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Recruiting Update 7-16-09

2010 Michigan Wolverine Austin White

Moved to committed: MI RB Austin White, who announced for the Wolverines yesterday. Commitment post. Sam Webb had an interview with Austin on WTKA.

SC QB Commit Cornelius Jones has been shining on the 7-on-7 circuit:

“Conelius [sic] made some phenomenal throws,” Brown said. “Defensively, Coach (Mark) Razzano made some good calls in tight situations, and the kids made some big plays with games on the line.”

The Spartanburg team finished second to Byrnes, the powerhouse school with such Division-1 prospects as Marcus Lattimore, Nick Jones, Brandon Willis, and others. Local news provided a bit of video:

Hopefully, the success for the 7-on-7 team bodes well for Spartanburg’s season (though the vikings finished second to Byrnes last summer as well, and still only managed 5 victories in the fall), and eventually Jones’s ability to move up in the rankings. By the way – there seems to be mounting evidence that there’s no “r” in Jones’s first name.

Speaking of studly QB commits, MI QB Devin Gardner has been named to the Elite 11 camp. Gardner headlines the list of 3(!) players from the Great Lakes State participating, joining MSU’s Joe Boisture and PSU’s Robert Bolden.

Removed TX QB Aaron Johnson, as his favorites are OU, TCU, and Houston. It doesn’t appear Michigan is interested, and he clearly wants to stay closer to home.

Removed AL QB Trett Hardman. He’s listed as a pro-style QB by the recruiting services, and I’m really stretching for reasons to get some of these guys off the board who quite obviously aren’t going to end up in Blue.

Super fluff on LA Slot Commit Drew Dileo. Highlights:

“Of all the coaches that came through,” Parkview assistant David Simoneaux said, “Michigan was the most aggressive. They said they just had to have him.”

This likely means that Michigan’s coaches see something in Dileo that the recruiting sites may not. That would continue a trend of the Wolverines’2010 Michigan Wolverine Drew Dileocoaching staff valuing different things than Rivals and Scout, leading to possibly underrated class rankings.

Slot receivers in a spread offense are usually matched against linebackers or safeties. They receive the ball in a variety of ways, including handoffs and lateral passes.

In their evaluation of Dileo, Michigan’s coaches saw the perfect fit.

They saw a tough player with sure hands who could make catches over the middle. They saw a versatile, explosive player who could make defenders miss, as a runner or receiver.

“He ([RB coach Fred] Jackson) told us Drew reminds them of Wes Welker,” Simoneaux said.

Brief scouting reort that is basically what we’ve come to expect from these guys. For added fun, insert “white” prior to every use of the word “player!” Also, obligatory white-slot-to-Wes-Welker comparison.

“I know my profile isn’t as great as a lot of other kids’ around the country,” he said. “I know (Michigan) reached out there a little bit to get me. It’s not about proving anybody wrong. I just don’t want people up there to feel like I wasted a scholarship.”

That’s a pretty tame quote, considering the context. I’d much rather have him say something along the lines of “It’s not about proving anybody wrong, it’s about kicking ass and taking names.” There’s also mention that Dileo has always worn #3, which Justin Feagin currently rocks for Michigan.

Removed PA WR Alex Kenney, who committed to Penn State.

MN OL Seantrel Henderson doesn’t have a visit to Michigan in his plans. The recruitment of Henderson is starting to get weird, as there is alternating “Michigan and USC lead” talk interspersed with “Michigan is in his top 10, but not any higher than that”-type speak. Henderson has already visited Ann Arbor once, so perhaps he’s using the officials as a way to see places he’s never been? As a side note, Seantrel himself has said he’s no longer interested in Notre Dame, but his father says they’re right near the top. Maybe his dad just isn’t attuned to the evolving list of favorites.

Removed OH OL Andrew Donnal, who will become a Hawkeye.

In the ongoing search for at least one defensive tackle in this class, GA DT Michael Thornton will give the Michigan coaches a chance to woo him. Thornton plans to officially visit Michigan sometime this fall (info in header).

Removed OH DT Josh Davis, who committed to Purdue.

Removed CA DE Ronald Powell, who will pick between USC and Florida sometime in January.

Removed SC DE Dexter Morant, who committed to Georgia.

