Wednesday Recruitin'

Wednesday Recruitin'

Submitted by Tim on January 20th, 2010 at 12:06 PM

Recruiting Boards of note:

Davion Rogers, Jake Ryan, and Delonte Hollowell Go Blue

davion.jpgryan.jpg   

Yay, commit-a-palooza! OH LBs Davion Rogers and Jake Ryan are in the current recruiting class, and both are linebackers who :gasp: play linebacker in high school! Rogers is a tall guy who may eventually play defensive end if he can put on the necessary weight. Ryan looks like a true middle linebacker, though he's apparently been told that the coaches are looking at him as a "pass-rushing outside linebacker," which sounds like the Quick position. MGoBlog doesn't buy that since that would make about eight guys in the class destined for one position.

For more on each, check out the "Hello" posts for Rogers and Ryan.

hollowell.jpg

MI CB Delonte Hollowell is a cornerback who hails from Detroit's Cass Tech high school, but won't join the Wolverines until 2011. Small in stature, he has drawn comparisons to former Wolverine Boubacar Cissoko. Delonte is still a long way from campus, but if you want to know more about him, check out the Hello: Delonte Hollowell post.

Happy Trails

  • GA QB/S Blake Sims has recommitted to Alabama. He decommitted from the Tide last week, and had been considering Michigan.
  • CA RB Dillon Baxter reopened his commitment last week, but last night he recommitted to the Trojans on local TV.
  • CA RB Brennan Clay will stick with Oklahoma.
  • NJ OL Jake Kaufman committed to USF. He hadn't been involved in Michigan's recruiting plans for quite some time.
  • FL OL Torrian Wilson committed to Louisville (after decommitting from USF). It doesn't seem like Michigan is going to bust their tails to get him to visit.
  • TX DT Jatashun "Big Tex" Beachum has solidified his verbal commitment to Arkansas, and doesn't appear to be an option anymore.
  • FL DE Clarence Murphy looks like he'll stick with Maryland, as Michigan won't heavily pursue him to land Tony Grimes. For his part FL CB Tony Grimes is still considering Michigan, but looks like a longshot.
  • As expected, GA LB Michael Taylor committed to Florida after switching from Tennessee.
  • MI CB Dior Mathis will play for Oregon.
  • OH S Latwan Anderson is committed to West Virginia.
  • MD S Lorenzo Waters committed to Rutgers.

With the recruiting class almost completely full, it's time for a little cleaning on the board. A bunch of guys who haven't committed elsewhere, or would otherwise still be possibilities, will be removed. That includes:

FL RB Cassius McDowell, DE RB Jamaal Jackson, OH RB Demetrus Johnson, MI OL Jarhaur Jackson, IL OL Andrew Schofield (South Dakota commit), MD DE David Mackall, MI LB Austin Gray (Iowa commit), FL CB TC Robinson, OH S Bobby Swigert (Boston College commit).

Some of those guys don't have many D-1 offers, and are potential preferred walk-on candidates, but the ones committed to BCS programs will definitely stick with those schools.

And it All Means?

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With the above guys taken off the board, there are very few bodies left as options for Michigan. Those would be:

  • CA S Sean Parker: He visited USC over the weekend, and will take a final visit to Washington before his decision.
  • FL S Rashad Knight: He told mgoblog's own TomVH that he truly enjoyed his visit, and Tom speculates that the Wolverines are now #1.
  • FL S Demar Dorsey: a cousin of Denard Robinson, rumor has it that Florida is getting frustrated with his wandering eyes, and is considering revocation of his offer. Dorsey is pictured at right.

A few guys, like FL WR De'Joshua Johnson, have mentioned taking visits to Ann Arbor, but it's highly unlikely that anyone else signs with the Wolverines unless another sleeper or two emerges.

[editor-appended bits]

Guru Loves Us, Guru Loves Us Not

Post all-star lists have been published and it's been a long time since I can remember such a difference of opinion between the sites on Michigan's recruits. Devin Gardner got the boot from the Rivals 100 and Cullen Christian dipped to 99; on that site he's Michigan's only top 100 recruit. Gardner sticks at 132 and is the only other Michigan recruit in their top 250. Three others (Ash, Robinson, and Wilkins) get four stars, but that's it. Michigan is 19th in their rankings largely because of class size. To Rivals, this is the worst Michigan recruiting class since people started tracking these things systematically.

Scout, on the other hand, peppers their top 300 with Michigan recruits:

43. Devin Gardner

56. Cullen Christian

98. Josh Furman

155. Austin White

167. Ricardo Miller

201. Marvin Robinson

258. Jerald Robinson

If Sean Parker signs with Michigan he would be a fourth top 100 kid at #81. That's about an average haul for Michigan, and Scout has M in about the range they usually are: Michigan ranks #9 in their rankings right now. They've got a big class and are close to full, so that's a ranking you expect to see drop and grudgingly concede is a bit overrated—team recruiting rankings don't do a good job of accounting for opportunity costs—but after the last two years I'll take a top-ten-ish recruiting class and run.

At MGoBlog, the correct guru is always the one that favors Michigan, so one point for Scout this year.

Side note: at least it's been an off year for Ohio State, too. They've got a small class and a better star average than M at Rivals but are currently 24th(!) in their rankings. Penn State is this year's undisputed Big Ten recruiting champion.

Coner 2000

That is what I am calling new fourth-string QB Conelius Jones. Yes. Yes. AnnArbor.com did a story on the oddly named recruit* that indicates he can't throw worth a lick…

"What I look at when I see him, guys that have come through like Woody Dantzler at Clemson, Pat White," Spartanburg coach Freddie Brown said. "Athletic quarterback, pull it down, run it, throw it guy. He can be a 50-50 (run-pass) guy. A guy that probably runs it a little bit better than he throws it, but Conelius can throw it, too."

…and that he's open to whatever, man:

“I’m a quarterback," Jones said. "But I wouldn’t have any problem with not being” one.

Coner 2000 is about the most guaranteed redshirt in the recruiting class; we'll see how he develops. That Cutcliffe offer from Duke is more appealing than your average Duke offer is, but I bet one dollar he ends up somewhere else.

