Hello: Grant Perry Comment Count

Ace February 3rd, 2015 at 12:31 PM

Grant Perry (foreground) warming up with Alex Malzone (#12)

After Deontay Burnett's coach jumped the gun Sunday in announcing a commitment to Michigan, one that fell through for reasons unclear, the Wolverines wasted little time in landing another wide receiver. Birmingham (MI) Brother Rice's Grant Perry announced his commitment this afternoon, becoming the tenth member of the 2015 class.

Perry, who'd previously been committed to Northwestern, is the second receiver commit (joining Brian Cole) and the second Brother Rice commit (joining Alex Malzone) in the class.


Scout Rivals ESPN 247 247 Comp
3*, #59 WR 3*, #80 WR 3*, 76, #128 WR 3*, 85, #133 WR 3*, #110 WR,
#867 Ovr

Perry is a three-star across the board, with Scout easily the most bullish on his abilities. All four sites agree that he's in the 6'0", 180-pound range.


By virtue of playing on a very successful Brother Rice squad and catching passes from Alex Malzone, there's plenty of scouting out there on Perry, including on this site. I watched Perry record seven receptions for 103 yards in an early-season victory over Warren De La Salle last fall:

Brother Rice WR Grant Perry (2015 target): Perry had an outstanding game, hauling in seven of his nine targets; one of those incompletions was uncatchable, while the second would've required a difficult one-handed catch. He and Malzone are clearly very comfortable playing with each other—they connected on several timing routes and when Malzone was in trouble, Perry was often the receiver working his way back to the ball to bail him out.

Perry runs precise routes and plucks the ball out of the air; he showed off soft hands. While he's not a gamebreaking athlete, he gets separation on defensive backs with sharp cuts and does a nice job getting upfield after the catch; he doesn't look like a major threat to juke a safety, but he finds a way to get solid yardage after the catch.

In a normal-sized class, I'd say Perry merits a Michigan offer, and even with the small class I wouldn't be surprised if he picks one up late in the cycle. The Wolverines could hold out hope that Perry, who holds a handful of MAC offers at this juncture, decides that he'd rather be a preferred walk-on at U-M, though with the way he's playing it wouldn't surprise at all if bigger offers took that off the table.

Scout's free evaluation lists size as his only weakness while praising his route-running, hands, and work after the catch:

Technician with quick feet who runs excellent routes, always seems to get open and has excellent hands. Rarely drops a pass and catches balls away from his body. Not a tall kid, but has added good weight and strength. Really improved after the catch as a senior. Fundamentally sound all-around, a competitive playmaker and a kid who will catch a lot of balls and move the chains in college. - Allen Trieu

Trieu listed Perry as one of the seniors on the rise in the Midwest after a strong start to the season. Just days ago, Scout's national analysts listed Perry as one of ten prospects expected to make an immediate impact in 2015. While that was when he was expected to end up on a Northwestern team in need of help at receiver, it still speaks to his polish as a high school receiver.

ESPN is skeptical of Perry as a big-play threat but really like his precision on routes ($):

Possesses a strong, smooth stride and plays with good lower body drive in traffic. Quick off the line and able to put immediate pressure on DBs with very good lateral quickness and change-of-direction. Is smart -- he finds soft spots and knows when to throttle down. Gets inside leverage and is efficient in scramble situations. A very nuanced route runner that is quick in and out of break.

They also praised his catching ability and projected him as a potential go-to guy—albeit a tweener Power 5 conference prospect—operating out of the slot.

After saying Perry finished just behind Good Counsel's Devin Judd for best receiver at Michigan's summer technique camp, The Wolverine's Tim Sullivan scouted him multiple times over the course of his senior season, including a game against Detroit Country Day in which Perry caught eight passes for 133 yards and returned a punt 61 yards for a score ($):

What Perry continues to show this season is an explosive burst after the catch, allowing him to get downfield in a hurry and pick up yardage. For a 6-0, 185-pounder, that quickness and ability to gain yards with the ball in his hands will be important. ...

His punt return touchdown showed off his awareness of the blocking developing around him, as well as the speed up the sideline, to make big plays happen. It's been apparent that he can get open and catch the ball when it comes to him, and he's expanding his repertoire.

Perry seems destined for the slot, depending on how Harbaugh utilizes receivers in his offense, though his route-running and reliable hands could earn him a spot on the outside. I was thoroughly impressed by him back in September; he operated very intelligently within the Brother Rice offense, getting open frequently either on his initial route or improvising after a play broke down. He's also got a chance to contribute on punt returns, as he makes up for a lack of game-breaking athleticism by reliably catching the ball and working his way upfield.


Perry held offers from Northwestern, Ball State, Bowling Green, Buffalo, Central Michigan, Eastern Michigan, Kent State, Nevada, and Northern Illinois.


