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Recruiting update 6-15-09

Some things that didn’t fit in Thursday’s update is thrown in here as well, so it should be a JAM-PACKED! update. Here’s the 2010 Michigan Recruiting Board.

2010 PA QB Anthony GonzalesSuper-non-informative article on the recruitment of PA QB Anthony Gonzales (#6). He’s fast enough to play QB for his high school team, and is described as “slippery.” Though Michigan hasn’t offered yet, that certainly fits the description they’re looking for in this class: a good second QB who can potentially change positions down the road if everything works out with the other players. There is no Michigan mention in the article, and Penn State is presumed to be the favorite by the author, with Pitt just behind. Still, if the Wolverines don’t have a second QB committed by the time the season rolls around, Gonzales may be a candidate to pick up an offer.

LSU has jumped into the fray for IA QB/Ath AJ Derby (info in header). He is becoming a bigger and bigger prospect, which means he may be less likely to accept an offer to play second fiddle to Devin Gardner in the QB class of 2010. Of course, it’s still highly likely he plays at Iowa, where his dad played. The Chicago Sun-Times’s Second Season blog thinks it’s Iowa or Florida for him.

Continuing the deluge of QB news, SC prospect Cornelius Jones has set up a summer visit to Ann Arbor (info in header). Smart money is on this visit happening for camp this week. Jones has had Michigan at or near the top of his list for quite some time now, so a good visit with the Wolverines might be enough to convince him to commit.

Removed MI QB Robert Bolden, who does not have the Wolverines on his list of 6 finalists. I’m not disappointed, because I still maintain that Bolden is more of a pro-style QB than a true dual-threat who would thrive in the Rich Rodriguez spread.

Fluff/brief recruiting info on FL RB Cassius McDowell from SoFlaFootball. McDowell is out for the spring with a broken leg, and has been using his newfound free time to pick up the pace with schoolwork, and enroll early in the fall at his school of choice. The teammate of 2009 signees Denard Robinson and Adrian Witty counts the Wolverines among his offers.

Removed FL RB Darion Hall, who committed to Miami. This is not a surprise. You may recall that I was not particularly stoked on Hall, especially considering he apparently has some maturing to do “on and off the field.”

FL/MI WR Ricardo Miller has apparently changed his tune about which Ann Arbor-area high school he’ll be attending, according to Sam Webb. Rampant speculation and semi-disturbing high school fantasy football leagues by Michigan fans have cluttered the interwebs this weekend, but the fact of the matter is, he’s going to go to the school that gives him the best education and opportunity to succeed on the football field.

PA WR Andrew Carswell‘s continued interest in Michigan (they’re in his top 3 with BC and Pitt) may be explained by the fact that he’s a multiple-position player. If he ends up committing to Michigan (I still think it’s something of a longshot at this point), he could end up playing linebacker on defense.

Removed MD WR EJ Scott, who committed to Virginia.

Removed AL WR Soloman Patton, now a Florida Gator.

In your latest breathless MN OL Seantrel Henderson update, a couple fun factoids that may play a role in his recruitment. First, new Gophers OL coach Tim Davis might send his son to Cretin-Derham Hall. That would certainly not hurt Minnesota for Seantrel (unless said son is a total d-bag, but I digress). Another interesting friend item on Henderson:

According to Lemming, Henderson may want to attend the same school as friend J.D. Pride, another Minneapolis-area player. According to Rivals.com, the only offer Pride holds is from Minnesota.

If the Wolverines ever offer Pride, a QB/Ath, it would certainly help their case. Also, maybe Pride could net an Eastern Michigan offer? That could still help the Wolverines land Henderson. I believe both Henderson and Pride are camping at Michigan, and Eastern’s coaches traditionally head across town to take part.

Recruiting info on GA DT Jeff Whitaker, with nary a mention of Michigan. It sounds like he probably won’t end up with an offer. With the Wolverines perhaps having less of a need for DTs in the unconventional defense of Greg Robinson, perhaps they’ll only need one tackle in this class.

MI DT Jonathan Hankins may be their guy at the position, as a camp offer is likely to come through, especially considering even the stingy Buckeyes have deemed him worthy of a scholarship. Sam Webb had a “gut feeling” on the Recruiting Roundup Thursday that Hankins would be blue if offered. For those who are unfamiliar with the WTKA morning show, Sam’s “gut feeling” means that he has heard directly from a source that the information is true.

