Hello: Pearlie Graves

Submitted by Brian on November 20th, 2008 at 11:11 AM

OK DT Pearlie Graves has committed to Michigan($). Informative update coming tomorrow AM.




Scout Rivals ESPN
NR 4*, #35 DT 75, #64 DT

Very weird spread in the guru rankings above, with Rivals giving him the fourth star (though barely; he's the second-to-last DT to acquire one), ESPN saying "meh" and Scout not even rating him. ESPN, FWIW:

Graves is a busy body in the trenches. He is an active kid that can be disruptive. He will need to add more good bulk to his frame. … Graves shows some flashes. With some added size and continued fine tuning could develop into a solid college defensive tackle, at least could be a good wave player.

Yeah, at 6'3", 260, Graves is wicked undersized for a college DT. This makes him a project.

Here's some stuff about sharks:

"You have to be vicious to be on the defense," Pearlie Graves said. "You have to be a shark on the water to get out there and get it."

East Central can boast about their Gold Ball in 05 and their back-to-back undefeated regular seasons in 06 and 07, but these sharks are still taking a sink or swim approach to the upcoming campaign. …

"You have to stay hungry and have to stay motivated too," Graves said. "If you don't stay hungry you'll never get what you want to get."

Just like a shark.

I bet Pearlie has like 400 teeth and whenever he goes over to someone's house for a barbecue or something he ends up leaving them in the furniture and then people go "Oh, Pearlie" and there's a freeze frame with someone throwing their hat in the air. I bet a lot of money on this.


Here's the good part: Graves had an Oklahoma offer despite those guru ratings. Nice. Also chasing Graves were Oklahoma State and Texas Tech, and other Big 12 programs; in July Graves also claimed an LSU offer. (Tech was his only other official.)


The video you're about to see embedded says as a junior he had 64 tackles and five sacks; I couldn't find any senior stats.


Rivals lists his 40 at 4.9 seconds, which is somewhat fake(!) for a guy who runs 260 pounds but not, like, egregiously so.


Here he is awkwardly talking, with bonus footage from so far away you can't see anything:


That man has a kick ass beard for a 17-year old.


Unless people just missed on their evaluations here, Graves shouldn't see a ton of playing time until he's an upperclassman and even then would ideally be a rotation tackle. In terms of what sort of player he'll be like, he's probably more Mike Martin than Terrance Taylor. He'll live on penetration, not sucking up double teams.

Michigan does not have an ideal situation, though, and Graves could see time early as Michigan attempts to figure out what their tackle situation looks like over the next three years.

Arguing against the skepticism are the Oklahoma and LSU offers and West Virginia's success with guys like this in the past. With Barwis, all things are possible.

I should mention this:

"I can see myself playing for OU,” said Graves, who scored a 17 on his first ACT test and has a 2.7 GPA.

That is not qualified, and word is Graves still has work to do. It sounds likely he will make it, but something to keep an eye on.


Yes, there is still plenty of room for MI DT Will Campbell. Even assuming LA DT DeQuinta Jones sticks, Michigan will have only four DTs on the roster going into next year, and none of them are beastmonsters. Michigan will still pursue Campbell hard and should acquire him.

Aside from Campbell, does this mean Michigan is done on the defensive line? Maybe, maybe not. They'd clearly take a guy like SC DE Sam Montgomery, though he remains a longshot. Outside of Montgomery, the recruiting board now contains exactly one player not already committed or mentioned: MD DE Jason Ankrah, who seems ticketed for Penn State or Maryland.

If they want another DE they'll have to find a sleeper they like (can instate DE Dylan Farrington make the grade?) or pirate some commit away from another school.


chitownblue (not verified)

November 20th, 2008 at 11:19 AM ^

I think gremlins got in the Scout system, because when Tom initially brought him up, I looked over there, and Scout had him as a 4-star.

Isn't he frighteningly similar to Dequinta Jones? Fringe 4-star player with more of DE size than DT size?


November 20th, 2008 at 11:34 AM ^

Not sure if Brian forgot about him or is not that impressed with a Freshman making plays from DT, but Mike Martin is a Beastmonster in the middle. For a true Fresh playing that position he has been awesome....we have nothing else so we can take 4 more D linemen , you can never have too many. I think Ferrara will be switching back as well we're so thin.


November 20th, 2008 at 11:44 AM ^

Sure, they'll be in great shape and have the puking thing down, but we can shelve the idea that Barwis alone is going to turn our players into unstoppable forces of nature who will overwhelm the opposition at every snap.


November 20th, 2008 at 11:44 AM ^

i wouldnt take size too literally. lots of times scout/rivals get those listings when the kids are sophs or juniors and by the time they get to campus they are way bigger.

dequinta jones supposedly now is way closer to 300 than the 265 he is listed at

J. Lichty

November 20th, 2008 at 5:28 PM ^

the coaching staff saw fit to offer and he accepted, we should be happy. He provides much needed depth at a thin position, and had other great offers. Great pickup by Hopson/Shafer (not sure who was recruiting him).