Win Column and Recruiting

Submitted by StephenRKass on October 6th, 2010 at 6:27 PM

So the early meme on recruiting was that we just needed to win, and the recruits would come. IIRC, Brian and Tom VH suggested that this class was too late, but we would really see the payoff in 2012.

It now looks like a real possibility to end up with 9 - 10 wins this year. It also looks like we are only losing Schilling, Webb and Dorrenstein from the offense, meaning as good as the offense is this year, it will only be better next year.

It also looks like there is immediate playing time available for a killer safety, corner, and linebacker.

Does this change the recruiting equation? Sam has suggested a surprise 5 star recruit coming in for a visit. I'm wondering if Denard and the publicity and the possibility of immediate PT for a five star DB or LB is causing some to reconsider. After all, to be able to possibly play as a freshman on a MNC team . . . .does it get any better than that?

Questions, then:

  1. is our performance this year going to change the equation, or is 2012 still the year?
  2. Are there any unexpected 5 star DB & LB candidates who are now seriously interested in Michigan?
  3. What does this do with our current commits? In particular, do we have to keep all of them, or do we subtly encourage some of the commits to reopen their recruiting (or get buried on the depth chart, with little chance of playing time.) I think you need to do at least two things:  if better recruits are signing up, let current commits know that their commitment will be honored, but they are less and less likely to ever see the field.
  4. How many recruits do we sign? (Mods, when are you going to update the board?) In particular, do we oversign by one, assuming that out of 20 recruits, there will be at least one "Demar" disaster.
  5. What happens with Moore and Witty? And are there any others out there who were offered in a previous year (Conelius?) who we reoffer?
  6. Does our secondary disaster affect the mix of recruits taken?
  7. It seems like classes at top 10 schools are filling up earlier and earlier. Do they let recruits know the clock is ticking? In other words, we are willing to sign either corner A or corner B. Do we tell both, "there is room for only one corner between the two of you. Whoever signs first gets the spot. Once one signs, the offer is pulled from the other?

I really think that we are potentially going to get to 10 wins, and think that this is going to create some interesting recruiting problems.



October 6th, 2010 at 7:22 PM ^

  • You recruit for the next 4-5 years as much as for immediate need.
  • The more we win, the more recruits get interested.  Its a dimmer, not an on/off switch.
  • There isn't immediate playing time for a corner.  Next years starting corners will be a 5th year senior and a 4th year junior, both with starting experience.  The backups will be highly to mildly regarded recruits returning as sophomores with quality experience.
  • The safties/linebackers will also have plenty of returning starters and some high profile recruits backing them up.  MLB (Demens) is the only job that looks like it could get snatched up by a true freshman more so than other positions.
  • 10 wins is still less likely than 7 (regardless of what projections that say we have a 90% chance of beating Wisconsin may indicate)
  • Just be patient.  No one knows how many games we'll win let alone the potential recruiting ramifications of that outcome.


October 6th, 2010 at 7:24 PM ^

Winning can only help our recruiting efforts this year.  And yes, we need to try to grab more quality defensive players if possible.  We don't have as much of a need for another slot receiver to get buried on the depth chart for the next three years.  I'm sure 7-0 would start to build some real momentum in the recruiting world.

We're not exactly Alabama yet where we should be playing commitment games - sign now or else, I reserve the right to screw you over later if I feel like, oversign and backtrack later, etc.  Of course I hope that we can evolve into an elite recruiting force, but it's far too early to speculate to that end.  

We still have unused scholarships from after last recruiting class + a fair amount of attrition.  I would be okay taking a couple chances on higher two stars and three stars if the staff thinks the kid brings something to the table.  It's very hard to predict high school talent, especially if that kid is stuck on a crappy team.  

Shoot for 20, and see where we end up.  If you aren't getting the commits you want, you figure with our schedule and returning team that next year's record might push you over the edge with the kids you want.


October 6th, 2010 at 9:29 PM ^

We're not Alabama is an interesting take...

Before the current Saban iteration of Alabama it was Dubose/Franchione/Shula followed closely by hookers, scandals and NCAA investigations (certainly the injury..ahem...issues will follow Saban down that road eventually, but I digress). That was as recent as 2006.

Basically, Saban has re-shaped that program through strong recruiting and highly questionable redshirting in a very short period. There is no reason to think that in a very short period recruiting cannot move to exceptional levels given the strength of the school and the exceptional tradition. Winning will only accentuate this...

I don't necessarily agree that it is to early to speculate on what could happen when the greatest program in NCAA history wins using what may prove to be an offensive scheme of historical proportion. Already Denard is setting records and there will be more where that came from including credit to those responsible for that success (Rodriguez, Magee, the O-Line etc.). This can only help recruiting and the ongoing national exposure of the offense is a great tool for recruiting with each game a great commercial...come here - achieve this...

As for the defense, common sense would indicate that if you're good you can play here...and soon.

We are not Alabama but our turnaround in recruiting could be as quick. Given our own NCAA issues it will certainly be more ethical.


October 6th, 2010 at 8:31 PM ^

I thought we were talking this year's recruiting...not 2013. We'd need a hell of a lot of 5* prospects for this defense to be national championship calibre by next year. And they'd all have to pan out.


October 6th, 2010 at 9:59 PM ^

Well, I don't know what's going to happen at linebacker, but I think it's entirely plausible that we'll have a good secondary next year just with the current guys maturing.  Think about it.  Floyd and Kovacs are sophomores.  C. Gordon, T. Gordon, Johnson, Avery, Talbott, M. Robinson and Christian are freshmen.  These guys are getting their feet wet now and it's pretty rough, but a year from now they'll give us vastly more depth/experience than now.  And we swap Rogers for Woolfolk. 

If we can get something resembling competent LB play, we just might make a big jump defensively next year.


October 6th, 2010 at 8:41 PM ^

The following 13 players will leave the team at the end of the season:

M. Webb

P. Dorrestein

S. Schilling 

J. Ferrara

A. Patterson

R. Sagesse

G. Banks

O. Ezeh

J. Mouton

M. Moundros

 J. Rogers


T. Woolfolk will likely receive a medical redshirt and return

S. Watson & M. Williams will likely not be invited back for 5th years (Williams may receive a medical scholarship)

There will be 62 remaining scholarship players plus 4 walk-on players who have probably earned scholarships (Moundros, Leach, Kovacs, and K. Grady.)  That means of 85 total scholarships allowed 66 will be used leaving 19 available.  In order to increase that number either current players would have to leave, one or more of the four scholarship walk-ons would have to lose their scholarships, or one or more of the following fifth year seniors would have to not be invited back (J. Hemingway, M. Huyge, D. Molk, R. VanBergen, B. Herron.)

We currently have ten verbal commits; leaving nine spots for players to fill.  We are in the hunt for at least 20 top remaining players.  I suspect Coach Rodriguez would be willing to fill the nine and be open to any elite players that want to come at the last minute.  If we exceed the 19 scholarships, he would be forced to have a hard talk with either one of the walk-ons or one of the fifth years.