Wednesday Recruitin' Comment Count

Tim January 20th, 2010 at 12:06 PM

Recruiting Boards of note:

Davion Rogers, Jake Ryan, and Delonte Hollowell Go Blue

davion.jpgryan.jpg   

Yay, commit-a-palooza! OH LBs Davion Rogers and Jake Ryan are in the current recruiting class, and both are linebackers who :gasp: play linebacker in high school! Rogers is a tall guy who may eventually play defensive end if he can put on the necessary weight. Ryan looks like a true middle linebacker, though he's apparently been told that the coaches are looking at him as a "pass-rushing outside linebacker," which sounds like the Quick position. MGoBlog doesn't buy that since that would make about eight guys in the class destined for one position.

For more on each, check out the "Hello" posts for Rogers and Ryan.

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MI CB Delonte Hollowell is a cornerback who hails from Detroit's Cass Tech high school, but won't join the Wolverines until 2011. Small in stature, he has drawn comparisons to former Wolverine Boubacar Cissoko. Delonte is still a long way from campus, but if you want to know more about him, check out the Hello: Delonte Hollowell post.

Happy Trails

  • GA QB/S Blake Sims has recommitted to Alabama. He decommitted from the Tide last week, and had been considering Michigan.
  • CA RB Dillon Baxter reopened his commitment last week, but last night he recommitted to the Trojans on local TV.
  • CA RB Brennan Clay will stick with Oklahoma.
  • NJ OL Jake Kaufman committed to USF. He hadn't been involved in Michigan's recruiting plans for quite some time.
  • FL OL Torrian Wilson committed to Louisville (after decommitting from USF). It doesn't seem like Michigan is going to bust their tails to get him to visit.
  • TX DT Jatashun "Big Tex" Beachum has solidified his verbal commitment to Arkansas, and doesn't appear to be an option anymore.
  • FL DE Clarence Murphy looks like he'll stick with Maryland, as Michigan won't heavily pursue him to land Tony Grimes. For his part FL CB Tony Grimes is still considering Michigan, but looks like a longshot.
  • As expected, GA LB Michael Taylor committed to Florida after switching from Tennessee.
  • MI CB Dior Mathis will play for Oregon.
  • OH S Latwan Anderson is committed to West Virginia.
  • MD S Lorenzo Waters committed to Rutgers.

With the recruiting class almost completely full, it's time for a little cleaning on the board. A bunch of guys who haven't committed elsewhere, or would otherwise still be possibilities, will be removed. That includes:

FL RB Cassius McDowell, DE RB Jamaal Jackson, OH RB Demetrus Johnson, MI OL Jarhaur Jackson, IL OL Andrew Schofield (South Dakota commit), MD DE David Mackall, MI LB Austin Gray (Iowa commit), FL CB TC Robinson, OH S Bobby Swigert (Boston College commit).

Some of those guys don't have many D-1 offers, and are potential preferred walk-on candidates, but the ones committed to BCS programs will definitely stick with those schools.

And it All Means?

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With the above guys taken off the board, there are very few bodies left as options for Michigan. Those would be:

  • CA S Sean Parker: He visited USC over the weekend, and will take a final visit to Washington before his decision.
  • FL S Rashad Knight: He told mgoblog's own TomVH that he truly enjoyed his visit, and Tom speculates that the Wolverines are now #1.
  • FL S Demar Dorsey: a cousin of Denard Robinson, rumor has it that Florida is getting frustrated with his wandering eyes, and is considering revocation of his offer. Dorsey is pictured at right.

A few guys, like FL WR De'Joshua Johnson, have mentioned taking visits to Ann Arbor, but it's highly unlikely that anyone else signs with the Wolverines unless another sleeper or two emerges.

[editor-appended bits]

Guru Loves Us, Guru Loves Us Not

Post all-star lists have been published and it's been a long time since I can remember such a difference of opinion between the sites on Michigan's recruits. Devin Gardner got the boot from the Rivals 100 and Cullen Christian dipped to 99; on that site he's Michigan's only top 100 recruit. Gardner sticks at 132 and is the only other Michigan recruit in their top 250. Three others (Ash, Robinson, and Wilkins) get four stars, but that's it. Michigan is 19th in their rankings largely because of class size. To Rivals, this is the worst Michigan recruiting class since people started tracking these things systematically.

