Press Conference Player Info Part 1

Submitted by PaulVB on February 6th, 2009 at 11:08 AM

At the top of his press conference Rich Rodriguez basically went through the list and talked briefly about each commit. A lot of it was coach-speak and praising the high school coaches, but there was quite a bit of useful information (as opposed to Lloyd Carr press conferences, which were awesome in their own way) on most of the players. One interesting thing in general is that Rodriguez let us know who the lead recruiter was for each player, and for just about everyone from Florida it was Rod Smith. I guess that's why need a de facto third QB coach. On to the players:

Isaiah Bell

Coach mentioned that the staff is really tight with Youngstown Liberty coach Jeff Whittaker. It's not that stacked of a school, but seems to produce a bit of talent on a regular basis. He said that Bell would start competing as a safety, but if he can put on enough weight, may move up to outside linebacker.

William Campbell

Looking at depth chart would probably tell you this too, but Rodriguez said that Campbell will play defense only and will compete for playing time right at the outset. Campbell got the instant impact tag from the coach. Will said himself that his goal is to start his freshman year. Even though he is a really funny, kind of goofy guy, I get the feeling that he's super competative; I sure as hell wouldn't want to be a RB/QB playing against Michigan in two years. Campbell is now doing the full Barwis workout and says the toughest part was the running because since the all star game he's been relaxing and "got fat."

Vlad Emilien

Coach said he could play either Safety position and will probably be moved around to positions of need.

Tate Forcier

Apparently in the Spring, Jason Forcier was in town and talked with Rodriguez. He basically said he'd recruit Tate for Michigan. I just can't help but wonder how different this last year would have been if Forcier hadn't transferred... Oh well. Obviously will come and compete right away for time at QB. When a reporter asked Rodriguez if he was confident that he'll end up with a really good quarterback he responded that "we'll have a really good competition." Tate says he works much more on accuracy and a quick release than arm strength. In some passing drills he claims he hit Mike Cox and Kevin Koger in the back of the head because they weren't expecting the ball to get there as quickly as it did. After his interview with the TV crews at the press conference, most reporters were surprised at how well he handled himself. He really seemed like a pro.

Jeremy Gallon

For some reason, I got the feeling that Rodriguez is especially excited about Gallon, but I'm probably just projecting my own excitement. Coach said he'll compete immediately at slot. Tim has made this argument that Odoms is a pretty good slot receiver, but the concept of the slot receiver may be more appealing than Odoms himself. Rodriguez also mentioned that he'll immediately be in the mix for returning kicks. Obviously, Coach didn't talk about grade issues in specifics, but he mentioned that there are about 2-3 recruits who haven't been approved by the Clearinghouse and that all of those recruits of realistic plans to follow that will allow them to qualify. Rodriguez didn't really seem to worried about grade issues.

Check out Varsity Blue throughout the day for the tidbits on the rest of recruits.


Six Zero

February 6th, 2009 at 11:59 AM ^

Everyone seems to have this Gallon-or-Odoms mentality, but is it that hard to imagine both on the field at the same time? Certainly I can see the advantages of a one-back set with an outside and inside on both sides of the field.

Can you imagine the possibilities (or QB room to run) when we line up 4 wide with Mathews, Odoms, Gallon, and Stonum?


February 6th, 2009 at 12:01 PM ^

I interpreted the Tate comment differently. I think I interpreted it as Tate feels that those traits are more important and thus he focuses on them more than arm strength. In Mallet's case I don't think he worked on those things at all, so I took it as a positive.

And speaking of the elder Forcier, I think his transfer as much as any single event would have had the biggest positive impact on 2008. If he had stayed, he would have been a starter for sure, been reasonably mobile, been an upper-classman at a position where that is critical, and allowed us to have depth at that position. He would have been the perfect transitional QB for Rich Rod. I think he regrets transferring now that he saw what happened with Mallet and Carr.

Oh, and I also think Forcier would have done just as well or maybe better as Henne's back-up in 2007 than Mallet did. He doesn't have as much talent as Mallet, but he would have made better decisions.

El Jeffe

February 6th, 2009 at 1:24 PM ^

I get the general purpose of the ISQD, but wouldn't it be a little more IS (and not in the sarcastic way) if there was even a remote chance the Wildcatter would throw some sort of a pass? How is it, in concept, that different from a halfback option? That's probably why Tebow's dorky-ass jump passes at the LOS have been so effective over the years. That and the fact that while airborne he converts two leprous heathens and turns three gay teens straight (and makes two wafflers gay, for a net gain of +1 for His side).