OT: 2017 Top 50 WR Tyjon Lindsey Announces Transfer from Nebraska

Submitted by Caesar on October 3rd, 2018 at 4:04 AM


Some Thoughts

Michigan has been on the prowl for top-end WR talent, and he had a Michigan offer, so I thought I'd put this out there. Ohio State was thought to lead in his original recruitment before he pledged to Nebraska. He's on the shorter side (5'9), which might be a good fit for the future. If he was eligible for this year, I wouldn't post this up, with Gray and Jackson already in the fold. 

Nebraska has been cleaning house of late, and Lindsey is the sixth transfer out of the top eight recruits from Nebraska's 2017 class rumored to be leaving. The young man's output hasn't been great, but then again, who on Nebraska team is having a good year?  His redshirt is preserved, as per the new 4-game rule. It could be argued that he's a bit of a head case, but with the kind of season Nebraska is having, and with all the other departures, this might be a perfectly rational decision from a good kid. 



October 3rd, 2018 at 6:42 AM ^

I think it's perfectly understandable to transfer out of a place that is 0-4 under a new coach who didn't recruit you, putting aside issues of PT. 

Also, I think that by the time he gets on the field, there's a good chance DPJ, Collins, and/or Black have moved to the NFL, though not Martin. He could get significant snaps.


October 3rd, 2018 at 9:33 AM ^

We signed four WRs in 2017 and Ronnie Bell in 2018.  Good chance we lose DPJ and either Black, Collins, or both after 2020.  Collins' eligibility expires after 2020 anyway, and though Black would still have eligibility remaining I don't think we can realistically plan on having him in 2021.  That leaves just Bell and Martin for 2021.  Ideally M will sign some new WR talent in 2020 to avoid having to depend on freshmen in 2021.  But a guy like Lindsay would provide some insurance.  So, I'd agree M should pursue him if he has interest.


October 3rd, 2018 at 10:54 AM ^

I mean it’s pretty strange to be looking at the 2021...

But we’d have Bell and Martin who are already on the roster. 

The 2019 class already features Giles Jackson, George Johnson, and Quintel Kent. Not to mention still pursuing guys for one more WR spot. 

The 2020 class is just under way and we already have Kalil Branham in the fold.

That puts us at 6 scholarship WRs in 2021 with the 2019 and 2020 classes still looking to fill WR spots, not to mention any 2021 recruits. 

I think we should just calm down. You can look at ANY position three years from now and it’s going to look really thin right now. Mostly because most of those guys are just starting high school. 


October 3rd, 2018 at 11:41 AM ^

I mean, I'm not freaking out over it.  I think we'll get the guys we need.  But I'm not personally very optimistic about any of the 2019 receiver recruits save Jackson, and he appears headed for slot receiver or possible RB.  So that's why I think we need another 2017-like haul at WR in 2020.  Branham is a good start on that, but I think we'll need another WR or two--and probably a top-50, five-star type of prospect if we want him to start and produce as a sophomore.  Those guys don't grow on trees.  I think we'll get one but that's far from assured.


October 3rd, 2018 at 1:22 PM ^

 But again, you’re talking about a class that’s 2/3 done, one that just started, and one that hasn’t started at all before the 2021 season starts. Seems REALLY early to be questioning depth at any position. 

I mean I can sit here and say we need more depth and talent at every position between now and the 2021 season. 

I’m excited about Quintel Kent in this class, apparently you haven’t watched much of him. Ronnie Bell is another guy I’m very excited about. Jackson is a playmaker in the slot. That’s just the 2018/19 classes. 

I really think what the depth chart will look like three years from now should be the furthest thing from our minds.



October 3rd, 2018 at 3:03 PM ^

Well, look at the OT position.  The reason we are having a problem at OT now is because we had a dismissal in 2015 (LTT), missed on a blue chip recruit in 2016 (Devery Hamilton), had a career-ending injury in 2016 (Newsome), and then missed on another blue chip in 2017 (Isaiah Wilson).  Sure we signed some developmental guys in 2017 and some more good prospects in 2018, but for now we are dealing with the wages of past misfortune. 

Obviously, some of the things that happened at OT are not realistic to predict.  Career-ending injuries are pretty rare in football these days, Hamilton flipped a week before NSD, and the thing with LTT was just plain weird.  So if somebody had said back in 2015 that "OMG we're gonna be screwed at offensive tackle," they would really need to have been Nostradamus.  I totally get it and generally agree that it's silly to look too far ahead and worry about "what if we don't sign good recruits at X position" or "what if Y player gets hurt?"  In fact, I remember alum96 writing a whole series of diaries about how our secondary was going to be screwed in 2017, and my response was pretty similar to yours now because at the time there was still ample opportunity for M to sign and develop the players they needed--which is precisely what has happened.  

This WR situation is different than that because the future need is entirely predictable.  Our WR talent is concentrated in the 2017 class, and we need to get some more good WRs in the ensuing classes to avoid that position group falling off a cliff when the 2017 guys are gone.  This doesn't require a crystal ball to figure out; we're not talking about attrition losses, but fundamental eligibility expirations and possible NFL draft departures.  You have heard that the coaches are actively looking for WRs, right?  It's not a mystery.  It's a situation that needs to be dealt with.

Okay, so when do we need this next cohort of WR talent?  Well, if we don't get it until 2021 then that means we'll need true freshmen playing.  And per mgoblog doctrine, freshman WRs suck.  So we need it before 2021.  That leaves three classes: 2018, 2019, and 2020.  And how many do we need?  The last couple WR cohorts to come through Michigan have shown that you probably need at least three, maybe more than that.  Darboh missed a whole season to injury, Black missed most of last season and has already missed almost half of another.  The 2017 class had four WRs, so let's just use that as our standard.  