Removed SC DT AJ Cann. He is down to a final list that does not include Michigan, and the Wolverines are out of the race for his services.

FL DE Lynden Trail is favoring Florida as he quests to add more weight to give his body a more appropriate DE size (he’s currently at 210 pounds, standing 6-7).

Removed PA DE Dakota Royer. He has released a final five list that does not include Michigan. He plans to make a commitment in July. In a really odd twist, especially considering The Sporting News’s Recruitnik blog has an article on Royer from the same timeframe, also featuring direct quotes, that Royer is down to a top 10, with narrowing to a top 5 by the end of July. Either way, Michigan isn’t on his list, so he gone. Adios, guy who did this:

Removed PA DE Kyle Baublitz, who will be a Nittany Lion.

FL DE/LB Corey Lemonier is playing outside linebacker in a 3-4 defense this year at Hialeah, which is probably fairly comparable to the hybrid roles in Michigan’s new defense under coordinator Greg Robinson. It should come as no surprise, then, that Lemonier plans to use one of his official visits on a trip to Ann Arbor. DE/LB is the new WR in this recruiting class, as far as “how many of these guys can we fit in the class?”

MI S/LB/Ath Daniel Easterly currently favors Illinois, but his feelings about the Wolverines are hard to tell, because he won’t name schools that haven’t offered him among his favorites. He is going to camp at Michigan, so if he earns an offer there, the Wolverines would likely be a serious player in his recruitment.

Michigan is a reported offer for OH S/WR Bobby Swigert. He’s apparently camping this week as well.

Removed SC S Bashaud Breeland, now a Clemson commitment.

Removed MD S Jeff Knox, who committed to Pittsburgh.

FL CB Nickell Robey is going to visit Ann Arbor this summer along with FL S commit Marvin Robinson (info in header). This is obviously good news as far as Robey’s recruitment, but there’s also some moderately bad news that relates to Robinson: he still wants to take a visit to Chapel Hill to check out the Tar Heels (info in header). He still plans to honor his verbal commitment, so this isn’t exactly “ACK FREAK OUT”-type news, but the verbal is less than solid, it seems.

Removed OH CB Jordan Paschal. The Trotwood-Madison (Roundtree, Shaw, Moore) product committed to Louisville.

Posted under Football, Recruiting

Recruiting Update 6-5-09

2010 Michigan Wolverine Christian Pace2010 Michigan Wolverines Recruiting Board.

Moved to Committed: OH OL Christian Pace (seen at left). Commitment post. Pace also plans an early enrollment at Michigan.

Big House Barbecue fluff from Josh Helmholdt in the Free Press. Boilerplate stuff.

Fluff on FL QB Jeffrey Godfrey of the “he’s a QB even though he’s 5-11” variety. Godfrey has been told he’s not a QB his whole life, etc. Not to completely discard the article (despite the fact that it was clearly written by someone who should have a job writing things), but Godfrey really sounds like the type of guy Michigan would want to bring in, give a shot at QB for a year or two, then move to a different position down the road.

SC RB Marcus Lattimore and TX RB Lache Seastrunk thoroughly enjoyed their visits to Auburn last weekend (along with seemingly every prospect south of the Mason-Dixon Line), and both are extreme longshots, especially with Lattimore trimming his list to 8 non-Michigan schools earlier this week. Still no word on whether he intends to take the official visit for the Ohio State weekend as he had planned, so I’ll leave him on the list for now. Seastrunk has stated in no uncertain terms that he’ll probably end up playing his college football on the Plains, barring unforeseen developments.

FL RB Darion Hall is talented, but “needs to mature on and off the field.” With the Wolverines already filling up at running back in this class, I would be surprised if they took a guy who might be a risky prospect. He was suspended for half of his school’s spring game.

Prospective future Wolverine Torrian Wilson (who, in the past, has named the Wolverines his favorite and still has them in his top 5) has been selected to the ESPNU-Under Armour All-American Game.

After cutting down his list earlier this week, MN OL Seantrel Henderson, who is at or near the top of most prospect lists, has started planning out some summer visits. He plans to stop by Michigan for sure, possibly for summer camp. While we’re on the subject, let’s look at the reasons that coaches so covet Henderson:

With Michigan visits both in his past and future, the Wolverines are likely among his top schools.

