'14 OT Denzel Ward No Longer Committed

Submitted by MGoChippewa on January 29th, 2013 at 1:42 PM

Title pretty much says it all. Better that these things happen sooner than later, I suppose.

LINK?  http://insider.espn.go.com/insider/michigan/forums/_/the-den#!/topic/1359484652-266-681  (Insider)


Sam Webb reporting that it was Michigan's call.

Sam Webb @SamWebb77

@Grahambino007 Hearing it was #Michigan's choice and the door wasn't left open for a Dawson-like return.



January 29th, 2013 at 1:48 PM ^

I realize fans from all schools always say this but....who cares. This is the least important need in our recruiting right now due to our previous years' line hauls and there are many linemen in the 2014 class. All signs point to Ward being a 2-3 project anyways. This one does not hurt us.

Litt1e Rhino

January 29th, 2013 at 1:53 PM ^

Don't be foolish. This hurts a little. Does it break us? Of course not. But the kid is brining in some big time offers from major programs and he's only been playing for a couple years. The sky is the limit for him. He made a decision to quick with all the excitement. Would still like to see him as part of our class.


January 29th, 2013 at 2:46 PM ^

We should have a decent shot at landing him, especially if we pursue the whole teammate thing. Bauer is the top of my wish list as an individual, though, partly from watching him, and partly from him being the top of Bama and LSU's wish list too. But with Florida landing two top 2014 tackles already, and other local guys out there for LSU and Bama like Cam Robinson and Orlando Brown,  guys like Bauer and Cole, and maybe even Damian Prince could be in play for us.


January 29th, 2013 at 2:04 PM ^

It would hurt more if we didn't have two stellar offensive line classes ahead of him.

If we had Ohio's depth chart?  Yes this would be a big blow.

But with our current depth chart, AAAND with Taylor Lewan coming back for an additional year, it's so early that the fan-base shouldn't be heartbroken about this.

Good luck to Denzel. 


January 29th, 2013 at 1:48 PM ^

Is it alright if I feel like "meh".  I mean I really really liked his upside, but it's still really early, so finding a replacement shouldn't be too difficult.  And I think if there's one place we can handle a decommit it's at the OL.  Does anyone know if Sam's phrasing acutally means that UM dropped him because of the whole moving unexpectedly to FL and visiting UF all the time?


January 29th, 2013 at 1:59 PM ^

No surprise, really. We've got so many top tackle prospects ahead of him it wouldn't surprise me if he was looking around for early playing time. Still, a lot can happen between now and next NSD.


January 29th, 2013 at 1:52 PM ^

Shocked, blindsided, uprooted, hurt, taken off guard, never saw it coming, blown away, jarred, jolted, in awe, surprised. Obviously these are my thoughts after he switched schools to Florida.

True Blue Grit

January 29th, 2013 at 1:52 PM ^

But, it's much better to have this happen now than a year from now.  There's plenty of time to replace him with a good player in the 2014 class.  The best of luck to him.

Victor Hale II

January 29th, 2013 at 1:53 PM ^

I think we all saw this coming.  Sure, it's possible to get him back in the fold; however, I agree that this particular loss isn't a huge deal.  There are lots of good OL for '14, and the staff has plenty of time to identify them and get them on campus.


If there's one area of the team that I feel supremely confident in when it comes to this staff's ability to recruit, it is the OL.  Second place would be LB.

Caveman Bob

January 29th, 2013 at 1:55 PM ^

Ward is a huge raw athlete, but I wonder if he saw the classes ahead of him and realized that he'd likely spend his first couple of years developing while watching the linemen from '12 and '13 play on Saturdays. He doesn't seem like the type that you plug in as a RS frosh, but he could turn into a pretty great player after two or three years of coaching. 

He's the type of high risk/high reward player that we should be taking now that we have a lot of blue chips moving into the OL in the coming year. Hopefully he'll look around and decide later that Michigan is the best fit.


January 29th, 2013 at 2:14 PM ^

I really wonder what kind of counsel he's getting, with the desire for early playing time. I mean, Kalis, who is mean, and big, and polished, and as ready as any OL recruit to come in, still spent a year as a redshirt. And the reality is that he won't get early PT at any of the really good schools . . . I'm sure (without checking) that Ohio, and USC, and Alabama, and Texas, and Florida, and ND, don't make a regular practice of starting freshmen on the OL. The other thing is that at Michigan, the mantra has been, "you compete every week, and there are no guarantees for PT." Mattison is really strong on this, but so are all the coaches. If you're n.ot good enough to beat out the guys ahead of you, well, you shouldn't play


January 29th, 2013 at 2:17 PM ^

The people around him are probably telling him what he wants to hear, that he can go in and get on the field early.  I've learned in coaching that a lot of parents and family members have very inflated senses of what their family members are capable of accomplishing.  It's tough for a 16- or 17-year-old kid to look at himslf objectively and realize that he probably needs a few years of development.


January 29th, 2013 at 2:38 PM ^

first meeting with Jake Long.

"He’s just standing there, and he’s a very large individual,” Lewan said. “I had my shoulder pads on and he was still wider than me. It was a little bit ridiculous.”

That was a future first-rounder. How far away is the average highly regarded HS player?