We already had the 2018 class and we got one WR, Ronnie Bell.  He's already playing and contributing, so I think it's safe to provisionally call him a hit at this point.  So that's one.

The guys we have coming in for 2019 are not top-end prospects.  Evidently you think they are better than their rankings, and hopefully that turns out to be the case.  But if they're just guys, then that means 2020 will be our last chance to sign another crop of top-quality WRs in time to avoid the concerns identified above (talent drop off or reliance on true frosh).  Right now that 2020 class has Branham in it, and as I said above, that's a good start. If a couple of the 2019 guys pan out, then I guess that's all we need.  If none of the 2019 guys pan out, then we'll need two more high-end prospects in 2020 for the 2018-20 classes to match the 2017 class at WR.

Again, as I said above, I am not worried that things won't work out. There are lots of possible ways M could maintain a quality WR cops. through 2021 and beyond.  We could get a hit on one or more of the 2019 WRs.  We could sign a five-star WR in 2020.  Maybe Tarik Black decides to stay for his fifth year.  Maybe we pick up a graduate transfer.  Or maybe we pick up a quality undergraduate transfer with eligibility through 2021. 

In the end, this is probably all a moot point.  Maybe Lindsey's not that great.  Maybe he has a bad attitude and wouldn't be a good egg in the locker room.  Maybe he doesn't have the academic chops for Michigan.  Maybe his game just isn't a good fit for Harbaugh's offense.  Or maybe he just wouldn't be interested in playing for M for whatever reason.  But if he is a good player, and he does have the right attitude, and he would fit with Harbaugh's offense, and he can hack the books at Michigan, and he is interested in playing here, then it seems to me he's worth kicking the tires on.  That's because he has eligibility through 2021 and can thus help us resolve a situation that needs to be addressed: transitioning from the stellar 2017 class to a consistently-stocked WR corps in the future.  But he probably won't come here, and that's probably fine, because there are plenty of other ways that situation might be satisfactorily resolved and if Tijon Lindsey doesn't wind up being the answer then something else probably will.


October 3rd, 2018 at 5:33 AM ^

Watching Scott Frost’s press conference the other day, I don’t hate him anymore.  I think he is really kind of putting his “legend” status on the line in Nebraska to get that program to take football seriously again.  It is STILL probably going to get worse from here at Nebraska before it gets better, but that guy left a really cushy spot for a tire fire and you can tell he is trying his ass off.  But I understand why this kid wanted out.  It is going to be some time before Nebraska starts winning anything.


October 3rd, 2018 at 5:57 AM ^

Plus he has to deal with the Nebraska fanbase.  They are extremely polite, but completely unreasonable.  They fire Solich who is winning so they can hire Callahan.  Then they fire Pelini who is winning so they can hire Riley.  Watch, as soon as Frost starts winning, he will get fired so they can hire John L Smith.


October 3rd, 2018 at 6:48 AM ^

You could sort of tell from his words that the amount of buy-in he got in the off-season was far less than he was expecting, and as a result, it seemed like he was trying to do a lot of things in that presser - needle people, challenge them, light some fires and try to impress upon everyone what he would like to do given time. I will agree with others though - this year isn't rock bottom for them. I would be shocked if this were the only transfer announced this fall. 


October 3rd, 2018 at 8:45 AM ^

This seems like a Charlie Strong at Texas vibe where new coach with an aggressive, probably abrasive, hard line style walks into a situation where everyone was used to being super laid back. You can get some guys who are sick of losing to buy in, but the majority probably resented him replacing Riley. Add in a few losses and it's not hard to see him losing the team and having to really clean house and start over with his guys.


October 3rd, 2018 at 6:05 AM ^

I’m not sure why he’d want to come to Michigan at this point. His memories of Ann Arbor can’t be too fond after the game two weeks ago.  


October 3rd, 2018 at 6:18 AM ^

This kid gave the vibe that he was taking a very lazy, unfocused approach when we played them. His body language and his results came across as a guy who is entitled.




October 3rd, 2018 at 9:43 AM ^

Sure. Because environment, coaching, and situation never impact someone's attitude. 

Nobody on the Nebraska team looks particularly motivated. And I HIGHLY doubt that you were watching that game, singled out a WR who barely got on the game notes, and thought to yourself, "wow that guy is playing like he's entitled."

I call BS. I call BS on this so hard.


October 3rd, 2018 at 6:58 AM ^

Does the confrence still have the no scholarships for intra-confrence transfers rule? If so I wouldn't get my hopes up... not that I'd get them up anyway.

BTB grad

October 3rd, 2018 at 7:52 AM ^

There's no rule like that, otherwise we couldn't have gotten Jake Rudock. Schools often put restrictions on a player looking to transfer to disallow them from transferring to any school that's on their schedule during the remaining eligibility of that player, which is fair.


October 3rd, 2018 at 8:15 AM ^

Schools are no longer able to block transfers. Players simply inform their school of their intent to transfer and the school has to submit their name to a national database within two business days.

NCAA.com article

One other thing I discovered is that schools now can decide whether or not to continue honoring a player's scholarship at the end of the term where they have declared their intent to transfer. So let's say Lindsey doesn't find a new school by the end of fall semester, Nebraska could terminate his aid and require him to either pay out of his own pocket or leave school.

SBNation article


October 3rd, 2018 at 7:25 AM ^

If a smallish slot guy can't thrive in the spread, how is he going to even compete for playing time in a pro-style offense in a top 20 program?  There are plenty of MAC, MVC, etc teams that could give him playing time.

Craptain Crunch

October 3rd, 2018 at 7:25 AM ^

And how many of these kids transfer to the likes of Michigan?

The odds of you having a threesome with two porn stars and having Tiger Woods there clapping for you is better than this kid coming to Michigan.