2012 Recruiting Thoughts 2 DT vs. 1 QB

Submitted by wresler120 on June 23rd, 2011 at 12:52 PM

I read the interview with O'Brien, and he was quoted as saying Michigan only wants to sign one interior defensive lineman in the 2012 class. I also know Hoke stated he wants to come away with one QB in the 2012 class. We all know Michigan is limited on the number of scholarships available, and we also know there are two beasts at defensive tackle that are considering Michigan -- Danny O'Brien and Ondre Pipkins. While I think there is a strong chance to land both, I would hate to see one walk away after the first signs. I was thinking I would much rather see Pipkins and O'Brien commit, and then we could forego a QB in the 2012 class to compensate for taking an extra DT. With Denard, Gardner, and Bellomy on the roster and Morris coming in 2013, I feel we are strong at QB. Of course this would likely force Hoke into signing a 2nd QB in 2013 for depth, but that would be okay, because DT is a position of need coming up within the next two years. The worst case scenario occurring by not signing a qb in 2012 is Michigan would have to burn Morris' redshirt if there were a major injury at QB. Ultimately, I would rather see Pipkins and O'Brien at DT two or three years from now, as opposed to a QB who is sitting 3rd on the depth chart.


What are your thoughts on this?



June 23rd, 2011 at 12:59 PM ^

We have taken at least one QB for the past 14 years.

If you don't think we should take a QB this year, I refer you to the 2008 season plus 14 years of coaches disagreeing with you.


June 23rd, 2011 at 1:20 PM ^

Quarterback is a more important position than running back.

We have 7 running backs on the roster for 2012 (of which probably only 3 will see significant playing time).  That means you've got 4 guys sitting on the bench.

We have 3 quarterbacks on the roster for 2012 (of which probably 2 will see significant playing time).

So you're talking about using only 43% of your running backs, but 66% of your quarterbacks in any given season.  And that doesn't even consider the fact that any of the three could suffer an injury or transfer, and the possibility that Shane Morris could change his mind sometime in the next 20 months.


June 23rd, 2011 at 9:56 PM ^

But, how many of those runningbacks on the roster are good players?  Smith at best is mediocre in the Big Ten, Touissiant seems like he has never really developed up to this point, Shaw has shown some great moments, but has not been consistant, White is transferring.  That leaves Cox and Hopkins left, and both are either relatively young or inexperienced.  I did leave out the two freshman (Hayes and Rawls) because of their freshman status, but they could break out and play well as freshman.  Maybe someone with more knowledge on judging talent can put some positive insight on these runningbacks?

Also, how do we know that someone like Smith, Touissiant or another runningback may not transfer before their years at Michigan are over?  I would not mind taking Dunn this year and Thomas next year with only having taken Morris at QB next year.  Nebraska this year only has up to 15 scholarship offers they can accept, Michigan may end up that way next year.  I would like to hold that sholarship for a QB this year for someone else next year to have a larger quantity class in 2013.


June 23rd, 2011 at 11:40 PM ^

You mention that one of the running backs might transfer . . .

. . . and completely ignore the possibility that one of the quarterbacks might transfer.

You need depth at both positions.  One departure at the QB position could be devastating.  One departure at the RB position would probably be met with a shrug.


June 24th, 2011 at 12:09 AM ^

Quantity wise one departure at the RB position will not be devastating, but when the crop of players at the position are not suitable big players for a conference like the Big Ten then the need of a RB for Hoke's style of offense is higher then a QB in which there are already 3 on the roster and one in a couple years (hopefully).  By the time Morris becomes a freshman there will still be three QBs on the roster (Gardner, Bellomy and Morris).  It would be ideal to grab a QB each year, but given the certain situation Michigan is in with regards to the depth on the DL and OL and the low quantity of players they may end up grabbing next year, QB is not an issue. 