Fluff on FL LB Jeff Luc, who has only recently started lifting weights. Stats:

Luc registered 119 tackles, nine sacks, two interceptions, five forced fumbles and had four pass break-ups in 2008.

He says location does not matter in his college choice, and is in no hurry to make a decision – though he does plan to enroll in January.

Removed TX LB Corey Nelson. He briefly had Michigan as a leader, then said he would visit Ann Arbor despite not having the Wolverines in his top 5, but now the teammate of RB Commit Tony Drake has committed to Texas A&M. If he continues talking about taking visits to school’s he’s not interested in, Nelson may be able to find his way back onto the list.

OH S Latwan Anderson has Michigan State and West Virginia in his top 2. Michigan is not far behind, but it seems as though the Mountaineers are a pretty heavy favorite. Might a year of PAIN under inept headman Bill Stewart sour him on Morgantown?

ESPN’s Bill Kurelic predicts that Michigan will land both PA S Brandon Ifill and PA CB/S Cullen Christian, teammates at Penn Hills High. Christian has been an assumed Michigan lock for quite some time, and Ifill has had Michigan near the top of his list, though perhaps not in the leader’s position. Ifill will visit Ann Arbor at the end of this month, and if he enjoys himself, it’s conceivable that he could verbal to Michigan.

FL CB Spencer Boyd is deciding Friday between Notre Dame, Michigan, and Georgia. He hasn’t been at the forefront of Michigan’s recruiting effort lately, so expect him to pick one of the other options (I believe Notre Dame is the leader). Looks like things are heading towards a removal from the board in the next update.

Posted under Football

Recruiting Update 7-9-09

2010 Recruiting Board. Big update today. Hopefully everything from the last week can get taken care of in the next update.

Fluff on LA QB Terrance Broadway. There’s no Michigan mention, and it appears as though Michigan probably isn’t pursuing him. Broadway is on the fringe of being removed from the board.

Removed OH QB Dwight Macon. He named a top 3 of Ball State, Toledo, and Bowling Green. It appears at this time that he’s probably a MAC-level talent, and of no further interest to Michigan fans.

Michigan is likely to make the next cut for FL RB Brandon Gainer (info in header).

Removed GA RB Kendrun Malcome, who committed to Georgia. Malcome wasn’t a great prospect of interest to Michigan fans, but the Wolverines may feel a ripple effect. Georgia has been the leader for FL RB Eduardo Clements for some time, with Michigan not far behind. Malcome joins 2009 commit Washaun Ealey in the Dawgs’ backfield, and the crowded situation may help the Wolverines look a little more attractive in comparison.

Removed OH RB Braylon Heard, who’s headed to West Virginia.

Removed PA RB Dom Timbers. He committed to Syracuse, and was likely not a Michigan-caliber recruit.

Removed FL WR James Louis. He’s narrowed down to a final 4 that does not include Michigan.

Removed PA WR Andrew Carswell. He committed to Pittsburgh.

Removed FL OL Chaz Green. He’s only focusing on 5 main schools. With a planned decision by the end of summer, that doesn’t give Michigan enough time to try to get back into this one.

OH DT Terry Talbott plans to take all 5 official visits before committing to any school. By the way, he and his (non-twin) brother Terrance happen to attend the same school as QB Braxton Miller, probably Ohio’s top prospect in the class of 2011.

Removed FL DT Richard Ash, who has now been offered by USC. Since USC and Florida were his dream offers, and he has them both now, look for one of those two schools to land the Pahokee product. His early commitment (August 28th) doesn’t give Michigan much time to get back into this one, either.

Sam Webb Detroit News fluff on MI DE CJ Olaniyan. Of note: He’s close to setting a top-5 list, and Michigan is one of the 5-6 schools he’s already visited. the Wolverines look to have a chance for his top list. However, with the way defensive end recruiting has gone so far this season, I’d be surprised if he ultimately ended up in blue.

Removed GA DE Henry Anderson, who picked Stanford.

Added OH LB Cameron Ontko, who is “hearing from Michigan” (info in header).

Removed FL LB Zachery Allen. The Pahokee product (probably Michigan’s last best hope for a Blue Devil in the class of 2010) picked Wake Forest.