It appears as though the bridges between Tennesse and Pahokee may be on the mend. FL DT Richard Ash has the Volunteers near the top of his list, despite the disparaging remarks made about his hometown by UT headman Lane Kiffin. However, the Gators definitely still lead for the big man from the muck.

Added LA DT Harold Legania. No word as yet on particular interest from Michigan but he may be a prospect down the road. He is a high school teammate of QB prospect Munchie LeGeaux at Edna Carr high school, and the Wolverines might be interested in a package deal for players at two positions of need.

Previously-removed IL DE Chance Carter says he’s only considering Notre Dame, Stanford, and Nebraska, but might also give the Wolverines some consideration if they offer him. With the current players committed (Antonio Kinard, Jordan Paskorz) or on their way to being committed (Ken Wilkins – see below), I don’t see him getting an offer, so I’ll leave him off the board.

OH DE Marcus Rush, who was previously believed to be heavily favoring Michigan, is approaching a decision (info in header). Considering that development came shortly after visiting Ann Arbor for the Big House Barbecue, I wouldn’t be surprised if he was still feeling the Wolverines – enough to commit. However, with several DE/LB tweeners already in the class, I don’t know if there would be room for him at this point.

MI LB/DE William Gholston has named a top-9 list that includes Michigan (along with Michigan State, Ohio State, USC, Tennessee, Alabama, Florida, Miami of Florida, and Oklahoma). Still, for some odd reason, I’m not holding my breath.

PA LB Ken Wilkins has set a date for his college announcement: Next Tuesday. Wilkins was in town for the Big House Barbecue, and reportedly enjoyed himself immensely. He is expected to pick Michigan at that time.

VA LB Aramide Olaniyan, despite his Duke commitment, is still saying positive things about the Wolverines. I’d left him on the board for the time being, and it seems as though that decision was justified. He’s planning to take other visits, so we’ll see if anything comes of it.

Fluff article on various DBs in Florida, including FL CB Tony Grimes, a recent visitor to Ann Arbor for the Big House BBQ:

“If they try to throw to my side, I’m going to come down with the ball and make a play on it for my team,” Hollywood Hills cornerback Tony Grimes said. Along with a physical style of play and ball-hawking skills, Grimes brings leadership as well. Hollywood Hills coach Scott Barnwell has noticed the impact it has had on his team.

“With his leadership and having a person of that caliber, these kids pick up their game also and they get to see all of the different college recruiters coming out, and it just raises the level of everyone’s game, which for the team is tremendous,” Barnwell said.

Though the Michigan visit (and a planned return in the fall) seem to bode well for Michigan, that may be more of a pipe dream, as the Hurricanes of Miami are expected to be a heavy favorite.

Michigan has offered SC CB John/Johnavon Fulton. The offer has helped them vault towards the forefront of his recruitment (info in header). However, he still really likes Alabama, and the Wolverines are definitely in catch-up mode.

From Bill Kurelic at ESPN: IL WR Kyle Prater, IA QB AJ Derby, and MI CB/Slot Dior Mathis are all planning to take all 5 of their official visits before coming to decisions. This might leave Mathis and perhaps Derby out of luck, but Michigan would probably make room for Prater if he ultimately decided on the Wolverines.2011 MI WR DeAnthony Arnett Wolverines

And now, for the latest edition of your intermittent 2011 recruiting updates: Sam Webb brings the fluff on 2011 MI WR DeAnthony Arnett from Saginaw, seen at right. The Wolverines were the first school to offer Arnett, a true WR with the ability to play slot (think more Je’Ron Stokes than Jeremy Gallon), and are considered the likely favorite for his services. He’s also taken southward trips recently, to camps such as Tennessee, so this will be no cakewalk to land DeAnthony, and Michigan will have to work to earn a commitment from him.

Posted under Football, Recruiting

Recruiting Update 6-1-09

2010 Michigan Recruiting Board.

Big House Barbecue As mentioned in this morning’s post, there were no immediate results from the Big House Barbecue event. Though the Wolverines picked up a commitment from PA DE Jordan Paskorz (and how about a little Paskorz fluff? Or were you looking for a more local flavor?), it was prior to the barbecue, and not related to the actual even itself. So, was the whole thing a bust this time around? Not so much. There are lots of positive vibes coming from essentially every recruit who was there, with none moreso than a couple guys who might suddenly be ready to make decisions. “Wilkins moves closer to decision after visit” and “Is a Decision Imminent for Pace?” are pretty good indications-via-headline that PA LB Ken Wilkins and OH OL Christian Pace enjoyed themselves enough to at least seriously consider committing in the not-particularly-distant future. Keep your eyes peeled in the coming days.

