January 22nd, 2013 at 3:12 PM ^

A couple top guys got hurt (Fox, McCray) and didn't have a chance to show their stuff.  Morris performed poorly at the UA game.  Most of the other moves are fairly minimal (2-6 spots).

I also don't think a lot of our guys had outstanding seasons.  I mean, the guy who put up the most impressive stats was probably Deveon Smith, but he plays against questionable competition and he was outside the top 250 anyway.  Our quarterback had mediocre statistics, none of our corners grabbed a ton of picks, none of our receivers went wild with 80 catches and 1,500 yards, etc.  Poggi's good but not a TFL machine.  They're just a bunch of good football players who aren't really superstars.

gustave ferbert

January 22nd, 2013 at 3:17 PM ^

they committed early.  They knew what they were doing for the most part.  Could it be possible that since they had something to risk, they wouldn't have put it out there as much?  I don't mean lack of effort, but the proverbial out of bounds instead of taking a hit from four guys to get an extra yard?


January 22nd, 2013 at 4:05 PM ^

Just for kicks and because I needed to kill 10 minutes, I went through and calculated the average drop in ranking for our commits from their day of commitment to now.

Caveats: I didn't count anyone who was never in the top 250. For those who committed while in the top 250 and dropped out entirely (namely Tuley-Tillman, Gedeon, and Shallman), I used a final ranking of 251 for them. For those who committed before the first rankings were released (Morris and Thomas) I used their initial ranking.

The average change is -44.

Largest drop is LTT (-142). Second largest is Fox (-96).

Largest gain is Lewis (+36). Only other gain is Dawson (+34) (I used Dawson's first commitment, not the recent one).

Anyway, not claiming that this information is useful or significant in any way, like I said I just had a few minutes to kill.

Bo Knows

January 22nd, 2013 at 3:13 PM ^

You didn't mention Jake Butt in your move up/down.  You highlighted him in your offerees section though so I guess it suffices.  Sorry for pointing it out, it just really stuck out to me....

Anyway, not much change really.  Everyone already in the 101 - 150 range stayed there, as well as Dawson in the 151 - 200 range, and Douglas and Charlton being at the bottom.  LTT dropping wasn't overly surprising, he was so low on the list, that with the inclusions it was almost expected.  I secretly hoped Hurst would have sneaked his way in there by how well he played in the semper fi bowl, but I now doubt he'll even get a 4th star.  Overall, great class.


January 22nd, 2013 at 3:28 PM ^

Interesting that Cameron Hunt made the list at 213. I don't think he was in the top 250 previously, so unless I'm wrong that's a pretty significant jump.


January 22nd, 2013 at 4:30 PM ^

Our class is a good one, but it is not spectacular.  We have a bunch of solid football players but no elite athletes in the class.  Easy to move kids down that don't have a wow factor.


January 22nd, 2013 at 4:57 PM ^

Exactly. Great teams are built on large quantities of good to great players, not necessarily a handful of elite ones. A top 250 ranking basically means "predicted NFL draft pick." Having a dozen of those in one class is very very good, even if none of them are first rounders.


January 22nd, 2013 at 6:28 PM ^

Of course.  If spectacular means the best in the country by a long shot, then of course ours is not that.  I don't think most definitions of the word would apply to this class, but it's without debate a very good and deep recruiting class.  

If you can string together 3 or more top-10 classes, you're probably looking at a top-5 team.


January 22nd, 2013 at 6:00 PM ^

In my opinion, we have a very good solid class, but it is not great.  Lack of explosive players at Defensive End, Cornerback, Wide Reciever, and Running Back(unless Green commits).  Games are won up front on the offensive and defensive lines, but to be a truly great team you need some playmakers.


January 22nd, 2013 at 7:12 PM ^

I get what you're saying, but not all "plays" are flashy like that.  Look at Stanford - it seems like we are building a team similar to what they do, and they don't have many "playmakers" either, but they win a lot of football games.  

I like sacks and picks and punt returns as much as the next guy, but I also like guys who can shed blocks, fill gaps, diagnose plays and fall forward for a first down.  Are Jake Ryan and Jordan Kovacs playmakers?  

That said, Taco Charlton looks like a guy who can rack up some sacks, and Stribling has a knack for the ball that not many CB recruits have had for us lately.  And if Jourdan Lewis moves to WR like I'd like him to, I think he can certainly be a playmaker there.  He reminds me of Manningham at that spot - not big or super fast, but smooth with great instincts and hands.  