The somewhat-odd saga of MI LB/DE Andy Phillips came to an end last week. Early in the week, he said “if I’m going to play MAC ball, I’m going to play at CMU” ($). He was still seeking out better offers, but by the weekend, he was ready to play MAC ball for CMU. I’ve removed him from the board.

Removed MI S Earnest Thomas, who committed to UCLA. He never received much attention from Michigan, but it seems as though he blossomed into a better prospect than many were expecting. In other Orchard Lake St. Mary’s news, QB Robert Bolden, who has already been removed from the recruiting board, is announcing a decision on Friday, likely for Penn State.

FL CB Tony Grimes has set up his official visit to Ann Arbor (info in header). Forthcoming: free news on when that visit actually is.

MI CB Dior Mathis now favors Oregon and Michigan State over the Wolverines. Since Michigan had long been considered the favorite, that’s a bad thing, but there’s plenty of time to get back in the forefront of this Cass Tech player’s radar. Mathis will decide after his senior season, and plans to enroll early at his school of choice.

Sparty fluff on MI P Mike Sadler, who is one of the three kicking specialists Michigan is looking at heavily for this class (WI P Will Hagerup is the only one who has been offered at this point). Also mentioned is OH LB Jewone Snow. Michigan has yet to offer, but does have a family connection in their favor, as he’s the son of Garland Rivers. I wouldn’t be upset if the Wolverines offered for two reasons 1) He’s at MLB, a position of need, and 2) It could only help in recruiting his 2011 teammate, DE Steve Miller.

…and that seems like a perfect transition to talk a little 2011 recruiting and Miller. Video interview (HT: UMGoBlog):

Miller has visited Ann Arbor, but he says that Ohio State was his dream school growing up. If this Michigan coaching staff wants to get truly serious about recruiting, they’ll have to start beating the Buckeyes for prospects from Ohio. Going hard after Miller might be a good way to start getting that going. Steve already holds a Michigan offer.

Since the 2010 recruiting class is already starting to take shape, the 2011 recruiting board should be ready to debut any time. I’ll unleash it on the publis whenever the Wolverines get their first verbal commit for the class of 2011 (which may be coming soon, according to some insiders).

Posted under Football, Recruiting

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 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 5-14-09

Denard Robinson 100m 10.44 seconds Michigan QBAs always, the 2010 Recruiting Board has a running tally of all the updates.

A very Michigan-tastic relay team of Denard Robinson, Adrian Witty, 2010 RB Cassius McDowell, and Donte Dotson (who does not play football) won the Florida State Track title in the 4×100 relay, with a time of 40.64. They did not, however, break the state record of 40.54, partially because of a bad handoff between Witty and Dotson:

”I’m mad we didnt break it but happy that we won states,” Robinson said. “It’s a great experience. I don’t know what happened. Our exchange wasn’t that good from first to second. That is what got us. It means a lot. To two-peat means a lot, especially after losing two legs from last year.”

If only there were video of this whole thing… ASK AND YE SHALL RECEIVE:

The legs are as follows: Dotson, Witty, McDowell, Robinson. All are very fast. Robinson finished 3rd in the 100m dash, with a time of 10.62.

Oklahoma-oriented radio interview/podcast-like-substance with CA RB Brennan Clay. Talks about how big a threat the Scripps Ranch offense was, in large part thanks to Tate Forcier. Brennan caught 70 passes and ran 107 times, so he’s definitely a multi-skilled threat. Not to sound the alarm bell quote yet, but he lists about 10 of his offers, and Michigan is not among the schools he names.

IL RB LaSteven McKinney is among the 400 nominees for the Army All-American Game, and he talks a little bit of recruiting.

Former Michigan and 10-year NFL running back Tyrone Wheatley is the [EMU] Eagles’ running backs coach and has kept tabs on McKinney.

“I talked to Coach Wheatley yesterday on the phone,” McKinney said. “He said that I’m definitely the type of player that they like and I remind them a lot of Reggie Bush. They said that they can’t see why I don’t have anymore offers yet, so it was a very good compliment and he seems like a pretty good guy.”

“I’m thinking I should have everything narrowed down by national signing day,” McKinney said. “I’m very open-minded about everything.”

