Isaiah Bell Goes Blue

Ohio Safety Isaiah Bell has pledged to become a Michigan Wolverine. He is so new on the radar that he hadn’t been added to the recruiting board yet, though he was slated to be added in the next update. He is a high school teammate of LB Julius Ferrell and RB Fitzgerald Toussaint.

Bell is a 6-2, 200lb safety who had been on the rise before his commitment to Michigan. As is the case with most Michigan commitments, this means his ranking will not rise that much more, and he will likely peak at 3 stars.

More coming on Bell later tonight or tomorrow.

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Frozen Four Set

With all the regional games completed, the 2008 Frozen Four is now set. Both Sunday games turned out the way Michigan fans didn’t want them to, but for now, that’s too far in the future to worry about.

Thursday, April 10 6:00 PM Michigan v. Notre Dame. (ESPN2)
Thursday, April 10 9:00 PM Boston College v. North Dakota (ESPN2)

Michigan v. Notre Dame
CCHA foes meet up in the first national semifinal game. Michigan went 2-0 against the Irish this year, with a 3-2 come-from-behind win at Yost, and a 5-1 pasting the next night at The Palace. Michigan finished 1st in the conference to Notre Dame’s 4th place finish. Top performers for Michigan against Notre Dame this year were Kevin Porter (2 goals), Travis Turnbull (1 goal, 2 assists), and goalie Billy Sauer (1.5 GAA). Michigan shouldn’t expect to replicate either performance, and will likely split the difference between the two. 4-2 Michigan.

BC v. North Dakota
The Sioux are always a team that gives the Wolverines trouble, so Michigan fans should be pulling for Boston College. In one game against the Eagles this year, Michigan notched a 4-3 overtime win in St. Paul, behind a 5-point night from the Caporusso-Hagelin-Turnbull line. In this matchup, both teams had 2-goal deficits in their regional finals, before coming up victors in overtime. North Dakota was given trouble by sub-.500 Wisconsin, but they are a team with championship experience. They will likely come up as winners, facing Michigan in the national title game. 3-1 North Dakota.

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Recruiting Update 3-31-08

With two commitments and a few prospects down, it was a big weekend of change for the recruiting board.

KS LB Jaydan Bird. Committed to Oklahoma. Not a huge loss, as I don’t think there was ever great mutual interest. He seemed like one of those guys who mention Michigan early in the process to make them sound like big-time prospects.
TX OL Mason Walters. Committed to Texas. Not sure anyone but the Horns ever had a really legit shot at him.

New Information:
MI RB Teric Jones. Freep article on his commitment.
VA QB Kevin Newsome. Track video interview.

Etc.: Wisconsin looking to add some spread? Trotwood-Madison track (Michael Shaw and Chris Freeman). AP Indiana all-state basketball selections (Stuart Douglass special mention, Zach Novak 1st team). Mike Hart will be signing autographs at Briarwood MDen on Saturday. Free Press photo gallery from Saturday’s spring practice.

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Wolverines Frozen Four Bound

Behind the spectacular play of netminder Billy Sauer, and another solid performance from soon-to-be Hobey Baker winner Kevin Porter (vote here), Michigan defeated Clarkson Saturday night to advance to the Frozen Four. Aaron Palushaj and Porter gave Michigan two goals, which would up being more than enough to get them the victory. Even a 6-on-3 advantage for the Golden Knights late in the third could not help them decode Sauer, who made 27 saves on the night.

The east regional team consists of four Wolverines, with Sauer and Porter (obvious choices) representing the Wolverines along with teammates Chad Kolarik and Mark Mitera. The Wolverines will advance from the regional to play in the Frozen Four in Denver on April 10th.

Also advancing to the Frozen Four are the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame. They defeated Michigan State by a 3-1 count in the West Regional. Michigan will face them in the semifinal game. This works out best for Michigan, as State was one of the few teams that managed to give them trouble over the course of the year (Michigan went 1-2-1 against the Spartans on the season).

On the other side of the Frozen Four, tonight’s games will determine whether North Dakota or Wisconsin and Miami or Boston College will advance to Denver. Michigan fans will probably be pulling for Wisconsin on the one side (a much worse team than North Dakota, and the Sioux have been a Michigan-killer over the past couple years), and Miami on the other (Michigan had a lot of success against Miami this year, with the only non-win being a Shegos-reffed tie). Michigan also beat Boston College in October, but did not have a chance to develop consistency in beating them.

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Recruiting Update 3-29-08

Now updated to account for Teric Jones commitment.

I don’t really intend to update the recruiting board every day, but when something big happens (such as a commitment), it’s kind of necessary. Tom Beaver speaks on Grand Haven radio.

OH DB Justin Turner moved to committed. Free Press article.
MI RB Teric Jones moved to committed.

New Information:
MI WR James Jackson wants to do football and track in college. Have him talk to Morgan Trent.
FL WR Andre Debose Track fluff.
OK RB David Oku plans to decide on his birthday (October 10th), if possible.
IL DE Craig Drummond won’t take visits until after his ACT is done with. Top 5 of M, IL, USC, Kstate, and Tennessee.
NC S Devonte Holloman will decide after official visits, and maybe early.

Etc.: Steve Spurrier apparently thinks the new clock rules will help teams that run a no-huddle offense (hey, that’s us!). My boy John Bacon slams him some Carty.

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Teric Jones goes Blue

Detroit Cass Tech RB Teric Jones (rhymes with Eric) has pledged to become a Michigan Wolverine. He joins his high school teammate, DT William Campbell in the 2009 Michigan recruiting class.