*(Months after MGoUser Clarence Beeks reported back that this kid apparently didn't have the R in his name that every recruiting site and newspaper said he did, this story makes the same understandable gaffe. I don't blame them at all. "Conelius" cries out for an R. If someone was named Elizaeth no one would ever get their name right, either.)

[/end editor bits]

2011

As noted above, MI CB Delonte Hollowell has become member #2 of the 2011 recruiting class. It's a little too soon to speculate on class composition until after Signing Day, but that's already two DBs following what looks like a very DB-heavy 2010 class.

Potentially adding to that is OH S Ron Tanner, who currently favors Michigan ($, info in header).

Moving along to non-DB news, SC RB Demetrius Williams is now holding an offer from the Wolverines. Despite that, Michigan is a longshot to land him:

“(Growing up) I had three favorite schools,” he said. “I liked (South) Carolina, Clemson and Florida. I really prefer to go to Carolina. If I get an offer from Carolina that is probably where I’m going to go.”

At this point, it looks like a token offer. Bamberg-Ehrhardt has pumped out a bunch of talent in the past few years, and Michigan's coaches may simply be trying to get their foot in the door.

Butler High School outside of Charlotte, NC is perennially stocked with talent, and has a long-standing relationship with Michigan, as the Butler coaches work the Wolverines' summer camps, and guys like Jamar Adams have gone from Butler to Ann Arbor (to the NFL). The class of 2011 appears to be a special one at Butler, with 6 BCS-caliber prospects, including at least two Michigan will try to land:

*Christian LeMay, QB: A national talent of the first order. “I don’t even count his offers anymore,” Newsome said. “He can get one from any school he’s interested in, from Alabama on down.”

*Kris Frost, LB: Another player expected to be recruited on a national scale, he’s received his first written offer, from North Carolina. But he also has a few verbals, including one from Michigan. “He’s always been a Michigan fan; wearing Michigan shorts and T-shirts to practice ever since he started here,” Newsome said. “Any school that wants to beat them will have to work real hard.”

LeMay will be one of the nation's top QBs, and holds a Michigan offer. His dad is the former team chaplain at Florida, however, and he is considered all but a Florida lock. Frost also holds an offer from the Wolverines, so I have added him to the board as well. It certainly sounds like Michigan can land the kid if they go hard after him.

Another linebacker target, OH LB Trey DePriest, hit up Ohio State's junior day over the weekend, instead of heading up to Ann Arbor ($, info in header). He's a very important prospect for Michigan, and hopefully he'll be able to make it to a recruiting event sometime this spring.

Once the class of 2010 is signed (which is shockingly close), I'll start taking a closer look at available scholarships and needs for the 2011 crop.

Wednesday Recruitin'

Wednesday Recruitin'

Submitted by Tim on January 13th, 2010 at 12:59 PM

The 2010 Michigan Football Recruiting Board and the 2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Board contain past updates.

Slipping Away

Though they had been long-considered near-locks to join Michigan's 2010 recruiting class, that is no longer the case for FL CB Tony Grimes and DE Clarence Murphy. Murphy committed to Maryland last week, and since then, Grimes has not sounded so positive on the Wolverines. Mgoblog's own TomVH talked to Grimes and says:

tonygrimes.jpg

With Murphy choosing Maryland, everyone is kind of seeing the writing on the wall. I'm not sure what happened to change Grimes mind, but it seems like it is changing.

He's playing everything close to the vest right now, so he's not telling a lot. Like I said, I don't think it's good news, though.

Murphy talked to The Baltimore Sun about his commitment, and what his teammate is thinking:

“Me and my friend, Tony Grimes, were planning on going to school together,” Murphy said. “I think he stopped favoring Michigan a little bit. He went up there and got into some cold weather a little bit. … [So] he’s still weighing things out a little bit.

The Wolverines are still in a small group for Grimes, though Ole Miss is probably his new leader. To add insult to injury, Tony was just selected to participate in the USA v. the World All-Star Game. Jay Hopson's departure may have played a role here.

In other recruiting attrition, 2009/2010 FL CB Adrian Witty sounds like he will not be making it to Ann Arbor. Though some fans speculated that Michigan offered him only to help land Denard Robinson last year, the coaches seemed to really like Witty, and losing him is a hit. With Michigan's extensive DB recruiting in the class of 2010, hopefully the damage is limited.

The final piece that appears to be dropping out of Michigan's 2010 class is TX RB Tony Drake. The source is admittedly second-hand, but Michigan commits talk to the coaches about recruiting a hell of a lot more than you or I do. At this point its tough to consider Drake committed.

All of this changes the numbers for the class, taking it down to 23 commits (removing Grimes and Witty), with the potential to get up around 27 or 28. With Grimes and Murphy no longer penciled in, the Wolverines can find about 4 more prospects. Hopefully, Calvin Magee;s candidacy at USF won't affect any of Michigan's other commits.

The Other Side of the Fence

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It's coaching change season around the country, which means that other schools' recruiting classes may be ripe  for poaching. We first turn our attention to sunny Los Angeles, where Pete Carroll and a number of his assistant coaches are heading north to the NFL. One of the crown jewels of the Trojans' class, CA RB Dillon Baxter, will open his recruitment, and Michigan was the only other school to which he has already taken an official visit.

If the Michigan coaches can convince him to go Blue ("Baxter said Friday that Florida and Michigan had reached out"), it would be a huge recruiting coup, and a more than adequate replacement for Drake. MGoBlog's TomVH has talked to Baxter, who indicated he nearly switched his commitment to Michigan following his official visit. Carroll's departure is probably a positive for Michigan's recruitment of CA S Sean Parker as well.

The fact that it's uber-recruiter Lane Kiffin taking over may bolster the Trojans' recruiting. Despite showing no ability to be a head coach, Kiffin is a proven winner in February.

To the best of my knowledge Michigan wasn't really a serious player for any of Tennessee's current commits other than GA LB Mike Taylor. He will decommit from Tennessee, though it's assumed he will commit to Florida, he told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that is a "false statement." It would still be an upset for him to land anywhere other than Gainesville.

One other player may be affected by the Kiffin departure: FL OL Torrian Wilson. Wilson visited Michigan in the summer and maintained the Wolverines as his leader before a surprise Stanford commit. He decommitted in search of a school closer to home and announced a top three of South Florida, Tennessee, and Michigan. Michigan is the farthest from Miami but is currently the only school of those three with, you know, a head coach. That would seemingly bode well, but watch out for Louisville. Charlie Strong has been hitting Miami Northwest hard and already has two of Wilson's teammates committed. Wilson's next list will be interesting.

