2019 OT Devontae Dobbs Discusses Recruiting Decision

Submitted by Caesar on June 29th, 2018 at 11:36 AM


As you probably know, 2019 OT Devontae Dobbs committed to MSU recently. Here's the story from ESPN where he describes his reasons, which is really a series of quotations about the major schools recruiting him (link).


  • USC--too 'rah, rah' and disingenuous
  • Ohio State--he felt like they lied to him 
  • Michigan--didn't maintain contact, uppity, and bizarrely, too 'robotic' (??)
  • Michigan State--didn't pressure him, he felt comfortable, etc.

Some Thoughts

I remember reading what happened during the time Dobbs may be sore about. Basically, the Drevno saga was dragging on, and Michigan did not have coverage for some of their recruits, resulting in a period where Dobbs wasn't contacted. But this whole 'like robots' bit is weird. I have no idea where that came from, nor does Dobbs really offer much of an explanation. 

One bright spot for me is that at least some recruits seem to be catching on about Ohio State's lack of honesty. I won't forget, for example, how Mike Weber's primary recruiter bailed the day after he committed to the Buckeyes. 

Pure Rumor

I've read some things about Belleville that I caution are completely unsubstantiated. Anyway, some folks I've read online indicated that there might be some funny business at the school that would lead to NCAA sanctions for a school recruiting their kids. We'll see how Michigan recruits the school in the future.




June 30th, 2018 at 11:32 AM ^

Sorry about the late reply. Some guy on twitter claimed that the high school would get boycotted by Michigan in the future because of some shady demands related to the Dobbs recruitment. That tweet got deleted, however. Also, I haven't seen the claim repeated, and it seems like the recent Michigan recruit from there flies refutes that claim.


June 29th, 2018 at 11:44 AM ^

Harbaugh came off as kind of robotic on All or Nothing, but I doubt he was the one spending the most time with Dobbs anyway. Sounds more like something rubbed him the wrong way once or twice, and he used it to generalize all of Michigan (and same with USC and OSU). Not a big deal. Pretty clear the vast majority of other players we've recruited don't agree with him.


June 29th, 2018 at 1:44 PM ^

Belicheck isn't trying to convince 17 year old recruits to play for him. 

Ed is in his 3rd job in 3 years for a reason and it has nothing to do with his ability to coach the offensive line.  He is pretty good at that part of his job.  Its the other stuff he struggled with. 


June 29th, 2018 at 5:53 PM ^

To be fair this last move was a choice Ed made and many Minnesota fans are mad at him for leaving. 

He’s had a solid upward trajectory throughout his career but clashed with and/or carried the Clemson shutout water for Urban. Let’s see what we hear about him at Michigan before we make him out to be a misanthrope.


June 30th, 2018 at 9:44 AM ^

Ed Warinner is one of the best OL coaches in the country. You would think he would be excellent at identifying OL talent. Wasn't the case @ TOSU.  I think by 2016 22 of the OL he signed 9 ended up transferring without contributing. Not a good recruiter. He lobbied for a 3 star from idaho or north dakota can't remember but from day one on campus some felt it was mistake.  That he was nowhere near D1 material.  

     As far as the clemson debacle that was the 2nd year of Warinner's failed attempt at play calling. He was a pretty bad OC. Like i said he's a one if the best offensive line coaches in the country just needs help recruiting. I would be shocked if he doesn't turn around your offensive line problems. Should be night and day from the previous OL performances.

Space Coyote

June 29th, 2018 at 11:47 AM ^

The thing is that OSU didn't really lie to him either. They said he had a chance to play as a freshman, which while unlikely, Meyer has done with OL in the past (Michael Jordan, who wasn't as good of an interior prospect, and also from Michigan, started as a true FR).

Here's the thing with recruiting: kids fall in love with some place or a few places. They look for reasons to justify that love and sometimes there isn't a ton of objective logic behind it, but you follow your heart. So things that aren't really lies you start to twist as lies. You start to view your interaction in your own prism relative to the places you like. You hear things in a way that gets misinterpreted because you talk so much with each of these places.

In the end, you go where you're comfortable. That's what Dobbs did. He preferred MSU. And that's fine, good for him to go to the place that he liked best. But then you get these sorts of quotes that are trying to justify "why not them" when really he should be talking about "why them". It doesn't make for as interesting of an article, there is a lot less shot taking, but it is what it is.


June 29th, 2018 at 12:43 PM ^

And yet, most guys manage to be bland and PC when asked questions about other schools. That's often the case in the yearly piece on (the State of) Michigan's top recruits.

Dobbs has *much* to say in that article. I think he sounds pretty insecure at times. 

He's a young person so I'll give him plenty of slack, but he's a behavioral outlier so far.


June 29th, 2018 at 12:59 PM ^

Grace is a difficult concept to master let alone for a 16-17-18 year-old kid who has reporters asking him questions.   It takes a long time to realize you don't have to answer the question that was asked. 

Why didn't you pick school X?   

All of the schools were top notch, but school Y is where I clicked.



June 29th, 2018 at 1:56 PM ^

Agree completely with the space man. Every time I read these "reactions" and "analyses" about why a kid picked a particular school, I take everything with an enormous grain of salt, and I remember what it was like to be 17-18 and be picking a school (and I wasn't even an athlete). There were so many thoughts swirling around and different ways different schools became more or less attractive to me, and sometimes some of those made no sense. Why did I pick Michigan over others? Sometimes you just feel most comfortable with a place. 

I don't fault any of these kids, nor do I spend a lot of time agonizing over it. Let the staff got get the best kids they can that think fit their system. As long as we're near the top 10 in recruiting 3/4 years, and we get kids in the positions needed, I'm generally good. Plus, with the defensive staff (doesn't apply to Dobbs, but this is a general comment), I think they've earned my trust at this point that they're getting the kids they need, know how to evaluate talent, and will make the most of it. 


June 29th, 2018 at 11:53 AM ^

I'd like to know what makes a school uppity, but otherwise this isn't surprising.  Ask a kid why he didn't go to other schools recruiting him, he'll find something wrong with them.  Ask him about the school he signed with and he'll list ways it's not like those other schools.

I wish him luck, and chalk this up to a miss due to some uncertainty with the staff + him liking MSU more.


June 29th, 2018 at 12:26 PM ^

The recruit didn't use that word. It was just the OP's word in his summary. What the kid actually said was:


“It felt like Michigan thought they were superior and the big boss to Michigan State. They thought, ‘You have an offer from Michigan, so you should be going to Michigan since you have the offer.’ It was as if they didn’t need to recruit me or better their relationship with me. That was the first thing they did wrong.


June 29th, 2018 at 5:20 PM ^

uhh, "Michigan Arrogance" is a term mostly accurately used to describe the school ALL THE TIME.

the dictionary definition of uppity: self-important, arrogant.

So yeah, uppity and synonyms get used all the time to describe Michigan, Notre Dame, Ivy League schools....and the description has plenty of merit if we're being honest with ourselves.


June 29th, 2018 at 1:50 PM ^

It does happen, every year with dozens and hundreds of kids at a ~120 or so D1 schools across the country.  

This is remarkable in that you typically don't hear those kids go off on the schools they didn't choose.  Especially with some pretty accusatory language of lying, "false actions", and being robots.  Somehow nearly all of those hundreds of kids manage to not say these types of things. 

Says something about something, as Brian would say. 


June 29th, 2018 at 12:02 PM ^

If Devontae Dobbs doesn't think he cans see the field as a true freshman when OSU's current line is currently featuring a kid who has started every game since he was a true freshman, that's on him.