I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s given at least a glance later on, though it sounds like it would be for either defense or slot:

McKinney is also a polished receiver, as Racki sometimes uses the standout in the slot… Though he is a productive running back at the high school level, McKinney is being recruited by many schools as a defensive back because of his fluid hips and quickness. Racki said every Big Ten school, including Illinois, has shown interest with only Michigan State recruiting McKinney as a running back.

I would presume that, since Michigan has 2 RB/Slots prospects already committed, he would be a defensive guy, or maybe a contingency plan for a decommit. He may be the type of kid who comes to Michigan’s camp, as the Eastern Michigan coaching staff typically attends.

OH RB/DB Christian Bryant has received his Ohio State offer, so it’s likely only a matter of time before he commits to the Buckeyes. Like many Glenville players, the Ohio State offer was all that was holding him back from becoming a Buckeye. He may wait a while to announce a commitment, as Glenville players often do, but he’s as good as Scarlet.

Has Michigan offered FL WR Ace Sanders? I had’t previously heard of the kid, and I’d be shocked if they offered yet another WR (albeit a slot). Still, I was wrong in questioning a report last week, so I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt, and at least add him to the board as unoffered.

They’re also still visiting the high school of NC WR Anthony Creecy. Again, I’m skeptical of their desire to take another true WR, but this is a results-based recruiting board, so he’s added. Of course, any additional WR recruit may still end up at another position.

FL WR Quinton Dunbar has Michigan in his top 6, despite aforementioned glut of wide receiver recruits for the Wolverines. The need for another outside wideout is low, and a recruiting class heavy in wide receivers isn’t exactly inviting to recruits, so look for Michigan to miss one of the next couple cuts for Dunbar, barring unforeseen circumstances.

After visiting Ann Arbor earlier this spring, FL OL Torrian Wilson named the Wolverines his favorite. I assumed, like many other Michigan fans, that after the afterglow of the trip started to fade away, that Wilson would back off that statement, and eventually start favoring another school (such as the hometown Miami Hurricanes, which took 8 Miami Northwestern prospects in the class of 2008). Recent indications, however, are that Wilson still favors the Wolverines. Better yet, he plans to decide sometime this summer, which means other schools don’t have a ton of time to catch up with Michigan. Keep an eye on this one though, since I wouldn’t be surprised if the ‘Canes made a push at Torrian.

Since Wilson seems to be holding strong with the Michigan lead, it reduces the downside of FL OL Jose Jose announcing for Tennessee, except for the fact that a player named “Jose Jose” should get the full red carpet treatment on name basis alone.

IN DE Blake Lueders is going to start cutting down his school list (info in header). Considering he recently released a top 6 with Michigan nowhere to be found, don’t be surprised if the Wolverines don’t make his first cut.

FL LB Jeff Luc is among the nation’s top linebacker prospects, and is near the top of the charts overall, as well. I guess, then, that he’s deserving of a pretty serious fluff piece from Gridiron Studs:

He has turned his life completely around through football and faith. Luc now sports a 3.7 G.P.A., is on track to graduate early and wants to be an engineer major in college. As for what college that would be, that’s the big question that Luc will keep people waiting on.

” I don’t have a favorite right now,” Luc says, “I like them all.”

Here’s the video referenced in the article (and it is indeed impressive):

Yay, video.

MD LB Javarie Johnson, though it was erroneouly reported a while back that he committed to Michigan, has in fact not. However, he still did enjoy hi visits to both East Lansing and Ann Arbor, and holds both the Spartans and the Wolverines in high regard. Maryland and Miami still loom in his recruitment, but that group of schools may be an unofficial top 4. Aside from schools of choice, Johnson plans to be a January enrollee, so his decision will likely be made sooner rather than later.

FL CB/Ath TC Robinson, the cousin of S commit Marvin Robinson, is currently favoring Michigan (info in header). If an offer ends up coming through for Robinson the Second, I wouldn’t be surprised if he ended up in Blue, what with the family connection and all.

Continuing the Pahokee-centric bent from Monday’s recruiting update: Josh Helmholdt expands in the Free Press on Michigan’s recent rash of offers to Pahokee players:

Michigan returned to Pahokee early during recruiting for the class of 2010 and offered four-star wide receiver De’Joshua Johnson.