Also in coaching change news, Michigan State RB coach Dan Enos is heading north to become the head coach at Central Michigan. Since the Spartans have a heavy in-state bent on their recruiting class, there may be a chance Michigan can step in for a couple guys, no? The following recruits have Enos listed as their primary recruiter on Rivals:

  • MI QB Joe Boisture
  • MI DE Taylor Calero
  • MI LB/DE William Gholston
  • MI CB Mylan Hicks
  • MI RB Nick Hill
  • MI RB Jeremy Langford
  • MI WR/Ath Tony Lippett

Of those prospects, only Gholston and Hicks likely interest Michigan, and Gholston ain't happening for. Hicks was also recruited by Harlon Barnett, State's secondary coach, so I doubt he is likely to wriggle loose. It appears as though MSU's recruiting class is safe (unless Gholston, as rumored, has legitimate interest in Alabama). For the future, however, recruiting Detroit may suffer slightly for the Spartans, as Enos was their main man in Detroit. That's good news for the Wolverines.

In non-coaching change poaching, GA QB/Ath Blake Sims has decommitted from Alabama after being unclear where he figured into the Tide's future plans. He's considering a small group of other schools including Michigan and West Virginia, though Tennessee and Georgia probably lead.

“I am not sure if I would have played receiver or where at Alabama, but I am just looking for a place I know they spread the ball out and where I will be used the best,” Sims said.

It's important to him to have a chance on offense rather than in the secondary, and if the coaching staff can give him a shot at QB, he may end up in blue.

Visits

With Grimes seemingly out of the picture, Michigan will probably turn up the heat on FL S/CB Rashad Knight. TomVH thinks Michigan no longer leads, but he is officially visiting this weekend, giving the Wolverines a chance to close the gap, and possibly even seal Knight for the Maize-and-Blue.

As mentioned last week, OH DT Jibreel Black is expected to take a January visit to Ann Arbor. I believe Michigan's only other big recruiting weekend will be January 30th, the weekend before Signing Day.

2011

SC WR Hakeem Flowers "Will Look to Get Away," and also holds a Michigan offer ($, info in header). He should be among the top wideouts nationally.

MI CB Delonte Hollowell gave GoBlueWolverine an interview during the US Army Combine, and considering the headline says "his thoughts on committing to U-M," it sounds like there's not only a good chance he'll become a Wolverine, but also do it soon ($, info in header). I've upgraded him to a Blue Smiley on the recruiting board.

Wednesday Recruitin'

Wednesday Recruitin'

Submitted by Tim on January 6th, 2010 at 2:37 PM

Boards of note:

Trench Warfare

hankins.jpgLots of changes on the defensive tackle recruiting front in the past couple days.

First things first, MI DT Johnathon Hankins picked Ohio State yesterday over the Wolverines. Allow me to editorialize for a moment here: This blog has a tag called "basketball recruiting is dirty like dirt in a dirt sandwich," but if half of the rumors about the Southeastern coaching staff's handling of Hankins's recruitment are true, we may need to expand that tag to football as well. Genuinely Sarcastic provides some angry detail.

FL DT Todd Chandler seems to be looking primarily at Louisville as an option outside of USF (where he is committed). Michigan might become a stronger option if his teammate, FL OL Torrian Wilson, visits Ann Arbor, but this one appears to be on the back-burner for now. Chandler's top schools have gone from the likes of Miami, Michigan, and Florida to Memphis, Louisville, and FIU, so he may have some issues—grades?—that are causing bigger schools to back off.

Wilson, by the way, is down to USF, Michigan, and Tennessee. Michigan could really use another offensive lineman in the class.

Cincinnati high school sports reporter Mike Dyer reports that Michigan visited OH DT/DE Jibreel Black both in-home and in-school on Monday. Black, who has been committed to Cincinnati, but is reconsidering after the Brian Kelly departure, will also visit Michigan sometime this month, probably the weekend of the 22nd. According to Dyer's full article, the Wolverines have replaced Louisville on his list.

Michigan has a couple defensive ends and a couple three-tech defensive tackles so all they need is a nose; if they pick up Black it's because they really like him.

All-Star Updates

More on his actual game performance in a delayed Friday Night Lights post next week, but MI QB Devin Gardner participated in the Under Armour All-American Bowl on Saturday. He impressed in practice:

"(Devin Gardner) really impressed me a lot," [Scout Florida expert Geoff] Vogt added. "He was bigger than I expected him to be. His arm was everything that people made it out to be. He was accurate... He clearly, in my opinion, is the top quarterback on that team... He'd be the No. 1 quarterback in Florida straight out this year and that's really saying something. I think he has a really bright future at Michigan."

Of course, being the clear #1 QB on the team got him by far the fewest snaps out of the 3 QBs, with Nick Montana and Phillip Sims getting more (the order was determined randomly, FWIW). That Webb article also says that Michigan is pursuing Tennessee commit LB Michael Taylor. I've added him to the board. Taylor remains a soft commit to the Vols.

FL CB Tony Grimes participated in last weekend's Offense-Defense Bowl, and MGoReader J. Lichty reports that opposing offenses mostly stayed away from him. He played both corner and safety. MGoBlog's own TomVH talked to Grimes last week, and he reiterated what we've been hearing for some time on both Grimes and his teammate, FL DE Clarence Murphy:

TOM: Are you and Clarence still planning on going to the same school?

TONY: As far as this point, yes that's the plan.

TOM: Is Michigan still on top for you?

TONY: Yes.

The two still both favor Michigan, and plan to announce on Signing Day. Tony also said that he didn't know there was a dead period between college coaches and recruits, and was wondering why Michigan wasn't contacting him as much. Sounds like other schools haven't quite been following the rules. THE NCAA WILL BE ALL OVER THIS!

This upcoming weekend is a little more notable for Michigan fans: Commits WI P Will Hagerup and PA CB Cullen Christian will play in the US Army All-American Bowl, and CA S Sean Parker who is down to Michigan, Cal, and USC, will also participate.