Scout, on the other hand, peppers their top 300 with Michigan recruits:

43. Devin Gardner

56. Cullen Christian

98. Josh Furman

155. Austin White

167. Ricardo Miller

201. Marvin Robinson

258. Jerald Robinson

If Sean Parker signs with Michigan he would be a fourth top 100 kid at #81. That's about an average haul for Michigan, and Scout has M in about the range they usually are: Michigan ranks #9 in their rankings right now. They've got a big class and are close to full, so that's a ranking you expect to see drop and grudgingly concede is a bit overrated—team recruiting rankings don't do a good job of accounting for opportunity costs—but after the last two years I'll take a top-ten-ish recruiting class and run.

At MGoBlog, the correct guru is always the one that favors Michigan, so one point for Scout this year.

Side note: at least it's been an off year for Ohio State, too. They've got a small class and a better star average than M at Rivals but are currently 24th(!) in their rankings. Penn State is this year's undisputed Big Ten recruiting champion.

Coner 2000

That is what I am calling new fourth-string QB Conelius Jones. Yes. Yes. AnnArbor.com did a story on the oddly named recruit* that indicates he can't throw worth a lick…

"What I look at when I see him, guys that have come through like Woody Dantzler at Clemson, Pat White," Spartanburg coach Freddie Brown said. "Athletic quarterback, pull it down, run it, throw it guy. He can be a 50-50 (run-pass) guy. A guy that probably runs it a little bit better than he throws it, but Conelius can throw it, too."

…and that he's open to whatever, man:

“I’m a quarterback," Jones said. "But I wouldn’t have any problem with not being” one.

Coner 2000 is about the most guaranteed redshirt in the recruiting class; we'll see how he develops. That Cutcliffe offer from Duke is more appealing than your average Duke offer is, but I bet one dollar he ends up somewhere else.

*(Months after MGoUser Clarence Beeks reported back that this kid apparently didn't have the R in his name that every recruiting site and newspaper said he did, this story makes the same understandable gaffe. I don't blame them at all. "Conelius" cries out for an R. If someone was named Elizaeth no one would ever get their name right, either.)

[/end editor bits]

2011

As noted above, MI CB Delonte Hollowell has become member #2 of the 2011 recruiting class. It's a little too soon to speculate on class composition until after Signing Day, but that's already two DBs following what looks like a very DB-heavy 2010 class.

Potentially adding to that is OH S Ron Tanner, who currently favors Michigan ($, info in header).

Moving along to non-DB news, SC RB Demetrius Williams is now holding an offer from the Wolverines. Despite that, Michigan is a longshot to land him:

“(Growing up) I had three favorite schools,” he said. “I liked (South) Carolina, Clemson and Florida. I really prefer to go to Carolina. If I get an offer from Carolina that is probably where I’m going to go.”

At this point, it looks like a token offer. Bamberg-Ehrhardt has pumped out a bunch of talent in the past few years, and Michigan's coaches may simply be trying to get their foot in the door.

Butler High School outside of Charlotte, NC is perennially stocked with talent, and has a long-standing relationship with Michigan, as the Butler coaches work the Wolverines' summer camps, and guys like Jamar Adams have gone from Butler to Ann Arbor (to the NFL). The class of 2011 appears to be a special one at Butler, with 6 BCS-caliber prospects, including at least two Michigan will try to land:

*Christian LeMay, QB: A national talent of the first order. “I don’t even count his offers anymore,” Newsome said. “He can get one from any school he’s interested in, from Alabama on down.”

*Kris Frost, LB: Another player expected to be recruited on a national scale, he’s received his first written offer, from North Carolina. But he also has a few verbals, including one from Michigan. “He’s always been a Michigan fan; wearing Michigan shorts and T-shirts to practice ever since he started here,” Newsome said. “Any school that wants to beat them will have to work real hard.”

LeMay will be one of the nation's top QBs, and holds a Michigan offer. His dad is the former team chaplain at Florida, however, and he is considered all but a Florida lock. Frost also holds an offer from the Wolverines, so I have added him to the board as well. It certainly sounds like Michigan can land the kid if they go hard after him.

