2012 Recruiting Hotlist: Defense

Submitted by JC3 on February 8th, 2011 at 11:25 AM

[ed: bump.]

This is the continuation of my offensive post from yesterday. Michigan obviously addressed the defensive side of the ball in 2011, and luckily for Coach Hoke and Coach Mattison the Midwest is loaded with some great defensive talent for an even better haul.

I’d go far enough to say that a top-10 class is possible, and that’s not even considering states like Texas or California, which we know this staff can recruit.

I’m going to start off with the defensive backs and linebackers, since I know many of you want to know about all the tackle prospects! Patience.

CB Terry Richardson – 5'9, 160 lbs, Detroit, Michigan.

Richardson is the next great cornerback in the proverbial line of smallish Cass Tech cornerbacks. Terry is more similar to BooBoo as a faster prospect with good hips, though he will need to add some weight and be more physical at the next level. There is some worry amongst Michigan fans that Richardson is not being offered fast enough, but that offer will come soon.

Other offers: Iowa, Alabama, LSU, Toledo, Pittsburgh, Michigan State

Safety Bam Bradley – 6'2, 200 lbs, Trotwood, Ohio.

Bam is a great talent to go along with a great name. A player similar to current Wolverine Marvin Robinson, Bradley has the potential to be a safety or grow into linebacker at the next level. Bradley suffered through a hamstring injury his junior year, so his stats weren’t very good. Obviously Michigan has the Trotwood trio on their current roster, but Bradley is being watched by Ohio State and will likely be offered.

Other offers: Michigan State, Northwestern

Safety Deshaun Hall – 6'1, 205 lbs, Canton, Ohio.

Many think of Bradley as one of the top safeties in the state, but Deshaun Hall is quietly becoming one of the best safeties in the state of Ohio and the Midwest as well. He’s got very good size, and is a great free safety prospect in college. Unfortunately, Ohio State has been through his school a number of times and he’s visited them as well.

Other offers/interest: No offers, but Oregon, Pitt, Wisconsin, and others are interested.

CB Cody Quinn – 5'10, 165 lbs, Middletown, Ohio.

Quinn is a smooth cornerback with great hips and he has good speed to match as well. Helped his team go 10 in their regular season and is one of the top cornerbacks in Ohio. Cincinnati was the first to offer, but it’s a pretty down year in Ohio, so don’t be surprised to see Quinn get a lot of looks.

Other interest: Notre Dame, Michigan State

LB James Ross – 6'1 210 lbs, Orchard Lake, Michigan

One of the top players in Michigan, Ross struggled last season due to a number of injuries. Michigan has been in on him since his late sophomore year, and that interest is continuing. Ross was very happy with the hiring of Greg Mattison, and he will visit Michigan, along with Ohio State, and Notre Dame among others.

Other Offers: Michigan State, Purdue, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati

LB Royce Jenkins-Stone – 6’2, 215 lbs, Detroit Michigan.

Where Ross is a much more polished product, Royce is still tapping into his potential. A great physical athlete who can move sideline to sideline, Stone has turned into one of the top linebackers in the state and the midwest as well. One of Brady Hoke’s first stops once he arrived at Michigan was to see Coach Wilcher and his players at Cass, so you won’t need to worry about Royce getting an offer or not.

Other Offers: Iowa, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, Toledo, Michigan State

LB Laron Taylor – 6'0, 205 lbs, Detroit Michigan.

While Jenkins-Stone is the more recognizable name at Cass Tech, an evolving star is Laron Taylor, who plays alongside Royce. Taylor is a bit undersized as a linebacker, but I had the chance to see him play in person once and he’s a terrific athlete who will be able to play linebacker at the next level. Iowa was the first to offer Taylor, but there is serious interest from a lot of schools after Taylor put out his junior film.

DT Vincent Valentine – 6'3, 300 lbs, Edwardsville, Illinois

Aside from having a cool name Valentine is a big talent who’s mostly upside at this point in time. He’s already visited Missouri and Kansas State, but Valentine is very open at this point and would be great to get on campus.

Other offers: Arkansas, Auburn, Florida, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas State, Tennessee, Wisconsin

DT Danny O’Brien – 6'3, 280 lbs, Flint, Michigan

A top-10 player in the state and premium talent. One of O’Brien’s “heroes” happens to be Mike Martin, and he’s visited Michigan a few times. However, Tennessee has been showing him serious interest as well, and they may lead. Hoke and Mattison really need to do work on this kid.

DT Matthew Godin – 6'5, 260 lbs, Deroit, Michigan.

Godin is another player who’s really come on strong since last year. He will probably end up as a three-technique in college, as he is more of a end right now. Buffalo and Cincinnati were the first to come through with offers, and Michigan State offered Godin recently on his visit to their junior day as well. Has strong family ties to Michigan.

