The Michigan coaching staff has made it apparent that they would like to recruit a running back prospect for the 2012 class. However with the number of offers extended and prospects committed, the opportunities are becoming slim. That may require the coaching staff to look for new prospects to extend offers to, and there just happens to be an uncommitted back waiting for an offer from the Wolverines.
Muskegon RB Juwan Lewis (5'11", 208 lbs) laid everything on the line recently at Michigan's camp and is now hoping that performance will earn him an offer. I caught up with both Juwan and his father, who also happens to be his coach. Here's a look at his film and then we'll start with Juwan.
TOM: Tell me first where you're at in your recruitment, and who you've all heard from so far.
JUWAN: My parents and I are taking our time with recruiting. My dad has been taking care of everything for me and it's been a great help. My feelings right now for every school is mutual, no school is above the other. I've been in contact with schools from the Big Ten, ACC, SEC, Pac 10, Big East, Independent, and MAC schools. My parents have mainly been telling me to enjoy the process and take my time with my decision right now.
TOM: When you camped at Michigan what did the coaches say to you?
JUWAN: They've been impressed with my work ethic, and they were happy with my work outs at camp. They're very interested.
TOM: What offers do you currently have?
JUWAN: I have offers from Buffalo, Western Michigan, and Eastern Michigan.
Since Juwan's father handles most of his recruiting I also spoke with him about what's happening now and what could be coming up in the near future.
TOM: I know Juwan told me he's hearing from a lot of schools, does he have any favorites yet?
MR. LEWIS: He's getting letters and phone calls from all over. His options are open for now. Does he want to go to a Big Ten school? Probably. They're all starting to come around and talk to him. I coach so they can talk to me about him and he has a lot of letters, he has a tub full of letters from schools all over.
TOM: With Michigan specifically what do you think is next after his camp performance?
MR. LEWIS: He had a great experience down there. I've been working Michigan camps for the last 11 years. I'm injured right now so I couldn't this year. They worked him over though and he was one of the best at the camps. With them it's a waiting game. I like Michigan, I love Michigan, but I don't know if they feel like they have enough backs or not. My understanding is that Juwan could be on the backs that they would take. Until they offer him we have to keep options open. He's talked about Indiana, Northwestern is definitely a school that's right there. Iowa has contacted him. The only school that's fallen off with us is Ohio State.
TOM: Can you tell me about who he is off the field?
MR. LEWIS: He plays the drums in church, too. He's in the church band so I never have to wake him up to go to church. He does a lot of community stuff without people asking him. He's a well rounded kid that's humble. I try to make him see the other side of it. Little kids come up to him, and we're in a small town, and they look up to him. People talk about not just the football but what he does in the community, he's in honor society, and he's probably going to be around top twenty in his class. He was born in Ann Arbor, I brought him up from Ann Arbor and I took everything personal with him. I'm an educator and we focused on that with him, and I'm proud of where he's at.
TOM: Do you have any idea of when he'd like to have his decision made by?
MR. LEWIS: What I want to do is have him done by a couple weeks into the season. Have him getting an offer and just saying let's go with it. I don't want him to have to worry about anything and just have fun. That takes a lot of pressure off the kid. He only has two classes next year and he has a 3.8 GPA, so he'll graduate early. In January I want him to be in someone's system, learning their program. The academic side is why I like the Big Ten schools. It's up to him to finish his major, I know he wants to major in broadcasting. I preach with him because I know he can play football. I want him to embody the student athlete and be in the study hall as much as he is in the film room.