Another linebacker target, OH LB Trey DePriest, hit up Ohio State's junior day over the weekend, instead of heading up to Ann Arbor ($, info in header). He's a very important prospect for Michigan, and hopefully he'll be able to make it to a recruiting event sometime this spring.

Once the class of 2010 is signed (which is shockingly close), I'll start taking a closer look at available scholarships and needs for the 2011 crop.

Comments

redwhiteandMGOBLUE

January 20th, 2010 at 12:25 PM ^

as to the huge ranking disparity between Rivals and Scout?

I thought I remembered from past questions to Brian that he preferred Rivals content and rankings over Scout.
Along the lines of Rivals being less hype and more in depth?
Not that it matters much as we are targeting players of need that apparently want to be here, so I'm all good with that.

Just wondering on the vast difference in numbers.

Go Blue!

Don

January 20th, 2010 at 12:28 PM ^

Considering that Rivals ranked the 2005 Michigan class #6 and it turned out to be filled with one huge bust after another, I'm not going to obsess over their rankings, nor Scout's, for that matter.

cjpops

January 20th, 2010 at 3:23 PM ^

Agreed, I'm pretty much over rankings, Rivals/Scouts and basically all recruiting-based punditry. Who cares what a bunch of analysts "think" might happen when these kids are at college?

I trust in the coaching staff to recruit the best players they can and then coach 'em up when they get here.

Drop the puck on 10/11 Michigan Football, already!! :)

dundee

January 20th, 2010 at 3:38 PM ^

i'll take RRs and his staffs word over the recruiting sites who only see tape. plus a big problem was all of our early commits. when scout or rivals recieve 5000 highlights of kids and review those commits early and place them somewhere in the top 250 then see the others later, those first reviewed tend to drop as they are not fresh in their minds(Devin) as the ones just reviewed.

c williams

January 20th, 2010 at 12:33 PM ^

It's great to see the defensive recruits piling up.

Of course, it'd be great if some of these LBs and DBs develop into great Michigan players and lead the defense back to former levels. At the very least, they help even out the roster (and increase the number of scholarship players), and that will help this team improve as a whole. One thing that's likely been stagnating the team's development is the disproportionate number of offensive players. In simple terms, if there's twice as many offensive players then they get half the number of snaps when they go O v. D in scrimmage. To get second, third and fourth string players at all these positions should help tremendously as everyone needs to go against and compete with good players in practice. Hopefully, this will be THE important rebuilding class that fills out the ranks.

Now on to all the 4 and 5 starz in 2011, of course!

mstier

January 20th, 2010 at 12:37 PM ^

I usually defer to rivals for rankings, but the rankings this year seem a little strange. A guy like Sean Parker who was a big performer at the Army All American game and has offers from nearly everyone under the sun isn't in the top 250. This happens from time to time, but I feel like the disparity between offers and rankings is a bit bigger this year on rivals.

That said, ranking this class 19th isn't all that surprising. It's a great class in that we've filled needs at DB and such, but with the past two seasons I think its hard to recruit the really highly sought after players. I'm alright with that, so long as we can make some serious strides this year to show recruits that we're going to be a high caliber program.

UMaD

January 20th, 2010 at 1:06 PM ^

the coaching staff would rather take players they like at deep positions than take reaches at thin spots. After striking out on MLBs, NTs, and OL they wanted, they seem content to wait and bring on guys they like instead regardless of position. I'm not sure this is a wise strategy, but it points to confidence in their ability to assess talent and fill needs when they have to. There has been talk that the 2011 class looks strong for LBs and OL, so that may help explain the strategy a bit.

Its also very premature to worry about positions too much given how people can switch. I'm more concerned with overemphasizing (WR & DB) and underemphasizing (OL) positions where there are less likely to be position shifts compared to say LB.

There seems to be a lot of concern about the two interior LB spots but there are 2 seniors at those positions plus Leach, Demens, Fitzgerald and potentially a number of younger guys who could end up filling the role (Kinard, Bell, Jones, Furman, etc.) To me its a little like worrying about too many slots vs outside receivers. A minor concern compared to the razor thing depth and youth at other positions (e.g. QB and DB).