DE Evan Winston – 6'4, 260 lbs, Muskegon, Michigan

A name you might not have heard much but will hear more of, Winston travelled all around the country last year camping, and he had a really strong showing on the field as well. He’s been collecting offers like crazy; Michigan State has been talking to him, and I expect Michigan will show interest as well. Brother plays at CMU.

Other offers: Ball State, Bowling Green, Toledo, Syracuse, Eastern Michigan

DE Tom Strobel – 6'6, 240 lbs, Mentor, Ohio

Ohio is absolutely loaded at defensive end in 2012.. which is why I think this guy may slip through the cracks. Strobel is a big body that moves well and plays for a very good Mentor program. He has visited Ohio State but I don’t think they’re heavily interested in him. High-academic kid too

Other offers: Cincinatti, Northwestern, Pittsburgh, Purdue

DE Chris Wormley – 6'4, 255, Whitmer, Ohio

A consensus top-10 (rated #3 by rivals) player in Ohio next year, Wormley is a big body who excels in pass rushing. He’s got all the physical tools, and simply needs solid coaching and a high motor to put it all together. The consensus from people in Ohio is that Wormley will go to Michigan. He’s visited there a few times and though he may not say it, is leaning that way. Still, a long way to go in the recruiting process.

Other offers: Ohio State, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan State, Toledo, Cincinnati 

You’ll notice I did not include some of the Ohio “Super” defensive ends. I did not include Washington, McMullen, Pittman, or Lewis (All top-10 players in Ohio). Frankly, I do not think Michigan will be able to pull any of them. Unless Ohio State takes 3, it will be incredibly difficult for the new staff to get in on these players. Most of them have been talking to Ohio State for 2 years and visited numerous times.

With that being said anything can happen.


True Blue Grit

February 7th, 2011 at 12:39 PM ^

It looks like Michigan and Ohio are loaded as you said.  Michigan should be able to fill a chunk of our needs close to home.  But, I hope the staff doesn't ignore the other productive states for top talent.


February 7th, 2011 at 2:29 PM ^

I remembering reading a few days ago that Oregon had or were close to offering Richardson. They'll probably be in the picture as well.

Could Worlmey end up at DT? He's big compared to most DEs at that age, yet he has the athleticism to play anywhere along the front four. I know we'll recruit him as a DE, but if he ends up filling out to around 275-285, he could end up in the middle. Either way, his versatility would be priceless.


February 7th, 2011 at 9:35 PM ^

I think if OSU offers he will end up there.  Being from the same high school i graduated from I would love to see him in the Maize and Blue, but i believe he is an osu fan.  Hopefully with the coaching change his dad and uncle Charles gets in his ear and can convince him to go blue.  Also watching him live he looks like he will end up at Linebacker he is not that fast, i wouldn't be surprised if he ends up at Tight end either he has great hands.


February 8th, 2011 at 11:53 AM ^

It is sad that so many of our fans feel this way.  When I was in school, (94-98), there wasn't a prospect in the country (barring legacy, geographic preference) that we didn't have a strong shot at.  The concept that if OSU offers, we are likely out is still so foreign to my way of thinking.

I hope that in 1-2 years, we will no longer have this inferiority complex.  I guess winning cures all, and our schedule is set up nicely for an 8-9 win season, so here's hoping that we can reverse this trend quickly!


February 7th, 2011 at 9:23 PM ^

First off he is from the same high school as Koger.  With Mattison and the new emphasis on D i think he would be a perfect fit.  Mich is the closest big time school to Toledo, so thats always a plus for the parents.  I have a feeling we have great shot at getting him.  As for the S&C at Whitmer i got to believe its top notch.  The Toledo area is becoming a hot bed for recruiting because of the S&C.  Whitmer's practice facilities are great, and i would inclulde a link, but thier web sight is down.  Central Catholic, and Sylvania Southview have recently won State titles in Division 2 and Whitmer and St. John's and St. Francis will compete with anyone in the State. 


February 8th, 2011 at 1:33 PM ^

very very good insider information on wormley. Huge michigan fan, his parents love michigan, his girl friend loves michigan and all I have heard is hes ours to lose. hell hes 60 miles away from the big house and mattison might as well get the trip down 23 memorized because this is one guy that is michigan through and through. the only thing i dont like is that kenny and nigel hayes are osu recruits ( kenny football and nigel basketball)  it sounds like kenny is working hard on getting him to come but I still have my guess on michigan and a huge selling point for him is could start this season if he were already there. You might think I'm crazy for saying that but he is a man among boys at the hs level and will probably be a four year starter IMO.  


