Save Us, Basketball
The football recruiting news is as expected; later in this post you'll read about Michigan's latest decommitment and multiple commits visiting other schools. Recruiting news on the basketball front has an outside shot of being much, much better in the very near future, so let's begin with that.
Perry "PJ" Dozier Jr., a five-star in the 2015 class, is a 6'6" true point guard in the Darius Morris mold. The South Carolina native will announce his decision tomorrow at 12:30 pm between five schools: Georgetown, Louisville, Michigan, North Carolina, and South Carolina.
Despite a very good official visit to Ann Arbor back in September, it looks unlikely Dozier will choose Michigan, unfortunately; basketball recruitniks expect it to come down to Louisville and South Carolina, with the Cardinals seemingly having the edge. So I guess this isn't great news, barring a huge surprise. But it's not bad news, at least?
Anyway, I'll have a much more complete outlook on M's basketball recruiting in the near future. In the meantime, the bad news...
[Hit THE JUMP if you want to, I guess.]
Another One Down
Goodbye, Darrin Kirkland. The four-star linebacker announced his decommitment last week after taking an official visit to Ole Miss the previous weekend. Per Scout's Allen Trieu, Kirkland is now considering Ole Miss, Texas, Oklahoma, USC, Virginia Tech, and Kentucky; Kirkland indicated that Michigan is no longer under consideration:
Asked if Michigan was still in the picture or completely out of his recruitment, he simply responded, "out."
That seems pretty cut-and-dry, but TomVH reported the next day that Kirkland's father told him Michigan is still in the mix. A Michigan source went even further, telling Steve Lorenz that Kirkland "will end up back at Michigan."
I think Kirkland's original statement is likely to hold. Lorenz mentioned in his article that one of the biggest draws to Michigan for Kirkland is the presence of Greg Mattison; I'm not sure if you've heard, but the coaching staff is under some duress at the moment. If Kirkland's commitment is contingent on the coaching situation remaining unchanged, it's very unlikely he'll find his way back into the class.
Other Looking Around
Lorenz also has the latest on Saginaw WR commit Brian Cole, who's in the midst of taking multiple visits to "cover his bases" while reportedly staying firm to Michigan behind the scenes ($):
As was reported last night by Bucknuts analyst Bill Kurelic, Michigan commitment Brian Cole is planning on taking three official visits before the end of the season. Those visits will be this weekend (Purdue), November 22nd (Nebraska) and "sometime in December" (Ohio State).
Cole already took one official visit to Wisconsin last month for their game against Illinois on October 11th. The visit reportedly went well, and the Badgers could still be in consideration.
Purdue, where Cole visited last weekend, is unlikely to be a factor. The others could be a threat, however, especially if Michigan's coaching uncertainty extends into December; Cole plans to enroll early, and his father told Sam Webb the current timeline:
Brian Cole, Sr.: “I think we need to be settled by the end of November, we need to know what’s going on. I don’t want to take it too much past that. He’s done December 19th. It’s coming pretty fast. I don’t want to go much past November. “
The elder Cole wouldn't reveal the plan for what would happen if Hoke is fired. Lorenz's sources, FWIW, expect Cole to end up in the class regardless of the coaching situation.
Cass Tech RB Mike Weber told Rivals' Josh Helmholdt he plans to take visits ($):
Weber said he still has a good relationship with the coaching staff at Michigan, but he will continue to explore other options in the coming weeks and months.
"I just know that I want to take my visits right now and go from there," Weber said.
There were three additional schools besides Michigan State and Michigan that Weber said he is in close contact with and they are Mississippi State, Ohio State and Wisconsin.
Weber had tentative plans to go to East Lansing last weekend, but he wasn't sure he'd be there as of Saturday morning, and I can't find any confirmation that he took the trip. That, at least, would be a positive sign.
Finally, safety commit Tyree Kinnel cancelled a planned trip to West Virginia last weekend. That was his only scheduled visit; he's been steadfast in his commitment thus far.
At one point last summer, Michigan was on commit watch for 2016 Traverse City OT Thiyo Lukusa. That is no longer the case.
Thiyo Lukusa, No U-M MT @BigblacK4420: my top five (six) in no order consists of notre dame georgia auburn Nebraska MSU OSU
— Joshua Henschke (@JoshuaHenschke) November 4, 2014
If you're wondering how a hypothetical 2016 class with Brady Hoke still coaching Michigan would go... that's a bad sign.
Lastly, Michigan offered top in-state 2017 prospect Corey Malone-Hatcher this morning. He also holds offers from Ohio State and Penn State.