Michigan Leads For Slaton
Five-star FL OT Tedarrell Slaton has, at previous points in his recruitment, named Michigan his leader before walking back that stance. 247's Ryan Bartow has been going around Florida getting updates on seemingly every recruit in the state; when he hit American Heritage, Slaton once again said the Wolverines are out in front:
Slaton tells Bartow that Michigan "still has the edge" for his services. This is the third time Slaton has publicly placed Michigan ahead of the competition in his recruitment. Per Bartow:
The nation’s No. 7 offensive tackle, Tedarrell Slaton, said Michigan has the edge. Slaton also said Tennessee and Miami are programs he feels are recruiting him consistently.
In an interesting twist, Slaton added that he prefers to play defensive tackle. Oddly, there aren't full-season highlights of Slaton anywhere on his Hudl page or YouTube, and the single-game reels only feature scattered snaps at DT. His positional preference may not matter much anyway; Michigan would certainly take him and worry about the rest later.
Bartow also caught up with Flanagan five-star CB Stanford Samuels, who went further in depth on the top four—consisting of Alabama, Florida State, Georgia, and Michigan—he released over the weekend:
Michigan: “I like all the NFL guys they have on staff. All the guys on that coaching staff have been there and done that. When you have that experience it makes it hard for you not to get the right coaching.”
While Samuels has Michigan connections through his former coach, Devin Bush, and the three Flanagan teammates who will be freshmen this year, it's hard to see him ending up in Ann Arbor. He plans to make a summer decision and enroll early; unless he makes it to campus before then, FSU looks like the choice.
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Rivals Vs. Everybody, Singleton Edition
Drew Singleton and some other guy from his high school. [Isaiah Hole/247]
If you've followed along with the roundups here recently, you've probably noticed that Rivals has departed from the conventional wisdom regarding some big-name Michigan targets with, at best, mixed results. For example, mods on the Fort insisted the Wolverines was a top option for 2016 five-star Caleb Kelly well after Michigan had stopped recruiting him (he committed to Oklahoma), and Rivals pushed Clemson as a "true true threat" to land Rashan Gary—you know how that one turned out.
Here we are again. Four-star Paramus Catholic LB Drew Singleton visited Ann Arbor for the Spring Game, did an extensive in-studio interview with Sam Webb on WTKA—usually an excellent sign a player will end up at Michigan—and his father had previously told Webb that the presence of Chris Partridge is of "HUGE, huge significance" in Singleton's recruitment. After Singleton's most recent visit, Steve Lorenz didn't mince words regarding M's outlook:
Michigan remains heavily in front for Top100 linebacker Drew Singleton (Paramus, NJ/Catholic). The Crystal Ball in that situation isn't going anywhere.
After Singleton's Clemson visit, however, Tim Sullivan had a different take on the Fort:
I see Clemson as a safe leader over Michigan right now - though close enough that it's far from a done deal - and those two as the only serious contenders.
"Safe leader" flies in the face of the rest of the info we have on Singleton unless Clemson completely blew him away on his visit, and while Singleton had high praise for the trip when talking to Rivals' Clemson outlet, it doesn't sound like it separated them from Michigan:
“The Michigan trip went real well, too,” he said. “It was a great experience, just like Clemson was.”
Singleton's recruitment won't wrap up any time soon, and Clemson is clearly Michigan's primary competition—it might be a while before we get an idea of whose intel is best.
Looking Good For Malone-Hatcher
Michigan has long been the favorite for four-star DE Corey Malone-Hatcher, who missed the Spring Game due to illness but made it to campus the following day. With a summer decision planned before an early enrollment, Hatcher's father told Sam Webb that M remains in great shape:
"They're still definitely up there as one of his favorites,” said Mr. Malone. “He's always had great experiences with Michigan, he loves Harbaugh, loves Coach Mattison, loves Coach Mattison's wife, and it has always been a real loving experience there. He's always said he could see himself playing there, so Michigan is definitely in good position. We just keep working through everything. I don't see them sliding down or falling anywhere."
Malone-Hatcher will take a handful of visits before his decision; it would be a surprise if he ended up elsewhere.
M Offers Fast-Rising In-State Junior
Michigan offered four-star 2018 Muskegon OT Antwan Reed yesterday afternoon, per Lorenz. Reed is one of the more intriguing prospects in the state. He's young for his grade, didn't start playing high school football until his sophomore year, and he already stands at 6'7", 285 pounds. Arkansas, Michigan State, Penn State, Tennessee, and Virginia Tech have also put forth early offers.
Michigan will host four-star OH TE Matt Dotson this weekend, per Lorenz. Ohio State and Tennessee split his Crystal Ball choices down the middle, but Lorenz expects Michigan to make a big push—he's near the top of the board in a class thin on tight ends.
Four-star CA DE Hunter Echols, a UCLA commit, told Lorenz that Michigan will receive one of his official visits. He added that it would "take something big" for him to decommit from UCLA.
Michigan is running second behind Florida for three-star Cass Tech OG Jordan Reid. If he sticks to his commitment timeline of "soon," it's unclear if M is even an option; the Wolverines are at or near the top for multiple higher-ranked interior line prospects.