Monday Recruitin' Retrofits Checklist Comment Count

Ace October 23rd, 2017 at 2:10 PM

A Good Thing Happened Last Week

So, yeah, this hasn't been a great week. Not all is bad, though! On Friday evening, Michigan picked up a commitment from one of their top remaining targets, four-star TX TE Mustapha Muhammad. The full Hello post is here, and there's been plenty of #content on him since. Muhammad actually made a silent commitment way back when he visited for the Spring Game, and while those don't always stick, he told Sam Webb that he didn't waver—in fact, he's even been recruiting for Michigan for months. One of the main draws, unsurprisingly, is the offense's use of tight ends actually living up to the recruiting pitch:

“(Michigan’s tight end play), definitely had an impact on me,” Muhammad said. “I had been told by a lot of tight end coaches around the nation about how they use the tight end, but when I watched them on actual game film I didn’t really see anything as impressive as Michigan’s play-calling and the different variations of how they use the tight end position. That’s really important to me… that they were really giving me everything they were selling.”

The checklist he gave 247's Steve Wiltfong appears to have been retrofitted for Michigan:

Muhammad listed those boxes.

Business School
TE Usage in Offense
NFL Pipeline
Large Muslim Population
Connections
Great dining hall
Jordan Uniforms

Scout's Greg Powers, meanwhile, updated his evaluation with a couple promising notes:

Muhammad has established himself as the type of player who can make elite plays in the passing game, whether it be a a heroic touchdown catch and run that is capped off by a full extension dive into the end zone or jumping over a defender trying to make a tackle, he possesses that special it factor, but he is also underappreciated as a blocker by many. He is an excellent zone blocker, who understands leverage and how to use his hands on defenders. He has added some weight to his frame and some strength and that has helped develop him into an even more complete package at the position.

Adding bulk and functional strength is the main thing Muhammad needs to do to see the field early at Michigan; he's already begun the process.

[Hit THE JUMP for the rest of the roundup.]

Actions vs. Words: Can M Hold Onto Ekiyor?

Michigan's top-ranked recruit in the class, four-star IN OG Emil Ekiyor, is the class's top flight risk; while he's maintained his commitment, there's strong mutual interest with Alabama. This one's shaping up to have some twists and turns. Ekiyor is saying the right things from M's perspective, telling TMI's Josh Newkirk that he's still solid despite last month's official visit to Tuscaloosa:

Did Ekiyor’s visit have him reconsider his commitment to Michigan? Well, if he it did, he’s not admitting it.

“No, no, no, I got a chance to talk to the coaching staff with Michigan after my (Alabama) visit. We’re solid; I’m taking a visit in the next couple weeks. I’m going to watch them play at IU (last Saturday). I’m just Michigan all the way,” Ekiyor said.

“I’m committed to Michigan,” he added. “That’s like no doubt.”

That's nice to hear; there's still doubt. Ekiyor was back at Alabama for last weekend's game against Tennessee, going on his own dime. He's also set for an unofficial visit for the Michigan/Rutgers game this weekend (reportedly with his family in tow) and an official visit for The Game, so Michigan will have their opportunities to solidify his commitment. It might be a coin-flip situation; Ekiyor has a final decision date set:

“December 1st is the day they all want me to make a decision,” Ekiyor said.

Hold onto your butts.

More 2018 Updates: Commit Watch This Weekend?

Michigan recently offered three-star MO RB Hassan Haskins, who'll be on campus this weekend. Given how his coach describes Haskins's reaction to the offer, it sure sounds like seatbelt safety is required this weekend:

He just absolutely couldn’t be more excited. He's a humble kid, but he smiled ear to ear and that's how I know he was completely and overly excited about it. As far as other schools, he's going up there to check it out and we'll see where it goes from there.

Haskins displays excellent power on tape; he could be a late riser and a very worthy addition to the class.

The Wolverines secured an official visit for The Game from another recently offered prospect, four-star NJ DE Jayson Oweh, and went up 2-0 this season vs. Florida in the process:

Oweh recently told Bucknuts that Ohio State and Penn State are still tied atop his list. Michigan may be able to make up ground quickly after taking their time to enter the race; the visit will determine a lot.

Four-star MO DT Michael Thompson told Wiltfong that USC, a program that didn't make his previous top five, is the school recruiting him the hardest. He doesn't have any official visit scheduled yet but says the Trojans will receive one; Michigan should also get one, and Thompson mentioned his strong relationship with Greg Mattison in the same interview.

There was word out there that Michigan really biffed four-star CA ATH Bryan Addison's official visit for the MSU game. Steve Lorenz says the problem was more logistics than anything else:

Addison's visit to Michigan was really, really short. He flew in on a red-eye flight on the Friday night before the game against Michigan State and didn't get in until early Saturday morning. He spent the majority of the day on Saturday catching up on rest from the flight up until shortly before game time (7:30 EST). Addison then left on Sunday morning.

