigan didn't make IN DE Blake Lueders's top five the first time he cut it down.

The only other player in Notre Dame's class who seems like even a slight possibility is IL OL Christian Lombard, but Lombard committed to Notre Dame at the Army Junior Combine and is likely a true believer who isn't even going to look around. (Side note: Lombard was a consensus five-star at that combine and Rivals now has him a meh three star. Ricardo Miller should have a "what happened to our recruiting rankings" pity party with him.)

In sum: Michigan and Notre Dame did not got head-to-head much this year and Michigan has better options at the spot where they did and ND won, so Weis's axing isn't going to be fruitful for the already-crammed recruiting class.

[/editor]

Happy Trails

OH TE Alex Smith officially decommitted from Cincinnati last week, and Michigan was in the small group of schools he was still considering. Alas, he chose North Carolina yesterday, meaning his tenure on the recruiting board is over once and for all.

SC WR Nick Jones, who Michigan had offered, committed to South Carolina. Michigan was never hot on him, and I imagine he was mostly offered for leverage on Marcus Lattimore.

2011

FL RB Demetrius Hart missed his playoff game last week because there was a controversy over whether he lived in the appropriate school district to attend Dr. Phillips.

John Magrino, Dr. Phillips athletic director, said OCPS determined Hart should sit until administrators can study allegations brought by Olympia that he lives in Pine Hills, not the DP school zone.

"He was assigned to our school from day one as a ninth grader and we’ve never had any reason to question that until today,” Magrino said.

Dr. Phillips managed to squeak out a 23-22 victory over Olympia without him, and he was cleared to hit the field against Apopka this weekend. Apparently, the mere challenge by Olympia's principal has been seen as a bush-league move. Hart is considered a heavy Michigan lean, although he wasn't able to make it to Ann Arbor for a visit last weekend.

ESPN's On The Trail (no link) reports that FL DT Tim Jernigan, who holds a Michigan offer, is only likely to consider Florida and Florida State.

Michigan has their eye on AZ QB/P Jordan Morgan. He's been invited to the Army All-American Combine in San Antonio.

Etc.: MI CB Dior Mathis is an Army All-American, along with MSU Commit Joe Boisture (which is odd, because he was so awful this year that his high school team benched him). That's an Army player each of the past four years for Cass Tech, with two picking the Wolverines (though Boubacar Cissoko didn't exactly turn out as expected). Fluff on the high school coach of GA DT Michael Thornton and LB Tyrone Cornileus. Michigan pipeline Pahokee faces an unceremonious exit from the state playoffs.