RR confirms potential move for Campbell to OG

Submitted by Bodogblog on October 19th, 2010 at 2:50 PM

Another forum post on this earlier, but RR confirms. 

Sigh.  This doesn't sound like a motivating tactic.  And we're pretty well stacked at OG.  Not good, don't see how he can move like he'd need to in our OL zone blocking scheme.  And we are not stacked at NG behind Martin.  Bye-Bye dreams of Roh-Martin-RVB-Campbell line of Death and Destruction in 2011. 


EDIT: Bonus speculation on who's moving from OG to OT, and switching safety positions. 


STW P. Brabbs

October 19th, 2010 at 2:56 PM ^

That's one way of putting it, I suppose. 

Our five-star DT recruit is showing less potential than our high three star freshmen DTs - one of whom is decisively undersized, while the other is overweight and has motivation issues.

This is a fucking punt on a player who was supposed to be our most talented DL recruit in years.  Maybe, with some luck and some good recruiting, we'll field a good defense by 2013.  Fuck.


October 19th, 2010 at 3:00 PM ^

I'm not saying this is encouraging news, just that Ash/Talbott must be showing more than Campbell is.  Otherwise we'd never think of moving him, given that Banks, Patterson and Sagesse are all seniors.

STW P. Brabbs

October 19th, 2010 at 3:28 PM ^

There's one highly ranked and un-committed DT recruit who was expressed interest in Michigan.  There are two VHT (can't help it sometimes) recruits who are currently committed to other programs.  If Rodriguez is moving Campbell because he might land a couple of these high schoolers who might be productive players in a couple of years, he needs to be fired immediately, after he gets hit in the nuts with a meat tenderizer. 

I don't think that's the case.  I'm guessing it's because Campbell kinda sucks at DT, which, itself, really kinda sucks. 


October 19th, 2010 at 3:41 PM ^

This would never happen for a million obvious reasons:



If Rodriguez is moving Campbell because he might land a couple of these high schoolers who might be productive players in a couple of years,


but the most obvious one is that nobody would move a player from a position of need in the middle of the season if they had any possible future at that position at all.  

And fwiw, there are three highly-rated uncommitted DTs who have expressed interest in Michigan.

STW P. Brabbs

October 19th, 2010 at 3:13 PM ^

Terry Talbott is pretty damn small for a DT - 6'3", 248.  Richard Ash's star dropped precipitously in recruiting because he was out of shape and disinterested at camps.  He's 6'3" 320, a dramatic weight gain from his high school days, which indicates that he had a lot of bad weight there.  Of the two, I'm more hopeful with regard to Ash, but the lack of motivation and conditioning whammy that apparently is Will Campbell is preventing me from being too optimistic. 

After a while, hoping against hope that high three-stars will overachieve at multiple spots on defense is just going to lead to more frustration.  If Campbell really is an utter bust at DT - to the tune of never getting the chance to see the field at the position - it is a huge blow to our future prospects on defense.   Someone please dissuade me that shit looks pretty goddamn grim on that side of the ball for the foreseeable future.

STW P. Brabbs

October 19th, 2010 at 4:10 PM ^

Was that Campbell, though a bit on the tubby side, had the massive frame and freak-dekey genetics to still be dominant.  Hell, he even slimmed down a bit when he first got here!

But you're right - I should have followed my own dictum, and realized that Will Campbell, fatty, would likely be a bit of a disappointment.

We fans are not always so rational. 


October 19th, 2010 at 3:31 PM ^

Again not being a smartass, but Talbott looks huge.  I didn't run out and tackle him, but I did see him, watch him, and smile during pregame warm-ups.  I didn't know there was a general consensus that he seemed small.  As a contrast, LaLota did seem small to me.  Talbott looks to be good sized.  Ash does seem heavier

On a positive note, Ken Wilkins is absolutely enormous.  Big and Muscle Big, not chub.  Eyball test only, he should be a terror at some point.  Feelin' any better?*

*touch of smart ass'm


October 19th, 2010 at 4:12 PM ^

How does "disinterested at camps" and "out of shape" equate to unmotivated at Michigan?  I think it's safe to say that most freshman come to their first summer workout out of shape.

If you find me anything that says that Ash hasn't been going to workouts or has been slacking at practice, then I will take this all back.  Otherwise, your freak-out over Ash is a little premature.

Also with respect to Talbott (the DT one) he could, you know, get bigger.  Omameh was a "small" 2-star that got bigger over 2 years and is now a good, starting OG.  If I remember correctly, Roundtree was 150ish lbs when he came in; Tate and Denard weren't exactly the biggest guys as true freshman.