January 22nd, 2013 at 7:23 PM ^

OK - but why do we think guys like Dymonte Thomas or Stribling or Mike McCray or Taco Charlton can't do that?  As far as DTs go, Hurst and Poggi sure look like guys who can get to the QB very well.  It just seems that no matter how good our class is, people still think it's not quite good enough.


January 22nd, 2013 at 7:32 PM ^

I'm not sure they can't.  But Thomas is a strong safety, so he might not have that many chances in pass coverage.  Stribling isn't known for his speed.  I'm not that high on McCray.  Hurst and Poggi don't look like big-time superstars.  Maybe Charlton can be that guy who gets a lot of sacks, maybe Lewis can get the picks and big returns, but the recruiting sites generally aren't in love with these guys we're mentioning.  It's not just a few of us who think these guys lack playmaking ability.


January 22nd, 2013 at 7:46 PM ^

And all of Stanford's defensive players were 5 stars?  The sites might not be "in love" with them, but they seem to all be in the top-150ish players in the country, so they must think they have some playmaking ability.  It just seems that if a guy isn't a univeral 5-star, you think he's destined for mediocrity.  And I'm not saying all of these guys will be superstars, bu the odds are in my favor that some of them will.


January 22nd, 2013 at 8:49 PM ^

Are we talking about being Stanford?  Or are we talking about being Alabama?  The phrase I heard above was a "truly great" team, and I'm not sure that Stanford falls in that category.  If we're talking about a national championship-quality team like Alabama, then these guys don't seem to be up to par.  If we're talking about being Stanford, then yeah, maybe these guys can develop.

I'm not disappointed at all with the class.  I've said many times that the offensive and defensive lines are going to help us be a good team, regardless of the playmakers.  But to take that next step, from "good" to "great," we need guys like Amari Cooper and T.J. Yeldon and Dee Milliner.


January 22nd, 2013 at 9:03 PM ^

I think we need to talk Stanford before we can talk Alabama.  Stanford finished ranked #7 after a Rose Bowl win, a year after Luck left, so I think that's a spot Michigan fans would be pretty psyched with.  Alabama is a dynasty right now, and most years there's not a team like that.  It's possible Stanford was a play away from being the team to play Bama this year, though.

In your mind, is the national champion the only "great" team?  Because there's no team outside of Alabama this year that we wouldn't compete with having talent like our 2013 class brings.  


January 22nd, 2013 at 10:24 PM ^

Personally, I think the word "great" is overused.  So yes, I would say Alabama was the only great team.  After all, the next tier is teams like Ohio State, Notre Dame, Georgia, Texas A&M, etc.  Very good teams?  Sure.  But when I think "great," I don't think a Notre Dame team that barely beat Pitt and barely beat a Michigan team that threw 5 picks, most of them stupid.

I agree that Michigan fans would and should be happy with a season like Stanford's before taking the next step, but that wasn't really my point.  I'm looking at true greatness, not the kind where "You're a great team if you finish in the top 10."


January 22nd, 2013 at 10:19 PM ^

I have to agree with Wolvin. I would love Michigan to get back to the top of the food chain with the SEC schools, but they just aren't there. We have to be a Top 10 team before we are near an Alabama. Hell even a Georgia. Michigan might be able to beat half the SEC this year. They really need to find a way to lure more dynamic players to Michigan. I hate to bring up bad memories but Clowney changed the game with one hit.


January 22nd, 2013 at 7:05 PM ^

Not to be cliche, but the lines are the foundation for any great team, and as we know, linemen take longer to develop at the collegiate level (especially o-linemen).

We have brought in the meat the last two recruiting cycles and will hopefully be adding some elite skill position players around that.  RBs and WRs can come in and play in year 1 or 2 and be serviceable to great. 

If we are indeed trying to replicate the Alabama manball model, we seem to be on the right track.  Morris should develop well under Borges and with solid protection could develop into the pocket QB role. 

Based on the last two recruiting cycles we can expect to look like Stanford next year.  If we pull in the elite WR, Corners, and RBs in the next class and going forward we will start to lookmore like Bama, LSU, Florida.


January 22nd, 2013 at 8:17 PM ^

I really like what we are building, but it is ok for me and others to think that there are some glaring holes that still need to be filled.  I believe Michigan will be a top 10 team again sooner than later, but damn we need some skill players. 