If Morris had not committed then I would say yes they need a QB and hope Morris still commits down the line, but he has stated he is solidly committed on Michigan and would be at least 2 years behind Bellomy.  I just think the need for a big back this year is vidal because there is only one big back on the roster, and we have plenty of good QBs with another on the way in a couple years.  As I mentioned, I am not a scout expert.  I played minor league baseball, but have only watched and enjoyed football. 

Crazy Canuck

June 23rd, 2011 at 10:40 PM ^

Everybody forgets what happened to the Philadelphia Eagles a few years back. McNabb broke his ankle in the first game and the back up got hurt in the second game (I believe) and they had to start Feely who had zero NFL experience.If that happens to us we have Morris as a true freshman with no back up or another freshman as our backup if we take two QBS in 2013.


June 23rd, 2011 at 1:07 PM ^

People just can't seem to grasp anyway that we could actually need that extra qb on the roster.  It seems they forget having to start a new qb every year for the past 3 years.  OSU and Nebraska are more recent examples of a real lack of qb depth, and are only an injury or 2 away from terrible qb play.


June 23rd, 2011 at 8:13 PM ^

Different schmifferent.  Circumstances are different at every single position every single year. I'll trust 14 consecutive years of taking a QB over "Circumstances are different this year," especially when the circumstances this year are by no means overwhelmingly in favor of going the other way.


June 23rd, 2011 at 11:05 PM ^

Well the circumstances aren't just "different", they're friendlier to not taking a quarterback than any time since at least 2005.

2005-7: Henne takes starting job as freshman. Older qbs immediately become transfer risks compelling us to take qbs in each class.

2008-09: Rodriguez is hired. Statues flee. Rodriguez comeplled to recruit qb that fits his offense.

2010: Rodriguez style qbs are Tate and Denard. As they are both in the same class whoever loses the job is going to be a transfer risk. 2 deep with one transfer risk means qb is mandatory.

2011: Rodriguez style qbs are Tate, Denard and Devin. 3 deep with one transfer risk.

2012: Denard, Devin, Bellomy. 3 deep, no obvious transfer risks. A switch in offensive philosophies puts a squeeze on scholarship numbers. Further putting a strain on numbers-every position group besides quarterback (and offensive line) needs an infusion of talent because of subpar performance. Offensive line needs a massive infusion of talent because of recent recruiting neglect.

The last time Michigan was anywhere near as well set up at quarterback as it is now was 2004. We had a stable system and Richards and Guttierez coming up (I think someone else too). And we took Chad Henne who even then wasn't just some guy.


June 23rd, 2011 at 11:53 PM ^

Okay, you went all the way back to 2005 . . . which is almost (but not quite) halfway back toward those 14 years.  Congrats.

Having only three quarterbacks is still dangerously thin.  For some reason Michigan fans are okay with having 13 linebackers (for 3 starting spots) and 7 defensive ends (for 2 starting spots), but they don't want to spend a 4th scholarship on a quarterback . . . which happens to be the most important position in football, period.

And if you're against Michigan taking a quarterback who's just some guy, then you should be equally annoyed that Michigan is taking "just some guy" at other positions.


June 24th, 2011 at 12:24 AM ^

I wouldn't be annoyed if we took a qb who was just a guy, in fact maybe I'd support it. I'm saying it's not a slam dunk.

Maybe I should be annoyed at Hoke for taking on "meh" players at less critical positions, but I think the real problem is there's a lot of dead weight on the roster and that's Rodriguez's doing.

Mr Mackey

June 23rd, 2011 at 1:00 PM ^

There are too many wildcards about not taking a QB, and the staff has said they want to take one.

Ideally, it would be Devin Fuller, as he can play other positions. Do we have any realistic shot at all?


June 24th, 2011 at 12:14 AM ^

Fuller would be a great pick up, that way if they did not take a full-time QB and if something happened to the other 3 QBS on the team then Fuller can step in and play the position, kind of like Bass a few years ago.  If they are ok health wise at QB Fuller can play like a WR position or CB. 