Other than those two, nothing seems to be imminent, but the general feeling from the barbecue seems to be a good one, emanating from the mouths of seemingly every recruit who was there. Michigan certainly helped themselves with a number of guys, even if they only managed to accelerate a couple of decision timelines. Some of those who seemd to enjoy themselves: FL CB Tony Grimes, who had his “eyes opened by Michigan,” and seems to be a pretty good player, as well. Another top prospect who was there, perhaps surprisingly to Michigan fans who are staring at the commit list with a shocked expression, was IL WR Kyle Prater (info in header).

Fluff on IA QB AJ Derby. Tom Lemming criticizes several midwest schools for being impatient and not waiting for great prospects like Derby, while lauding Iowa’s foresight to not accept commitments from lesser-rated players. Like, I don’t know, 3-stars James Morris and Austin Gray and unranked Anthony Ferguson and Jim Poggi. I’m just sayin’. Back to Derby though, Lemming seems to think he might be a 5-star caliber player, but that his Hawkeye connections (aside from the obvious – living in Iowa City – his dad also played for Iowa in the 90s) will probably mean he ends up playing for his hometown school.

OK QB/WR Demarco Cobbs is trying to narrow his list, but is having a hard time telling schools that he’s just not that into them. Be forwarned that Michigan is nowhere near his rough top 10 list, which instead consists of Alabama, Arizona, Auburn, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, LSU, Oklahoma, Tennessee and USC. He basically never mentions Michigan, though he says “a couple schools” are right outside the top list, and could sneak in there. He seems to have little interest in playing QB, and the only reason I’m leaving him on the list for now is that he has a Michigan offer, and there’s no formal cutdown that means Michigan is absolutely out of it.

SC RB Marcus Lattimore has trimmed his list of schools to a final 8, which doesn’t include Michigan. This is curious because of the “I am definitely going to an official visit in Ann Arbor” vibe he was giving out before, but the writing has sort of been on the wall for a while now. I’ll leave him on the board a little longer, until I can get a chance to resolve the official visit issue.

Selective reading by the Miami Herald, when discussing possible future commitments for Da U. They pick out a FL OL Torrian Wilson quote that all of his top 5 schools are “about equal,” while forgetting to mention that he has also said several times that Michigan definitely leads. This is yet another reason why newspapers are failing, guys. I’m not saying the Wolverines will definitely land Wilson, but lying to your readers by omission isn’t exactly a criterion for becoming a beacon of journalism.

GA OT/DE Henry Anderson says Michigan “is in the big picture” (info in header). While that certainly doesn’t mean very much, it’s enough to warrant adding him to the board.

GA DE TJ Stripling might be taking a visit to Ann Arbor soon (info in header). Memo to Pete Cunningham, the author of this article. You can’t have a tease in the excerpt that you’ve already answered in the headline. Stripling had not been previously on the board, so I’ve added him.

Some pretty fluffy stuff on FL LB Jeff Luc. Of actual note from the article: He’s a good student, and trying to get all of his classes in order so he can graduate in December and enroll early at his school of choice.

Michigan has offered GA LB Tyrone Cornelius. I’ve added him to the board.

MD LB Troy Gloster has been offered by Michigan. The former teammate of Florida’s Jelani Jenkins is one of many Division-1 prospects at Good Counsel High School, so keep an eye on the Wolverines’ future actions at that school.

Periodic Pahokee Update Time. It seems I say more about this school than any other, probably because the number of prospects available there, and also because of Michigan’s existing ties to the Blue Devils. Anyway, a weird-ish non-story from the muck over the weekend, as CB Merrill Noel and LB Zachery Allen planned to announce todaythen promptly changed their minds. The Wolverines wouldn’t have likely been the school of choice for either guy, so if they want a legit shot at them, a longer recruiting process can only help Michigan. It had been predicted that both would commit to Wake today.

