Yes, Another 'Jabrill Peppers Is Staying' Header
Michigan's biggest official visit weekend, featuring nearly all of the 2014 commits plus running back target Vic Enwere, is now in the books, and it appears we can close the "Jabrill Peppers scares the bejeezus out of everybody" chapter. Peppers heard chants of his name at Crisler while cheering on the hoops squad, then tweeted out affirmation that he'll be in Ann Arbor next fall:
Ann Arbor it's been real, thanks for all the love, truly a memorable weekend! Team135 coming in with big plans! #GoBlizzyBlue
— Breezy (@JabrillPeppers) December 15, 2013
“Jabrill said he is 100 percent solid. He and I had a conversation away from the rest of the group on Saturday,” [Wilton] Speight said. “He said all he was looking to do was have fun on a couple visits, but that he is not interested in playing anywhere besides Michigan.”
Speight also said that 2015 commit Shaun Crawford, who was also on campus, is in the same boat as Peppers and "isn't going anywhere"—Crawford had recently mentioned interest in visiting Ohio State, though he'd maintained throughout that he was 100% committed to Michigan.
[UPDATE: As I hit publish, TomVH drops an article in which Crawford reaffirms his Michigan pledge, saying "the only trip I’ll be making to Columbus is for the Columbus Touchdown banquet." Huzzah.]
Multiple crises averted? It sure looks that way.
[Hit THE JUMP for Vic Enwere's visit reaction, the latest on a couple underclassmen prospects, and more.]
The aforementioned Vic Enwere, three-star Texas running back and current Cal commit, came away from his Michigan official very impressed with the school and his potential classmates, per Steve Lorenz ($):
"I really enjoyed myself and had a great trip," Enwere said. "The guys who are already committed definitely made me feel like one of them and the atmosphere all weekend was amazing. I really liked what I saw out of Michigan."
Perhaps the best sign for Michigan is that Enwere said he's "pretty sure" that his only other official visit will be to Cal—he's never been to Berkeley despite being a Cal commit. Before the trip to Ann Arbor he'd considered taking additional officials to TCU and UCLA.
Enwere and Malik McDowell have emerged as the two primary targets for Michigan to round out the 2014 class, and the Wolverines look to be in good shape with both recruits; if I had to guess (oh, right, I can do that) I'd say both end up at Michigan, though with official visits left to go for both prospects that can always change.
It appears Michigan is continuing to expand their search for a second 2015 offensive lineman to join Jon Runyan Jr. in the class. Last Thursday's roundup included updates on Matthew Burrell and Grant Newsome; now consensus four-star PA OT Ryan Bates says Michigan is showing interest. Bates has Michigan among four schools standing out early, along with Notre Dame, Penn State, and South Carolina, per Scout's Brian Dohn ($). Penn State is considered the early favorite and they've already offered, as have the Gamecocks; the Wolverines and Irish could become serious contenders if they come through with an offer.
Elite 2016 NJ DT Rashan Gary is still very early in his recruiting process; he already holds a Michigan offer, however, and told Sam Webb that he's got a family connection to the Maize and Blue ($):
Michigan has always been a team I watched on Saturdays because I have family up there in Detroit. I have my mom’s side. There are some of her sisters and brothers up there. Everybody when I go up there is like all Michigan. So it’s a team that my family knows about and I know about. I just started paying attention to their games heavily though.
Gary has been in touch with Roy Manning—who stopped by his school last week—as well as fellow Jersey native Jabrill Peppers; he's looking to visit Ann Arbor for the first time, though a visit date isn't set yet.
Ohio State picked up a commitment from a high school freshman. As in the class of 2017. I was going to say something snarky about Urban Meyer being old when he's a senior but Meyer, despite being in the coaching business since 1985, is only 49 years old. DAMMIT.
Oh, and the Buckeyes also got a huge commitment from 2014 five-star LB Raekwon McMillian today. Televised commitments on NBCSN have really not been fun for Michigan fans.