February 7th, 2011 at 4:11 PM ^

A few questions:

What's the timeline for getting offers to these players? I know Tom said that he expects the next couple weeks to be busy. When is our Junior Day (I googled it, but could not find an actual date)? How much ground can we lose on some of these kids if we don't offer soon? 

Thanks for both of these posts JC3, they've been very informative.

Blue In NC

February 8th, 2011 at 12:38 PM ^

Curious as to what "high profile" means.  I think you mean "more successful in the last few years" (and I understand many are looking for that) but in terms of national exposure, there aren't many higher than Michigan.  A certain DE didn't have too much trouble getting noticed at Michigan despite playing on some bad Michigan teams.


February 7th, 2011 at 6:41 PM ^

Surprised DE Noah Spence didn't make it on your list, it will be hard to get him out of pennsylvania but this is the time to recruit against PSU and have success.

Richardson, Stone and Ross are set to attend ND's junior day.  None of them have offers that I know of.  Of the 3, Richardson would appear to be the least likely to get an offer if those measurements are correct.  ND is in a strong position with Geno Smith and Tee Shepard, and the staff doesn't appear to recruit many players shorter than 6', especially at corner.  If they are a package deal ND doesn't probably have much of a chance, so probably isn't anything for you guys to worry about there. 

Once Tx gets their offers out it will be interesting to see what DTs are still available.  Valentine has a lot of upside and ND has been in contact but hasn't offered yet.  I expect him to get more attention as the year goes on.  Surprised another Illinois DT didn't make your list, Tommy Schutt has one of the most impressive offer lists in the country at the position


February 7th, 2011 at 8:22 PM ^

Some have said that this is the most talent coming out of the midwest, specifically Michigan and Ohio, in years. Does this possibly mean we can expect to start seeing more talent coming out of the area in the future, or is this just a freak year for the region? This is probably a tough question to answer at this point, but there are people on this site who are way more informed about recruiting than I am.


February 7th, 2011 at 9:21 PM ^

At this point, I'd say it's a little hard to judge that. I'd guess that about 75% of the 2013 class we sign hasn't even been listed on Scout/Rivals yet. 

However, there are a few very talented recruits coming from the area in 2013. Four that I'll mention are Ross Douglas (corner who's likely to be a big-time national recruit), David Dawson (tackle from Cass Tech), Chris Overton (DB/Slot ninja from Glenville..who likes Michigan), and Shane Morris (QB from Warren who already has a few verbal offers..likely to be a bigtime national recruit as well.


February 8th, 2011 at 9:18 AM ^

that almost all these kids have State offers already, and we've hardly offered?  Is that just how State operates, throwing kids offers early to get them excited?  I know we typically like to get them in to Junior day to see them first before we offer.


February 8th, 2011 at 11:34 AM ^

Mark Dantonio has been at MSU since 2006, Hoke has only been at Michigan for 4-5 weeks so MSU has been around these kids for awhile now. It takes time to evaluate prospects and figure out who you need, what recruit would fill that hole, etc. 

I would have been more concerned had Hoke came in and just started throwing offers out right away. It means they're actually evaluating people and figuring out who would fit with what they want. 


February 8th, 2011 at 12:34 PM ^

I'm so tired of the permeating attitude throughout the Michigan base when following Ohio recruits of "But Ohio State wants him." "Bad news folks. . .OSU was in his school."

It mirrors the defeatist's lament many have of us now feel against our rival regarding the actual games. It's really disheartening to see how accepted the white towel has become.

That's why I wasn't enthused about Hoke at first but his "This is MICHIGAN, for crying outloud" mentality is really selling me on the man. If only more of us thought like that these days...


February 8th, 2011 at 10:54 PM ^

won't to know what the hell is going on out here,with the CASS TECK KIDS.We should have offered them a long time ago.We are in on some big time prospects on the defensive side of the ball.GO BLUE!!!


April 18th, 2011 at 3:48 PM ^

We should also pay attention o David Dawson OT and Kenton Gibbs DT from Cass Tech these two are some BEAST, we need to get on them quick! Dawson a 6'5 305 OT that is a good pass blocker and can get nasty in the run game! Definately could play in our offense at either OT or OG just watch some of the kid's tape! I love the camp highlights! Watch Gibbs tape as well BEAST!


April 18th, 2011 at 3:56 PM ^

We should also pay attention o David Dawson OT and Kenton Gibbs DT from Cass Tech these two are some BEAST, we need to get on them quick! Dawson a 6'5 305 OT that is a good pass blocker and can get nasty in the run game! Definately could play in our offense at either OT or OG just watch some of the kid's tape! I love the camp highlights! Watch Gibbs tape as well BEAST!