A top 100 list of Florida prospects by the Miami Herald includes a number of Michigan prospects, including commits Ricardo Miller (#19) and Marvin Robinson (#31). The most humorous part of this list is the authors’ insistence on bragging about how much smarter they are than the national recruiting sites, and how they know so much more than those guys. Then they go on to spell about 30% of the names wrong. Great work, guys!

Posted under Football, Recruiting

Recruiting Update 5-28-09

2010 Michigan Wolverines Recruiting Board.

Moved to committed: PA DE/LB Jordan Paskorz. Commitment Post.

Let’s get started with the bad news. For those who were harboring some hope that the Wolverines would be able to steal MI LB William Gholston from the Spartans, it might be time to think again. Take a look at the outfit that the young Mr. Gholston wore to prom (HT: The Only Colors):

2010 DE William Gholston Michigan Wolverines State Spartans

So, yeah. Spartans lead. Gholston, despite his frequent trips to ann Arbor, has made even more frequent trips to East Lansing. His high school coach at Detroit Southeastern is allegedly in the pocket of Mark Dantonio, and Gholston grew up a Michigan State fan. All of these factors certainly add up as circumstantial evidence that the Spartans are likely to be the favorite to land Gholston. It’s certainly too early to give up all hope, but it’s probably time to temper some expectations, methinks. It’s unfortunate that he’ll end up moving to defensive end when he gets to East Lansing, when Michigan is offering him the opportunity to remain at linebacker, but there are certainly several factors at play in his recruitment. You can’t get ‘em all, so unless he indicates that Michigan still has a definite chance, we’ll kindly move along from Big Will II.

Some offensive soul-searching for the Florida offense in the wake of the Tebow Child’s eventual departure. Michigan isn’t particularly strong with any of the QBs mentioned in the article (TN Barry Brunetti, CA Jesse Scroggins, GA Marcus Smith, and IA AJ Derby – the most realistic prospect in the bunch), but Florida’s schemes will certainly affect their recruiting in this and future classes, which will likely have a domino effect on Michigan, as well.

Speaking of QBs, time to remove one of Michigan’s potential second options from the board: TX QB Jeremy Johnson has finally committed to West Virginia.

In other QB news, FL QB Christian Green has released a top 6, with Michigan nowhere to be found. He’s expressed interest in moving to wideout in college (which would actually be good for Michigan, assuming he’d be willing to play quarterback for at least one year), and seems to be very into Florida State. If I used MGoIcons, he’d get a Nefarious Eduardo up in this joint.

Sam Webb Detroit News fluff on CA RB Brennan Clay:

“I’m open to all the schools right now,” he said. “I’ve told them all that I don’t have a favorite yet and I’m showing them all interest. I’m gonna announce my top 10 before the season starts. I want to take a few official visits and hopefully I’ll be able to commit during mid-season or before our playoffs start.”

Clay, obviously, is the former teammate of presumptive starting QB Tate Forcier, and Michigan has really become more of a factor in his recruitment of late.

Rivals (free) video fluff on MN OL Seantrel Henderson:

Relevant recruiting notes include the fact that he plans to narrow to a top 5 before the season, and take official visits to all of the finalists before eventually making his decision on National Signing Day. He also had some nice things to say about Michigan (probably the most positive-sounding comments about any of the schools he mentioned, for what it’s worth). He said it’s a really big university, and he really likes the campus, plus the coaching staff is pretty cool, and there are nice new facilities and lots of new stuff going on. He didn’t mention this in his Michigan-related snippet, but Seantrel did say he plans to major in business or communications, and wants to go to a school that is strong in either of those. Michigan is excellent in both, so that’s another plus.

Though he went from somebody that the likes of Sam Webb was routinely mentioning as a “hot prospect” for Michigan on the WTKA morning show to a recruit that doesn’t seem to be all that interested in the Wolverines anymore, SC DT AJ Cann is still one of the few interior defensive line prospects on the board at this time. Fluff from his coach:

“A.J. is a humble kid,” he said. “He doesn’t talk about it. A lot of times when you get a kid who’s been offered by 32-35 Division I schools, a lot of kids believe he’s going to get this treatment, he’s going to act this way. A.J.’s the same kid he was before he got those 35 Division I offers.

“He busts his butt in practice. He’s a leader out there. When you tell him to do something, he asks no questions. He’s front of the line, showing young guys what drills we do offensively and defensively the same thing. He’s responded to it well and hopefully, within the next couple of weeks, that will take a little bit off of him.”