You're probably familiar with Brother Rice, which won three straight MHSAA Class 2 state titles from 2011-2013 under legendary coach Al Fracassa and produced 2015 early enrollee Alex Malzone and preferred walk-on Jack Dunaway. Their most successful recruit of the Rivals era isn't the highest-ranked—two-star Eastern Michigan DE T.J. Lang moved to offensive line and now is a starter on an excellent group for the Green Bay Packers.


Per 247, Perry caught 105 passes for 1727 yards (16.4 YPC) and 20 touchdowns in his senior season. Not bad.


None of the sites list a 40 time. He's got good initial burst off the line, and while he doesn't have blazing speed, he's pretty solid in the open field.


Senior highlights:

Single-game highlights from his game against De La Salle:

Junior highlights and single-game reels can be found on his Hudl page.


While Perry possesses the skills required to see the field early, Michigan is deep enough at receiver that he should be afforded a redshirt year. After that, he should work into the rotation in the slot, and I like his chances of being a significant contributor down the road, especially if Malzone eventually takes over at quarterback. While his size and lack of outstanding athleticism may keep him from being a superstar, he's got the ability to be a very reliable possession receiver who can break the occasional big play and also potentially make a mark as a punt returner.


Perry is the tenth commit in the class, and he may not be the last at receiver: Ole Miss commit Van Jefferson, who visited last weekend, is a candidate to flip on Signing Day. The most pressing needs heading into NSD are at running back, tight end, defensive end, linebacker, and cornerback. Michigan has five open spots to work with, and could potentially have one or two more with projected attrition.

For a much more detailed picture on the class outlook, check out the Signing Day Primer.



February 3rd, 2015 at 1:04 PM ^

I think Perry is a quality individual to add to the class: great kid, chemistry with Malzone, reliable receiver, who I think will have a similar impact as Drew Dileo did. Would especially love this addition with Jefferson and Cole joining him at receiver. I think each of their strengths compliment the others' nicely. 


February 3rd, 2015 at 1:05 PM ^

We're stockpiling a surprising number of tap-dancin' receivers for a supposed MANBALL team.  Not that I'm complaining, but I wonder if there's enough playing time to go around.

"The most pressing needs heading into NSD are at running back, tight end, defensive end, linebacker, and cornerback."

No DTs?  It's a tough position to fill.


February 3rd, 2015 at 1:21 PM ^

The staff hasn't targeted anyone in this class, but that's going to be the top priority in 2016. Obviously Rashan Gary is one of the top targets on the board, and they've got a pretty good shot at landing him.


February 3rd, 2015 at 2:23 PM ^

A previously posted write up breaking down Harbaugh's offensive philsophy mentioned that JH's route trees and passing concepts often emphasize short/intermetidate routes designed to acheive YAC.  I think Perry (and that Deontay kid) fits well into that idea. 


February 3rd, 2015 at 1:06 PM ^

Perry should be an immediate contributor on special teams. The gap between his current ability and his upside doesn't sound like it is large enough to warrant an extra scholarship-year.


The Coallition for Non-Red Shirts


February 3rd, 2015 at 2:42 PM ^

Most guys would get better with an extra year...but that includes guys like Bellomy and Hayes and many many more who move on after graduating for better opportunities elsewhere.  If those guys could have helped as freshman, Michigan would have been better off. Instead, they spent 4 years of scholarships on players who only contributed for 3 seasons.

Anyway, I don't know that Houma, Williams, Ojemudia, and Norfleet would be that much better next year than they are now.  So, I'm not sure that your "roster full of guys" assessment is accurate.  I think the red-shirts Michigan would like to have back are pretty rare on this team.  RJS is the only one I can think of, and he was a special teams contributor, so I don't even feel too strongly about that one.

Finally, each 5th year senior that does stick around costs Michigan a shot at finding another great recruit.  It's the opposite of oversigning - a clear advantage some programs choose to pursue despite the moral reprecussions.


The Coallition for Non-Red Shirts


February 3rd, 2015 at 2:07 PM ^

I'm still very impressed by Malzone & Perry just looks like those early Harbaugh recruited WRs at Stanford. I'd say he's a RS & that's good. However, I've seen Perry play in a few games along with his highlight film & he may be a 3* but he looks like he could be playing at a high 4* level soon. He had everything you want in a "package" WR, one that won't stay exclusively outside. He's not the biggest but he looks a solid 6' - 180. He's not a Burberry but he's fast, runs very nice routes, good hands & can really rack up YAC. Northwestern gets an under the radar stud every recruiting cycle. They always get a kid that is so much better than his HS ranking indicated. I think Perry may have been that guy this year. I agree that he looks UM caliber in any cycle year or class size.