Early Enrollment

The semester started today, so we should finally have a good idea of which 2010 Michigan commits were able to get in for the winter semester and spring practice.

MI QB Devin Gardner is still trying to enroll early, but Inkster's semester ends really late and there are some issues with getting him accelerated. Michigan should know by the end of the week whether he will or not. Stephen Hopkins, Jerald Robinson, Ricardo Miller, Christian Pace, Jeremy Jackson, and Austin White are all enrolling, though as of Wednesday morning Robinson and Miller did not have UMich directory entries. Marvin Robinson is also making an effort to enroll early:

Robinson, who took 3 classes over the summer in an attempt to graduate in December, said the holdup stems with 2 classes he took last semester.

"Most likely things are going to work out where I can go up there tomorrow," Robinson said.

Even if things don't, Robinson said he's firm in his commitment and will sign with Michigan in February.

I don't recall if the Athletic Department announced early-enrolling prospects last year until after Signing Day, but hopefully we'll have the final data by the end of this week.

Meanwhile, FL CB Adrian Witty was also supposed to be a midseason enroller after not qualifying for fall but is not in the Michigan directory. It's looking grimmer for Witty by the day; from the sounds of it he is qualified in the eyes of the NCAA; Michigan's admissions are the holdup. The most likely issue is a radically improved test score that got flagged.

Persistent rumors that TX RB/WR Tony Drake is so far from qualifying that he shouldn't even be considered part of the class any more get stronger by the day.

2011

Maxpreps published its Junior All-American teams, with few prospect of interest for Michigan fans, outside of a couple pipe dreams. SoFlaFootball has also published its first 2011 top 75.

FL RB Demetrius Hart may not be the Michigan lock that we thought:

The 5-foot-8, 175-pounder has had the Wolverines out in front for some time and continues to do so, though he jokingly said that cold temperatures in the Orlando area recently may have him thinking a little.

So, yeah: That's not as negative as the headline "Florida Prospect Considers Local Programs" would make it seem. It would still be an upset for him to not land in Ann Arbor.

Michigan has offered a trio of prospects from Gardena Serra High School in California. WR George Farmer appears to be the headliner, holding offers from a who's-who of bigtime schools, including Florida and Oklahoma. DE Jason Gibson and S Marquise Lee have also received Michigan offers, along with scholarships from the likes of Miami (Yes That Miami), Oregon, and Washington.

Etc.

Michigan commits Tony Drake and Austin White come in at #8 and #10, respectively on Sports Illustrated's top running backs of 2010.

Wednesday Recruitin'

Wednesday Recruitin'

Submitted by Tim on December 30th, 2009 at 11:36 AM

All-time updates can be found on the 2010 Michigan Football Recruiting Board.

The Final Few

parker.jpg

CA S Sean Parker (pictured at right), who may be slated for the Wolverines, has "officially" narrowed his choices to USC and Cal, along with Michigan.

"These are the three schools that he likes the most and has a good relationship with. And he has enjoyed being there," said Byron Moore, Narbonne's unofficial recruiting coordinator and a close family friend.

He will announce his commitment on Signing Day.

Michigan has gotten in touch with OH DT Jibreel Black ($, info in header). Black is reconsidering his Cincinnati commitment after the Bearcats lost coach Brian Kelly to Notre Dame. He's more of a 3-tech DT, however, and Michigan already has two of those on board. He does have four visits set up ($, info in header), and considering the article was written by a reporter for TheWolverine, I imagine one of those is to Ann Arbor.

Package Deals?

FL DT Todd Chandler decommitted from Miami because he hadn't heard from the Canes, and turned around to commit to South Florida. He's still open, though, and considering Michigan's recruitment of his teammate, FL OL Torrian Wilson, and the need for a nose tackle in this class, he's definitely an option for the Wolverines, especially considering the mystery Miami DT who will visit Ann Arbor ($, info in header) in January.

Michigan is "still on top" for FL DE Clarence Murphy. He and teammate FL CB Tony Grimes will announce around Signing Day, likely for the Wolverines. Don't consider them mortal locks, however, as Grimes will take at least one other visit ($, info in header).

Under Armour Weekend

The High School All-Star Bonanza kicks off this week, as the ESPNU/Under Armour game goes down in Central Florida. The game can be seen on ESPN at 11AM on Saturday.

Devin Gardner (#7 for the Black squad) is the only Michigan commit in the game, but there are a couple other guys that Michigan is still recruiting, or was until recently:

FL OL Torrian Wilson #76 White
FL WR Kenny Shaw #84 White (He'll commit at the game, but probably not to Michigan)
FL DT Todd Chandler #95 White

The Offense-Defense Bowl also goes down this weekend, and FL CB Tony Grimes, who heavily favors Michigan, will suit up for the East Team. The game kicks off at 5PM on Saturday, and can be seen on Fox College Sports.

2011

The 2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Board can be found here. A couple new offers come to us FROM THE FUTURE:

SC QB Everett Golson holds a Michigan offer. He was also named the 1st-Team All-State quarterback in South Carolina, and was one of only 4 juniors to make the team.

PA WR Dondi Kirby has been offered by MIchigan ($, info in header), as well as Maryland. I've added him to the recruiting board as an offered prospect.

depiest.gif

OH LB Trey DePriest, a personal MGoFavorite for the class of 2011, comes in for some fluff from JJHuddle:

“It was a good game,” DePriest said. “There were a lot of mistakes, but it was real live up there. Michigan is a good school. They need to get out of the hole they are in. They want me to come up and play early.”

Yes, there is plenty of playing time available for linebackers, believe it or not.

Etc.:

The Toledo Blade's Ryan Autullo talks to Jeremy Crabtree of Rivals, who says Michigan has a solid class, despite the lack of 5-star talent. OH LB Jewone Snow has committed to West Virginia. He'd been trying to wait on a Michigan offer, but one never came through. He's a teammate of 2011 DE Steve Miller, who is committed to Ohio State.

Christmas Eve 'Cruitin

Christmas Eve 'Cruitin

Submitted by Tim on December 24th, 2009 at 12:09 PM

All-time updates can be found on the 2010 and 2011 Michigan Football Recruiting Boards.