So, mostly boilerplate “the teams played hard and somebody won”-type coachspeak about one of his top players, no? However, I’m not quite sure how to interpret the very end of that quote. It sounds like he may be deciding soon.

PA DE Dakota Royer has been a steady prospect over the course of the year, collecting offers in small batches, but never really blowing up. Now, however, he at least has the opportunity to become something of an internet sensation (HT: Black Shoe Diaries):

That’s Mr. Royer jumping out of a 4-foot pool from shoulders-deep. He’s apparently quite explosive, though many sports media outlets would probably rather have you believe that he’s a “gritty” or “lunch pail” defensive end. Michigan has offered Royer, and stands a good chance to be in his top list for the foreseeable future.

OH LB Commit Antonio Kinard often seems to be the forgotten commit in Michigan’s 2010 class so far, but he’s having a successful track season of his own. He is a long jumper, and recently took first place at a meet, thanks to 2 of the best 3 jumps.

VA LB Chase Williams has mentioned Michigan in the past, but it doesn’t sound like he’s particularly interested in the Wolverines:

“This month has been packed with 19 schools including Virginia, Virginia Tech, Maryland, Tennessee, South Carolina and Ohio State,” he said. “All of them are saying they want me to come to camp this summer so they can see me in person to see all the things they see on film.”

“I haven’t made a true list of top schools yet,” he said. “I am starting to focus more on the schools that have offered and maybe one or two others. That is because I think I’m making a decision kind of early. I think the time when I cut things down is getting closer, but I know I haven’t approached that barrier yet.

The early decision and lack of strong Michigan interest seem to imply that the Wolverines probably don’t have much of a chance to land him, at least at this time.

AL S Jarrick Williams has not reported Michigan interest, despite being one of the top secondary prospects in the nation. Now, it appears as though he’s narrowed his list of choices to Auburn and Alabama, and I think that’s as good an excuse as any to remove him from the recruiting board.

2010 FL CB Tony GrimesFluff in the Broward Sun-Sentinel includes very little information. It’s about how spring high school football – which we don’t have in Michigan, much to my chagrin at times – is no longer just about schemes and whatnot, but also an opportunity for college prospects to show their stuff for scouts, and get noticed, hoping for recruiting results down the road. The only reason I’m even bothering to link it is a pretty cool picture of FL CB Tony Grimes, shown at left making an over-the-shoulder catch, though I have no idea whether he was intercepting or receiving the pass.

2010 FL CB Spencer BoydFL CB Spencer Boyd is still favoring Notre Dame, and plans to make a summer decision. Like many defensive backs of late (including FL CB Lorenza Wood, who had previously been favoring Michigan and now likes the Irish), he cited the TEH AWESOMEZ recruiting abilities of Irish Defensive Coordinator Corwin Brown, who played for Michigan. Take that as you will, and I’m glad to see a former Wolverine having success in the coaching world, but I’d certainly prefer to see him do so in a place other than South Bend. The biggest threats to the Domers for Boyd seem to be SEC schools.

Like I said in this week’s previous recruiting update, defensive back doesn’t seem to be a huge concern at this point. The Wolverines are holding steady with several prospects, and a commitment this weekend at the Big House BBQ (about which I’ll have more info tomorrow morning) would go a long way to easing the fears of Michigan fans.

Of course, the Michigan coaching staff may not be all that confident in their ability to land some defensive backs, as they’re still handing out offers like candy. The latest is GA CB Darius Robinson (info in header). I’ve added him to the recruiting board.

Non-2010 stuff below.

2009 QB signee Denard Robinson is considered one of the frontrunners (along with 2010 FL CB Cody Riggs) to be the Class 6A-4A High School Athlete of the Year. If he wins the award, it will be due to both his football and track exploits, so congratulations to Denard (HT: The Michigan Football Blog).

A quick note on 2011 FL RB Demetrius Hart. In a weather-shortened spring game, he managed to rip off a 65-yard TD run. He’s considered a top 2011 prospect, and has stated that he’d probably commit to Michigan as soon as he could receive an official offer on September 1st. With Ricardo Miller now at Ann Arbor Huron rather than Hart’s Dr. Phillips High School in Orlando, that Michigan love may have declined a bit, but they’ll probably still pursue the diminutive speedster.