Smith visited Pahokee High last week and offered three more Blue Devils: linebacker Zachary Allen, cornerback Merrill Noel and defensive tackle Richard Ash. They also have offered wide receiver Chris Dunkley, who will be transferring to Pahokee from Royal Palm Beach High for his senior season.

And as I speculated Monday:

The five Pahokee players with U-M offers plan to travel with Pahokee coach Blaze Thompson to Ann Arbor for a camp in June.

Establishing pipelines obviously helps the players find a comfort level with Michigan, and the staff obviously realizes this. By the way, Tennessee is among De’Joshua Johnson’s tentative list of three finalists, but good luck getting into Pahokee High to talk to him, Kiffykins. I hope hope hope a now-standard Lane Kiffin moment of Social Norm Non-Awareness takes place if he does indeed apologize to the Pahokee community. And, while we’re on the topic, let’s get some SoFlaFootball love from some of the guys who are new-ish to Michigan fans:

Merrill Noel 2010 CB 5′8″ 160: While Noel is being recruited as a cornerback, look for him to be used a lot inside the box this fall for Pahokee. Noel has great speed and is a physical defender. Noel has a host of offers, the latest being Michigan, but the school to keep a close eye on is Wake Forest.

Richard Ash 2010 DT 6′3″ 265: Ash has moved himself into being the top prospect coming out of Pahokee this season. His body is a work in progress and very easily can be around 280-pounds before he leaves high school. Ash’s agility is impressive and is quick off the ball. Today in practice he did a nice job of shooting the guard-tackle gap and getting into the back field. A lot of talk going around that Florida is the school to beat for Ash as of now.

Zach Allen 2010 LB/DE/TE 6′2″ 180: Allen lines up as a defensive end during the 11-on-11 portion of the practice, where he was fairly active. Allen is lean right now, but in the future should be able to add the weight needed to play at a high level. The Alphonso Smith affect seems to be flowing through Pahokee, as Wake Forest is a school to watch for Allen.

Famliarize yourselves, yo.

I know I promised not to spout Army Game nominations just for the sake of doing it, but here’s the list of players from the state of Michigan who are being considered:

Huron wide receiver Jeremy Jackson, Chelsea tailback Nick Hill and Saline quarterback Joe Boisture are three of 10 players from Michigan on the list released this week. The game will be played Saturday, Jan. 9, 2010, in San Antonio’s Alamodome and broadcast live by NBC…

Other in-state finalists include University of Michigan commit Devin Gardner (QB, Inkster) and MSU commit Max Bullough (LB, Traverse City St. Francis), along with Williams Gholston (DL, Detroit Southeastern), Dior Mathis (DB, Detroit Cass Tech), Austin White (RB, Livonia Stevenson), Robert Bolden (QB, Orchard Lake St. Mary’s) and Jordan Sanders (DL, Rochester Adams).

So, let’s tally ‘em up: 2 Michigan commits, 1 State commit, 1 BC commit, and 6 uncommitted, at least one of whom will land at each of the in-state schools, per conventional wisdom. Speaking of Austin White, he was part of a 1:30.95 4×200 relay team. It’s not quite Denard Robinson fast, but it’s nothing to sneeze at. Dedicated article for his Army nomination.

Posted under Football, Recruiting

Recruiting Update 5-11-09

2010 Michigan Football Recruiting Board. This was kind of a slow weekend, so there isn’t a whole ton of news. However, the later recruiting update this week will probably be pretty full. (Translation: I was on vacation this weekend and want to get the Monday recruiting post up without any further delay).

For those worried about the low ranking of slot commit Drew Dileo, hopefully his being ranked #17 in Louisiana will assuage those fears a bit. Louisiana is typically a talent-rich state, that #17 in that state is comparable to top-10 in Michigan in nearly every year. Couple that with the fact that Tiger Rag is an LSU fansite (like a Scout or Rivals page, but to the best of my knowledge, unaffiliated), and likely to slightly underrate the prospects who have already committed to out-of-state schools, and he’s probably a slightly better get than previously believed. Add in the stellar academic credentials, and things don’t look so negative, after all.