June 23rd, 2011 at 1:00 PM ^

Everyone is freaking out about this. At the end of the day I think if Pipkins and O'Brien both wanted to come to Michigan there's probably a scenario where that would work. I don't think anything is set in stone with recruiting, so just take it for what it is right now. 


June 23rd, 2011 at 1:05 PM ^

There are approximately 9 spots left.

I think the coaches can figure out how to take everyone they want to get (provided the players want to come).

I don't see a scenario in which taking both O'Brien and Pipkins would prevent us from getting a QB if the coaches want one.


June 23rd, 2011 at 1:12 PM ^

1. Wormley



4. WR

5. Bars? (think he goes PSU)

6. Kalis

7. DE

8. Dunn???

9. O'Brien

10. QB

Fucking NCAA and their 85 scholarship limit! How am I supposed to finish up our recruiting class?


June 23rd, 2011 at 2:26 PM ^

Ehh yea this would be getting into shady territory.  I guess it would just depend on how it was handled.  If the coaches sat one of the DEs down and told them that they might struggle to find playing time here, at which point the recruit decided to look elsewhere, I would be ok with that.  But if the recruit wanted to stay committed even after being told that, I couldn't support yanking his schollie.


June 23rd, 2011 at 2:56 PM ^

If you really want to know my opinion, you could probably take a look at my commitment posts for each one and figure it out.

I don't expect you to go to that trouble, but I also don't want to say "I don't like this particular player."


June 23rd, 2011 at 4:55 PM ^

Washington is a WDE? Probably would be one of those guys if this scenario were to happen. That being said I think it is very unlikely the coaches would try and suggest a commit take their talents elsewhere. The staff is pretty high on most of the guys we have offered, and although a Washington might have more potential than some of our current commits, I don't think any of them are significant drop-offs potential wise. Plus the coaching staff wants to wrap up as much of the recruiting as possible early so they can focus on the season and recruiting for next year, so it seems unlikely they would want significant change in the class later. Plus, these guys are already getting work out tips, communicating with each other, and doing recruiting of their own. They seem to invested in the program for the coaches to pull the rug out from under them. None of these guys are the Jordan Barnes and Dewayne Peace situations with RR.

Some guy quoted Bo earlier about no one guy being bigger than the program. It was in reference to Peat's statement about Notre Dame and Nebraska being leaders but not UofM. I told him the quote seemed out of context in that scenario, but I feel it applies here more. Although it would great to add the talent of Washington, no one guy (no matter how talented) is bigger than the program and what Michigan stands for (integrity, loyalty, dedication, character, etc.). Here is where the SEC sells themselves like a bunch of cheap pro...suits just to win.

turd ferguson

June 23rd, 2011 at 2:53 PM ^

I've been thinking about this and the only way I think this is acceptable is if the message is something like this:

"If you'd like to come, we'd love to have you, and you'll get just as good a shot as everyone else.  I'm sure you've noticed that the depth chart is getting a little crowded, though, and if you'd like to think about moving, we're here to help you find an ideal landing spot."

I'm not a fan of the cold shoulder approach or the explicit "go away" approach.


June 23rd, 2011 at 3:29 PM ^

@Magnus, Up until now, I believe your insight and opinions have been spot on.  But I think your opinion on this couldn't be more completely wrong and off base.  As much as I want the best talent at UM, I hope we never stoop to the level of the SEC mindset.  Doing this is obviously wrong as you've stated, plus it could affect future recruiting.  I for one hope everyone that has given their verbals stay commited and UM stays commited to them.

Jon Benke

June 23rd, 2011 at 1:54 PM ^

I think we get two more DEs, and can find room for a QB.

1. Washington, DE
2. Chris Wormley, DE
3. Jordan Diamond, OL
4. Kyle Kalis, OL
5. Dwayne Stanford, WR
6. Ondre Pipkens, DT
7. Danny O'Brien, DT
8. Jarrod Wilson, S
9 - your QB

If Wilson or O'Brien go elsewhere, insert Mr. Dunn.