Josh Furman and Richard Ash Go Blue

The audio is poor, but there is commitment video for MD LB Commit Josh Furman:

The local papers also covered Furman's commitment. For more on Josh, check out the Hello: Josh Furman post.

FL DT Richard Ash actually preceded Furman in commitment. He was snagged from West Virginia, since Rodriguez thought he needed more ways to make the citizens of his home state hate him.

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For (much) more on Ash, check out Hello: Richard Ash.

Offensive Overview

The Wolverines are done on every offensive position except maybe offensive line, unless they can convince an elite recruit to commit (for example FL WR Kenny Shaw, who has Michigan in his final group of 4). In that case, they'd probably dive into the sketchy world of pulling scholarship offers. At this time, it doesn't appear that would happen, unless a couple guys don't look like they'll qualify.

So who's still available on the offensive line? FL OL Torrian Wilson held Michigan as a heavy favorite early in his recruitment, then abruptly committed to Stanford. Now, he's decommitted from the Cardinal and has a top 3 of Michigan, Tennessee, and USF. I would imagine he'll visit in January if he's serious about the Wolverines.

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In other news on offense, MI QB Commit Devin Gardner may be able to enroll early at Michigan, after all ($, info in header). That would allow him to compete in spring and be more ready to play this fall, potentially avoiding a redshirt. There's still a lot that can be said about potential redshirts, the personnel at the QB position, etc., but we'll wait to see whether Gardner enrolls early and, if so, what happens in the spring between him, Tate, and Denard before we speculate on who is and isn't switching positions or taking a redshirt year.

Defensive Overview

Assuming the commitments of FL CB Tony Grimes and FL DE Clarence Murphy, and the strong possibility of a commitment from CA S Sean Parker, Michigan has to be very judicious with their scholarships, with only 1 or 2 to give out. The most likely candidates for those last couple spots would be a true nose tackle (OH DT Commit Terry Talbott and FL DT Commit Richard Ash are more 3-tech types), maybe a true pass-rusher at DE, an inside linebacker, or maybe even another defensive back.

GA DT Michael Thornton is still considering Michigan, and he's going on most of his official visits in January, with one of them possibly to Ann Arbor. Michigan is still behind for him, and would have to catch up to land Thornton.

TX LB/DE Holmes Onwukaife was at one time committed-ish to Michigan, before the Wolverines let him know they wanted him for a position that he didn't want to play. A fast-rising rumor last week said that he was reconsidering his Florida State commitment and would look at Michigan, but MGoBlog's own Tom Van Haaren reports that ain't true. Onwukaife will stick to his FSU commitment.

FL LB Darrin Kitchens will visit Michigan in January. The Wolverines are joined by the Florida Gators in his recent offer, so he's a prospect on the rise. He plans to commit to a school before making any visits, so unless the coaching staff really likes him, he probably won't ever come up to Ann Arbor.

Happy Trails

The Hopson Ripples

Michigan linebacker coach Jay Hopson will move on to Memphis, where he'll be the defensive coordinator. According to Rivals, he was the primary recruiter for the Talbott brothers and TX RB Tony Drake. It doesn't seem like those commitments are in jeopardy, since DT Terry Talbott solidified his Michigan commitment after visiting for the Ohio State game.

As far as Drake goes, there have been no rumblings of a decommitment, but there has been a bit of talk that he still hasn't qualified through the NCAA Clearinghouse. At this point, he's more of a risk to end up not playing college football at all in 2010 than at a different school.

Torrian Wilson (mentioned above) was receiving in-home visits from Hopson, so it's unclear whether the departure will affect Michigan's chances of landing the lineman. Tony Grimes and Clarence Murphy also had Hopson as their primary recruiter, so it's unclear if their commitments are still a mere formality. I'll have to do more digging to see which other uncommitted 2010 prospects Hopson was recruiting.

On to the Next One

With the 2010 class all but wrapped up, let's shift focus to 2011.

MI RB Justice Hayes likes Michigan, Michigan State, and Northwestern, according to Sam Webb in the Detroit Free Press. He enjoyed Michigan's camp last summer:

"I stayed (at the Michigan camp) for three days," he said. "They told me to stay for one day, but I wanted to see what their dorms were like. It was very nice. Throughout those three days I was able to bond with Coach Rodriguez, Coach Jackson, and all the coaches. They were tough on me. Even though it was a camp, they were still tough on me like I was one of their players (laughing). I liked that. It was a fun experience."

But sees that Michigan State has so many disciplinary issues that he'd be able to climb the depth chart quickly (seriously!):

"Michigan State has been losing players like flies in the discipline areas, so that's opening spots on the depth chart," said Hayes.

RENEGADE PROGRAM, BRAH! Hayes prefers to play in a pro-style offense, because it would get him the ball more. He's apparently unaware that not all spreads are the same, and MIchigan's goal is to run it as much as possible.

ESPN's Gerry Hamilton reports that OH LB Trey DePriest will be a big target, not only for Michigan and Ohio State, but perhaps across the entire country:

On the recruiting front, Ohio State, Alabama, Virginia Tech, Oklahoma, North Carolina, Michigan, Cincinnati and Pittsburgh have stepped up with offers. This past season, he made unofficial visits to Cincinnati, Ohio State and Michigan.

DePriest was impressed with the crowd at Michigan Stadium for the Ohio State-Michigan game.

"It was live up there," he said.

He also says that he wants to go somewhere that he can play early. With Michigan's depth chart at linebacker, he could probably freakin' start as a true freshman.

evans.jpg

The same article confirms that Michigan will indeed pursue TX S Sheroid Evans (pictured at right). Evans should be a top player in the state of Texas, but he hails from the same school as current Wolverines Brandon Herron, Troy Woolfolk, and Darryl Stonum, giving Michigan a connection. He is a blazer who is still developing position-specific skills, but would be a hell of a grab for the Wolverines.

Another safety Michigan is going after is OH S Ron Tanner, but things don't sound promising from the start:

"Growing up I was a big-time fan of the Bucks, but after experiencing the (Michigan-Western Michigan) game, I really like Michigan," Tanner said during the fall. "I like how you can see everything when you're on the field. At the Horseshoe, the fans are sitting up real high. In the Big House it was like the fans may be a little closer. It doesn't seem like people all the way up into the sky."