Josh Helmholdt Free Press fluff on who might be the second QB in Michigan’s class of 2010.Mostly non-informative, though he does say that the most likely options at this time appear to be LA QB Munchie Legaux, SC QB Cornelius Jones, and TX QB Jeremy Johnson. MI QB Robert Bolden is primarily interested in pro-style offenses… and Oregon? Either way, it’s unlikely that he’d end up in maize-and-blue.

This is also the time of year where we’ll start to hear about which prospects are planning to make it in to Ann Arbor for summer camps and other summer visits. FL OL Torrian Wilson and RB Eduardo Clements from Booker T. Washington in Miami plan to make it in for summer camp. Look for more comprehensive lists to start being formed as the time approaches.

Added NC DE Fre’Shaud Hunter, who has received a Michigan offer (info in header).

Added TN LB Justin Maclin to the board. He’s received a Michigan offer (info in header).

Added FL CB Merrill Noel, who has received a Michigan offer (info in header). Noel is one of the strong contingent of Pahokee players this year, headlined by WR De’Joshua Johnson. Johnson (who would be a prototypical slot in the spread offense) has stated he doesn’t want to play in a spread, and has eliminated Florida and Michigan, despite saying that he would love to play with his former teammates like Vincent Smith and Martavious Odoms. However, Pahokee does have a number of defensive players, including DTs Richard Ash, Doral Willis, and Antonio Ford, along with LB Zachery Allen who, like Noel, was just offered (info in header). If the Wolverines want to keep the Pahokee pipeline open (and they most certainly do), there are plenty of legit options in the class of 2010.

By the way, since 400-some recruits have been nominated for the Army All-American Game, I’m not going to bother individually listing which prospects with Michigan interest have been nominated. However, I may throw in “US Army Game nominee” when I bring them up in the context of having other news to discuss.

Removed:
DC QB Ricardo Young and VA CB Derrick Hopkins. Both committed to Virginia Tech.
MI QB/Ath Tony Lippett committed to Michigan State.
OH OL Andrew Norwell. Yeah, he’s been committed to Ohio State for a really long time now, and I just noticed he was still on the board.
OH LB Scott McVey. See above.
VA LB Aramide Olaniyan. It appears as though his commitment to Duke will hold.

Posted under Football, Recruiting

Recruiting Update: Spring Game Edition

Josh Helmholdt was so kind as to post an initial list of Spring Game visitors in the Free Press from which we can make additions and changes to get a visitors list:

Michigan extended invitations to most, if not all of the prospects they have offered scholarships to in the 2010 class and several are planning to visit. A majority of their in-state targets, including Inkster’s Devin Gardner, Detroit Southeastern’s William Gholston, Detroit Renaissance’s Mylan Hicks and Detroit Cass Tech’s Dior Mathis, plan to be there Saturday.

The second largest contingent of recruiting visitors will be from Ohio. Avon Lake offensive lineman Christian Pace, Cincinnati Wyoming defensive lineman Jibreel Black [now with UM offer - ed.] and Columbus Brookhaven defensive end Derrick Bryant all hold offers from the Wolverines and plan to attend the spring game.

Other expected spring game visitors include Lakewood (Ohio) St. Edward Latwan Anderson [Recently transferred to Ted Ginn Sr's private school and will play football at Glenville - a bad thing for Michigan's chances at him. - ed.]and Eagle Lake (Fla.) Lake Region Marvin Robinson, both top 100 safeties, according to Rivals.com. Another expected visitor, Flower Mound (Texas) Marcus running back Stephen Hopkins, said this trip is his most anticipated of the half dozen or more schools he’s already visited.

From Sam Webb’s recruiting roundups on WTKA (4-7-09)(4-8-09)(4-9-09):

Yes: 
FL/MI WR Commit Ricardo Miller
MI WR Commit Jeremy Jackson 
MI QB Robert Bolden
MI RB Austin White (recent LSU offeree)
MI RB Nick Hill
MI DE CJ Olaniyan (also at practice yesterday)  
MI DT Jonathan Hankins
MI LB Ishmael Thomas from Renaissance.

No: 
SC QB Cornelius Jones (rescheduled for summer camp)
OH OL Andrew Donnal
MD LB Josh Furman
OH DE Darryl Baldwin
FL CB Lorenza Wood

Maybe: 
TX QB Jeremy Johnson might show up. However, West Virginia sources are expecting a commit from him when he visits Morgantown next weekend.

