Hello: Wayne Lyons, Transfer DB

Submitted by Brian on February 10th, 2015 at 1:16 PM

This has been the worst-kept secret in Michigan football for a month or two now, but I think this from Rivals is the first official confirmation that Michigan is indeed bringing in Stanford defensive back Wayne Lyons as a graduate transfer this fall:

Lyons confirmed his plans to transfer to Michigan.

"Midterms have my attention, but yes, there is some truth to the rumors," Lyons said via text Feb. 9, adding he planned to report June after graduation. "I'm looking into taking a visit before then."

I'm going to ignore the "some truth" bit since everyone's been discussing it sotto voce for a month and his mom got hired and he's planning to report in June.

Lyons was a touted recruit out of Fort Lauderdale, a top 100 player on the composite and the #4 safety in the country. He broke his foot two games into his freshman year and has been a contributor since as a cornerback. He moved into the starting lineup as a junior, finishing fifth on the team in tackles and picking off Notre Dame twice. He was less involved last year, and Stanford fans are kind of eh about him:

He's a decent corner. I've heard that he'd be better as a safety (or maybe nickel corner, which is how we used him a lot this year), and supposedly we wanted to move him that way.

I think the consensus would be that he never quite played up to his expectations, but I'd be sad to see him go.

With Jabrill Peppers moving to safety, Michigan has more of a need at corner. Michigan lost Raymon Taylor and returns Blake Countess and Jourdan Lewis; there is an opportunity to be a nickel corner or to beat out Countess, who had a shaky junior year.

Michigan's walk-on situation makes it difficult to determine exactly how many scholarships are available. Lyons's arrival would hypothetically deprive Kerridge or maybe Kenny Allen of a scholarship, but in all likelihood someone leaves before September. In practice, it's moot. FYI: Michigan has filled 16 slots with their recruiting class and the transfers of O'Korn and Lyons, which is approximately the number they had to give.

UPDATE: there's an excellent diary from alum96 with more background on Lyons. It doesn't sound like he's a world-beater, but sometimes kids get a lot better as seniors. And the alternative here is leaving a scholarship open.

Comments

alum96

February 10th, 2015 at 1:32 PM ^

I assume this means he misses spring practice at Stanford.  I wondered the timing of this because like Hogan (when we thought he might leave) I had hoped he would stay active in organized football in spring and then transfer in June after Stanford lets out.  

Rabbit21

February 10th, 2015 at 1:32 PM ^

Good to get some more experienced defensive depth in and perhaps let some of the guys get more of a breather in what's looking like a somewhat thin secondary.  I like this move a lot.

BlueLikeJazz

February 10th, 2015 at 1:39 PM ^

Lyons and Countess will battle it out to be across from Lewis, with the loser being the nickel back.  Which leaves out Stribling, but he'll still get reps.

This also means and injury won't be quite as scary as it otherwise would've been.

I like.

alum96

February 10th, 2015 at 1:56 PM ^

Don't sleep on Brandon Watson.  It seemed like a guy they flirted with (shortly) not redshirting in camp as he was getting some starting reps (allegedly) at S.  That may have been more an indication of how bad our safety situation was lat year but he has college size already and came in as a CB.

But yes sets up a nice 4 man competition for that spot - hopefully Stribling finally gains some weight and can push for a starting role.  If he or Watson can grab that CB spot then Lyons and Blake can fight for nickel.  But its 1 more option for what probably will be 3 of the 4 guys who won't be separated by much at all.  And doesnt kill us in case of injury  - which almost always happens to DBs.

PeterKlima

February 10th, 2015 at 1:49 PM ^

Could this be another Ryan Mundy type senior year? Was there anything explaining his slide last year? different coach? loss of support in front seven? change in scheme?

alum96

February 10th, 2015 at 2:01 PM ^

See the diary for explanation.

But yes new coach - but quality new coach.  Quality enough to push his battery mate into the NFL as an early entry (Carter).  He was an ok starter in 2013 - sort of a Raymon Taylor type.  Progress stalled - other guys got better - lost starting reps.  Gave up big plays vs good teams apparently (ND , USC) so that cut into his time.  He made some progress in 2014 but sort of leveled off.

And no the rest of the D was excellent around him - Stanford's DL was great, their LBs were outstanding and the other corner is headed to the NFL. 

NYWolverine

February 10th, 2015 at 2:00 PM ^

Can we please take a second to appreciate what Wayne Lyons is accomplishing here? He currently holds a degree from Stanford in architecture and design, and will soon receive a masters from Michigan. Stanford and Michigan on the young man's resume; while playing football at two marquee programs, and every additional feather in his cap that brings.

Also note that the University of Michigan is ranked #6 in the Top-10 list of Schools offering Architecture and Design graduate programs. Wayne Lyons qualified for that graduate program on his own merit, to be paid for by the merit of his athleticism.

Wayne's education is paid in full. His football playing wrote and will guarantee those checks; done deal. That's a heck of an accomplishment. A heck of an accomplishment.

I'm proud as hell to add Wayne Lyons to Team 136. This kid is THE definitive student-athlete, and will be a major role-model for the team. 

Mr Miggle

February 10th, 2015 at 3:43 PM ^

By all accounts, he's an exceptional student who would have no trouble getting accepted without football. Starting the application process early is very helpful, just ask Jason Forcier. Lindsay got a relatively late start and we never heard anything about his academics other than having a degree from Alabama.