Michigan is chasing the Buckeyes for Tanner, but they have a chance to catch up before Ohio State offers.

Wed...er... Thursday Recruitin'

Wed...er... Thursday Recruitin'

Submitted by Tim on December 3rd, 2009 at 3:36 PM

Let's take a position-by-position look at recruits in positions that Michigan still has needs. Yes, they're mostly on defense. For reference, Michigan has 21 current commits, and there's still been no resolution as to whether they can accept more than 25 commitments.

Offensive Line

FL OL Torrian Wilson made a surprise commit to Stanford in the summer, but now he will visit Michigan this weekend. I had long assumed his commitment to Stanford was soft, but with no recruiting news until now, I had started to change my mind. It appears as though my faith has been reaffirmed.

hankins.jpgIn case it wasn't apparent from such events as "5-7," MN OL Seantrel Henderson is no longer considering Michigan.

Defensive Tackle

Thought to be out of consideration for Michigan, MI DT Johnathan Hankins (I've seen his first name spelled about a hundred  different ways, with no indication as to which might be right), has finally received his Michigan offer. Despite growing up a Michigan fan, Florida is still his strong leader.

Obviously, Michigan was similarly impressed, but their prolonged evaluation process has them currently trailing in the race for the three-star prospect's services.

"Florida is ahead right now," Hankins told Scout.com. "It was a great place. The players were great and the fans were amazing. The game (against Florida State) was great too. I feel comfortable there. They said I have a chance to play because they are losing defensive tackles. I'd have a chance to start. It's all up to me. After (visiting) Florida, I didn't want to take any more visits, but I rethought that and my coaches wanted me to take all my visits."

He visits Michigan this weekend, and Michigan will have the opportunity to outdo Florida then; there's also a chance that Florida might fill up (or "fill up") before Hankins has an opportunity to commit. He plans to decide before Christmas.

The increase in Hankins interest might be due to a couple other guys falling off, as last week a small Arkansas paper reported TX DT Big Tex Beachum might be solid to Arkansas. He still has not publicly reaffirmed his Arkansas commitment, so on the board he stays. Even The Recruiting Guy's follow-up doesn't have a quote affirming his commitment. FWIW, Sam Webb posted an article on Beachum that involved the words "clears the air($)," a universal signal that the article in question directly contradicts previously-reported information. He's still in play.

FL DT Richard Ash committed to West Virginia, which means Michigan is out, right? NSFMF, Tom reports that Ash will visit Ann Arbor this weekend. The Pahokee Pipeline lives!

Defensive End

Michigan has offered post-grad VA DE David Mackall ($, info in header), who originally committed to Maryland in the class of 2009.

The Wolverines are also the leader for FL DE Clarence Murphy. As Brian noted last week, Sam Webb has talked about a "gut feeling" on WTKA, which generally means a silent commitment.

Linebacker

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The biggest possibility for Michigan in the linebacking corps is MD LB/S Josh Furman, who will announce between Michigan and Virginia Tech at the Crab Bowl on December 19.

Both schools have strong academics, both have early playing time as a possibility, and Furman has established strong relationships with both staffs. With so many similarities between the pro

grams, settling on one sounds like a daunting task, but Furman has already done it.

"The location factored into it, along with the environment and the official visit," he explained.

As implied by that quote, a decision has been made and the coaches informed for each school. The location factoring could be interpreted as a bad sign for Michigan, but he did have tons of positive things to say about Michigan following his official visit. If the coaches have been informed, Webb's "gut feeling" is unimpeachable. Furman is putting up gaudy rushing numbers in his senior season, and is a huge prospect for the Wolverines.

Defensive Back

CA S Sean Parker still wants to take a Michigan visit. The Wolverines are in a final seven-ish also consisting of PSU, Notre Dame, UCLA, Tennessee, Washington, and USC.

Michigan leads for FL CB Tony Grimes and his teammate, DE Clarence Murphy.

Hollywood Hills defensive back Tony Grimes said he is leaning heavily toward the University of Michigan. When a decision to commit is made, Grimes said he and Hills defensive lineman Clarence Murphy will attend the same school.

"Michigan sticks out for both of us," Grimes said. "There we feel we can come in and play as true freshmen."

As noted above, the two are essentially Michigan locks, assuming the Wolverines stay on them until they announce a decision on Signing Day.

CA S Tony Jefferson is down to USC and Oklahoma. Michigan is still on the fringe of his recruitment, or even with the top two, depending on who you ask. Still, though don't expect anything further.

Don't expect FL CB Spencer Boyd to end up at Michigan: he's sticking with Notre Dame. [Editor's note: not so fast! Rivals threw up an image of Boyd in an article header indicating he will take an official this weekend.]

Also: Rivals AMP says Michigan is "re-emerging($)" for OH S Latwan Anderson, but kid goes to Glenville and ain't coming here.]

Commit Updates

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MI QB Devin Gardner is ready to move on to his college career, after high school ended on a down note with a 27-6 loss to Lowell in the state championship game.

"I can't mourn this,” Gardner said after the loss last Friday. “I start getting ready for my future on Monday - lifting, throwing, watching films and getting better as a quarterback so this will never happen again."

Gardner was in attendance at last night's basketball debacle, and is firm in his commitment to Michigan. He no longer plans to enroll early.

MI RB Austin White is not wavering, despite a lame internet rumor to the contrary last week.

Further commit updates, including All-State team news, will be in next week's Friday Night Lights post.

[editor jump-in]

22 + 3 + er… more = er…

At this point we are operating under the assumption that Michigan can enroll no more than 25 freshmen this fall no matter how many scholarships it has open. This is unfortunate since any attrition is likely to see scholarships go unused again. It also means that Michigan has 22 commitments, three guys who are virtual commitments, zero spots left in the class, and about a dozen other guys they're still recruiting.

The conclusion is inescapable: expect attrition from the current commits. Whether it's a decommit or a gentle suggestion that maybe Player X would be better off in a situation with more opportunities for playing time, the way Michigan is recruiting suggests they're going to end up with a couple more commitments past the three expected ones. This will necessitate some current commits not signing or for Michigan to sign up to 28 with the intention of getting down to 25 by August.