I wouldn't give up on them yet or even Campbell for that matter.  Brandon Graham was in Carr's doghouse his sophomore year b/c of conditioning issues.

Some guys just need time to grow physically; some guys just need time to grow mentally and mature; some guys just don't pan out or never reach their potential.  In 2-3 years, we will see which category each of these guys falls under.

STW P. Brabbs

October 19th, 2010 at 4:19 PM ^

People can gain weight and strength in college, but you've got to remember that we're not the only team that has discovered this.  As Barwis Himself has admitted, genetics are the number one determinant for how explosive/athletic/fast/whatever each player is going to be.  Will's frame is simply on a different order of magnitude than Talbott's and we were led to believe that he had extraordinary athleticism to match.  Maybe Talbott will pan out, but it's less likely for someone with his size and recruiting profile than for dudes like Campbell.  No matter what, it's hard to imagine that Talbott will develop into a dominating NT, though he might turn out to be a good DT. 

And you know what - you're right about Graham.  There is perhaps no better example of a Fat Dude who decided to become a Destroyer of Souls after a couple of years.  So maybe there is hope for Will, but if the move to the OL actually goes down, I don't see it happening.  He's only got two more years of eligibility, after all. 

myantoniobass …

October 19th, 2010 at 9:57 PM ^

Anyone else think Big Will looked ok, yeah even good on a few goal line series this year?  I always specifically watched him when he came, and he never looked bad, nor worthy of moving to our deep OL.  I guess this must ultimately be an indictment on his fitness/technique for what the 3 3 5 requires at nose.  Remember the sweet play of MM against IU to run down that screen play?  I just don't think Big Will is in shape to play fast on D.


October 19th, 2010 at 3:07 PM ^

Why do people assume that if a recruiting service ranks you 5 stars that you automatically can play at this level?

He has had a couple of bright moments, but a majority of the time, he plays with terrible technique, and gets blown off the ball. How many years are you willing to waste trying to hammer down technique issues with him before you try to salvage the player somehow?

How do you even know that BWC didn't request the move?

STW P. Brabbs

October 19th, 2010 at 3:19 PM ^

I'm not necessarily questioning whether this is the right move or not - if I truly believed that Rodriguez was so incapable of reading a depth chart that he just wanted to move a potentially dominating DT to OG for shits and giggles, I'd be playing naked in traffic right now. 

I'm just saying that our depth at DT is not so good, and that Big Will was expected to be a dominant player in the middle of the line.  If this is never going to come to pass - and the move to OG makes this seem all but certain - it is a huge hit for the development of the defense that many fans had in mind.

STW P. Brabbs

October 19th, 2010 at 3:35 PM ^

I hope you don't think you're clarifying something.  Yes - the disappointment in this scenario is rooted in the chasm of disjuncture between expectation and reality in the case of young Mr. Campbell.  But when we, as fans, look to the future for hopeful signs that our defense may cease being rather bad, we do so on the basis of expectations.  If you don't think expectations for the future have any part in thinking about the football team, you should completely ignore recruiting (and maybe you do, I don't know.)  The expectation that Campbell would be a high-level performer on the DL - an expectation that was reasonable, given the overwhelming consensus among recruiting services that Campbell was a hellbeast - has now been thrown in the ol' shitcan, and thus so has a significant basis for any optimism relating to our defense. 


October 19th, 2010 at 3:21 PM ^

I guess Kevin "5-star" Grady wasn't a memorable example for everyone.

Most would agree that a class averaging 3.7 stars is more likely to yield good players than one averaging 3.1.  What I'll never understand, though, is why anyone gives a @#$% about someone's Rivals/Scout/ESPN ranking after practice starts at UMich.  Needless to say, this has been used against RichRod.  Why, for example, wasn't he able to coach Justin Schifano (a four-star from the '05 class) up to an All-America level?  (That's a bit of an inside joke.)

As far as I'm concerned, everything gets zeroed at that point (that is, after practice starts).  Were that not the case, Cobrani Mixon would be playing in the Big Ten (rather than the AAA-equivalent MAC).  (Aside: He might still be better than Obi.)  As well, Kevin Grady would have retired with 4000+ career yards.