Posted under Football, Recruiting

Recruiting Update 5-22-09

2010 Michigan Wolverine QB Commit Devin GardnerJosh Helmholdt fluff in the Free Press about MI QB Commit Devin Gardner‘s recent performance at the Midwest Elite Camp. The article masterfully spews a couple hundred words without actually talking about performance at the camp. The biggest conclusion you can draw is “Devin Gardner is a dual-threat quarterback, and was present,” which, like, duh. There’s also a rather brief mention that his mechanics need work before he’s able to contribute at the next level, which anyone who follows Michigan recruiting in any capacity already knew. MI QB Robert Bolden was also there, but the boilerplate discussion doesn’t give much of a scouting report or recruiting vibe on him, either.

IS QB AJ Derby is back from an Elite 11 camp and campus tour on the west coast, and is talking a little recruiting. He’ll narrow down to a top 8 or top 5 sometime over the summer, and make all of his official visits. Michigan offered him as a QB a couple weeks ago, and is likely to make at least his first cut.

CA RB Malcolm Jones has a top three of Stanford, UCLA, and Oklahoma (info in header). Michigan doesn’t seem to be particularly interested in him, so his presence on the board may be starting to head towards an end.

SC RB/CB Jerrell Priester says he’ll camp at Michigan this summer. He doesn’t have an offer yet, but that might be a good opportunity for him to earn one. Of course, Michigan’s chances for a guy who comes out with a quote like this:

“Notre Dame is at the top of the list, but it’s open,” he said. “I’ve got to go where I’m wanted and do the best for me.”

are probably not superb.

Though it was reported last week that FL WR Fred Pickett had committed to West Virginia, both he and his coach say that is not in fact the case. Though Pickett’s likelihood of landing in Ann Arbor is approximately zero, this is still somewhat relevant to Michigan fans. Pahokee head coach Blaze Thompson says he’s now instructing his players (several of whom Michigan has offered, including WRs De’Joshua Johnson and Chris Dunkley, CB Merrill Noel, and others) to take their time in the recruiting process, and not rush into a decision that they’ll change later. This follows last year’s saga of Nu’Keese Richardson, who committed to Florida, then was snake-oiled away by Lane Kiffin. Speaking of the Pahokee boys, DT Antonio Ford plans to visit Michigan next month. And let the Pahokee fluff keep on coming, as Sam Webb discusses Michigan’s connection to the tiny Florida town in the Detroit News. Included is a scouting report of LB Zachery Allen:

“The thing with Allen is upside,” Vogt said. “More and more schools are intrigued by him. Right now, he’s maybe a little bit undersized for the positions that colleges are recruiting him for, but he has an outstanding frame, he can run, and he’s very physical at the point of attack. He’s one of those players who projects well at the next level because when he gets into a college weight training program they are going to sculpt him. He’s going to be an outside linebacker at 6-2, 230 that can really get after it.”

…and the information that Michigan probably has a good chance with Noel, DT Richard Ash, Allen, and even Dunkley.

General defensive recruiting fluff by Josh Helmholdt in the Free Press. Of note: the Wolverines lead for PA CB Cullen Christian and FL CB Rashad Knight still.

Michigan has offered NC S Keenan Allen. He hails from the same high school as DT prospect Gabe King (though King will not be eligible to participate this fall). They have also offered another teammate, 6-6 LB Chris McCain, according to the article.

Michigan zipped an offer to OH S/Ath Bobby Swigert (info in header). It’s one of his first high-BCS-level offers, along with Pitt and Colorado, and the Wolverines are looking to figure prominently in his recruitment.

Michigan has offered TX S Marquis Flowers (info in header).

MD S Lorenzo Waters plans to make a visit to Ann Arbor this summer (info in header).

FL CB Lorenza Wood has a list of four favorites: Notre Dame, Michigan, Stanford, and Ole Miss. Michigan was his heavy favorite early in the recruiting process, but a visit to South Bend has changed the wind. After chatting with Notre Dame DC (and former Wolverine DB) Corwin Brown, the Irish are now considered to be on top. Wood plans to decide in July.

Re-removed MD CB Louis Young, who reaffirmed his commitment to Stanford. Young had stated that he was interested in other schools earlier this spring, but now says he’ll stick with the Cardinal.

And in class of 2009 news, The Big House Blog brings the scoop on a new walk-on punter who plans to enroll in Ann Arbor this fall. Kristopher Pauloski, from Indianapolis Pike High School was first-team all-area last year.