Recruiting Story
Jones finished his junior year with Michigan and Michigan State as the two favorites. After a very good performance at the Army All-American combine, he vaulted into the consciousness of several more prominent schools. When more-highly ranked instaters Larry Caper and Edwin Baker committed to MSU, Michigan became Jones’s favorite.

Jones visited Michigan for a spring practice this morning and received his Michigan offer. He committed to Michigan shortly thereafter.

Player Notes
Jones ran a 4.47 40-yard dash at the 2008 Army junior combine, but has been timed as fast as 4.39. He was considered a top-10 prospect at the combine. Compared to his fellow instate backs Larry Caper and Edwin Baker (both committed to Michigan State), Jones lacks the polish of a multi-year varsity starter, but has the measurables to be the best player of the three.

Jones is a 5-10, 190lb runningback who will probably play a versatile role out in the slot as well. Jones’s exposure to this point has been low, as he played behind Indiana freshman-to-be Cortez Smith as a junior. By the time the final rankings come out, I wouldn’t be surprised if he ended up a lowish four-star.


Youtube-age of the Cass Tech team hitting.
A not-particularly-impressive run during Jones’s sophomore year.

Thanks to reader a2matt for making sure that I am on top of my game.

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Justin Turner Goes Blue

Ahhh, it’s been a while since I’ve had such a headline, and it feels good. Sorry for the delay on the news (I was watching the hockey game at The Arena per Brian’s suggestion), but better late than never, right?

OH DB Justin Turner has pledged to Rich Rodriguez. Turner, a 4-star from Massilon, OH (Washington) is the second member of the 2009 class. Michigan was his early leader, but lost ground during the coaching change. However, after a visit to Ann Arbor with his dad, Turner was comfortable pledging to the Wolverines.

Turner projects as either a safety or corner, measuring at 6-2, 200, and running the 40 in 4.4 seconds. For some video on Turner, we consult our friends at Scouting Ohio:

By the way, thanks to reader Obes. Without him, I probably wouldn’t have gotten to this until tomorrow.

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Tonight, Michigan kicks off its 2008 NCAA tournament quest, taking on the #16-overall seed in Niagara. For a full preview of the tournament, check out the Blog that Yost Built.

Don’t forget to vote for Kevin Porter in the Hobey Baker balloting, though he is in a pretty deep hole.

Finally, to get hyped up for the game tonight (and tomorrow if Michigan wins), accept my offering of the highlights from every game that was on WOLV this year:
Western Ontario
Bowling Green
Western Michigan
Northern Michigan

Oooooooooooooooooooooh, see ya.

Posted under Hockey, Video

Recruiting Update 3-28-08

The Recruiting Board. Lots of stuff this week. As always, if you have any tips, e-mail me or drop them in the comments. I don’t want to beat a dead horse, but Russell Shepard may want to reconsider his commitment. Ryan Perrilloux has returned from suspension, and the Tigers also received a commitment from another QB.

New Information:
MN WR Bryce McNeal plans to decide at the Army All-American game. Lots of information from the Gopher Hole, including a secret top five (which Minnesota and Michigan are both non-secret members of, leading one to believe they are his top 2). Video interview with MichiganVarsity.
PA CB Corey Brown. Video interview with Sam Webb.
PA LB Dorian Bell. Webb interviewed him as well. Random blog post says he’ll verbal to OSU within a month. Credibility? None.
NC OL Xavier Nixon. Fluff from his high school coach.
GA QB Donavan Tate. Baseball fluff.
IN QB Jordan Luallen. Visiting Georgia Tech this weekend (look near the bottom).
IL DE Craig Drummond. He plans to decide before the season, but will not take visits until his academics are sorted out.
TN WR Marlon Brown names a top 15.
AZ DE Corey Adams is committed to the ESPNU All-star game.

GA WR Braxton Lane. He has been offered by Michigan. He is a blazer (4.31) who seems perfect for the slot. He also likes teh baseballz.
OH RB Fitzgerald Toussaint. He has apparently earned an offer. A high school teammate of linebacker prospect Julius Ferrell, Youngstown Liberty has another player who may be added in the next update. Will the school be this year’s version of the Trotwood trio?
MN CB Varmah Sonie. Friend of WR Bryce McNeal.

OH LB Zach Boren. It appears that Michigan’s bridges have been burned with the Borens. Prior to Justin’s sudden departure, the Bucks had all but conceded him to Michigan. He will attend the school that Justin transfers to.

Etc.: Sam Webb talks about the past weekend’s Akron 7-on-7 in the Detroit News. Prospects Todd Thomas and Jordan Hall on Pennsylvania all-state basketball teams. Saline spring game information. Have fun not going, losers.

Posted under Recruiting

Potential QB Transfer?

Current Texas backup QB Sherrod Harris may be considering a transfer, according to several sources, including the Dallas Morning News. Harris is a true sophomore who would have to sit one year, and be eligible to play in 2009 and 2010. A likely target would be Michigan, with an offense that fits his skills and a dearth of quarterbacks.

Harris is an exception student-athlete, who graduated with a high school GPA of 3.96. He was a run-pass threat in high school, described as similar to Antonio Bass (slightly more developed as a passer, with slightly less athleticism). At Texas, he has been limited due to injury and depth chart, and has yet to attempt a pass (despite playing in two games in fall 2007).

Harris is not allowed to contact school of interest until he receives his release. Texas coach Mack Brown stated that if any player approaches him regarding transfer, a release will be granted.

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