October 19th, 2010 at 3:11 PM ^

I think you are overreacting and over-valuing the "star" system.  Rodriguez would not move the backup NT to offense just for the hell of it.  Give Rodriguez the benefit of the doubt that he's not just moving people around on a whim or "punting" on a arbitrarily high rated DL recruit.  This move is obviously warranted by something to a top-tier NCAA Head Coach, so who are we to judge otherwise?  To me, this shows that Campbell was not progressing as he should at that position, may have better value to the team on offense, and subsequently was passed up by some guys that could be peaking in college as opposed to peaking in high school.  The 5-star rating he received was because of his size and dominance in high school, which was warranted.  Sure, those ratings typically correlate to performance, but not in every instance.  Campbell is not the lynchpin of our defense.  His move to offense will not doom our defense for the next three years.  Come back to reality.

EDIT: Well, while I was writing this, I was beat to the punch by everyone.


October 19th, 2010 at 4:06 PM ^

The 5-star rating he received was because of his size and dominance in high school, which was warranted

That's probably the key here. Sometimes rankings are based on size and not ability. IIRC, Campbell had "matured early" and was simply blowing away smaller opponents in high school.

But it goes both ways. Jake Long would've been a 5-star, in retrospect. In reality, he was only a 2-star early in his recruitment.


October 19th, 2010 at 4:16 PM ^

Sometimes 3-star players are good.  Really good.  Like Mike Hart.  That worked out pretty well for us. 


I'll admit this is a frustrating turn of events though.  Not Mr. Turner frustrating, but definitely not fun.

STW P. Brabbs

October 19th, 2010 at 4:23 PM ^

The Mike Hart Fallacy of recruiting rankings finally emerged. 

Pat White Was a Diamond in the Rough to follow shortly.

(Recruiting rankings aren't always right - clearly, in the case of Campbell - but there is a high level of correlation between recruiting rankings and career success.  Brian usually tries to ferret out whether there is a good reason that rankings might be inaccurate - see: Guru Reliability - but no such reason exists for Talbott.  He might be good, he might not, but the most likely outcome based on recruiting rankings is that he'll eventually be decent.)


October 19th, 2010 at 6:11 PM ^

This is off topic but on the subject of predicting talent, wouldn't you assume that the one position where the high school to college transition makes the least amount of difference would be kicker?  I really don't get how Gibbons is such a flop. 

I mean, Will Campbell manhandled high schoolers and in college you need technique he never apparently learned.  But isn't the kicking game more or less the same?  Can't scouts generally tell if he always kicks low or can't produce under pressure?  Derp.

Yay Tony Boles

October 19th, 2010 at 6:56 PM ^

So much of the kicking game is mental, and that's a huge change from high school.  Kicking in front of 100 people v. 100,000 people.  Letting down 600 people, instead of letting down 600,000 people...

STW P. Brabbs

October 19th, 2010 at 9:11 PM ^

You're right - the level of competition is exactly the same, inasmuch as it doesn't really affect what the kicker is doing.  Actually, there might be some expectation that the snap and the hold will be better at the college level (though this hasn't been the case so far at Michigan.)

But because the kicker is so isolated, and because he has a binary outcome - success or failure - the change in pressure from HS to college may be unique.  My thought is that if we actually had someone teaching our kickers "technique," they might perform better under pressure - muscle memory and all that. 

Black Socks

October 19th, 2010 at 2:53 PM ^

You have to give Will baptism by fire.  Get him out there some plays.  He will be more effective than Patterson due to his sheer size.  Watch the OSU game last year, he tossed some OSU linemen around.


October 19th, 2010 at 4:07 PM ^

His baptism by fire usually results in disaster -- both on offense and defense.  Also, he's not that big that his shear size is going to get him anywhere.  Its not like he's 7' tall and 450lbs.  As far as football players go, he's normal-ish.  But normal-ish, out of shape, and poor with his technique which results in the aforementioned disasters.

People can't have it both ways.  You can't say, oh just throw this guy out there.  He's X amount of stars and super dope.  And then 2 weeks later get all pissed off because these guys we have out there are terrible and can't play defense/offense/special teams.


October 19th, 2010 at 2:57 PM ^

This simply does not compute. Wouldn't you rather have at least some bodies back there for depth if he is behind the others? I mean geez we have a great offense (even greater OL?). WTF. Lets strip the defense of another player because its in such good shape with surpluses at each position and all.


October 19th, 2010 at 3:11 PM ^

There can really be no other explanation than Campbell failing at the NT position.  I have to assume that anyone with any sense would keep him at NT if there was any chance he would pan out there.  Either he's just not going to make it at NT at the college level or, like someone else pointed out, he requested the switch.  There's no reason for him to get reps at that position and take them from someone else who is more likely to see the field.