Posted under Football, Recruiting

Recruiting Update 4-24-09

2010 Michigan Recruiting Board.

Michigan has offered IA QB AJ Derby. He had previously been included on the board as a defensive back, but made it clear that he’s being recruited as a QB. I’ve moved him and reflected that he has an offer. I was actually very crurious about the seeming lack of Michigan interest, so the offer certainly goes a long way to assuage those fears. For further education on Derby, check out the Youtube highlight of his team’s 2008 season. Understandably, said highlights have lots of QB action.

Removed WA QB Jake Heaps, who has narrowed his list to five. Michigan was never particularly involved in his recruitment, so this comes as no surprise. Time to pare down a few more of these QBs. Who’s next?

FL RB Eduardo Clements has started to name favorites, and Georgia is on top for now. However, Michigan doesn’t seem to be that far behind for the south florida speedster:

“As of right now, Georgia is still my leader but Miami and Florida State are really high for me too. Michigan is an offer that came in not too long ago and I’m interested in them just because of their offensive scheme and how they pound the ball.”

Sounds like the Wolverines are hanging on at the end of an unofficial Top 4, no? Considering they were the most recent to offer him (which is now reflected on the board), they seem to be right in the thick of the race for his services.

OH RB Tyson Gulley is starting to see bigger interest, as IU is close to offering. However, with Michigan already having a couple backs in the class, I’d be shocked if they reached for a lesser-rated guy like Gulley.

Michigan has offered MD WR Adrian Coxson (info in header). This is odd, because they’re already drowning in WR recruits.

FL OL Brent Benedict is a hotly-recruited prospect, and he’ll basically have his choice of any school when it comes time to decide. That said, it’s an encouraging sign that Michigan is among the campuses he plans to visit this summer, as he conducts research for his eventual college decision.

Removed IN OL James Hurst, who committed to North Carolina. It’s odd that Michigan never really got in on his recruitment, considering he’s just one state away, and is considered one of the top offensive linemen in the class of 2010 at this early stage.

Were reports of OH DE Darryl Baldwin‘s narrowing his list to four schools (UM, MSU, OSU, ND) premature? His coach says so. Still, even if he hasn’t limited his choices to those, it’s fair to say that they are his top4. Also, note the article writer’s disdainful look at the internet recruiting sites “Internet reports speculated…” Yes, they speculated something by taking a quote directly from the kid’s mouth. FAIL.

TX LB Corey Nelson has named Michigan his leader. He’s a serious prospect, and Michigan is certainly in the hunt for linebackers. The interest came from the commitment of RB Tony Drake, yet another example of Rich Rodriguez’s recruiting strategy of building pipelines at powerhouse programs and taking multiple recruits from the schools in a single year. Burnt Orange Nation, of all places, has a bit of fluff on him as well:

The other top linebackers, Corey Nelson and Aaron Benson, are both smaller, faster linebackers more highly rated than Jackson (for now, at least), with Nelson in particular looking physically more like a safety than a linebacker as a junior.

Is that a problem? Should Nelson or Benson be punished for not fitting cleanly into the traditional stereotype of their positions? In a word – no. Throw out the old prototype of big linebackers with two-gap responsibility asked to take on fullbacks in the hole – there’s a new sheriff (or pirate, if you prefer) in town who likes playing in the wide-open places on the field.

That’s pretty effusive praise for a guy who almost certainly will not end up playing for Mack Brown’s Longhorns.

The Wolverines have sent an offer to CT LB Khairi Fortt (info in header). He’s a 4-star to Scout and to Rivals.

FL CB Cody Riggs nearly committed to Notre Dame on his visit to the spring game. I think he’s a guy that we can almost forget about, if not quite yet.

An all-star game update: FL WR James Louis (who may be close to committing to Florida) will play in the ESPNU game. The article mentions that FL LB Jeff Luc, who at last word was waiting to decide which all-star game to play in, has decided on the ESPNU game.

From Sam Webb’s Wednesday Recruiting Roundup:

  • SC OL AJ Cann is not as high on the Maize-and-Blue anymore as he had been in the recent past.
  • Despite receiving an offer from Oklahoma, it is not a foregone conclusion that MI DT Jonathan Hankins will see the in-state schools follow suit. Look for him to be offered a little further down the road, if at all.

Posted under Football, Recruiting