Lorenz believes Michigan is still in the race with UCLA. I'm pretty pessimistic this one will turn out well, especially if USC enters the fray.

Etc.

Lorenz reports Michigan will host 2019 five-star DE commit Chris Hinton and his talented 2020 OT brother Myles Hinton this weekend.

Happy trails to 2019 four-star DE George Karlaftis, a Purdue legacy and West Lafayette native who chose the Boilermakers over offers from Michigan, Notre Dame, Ohio State, and Penn State, among others. Even with the local connections, I can't quite wrap my head around that either.

Comments

True Blue Grit

October 23rd, 2017 at 3:47 PM ^

past general pattern, it doesn't mean in this case, something bad IS going to happen.  Every recruitment is different and unique - period.  Personally, I'm optimistic he'll stay with Michigan.  He's coming in with his family it looks like, and the coaches will go all out to convince him he's made the right decision.  

taut

October 23rd, 2017 at 2:36 PM ^

 I love Muhammed's list. He's thought about what's important to him. A little surprised that Jourdan uni's are on the list. I prefer them to the alternatives too, but I can't imagine a scenario where the other factors are so close that Jourdan/Nike swings the decision. Then again, I'm not 17.

And, bummer on Karlaftis. I thought we had a good shot there, especially with him mom's enthusiastic reaction to Michigan. Sounds like he thinks Purdue is a program on the rise. I guess we'll see about that...

getsome

October 23rd, 2017 at 3:13 PM ^

jordan gear...no, not a swing factor but a nice bonus.  we had the worst gear (with reebok / nfl apparel but that was like 10 years ago) so i see the value in equipment guys consistently hooking up nice gear and plenty of it.  then again all major programs now have deals with the big 3 apparel companies so top prospects should find their lockers filled with bags and boxes every few months no matter where they go.  several pairs of jordans per year could be a nice cherry on top though after many of the major factors.

gotta say i like the kids list.  great cafeteria food is hugely important and never a given at the institutional level so i can appreciate that factor.  im sure culture, chemistry among teammates, sharp yet cool coaches, etc all factored as well.  solid list, seems like a smart kid and nice addition

GhostofJermain…

October 23rd, 2017 at 2:36 PM ^

Really man.  We have a great class and star gazers like yourself who only pay attention to hype I wish would just take a hike.  If you think for one second that every school in America wouldn't take: Spider, Muhammad, McGrone, and Hutch among others then you would be WRONG! Our coaches spend endless hours on finding the right fits and eligible kids to mold into future leaders and most of them pro NFL players.  I can't help but notice the avatar of Jake Long.  He was not a top 100 kid either, and turned out rather well.  I think people like yourself should just quit being a fan already, join some bandwagon and stay off these boards CLOWN!

ak47

October 23rd, 2017 at 3:06 PM ^

Yeah its not like recruiting class rankings correrlate incredibly closely with success to the point where no school that doesn't have at least 50% 4 or 5 star recruits has never won a national title in the last two decades or anything.  Or that highly ranked kids are statistically much more likely to be college all americans or drafted.  Oh wait that is exactly the case? Well damn.

Guy Fawkes

October 23rd, 2017 at 3:41 PM ^

We've been over this so many times. Are there 5 star busts? Yup, Are there also 2/3/4 star busts? Yup. Are the odds of a highly rated kid making a greater impact on a program than a low rated kid? Yup. Fill your program with as many highly rated kids as possible and its likely to correlate in some sort of high level success. 

bronxblue

October 23rd, 2017 at 10:26 PM ^

Except when you actually look at the numbers and realize that (a) Alabama is a weird outlier because they've out-recruited history for years, and (b) you basically need to have one elite/near-elite class but not necessarily every year.  And oh look, Michigan had one of those top-5 classes last year.  And a top-8 class the year before.  And will probably have a top-10/12 class this year even with a small size.  

Yes, you need a certain level of talent to compete nationally.  You also need a lot of luck.  Because that's the difference between 14-1 and 10-3.  Michigan can recruit on a national level; they just need the latter part to also be in effect at the right time.

UMAmaizinBlue

October 23rd, 2017 at 2:37 PM ^

That one stings. I feel like we're gonna be hearing his name a bit more in the B10, and I wish it was while wearing a winged helmet. Best of luck to him on his career at Purdue.

pug150

October 23rd, 2017 at 11:48 PM ^

Agreed. I saw him play this year against my kid’s team and he was average at best. You’d think a guy with that size would dominate and he did nothing of the sort. And mind you, his team plays in 3A, so he isn’t competing against Indiana’s best athletes. (Indiana has six classes, with 6A being the largest—think Cameron McGrone, Brandon Peters).

Scottwood

October 23rd, 2017 at 2:58 PM ^

Is Tyler Friday the last remaining top 100ish guy we have a good chance of landing? It seems like it’s going to be him and a couple 3 star types to finish out the class.