Perhaps you’ve heard that there is a football game that will be played at Michigan Stadium this weekend. Teenagers from around the nation are flocking to Ann Arbor to observe the dairy-engorged behemoths from Wisconsin clash with the Herbert-engineered athletic specimens from Michigan under the glow of very long banks of electric lights.
One teenager who won’t be in Ann Arbor headlined last week’s post as a would-be visitor, and his absence is not necessarily a bad sign for Michigan. Word got around on Monday that five-star NC ATH Quavaris Crouch would no longer be on campus this weekend. 247’s Steve Lorenz reported yesterday that the decision was mutual, and that Michigan’s staff would rather have Crouch, whom he noted is one of the staff’s top two or three remaining targets, on campus some weekend where there aren’t so many other visitors, thus allowing them to focus more attention on Crouch.
This makes some sense in light of Rivals and 247 reporting that five-star OH DE Zach Harrison will be taking an unofficial visit this weekend. 247’s Steve Lorenz reports that Harrison took an unofficial to Ohio State on Wednesday to learn more about their academic offerings. Lorenz notes that Harrison and fellow unofficial visitor 2019 OH S (but really Viper) Joey Velazquez, one of the commits recently featured in FBO, are good friends who grew up together, so maybe being on campus together makes a difference for what will be Harrison's fourth Michigan visit.
It makes even more sense when considering that there are only three official visitors this weekend, two of which are already committed to Michigan with the other happening to be their likely top priority on the offensive line. IL OT Trevor Keegan took an official to Ohio State last weekend and still has officials to Penn State, Georgia, and Clemson planned; 247’s Steve Wiltfong CB’d him to Georgia last week. That’s a lot for Michigan to have to counter, so rescheduling Crouch for a different weekend, risky though it may be, is understandable.
[Hit the JUMP for more visitors and interesting in-state 2020 interviews]
2019 Update: By Update I Mean Visit Update, ‘Tis The Season
Georgia may have picked up a crystal ball for one of Michigan’s top targets, but they lost a verbal commitment from another. Four-star GA CB Jalen Perry decommitted from Georgia last a week ago, and he’s going to be in Ann Arbor for the Wisconsin game on Saturday. The Michigan Insider’s Sam Webb reports that the status of Perry’s visit—unofficial—is a big deal for the Wolverines, as it obviously allows Perry to take an official later in the season. Webb reports that the official visit will likely take place the weekend of the Penn State game, which works in concert with Steve Lorenz’s report that Michigan would like Quavaris Crouch on campus for a game where they can focus more on him (that leaves Indiana). Rivals’ Chad Simmons reports that Perry plans to enroll early and, after unofficially visiting South Carolina last weekend, may take an official there and a visit to Florida before he makes his decision.
The arrow on the other end of the visit anticipation gauge points to current verbals taking visits to places named after Greek cities and featuring rows of bushes growing inside the stadium. GA DE Chris Hinton visited Georgia last weekend…and quickly let recruiting reporters know that it really wasn’t about him. Via Steve Lorenz:
"Myles wanted to go to the game, so I decided to tag along," Hinton told 247Sports. "You know everything is all good with Michigan."
Myles, of course, is five-star 2020 GA OT Myles Hinton, Chris’ brother. Hinton then told Rivals’ Chad Simmons that he is “…still 100 percent committed to Michigan” and intends to sign with Michigan in December. Michigan will have both brothers on campus for next month’s Penn State game, according to The Michigan Insider’s Brice Marich. Also of note: Hinton told Steve Lorenz “I’m starting to identify myself as a defensive tackle” in preparation for a move to the interior in college.
Speaking of Georgia, GA DE Nolan Smith, a current Georgia commit who’s ranked second overall, tweeted that he plans to take all five of his official visits. First up is a trip to Alabama, and sometime after that, according to Steve Lorenz, may be a trip to Michigan.
Another important visitor on Saturday, via a list from 247’s Steve Lorenz: TN RB Eric Gray. Gray has recently visited Ole Miss and Tennessee, so the importance of getting him back on campus on a weekend with a bunch of potential classmates is difficult to understate, even though his pledge is still thought to be fairly solid. He’s averaging 11.3 yards per carry on almost 120 touches this season, so keeping him in the class would be nice.