In summary, they seem to at least think they know what they are doing. I hope that its a case of strategy rather than desperation to plug holes from year to year.

Don

January 20th, 2010 at 1:04 PM ^

While I didn't expect top ten rankings, I'm even surprised at how low they are overall. Yet, they still have been reasonably competitive for the most part. What this says about the value of rankings or about the quality of coaching at those schools is for smarter people than me to guess at.

2005
Iowa #5; Wisconsin #34

2006
Iowa #40 Wisconsin #42

2007
Iowa #28; Wisconsin #34

2008
Iowa #53; Wisconsin #41

2009
Iowa #63; Wisconsin #43

TomVH

January 20th, 2010 at 2:05 PM ^

It just came up recently. I'm thinking it might have something to do with Sarkisian's ties to USC. I don't think they'll play a big factor, but who knows.

Sean is really quiet, and has closed down the fort basically. If you have noticed, all the interviews lately haven't been from him, but his coaches. He's going to be hard to figure out. We'll all have to wait until signing day.

TrppWlbrnID

January 20th, 2010 at 2:31 PM ^

That's where the truth lies, right down here in the gut. Do you know you have more nerve endings in your gut than you have in your head? You can look it up. Now, I know some of you are going to say, "I did look it up, and that's not true." That's 'cause you looked it up in a book. Next time, look it up in your gut. I did. My gut tells me that's how our nervous system works.

West Texas Blue

January 20th, 2010 at 2:12 PM ^

Trey DePriest is hands down, the #1 most important recruit in the 2011 class. With DL, OL, and LB being the major areas of need, most notably MLB, we have got to land this kid. We need to beat OSU for some of the top talent in Ohio, so this would be a good time to start.

WolvinLA2

January 20th, 2010 at 8:32 PM ^

I'm all for recruiting kids from MI, but I completely disagree that we need to get the top in-state players before we worry about the top players from other states, especially if those states are generally more talent rich than MI. If the top player from OH, FL, TX, CA, or virtually any southern state wants to come here, he should be a top priority.

Irish

January 20th, 2010 at 2:53 PM ^

Black is back to visiting UM this weekend, he did decide to visit MSU last weekend but UC is still firmly in the lead.

Also Anderson picked up a USC offer from Kiffin it sounds like, that one might not be over.

BostonWolverine

January 20th, 2010 at 3:19 PM ^

Any news on Drake?

Also, I remember commenting during the liveblog, I remember posting that Demar Dorsey looked absolutely amazing in the Under Armour game.

He'd make a real nice addition. Do we actually have a shot because he's Denard's cousin?

jeag

January 20th, 2010 at 3:24 PM ^

Is it possible that Scout deliberately overrates Michigan players because Michigan has an enormous and dedicated fanbase that could yield a lot of subscriptions?

umhero

January 20th, 2010 at 4:41 PM ^

Possible, but most of them are rated higher even before they commit to Michigan.

The only place I notice player ratings consistently improve after they sign are the unranked players who typically jump to 2 or 3 stars after signing with Michigan.

AC1997

January 21st, 2010 at 12:10 AM ^

I believe that one of the biggest downfalls of Michigan football was the woeful neglect of certain position groups for a multiple year span (starting with Carr). The primary positions that were affected were OL and DB. We didn't bring in star players or quantity.
--- I think this year's class addresses the quantity problem at every position except OL.

I also believe that a high risk aspect of recruiting is the "athlete" category or position switches. I think Michigan has been burned several times in the past few years by having a very athletic player who didn't have a natural position or know what he was doing on the football field. Guys like this have relied so much on their raw talent that they don't always learn how to play.
--- I like that we have safeties who have grown up playing safety and line backers who are natural linebackers - regardless of their star rankings.

I wish we had a few more highly rated guys, but I love the depth of this class, the diversity of the recruits, and the fact that so many of the guys are being recruited at their natural position.

AC1997

January 21st, 2010 at 12:13 AM ^

Tim mentioned that he's going to work on priorities for 2011. Off the top of my head, I would rank them like this:

1. Linebacker
2. Offensive Line
3. Nose Tackle
4. Running Back
5. Defensive End
6. Tight End
7. Defensive Back
8. Wide Receiver
9. Slot Receiver
10. Quarterback