Speculating about who is likely to depart in the former case is rude, but there are a couple of players who are reportedly not qualified yet and if they don't get there soon—ie, after this semester's grades are in—Michigan could be within its rights to say "sorry, but we can't take the chance you might not make it in." Your personal distaste for this sort of thing will vary. Mine is a six out of ten.

Possibilities in the latter case are grayshirting someone or expecting slight academic attrition from the incoming class. Some folks have proposed that MI WR Jeremy Jackson come in as a walk-on with a corresponding bump in Fred Jackson's pay, which is interesting, very definitely against the spirit of the rules, and possibly against the letter of them if Jackson received an official offer letter.

In any case, the next two months figure to be somewhat bumpy.

[/editor]

Etc.

Dave Birkett of AnnArbor.com interviews a couple of recruiting experts about Michigan's class thus far. Tom Lemming seems to be a bit higher on it than Allen Wallace of Scout. Both agree that it's a solid class, but won't contend with the nation's best. Lemming is very high on Cullen Christian, and both of them really like Gardner, because he's awesome.

Wednesday Recruitin'

Wednesday Recruitin'

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

Cullen Christian Goes Blue

CC.jpg

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.

jefferson.jpg

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.

An Interview With Tony Grimes

An Interview With Tony Grimes

Submitted by Brian on November 22nd, 2009 at 6:08 PM

tony-grimes-recruit

FL CB Tony Grimes and his teammate, FL DE Clarence Murphy, were amongst ten official visitors for the Ohio State game. Tom VanHaaren caught up with Grimes after he got back home and caught him for a brief, encouraging interview.

TOM: How was the trip, was it everything you expected?

TONY: It was my second trip up there, and I already knew I liked Michigan, so it met my expectations. It was pretty cool.

TOM: What was the best part about the game?

TONY: The atmosphere was crazy. Walking out of that tunnel and seeing the fans was pretty cool. None of the other games I've been to have compared to this.

TOM: So this sounds like a really good visit, what made the trip for you? What was so good about it?

TONY: It just felt like home. It really felt like home for me and Clarence. Clarence feels the same way I do about everything. The interaction with the coaches and players was great. There's a couple guys from Florida, so they knew what we were about, and what we were thinking.

TOM: What about seeing the defense in person. Did that give you a good look at how you'd be used?

TONY: Yeah, coach Gibson drew up some plays and schemes for me and Clarence, so we got a real good look at how they would use us.

TOM: Are you still going to be a package deal, and when will you announce your decision?

TONY: We're still a package deal, yes. We're probably going to take a couple more visits, not sure where yet. We're both going to announce on signing day, though.

TOM: One out of ten, how was this trip?

TONY: It was an eleven.

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

Grimes is a four-star to Scout (#10 CB) and ESPN(#16) and a three-star to Rivals(#36). Murphy is a three star all around.

Wednesday Recruitin'

Wednesday Recruitin'

Submitted by Tim on November 18th, 2009 at 2:54 PM

Remember, all-time updates can be found on the 2010 and 2011 Michigan football recruiting boards.

Out of Town Guests

jefferson.jpg

Wow, this would be an awesome recruiting weekend if it weren't for a game in which Michigan is likely going to get taken to the woodshed (plz don't, guys). Looking at past recruiting updates, we have the following list:

Official Visits:

  • FL CB Tony Grimes
  • FL DE Clarence Murphy
  • CA LB Tony Jefferson (pictured at right, courtesy of the Detroit News).
  • PA CB Cullen Christian
  • FL RB Cassius McDowell
  • FL S Rashad Knight (leaving for Ann Arbor at 6:45 AM Saturday)
  • FL S Commit Marvin Robinson

Unofficial Visitors:

  • 2009 FL CB Adrian Witty
  • MI CB Dior Mathis

Jefferson came in for the Sam Webb treatment in the Detroit News last week:

"They said they are in need of a player like me," Jefferson said in April after he received his Michigan offer. "They said I could play early at whatever position they think I could play -- outside linebacker, safety, or even offense. They liked my (physicality). That's what Michigan recruits."

He's a 4-star to both sites. MGo-Recruiting Guru Tom Van Haaren adds that Jefferson will not be the only California prospect in attendance. CA WR Kenny Stills will be in town along with CA Ath (and USC Commit) Dillon Baxter. Tom talked to Baxter yesterday. CA RB Brennan Clay, an Oklahoma commit and high school teammate of Tate Forcier, might also make it in. Or not.

SoFlaFootball says FL DT Richard Ash will visit for the Ohio State game as well. Ash comes from the familiar Pahokee pipeline, so Michigan might have a good chance to land him.

Add to that TX DT Jatashun "Big Tex" Beachum.

FL WR Kenny Shaw will be in the house as well. Remember, he's a former teammate of Ricardo Miller and current teammate of 2011 FL RB (and heavy Michigan lean) Demetrius Hart. Speaking of whom...

Expect a bunch of juniors as well, including Hart. Demetrius may be in the "good visit = commitment" category. 2011 OH S Ron Tanner will also be in attendance ($, info in header).

As previously discussed, GA teammates DT Michael Thornton and LB Tyrone Cornelius will take a fall visit. I wouldn't be surprised if it's for this game, though that's certainly not confirmed.

VINOPAL

Added OH S Ray Vinopal, who has received a Michigan offer. Vinopal had been on the radar much, much earlier in the process, but it didn't seem like he'd ever receive an offer. With that offer in hand, expect a winter visit from him. Here's his highlight video, courtesy of ScoutingOhio:

I honestly don't intend to reinforce racial stereotypes, but just from the highlight film, he looks like a guy who is always in position because he plays smart, not because he has elite speed. Vinopal also looks to be a big hitter. Cardinal Mooney is a traditionally strong program, and it couldn't hurt Michigan to have an in there.

For those concerned about his low recruiting profile, it appears that Vinopal's strong senior year is drawing interest from Notre Dame, Pitt, and a number of other local BCS programs. If a couple of those inquiries are followed up with offers, it'll be clear he's a Lewan sort of late bloomer, not a reach.

Cullen Near the End

rrcullen.jpg

PA CB Cullen Christian, as noted above, is visiting Ann Arbor this weekend. He had also planned to visit Ohio  State last weekend, but that apparently didn't happen. The Buckeyes were one of the prime challengers for his commitment, so not visiting the Buckeyes can only hurt them. He still plans to decide on November 24th, so as long as his Michigan visit doesn't go poorly, he could be the next addition to the 2010 recruiting class.