The one non-visit update worth noting is a reordering of the ESPN300 that they published this week. The Worldwide Leader bumped OK S Daxton Hill’s rating to a 90, thus giving him a fifth star and pushing up one spot to no. 13 overall; he’s one of ESPN’s three non-lineman five-stars. CA RB Zach Charbonnet also got a bump, jumping from their 26th ranked running back to sixth and from outside the ESPN300 to no. 105; the article says that’s the biggest jump of anyone on the list.
MI OG Justin Rogers, the top player in the state of Michigan and ranked 14th overall in the composite, recently spoke with The Michigan Insider’s Josh Newkirk about his goals for college and beyond. On that list: start as a true freshman, play three years, and leave for the NFL. He says that starting as a true freshman is his “main big deal” along with which school can get him ready for the next level; he doesn’t have a visit to Ohio State planned, but he said that he likes that Ohio State puts players in the NFL. Ben Bredeson and Mike Onwenu will have vacated both guard spots by the end of the season before Rogers would hypothetically arrive on campus, but Stephen Spanellis, Andrew Vastardis, Joel Honigford, Chuck Filiaga, Nolan Rumler, Zach Carpenter, and Jack Stewart will all still be on the roster. Starting a true freshman on the line is typically pretty, pretty bad. Maybe Rogers is the exception to that rule? Should know better later, as we have some film of him that I’ll use to write up a FBO later this year. Whichever school he feels gives him the best shot at the league won’t know for quite a while, as Rogers told Newkirk he plans to make his decision in February 2020.
Another guard who has garnered significant interest from Michigan is TX OG Logan Parr, who took an unofficial visit last weekend. Parr, ranked no. 131 in the composite, said his first contact once coaches were allowed to speak with juniors was a text from Jim Harbaugh. He picked up a Michigan offer at the end of his visit last weekend and told The Wolverine’s Adam Ghabour that his interest in Michigan is a nine out of 10 and that the facilities and play of the offensive line stood out to him. Parr’s CB is in favor of Texas, but he grew up a Michigan fan and has a grandfather who is also a Michigan fan, so maybe pulling a lineman with a Texas offer out of Texas isn’t as far-fetched as it seems.
MI WR Rashawn Williams, who like Rogers will be the subject of a future FBO, recently spoke with TMI’s Brice Marich and had some un-high school receiver things to say about what he’s done to improve his game this season.
“Yeah, I feel like wide receiver blocking sets me up for passing down field because I feel like once I get a good block and get into my defender’s head, then I can beat him down field,” Williams told The Michigan Insider. “Probably my physicality with my defender has improved the most. I like to go all phases with either blocking or catching the ball. No matter what I still want to beat my defender.”
A junior who’s already one of the class’ best receivers (no. 24 WR, no. 144 overall) thinking about how his blocking can improve his overall game is a guy who’s likely to make another jump. He also talked to Marich about his thoughts on Michigan, which he says has already showed him everything and that any future visits are just for fun. Williams added that he’s comfortable at Michigan because of all the friends he has there, including Ambry Thomas, Lavert Hill, and 2020 commits Andre Seldon and Cornell Wheeler. Even so, five of six crystal ballz are currently on Ohio State.
Official/unofficial visitor list from The Wolverine, with 247 noting that this is 2020 MI DE Braiden McGregor’s second visit of the season. 2020 Top100 GA QB Harrison Bailey was impressed enough by his visit last weekend that he has scheduled another for November. Brandon Brown looks at 2020 TX TE Nick Patterson’s upside and the likely composition of the roster when he arrives on campus. Giles Jackson, another of this weekend's visitors, working on recruiting childhood friend CA TE Isaiah Foskey. Greg Mattison wants four-star IL DE Rylie Mills, ranked no. 121 overall, to come to a game. PA OL Nolan Rucci, who also has offers from Wisconsin and Penn State, offered by Michigan. 2021 MI OL Garrett Dellinger, the nation’s no. 2 overall prospect, plans to visit for the Wisconsin and Penn State games. Happy trails, Lewis Cine.