January 22nd, 2013 at 11:06 PM ^

We lack the top 50 prospects at WR, CB, DE and FS. Beyond just rankings, we don't have the prospects that you EXPECT to make game-changing plays in key games.

We might have a few surprise playmakers in the class; we definitely have a lot of quality and depth in the class.

The upside is the staff is able to focus more on playmakers for 2014 with the foundation in place.


January 22nd, 2013 at 11:25 PM ^

Couldn't agree more, but it's a hunch that gallon, Dileo, Funchess, and Gardner will provide a very solid stop-gap for next year. Our linebackers are gonna be insane next year. Our d line should be deep, and our o line should be a strength instead if a weakness. Countess will be back and Taylor got experience a year ahead if schedule. Combine all that with the big ten bit being great and our toughest games at home, and u think we are do for a big year. I also think Borges will finally get to run his offense. Now, some have no faith in him, and he might prove them right, but I think we will see great things and be a good draw to some elite skill position talent. Green would make me feel better though


January 23rd, 2013 at 12:35 AM ^

I get what you're saying, but every team has some pretty big holes.  Alabama had one good WR (really none the year before) and this year their secondary was pedestrian outside of Miiliner, and they were one of the best teams in a decade.  Look at any other team in the top-10 and you'll find a couple position groups that aren't all that great.  

I agree our WRs and CBs aren't going to turn heads for a while unless someone overachieves (though I think Jourdan Lewis will be very good at whichever of those he ends up) but our safeties should be good with Jarrod Wilson and Dymonte Thomas and even if we don't get Derrick Green our RB group should be good with the holes they'll have to work with.

No team has future NFLers at every spot, and we'll be no different.  But we'll have big talent at a lot of positions and enough depth at the others that whoever emerges will be a very good player.  


January 23rd, 2013 at 9:13 AM ^

D.smith d3 player of the year
M McCray d2 defensive player of the year.

Not sure I agree with the we see these guys at combines crowd. Lewis was drooled over by Saban, not sure why people are so low on him. Taco went nuts this year, his ceiling has yet to be touched. At weak side we have Clark, Mario, and taco. If we land Marshall, that may be the most talented and deepest we've been at weak side in a very long time. Did anyone actually watch poggi? Kid was everywhere in the all star game. Hurst was said to have had a very good all star experience.

I think some are really selling these kids short at this point. You can't nail a super star at every position. Not realistic. You build from the inside out, as we a re doing, and sprinkle in good skill guys.


January 23rd, 2013 at 11:37 AM ^

Poland Seminary d3 playoffs in probably the best regiona in all of d4 with 17 teams with 6-4 records or better, including teams like Cardinal Mooney who didn't get in.

Warren Harding d1 playoffs, enough said.

Struthers finished 6-4 #9 in same region as Poland

Niles McKinley #2 in region d3

Hubbard #7 in same region as McKinley

Lakeside d2 school

Canfield d2 school

Boardmon d1

I'm not sure I follow.

Michael Ferns I would say didn't play many athletes, but saying someone from d3 in Ohio who plays several good d1-d2-and d3 schools doesn't play good athletes, is like saying no one in Michigan plays anyone.



January 23rd, 2013 at 12:44 PM ^

lol, ok, if you're not playing d1 football, might as well just not play because the quality sucks unless you are playing at St. Iggy, Mentor, St. Eds, Pickerington, Upper A, Colerain, St. X, Moller.


This is a silly assumption, because all of those teams aren't loaded with d1 talent the level of competition is not good. D3 Ohio Football is as good as 90% of the football played in America.

Bring the state champs in Michigan over to Ohio, we will see how those loaded with talent Cass teams play against the best D3 squads. Ask Catholic Central what they thought of big boy football when they played Moller. Ask De La Salle how their game with St. Iggy went.


January 23rd, 2013 at 12:51 PM ^

And what do St. Ignatius and Moeller have to do with Warren Howland?  Nothing.  They're in the same division of football, just like Michigan is in the same division as Eastern Michigan.  Does that mean Eastern Michigan and the MAC are good competition?


January 23rd, 2013 at 2:10 PM ^

What is your point? D3 football in Ohio is as good as 90% of football being played across America.


No way Cam Burrows is as good as another D1 Db because he plays D2.

No way McCray is as good as Gedeon because one is D1 the other D2.


We are screwed, of all of our Ohio commits, only one comes from D1.