Christian has made several unofficial visits to Ann Arbor, most recently in June. He is comfortable with what the program has to offer, but wants to spend a few days around the players, coaches and students before rendering his decision.

"I want to get everyone's opinion about Michigan before I make a choice,” Christian said.

Definitely sounds like his mind is all but made up. Michigan has been eliminated from contention for his teammate, S/WR Brandon Ifill, so don't expect a package deal.

Happy Trails

VA LB Aramide Olaniyan, who had previously named Michigan near the top of his list, has committed to UCLA. He visited the Bruins a week ago, whereafter he named them his favorite. I'd accept a trade of Olaniyan for Jefferson (a UCLA commit), if it's possible. Olaniyan's off the board.

CA CB Joshua Shaw, who I removed in the last update, picked Florida yesterday.

Permanently removed TX DT Jay Guy, who has switched his soft Cal commitment to a hard Nebraska one.

Etc.:

Spurned commit Holmes Onwukaife may be back in the picture for the Wolverines. Michigan and VT are the leaders for MD LB Josh Furman ($, info in header). MI QB Commit Devin Gardner isn't wavering, which is good because he does things like this. 2011 DL Donte Phillips was "wowed" by his Michigan visit a couple weeks ago ($, info in header). OH TE Alex Smith has parted ways with Cincinnati. He'll make a final decision within a couple weeks.

Wednesday Recruitin'

Wednesday Recruitin'

Submitted by Tim on November 11th, 2009 at 12:15 PM

All-time updates can be found on the 2010 Michigan Recruiting Board and the 2011 Michigan Recruiting Board.

Just Win, Babby?

furmanvisit.jpg

Michigan fans have seen what impact a tough season can have on a recruiting class, as the terrible 2008 squad led to attrition from last year's class, and made this year's crop more difficult to pull in. With the Wolverines facing similar struggles in 2009, some recruits may be out of reach, but a few key guys see the team improving:

"It doesn't change anything," said Millersville (Md.) Old Mill linebacker Josh Furman, who officially visited Ann Arbor in September. "They are a young team and they need people at certain positions to play and be successful like they have been (in the past)."

While the losing streak has probably put the likes of MN OL Seantrel Henderson out of reach, Furman is an important recruit, as Michigan's linebackers have... struggled this year. The article also mentions that CA LB Tony Jefferson will visit for the Ohio State game (rescheduled from last weekend), despite MIchigan's trying season. More on visits a little later.

One Game to Sway Them All

As mentioned above, the Ohio State game looks to be an important one for recruiting. Aside from providing an opportunity to show that this ship is headed in the right direction (plz plz win), it's the biggest visit weekend of the year. The list will probably change over the course of the next week, but it's shaping up to be a blockbuster, per Josh Helmholdt in the Freep:

Official Visits:

  • FL CB Tony Grimes
  • FL DE Clarence Murphy
  • CA LB Tony Jefferson (as mentioned above)
  • PA CB Cullen Christian
  • FL RB Cassius McDowell
  • FL S Rashad Knight
  • FL S Commit Marvin Robinson

Unofficial Visitors:

  • 2009 FL CB Adrian Witty
  • MI CB Dior Mathis

Aside from that article, GA LB Tyrone Cornelius has talked about visiting Michigan (as mentioned last week), but no word on whether it will be for the OSU game or post-season. CA WR Kenny Stills is in a similar situation. There are also a number of indications that some 2011 prospects will be in attendance, including FL RB Demetrius Hart, a possible commit if he really likes what he sees.

Quarterbacks

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Sup Ladies?

SC QB Commit Conelius Jones's Shrine Bowl profile is now available, and he's listed as a wide receiver, who will be a defensive back at Michigan. Obviously, we won't have full confirmation of his future position until Signing Day.

In other quarterbacking news, MI QB Devin Gardner comes in for a solid round of fluff from Sam Webb in the Detroit News. He's still looking at possibly enrolling early.

"He had a great junior year and has simply built upon that," said Scout.com Midwest regional manager Allen Trieu. "He is considered one of the top handful of quarterbacks in the country and is firmly entrenched as a five-star prospect. As far as upside goes, I don't see many quarterbacks that have his potential."

Rivals recently named Gardner the best scrambler among 2010 QBs, and the second-strongest arm, behind Penn State Commit Robert Bolden. At this time, I am obligated to grumble that I think Bolden is overrated.

man, I wish mgoblog had some awesome Gardner video that I could link here.

Happy Trails?

LA QB Munchie LeGeaux committed to Colorado. Once Michigan took Conelius Jones, the writing was probably on the wall that LeGeaux was no longer an option.

Though CA CB Josh Shaw was talking as recently as last week about taking an official visit to Michigan for the Ohio State game, that's no longer a possibility. He will decide early next week between 5 schools that aren't Michigan: Florida, USC, Ohio State, Notre Dame, and LSU. I'ma be straight with you: one of those things is reallllly not like the others.

PA DT Shariff Floyd has been alternately not very interested in Michigan and not at all interested in Michigan, so the latest sign of no interest (he will fill his final official visit slot with North Carolina) isn't quite cause to remove him from the board. Michigan is totally not landing that kid, though.

VA LB Aramide Olaniyan was positively raving about Michigan following his unofficial visit in September, but now UCLA may have moved to the forefront. That does give him a reputation for falling in love with the most recent school he's visited, so don't read too much into it. Still, there's no mention of an official visit to Michigan in December, as there was immediately after his first trip.

Olaniyan said he plans to take two more visits in December and then make his decision.

"I have Duke set for (Dec. 4) and North Carolina (Dec. 11)," Olaniyan said. "I'll make my commitment right after those visits. If I get invited to an All-American game, I'll announce then in January but otherwise, I'll do it in mid-December after my last visit."

Yeah, so that probably means Michigan has really fallen off.

OH S/WR Bobby Swigert has selected Boston College.

Etc.

Michigan's chance at TX DT Jatashun Beachum is "big" ($, info in header). Michigan offered MN DE Tobi Okuyemi... but he immediately committed to Nebraska. GA DT Mike Thornton has the Wolverines "in his thoughts" ($, info in header).