Beacon Sports reports that OH LB Jewone Snow (son of former Michigan RB Garland Rivers) will be in attendance. No word on whether he’ll bring 2011 DE Steve Miller, also mentioned in that update, along with him to Ann Arbor. Miller is expected to be one of the top players in Ohio in the class of 2011. Snow plans to make an early decision, but I don’t think it will be for the Wolverines this weekend.

So, be on the lookout for all these guys at the spring game if you happen to have any interest.

Posted under Football, Recruiting

Recruiting Update 3-11-09

I was going to try and hold off a bit longer between recruiting posts, but with the latter half of this week likely stuffed full of baseball and (hopefully) basketball, this will run now. I’ve been forgetting to link it of late, so be sure to visit the 2010 Recruiting Board for all the updates.

Removal:
SC DB DeAndre Hopkins, who committed to Clemson, as predicted.

Standard Information:
OK QB DeMarco Cobbs has been offered by basically every school as a wideout, but Michigan is giving the likely 5-star a look at QB. He’s been added to the board, but not yet with an offer.

FL LB Jeff Luc is sporting a Michigan offer, and he can’t decide which National All-Star game in which he’d most like to participate. Florida is his favorite, but he plans to wait until at least fall before he makes a decision. Frequent commenter “i know nothing” also brings his video to my attention, which I present for your review:


The dude looks like a heck of a player, and a very violent presence at linebacker. His offer sheet and invitations to both HS All-Star games would speak to this, and Michigan would certainly love to have him.

Michigan has offered FL CB Spencer Boyd. The 5-10, 160-lber also plays running back in high school. Boyd plans to wait until after his senior season to make a final decision. He’s been added to the board. Speaking of Boyd, Jim Stefani gave his information on some of Michigan’s new offerees:

Spencer Boyd DB/RB/WR 5′10 165 4.31 Cape Coral Florida

One of the top junior DBs and RBs in Florida. I have him ranked as among the top 58 DBs in the nation. As a junior, despite being injured part of the year and playing in just 8 games, he had 104 carries for 620 yards, 30 tackles and a 104-yard INT return for a score. Projects as a college CB. Has very quick feet and exceptional change-of-direction. 225 bench, 385 squat as a sophomore. Honorable Mention All-U.S. Army Combine at DB. Impressive on the 2008 combine circuit (4.31 forty, 4.25 shuttle). Named a team captain as a junior. “He’s kind of like our Marshall Faulk – he does a little bit of everything,” [Head Coach] Goebbel said. “He has the speed to take the ball up the sideline and the power to run between the tackles. We can put him out at receiver and he can catch the ball and make things happen that way. “He’s really one of the best overall players around this area.”

Caleb Lavey LB 6′3 225 4.56 Celina Texas

I have him rated as among the top 25 LBs in the nation. As a junior LB he recorded almost 200 tackles, 5 sacks, 4 FFs and 2 FRs. Nice-sized linebacker who has a great frame and runs well. Good nose for the ball and instincts. 275 bench, 27 vertical. 3.9 GPA. His father attended Michigan and was an equipment manager for the football team. 6-3, 225. One of the top junior prospects at the 1A-3A Texas 7 on 7 Tournament…………..2007 1A-3A State Passing Tournament Top 33 Recruits.

D.J. Williamson WR/DB 6′1 180 4.45 Warren Harding Ohio

I have him ranked as among the top 75 WRs in the nation. Sophomore track times: 10.82 100 meters and he qualified for the state meet, 21.7 200 meters. Great speed and nice size for a receiver, Excels as a return man. 270 bench, 315 squat, 32 vertical

Jim has a ton more information on all three of these guys on his site (I’ve trimmed it down significantly), so go check it out if you’re interested. I’ve also added D.J. Williamson to the board. Per the Junior Day updates listed below, he plans to visit Ann Arbor for the Junior Day this weekend. Webb’s update gave the not-so-subtle implication that a commitment is highly likely while Williamson is in town, so be on the lookout. The internet scuttlebutt is that Williamson grew up a huge Michigan fan, and agrees with the “likely commitment” sentiment.

Now, a slight transition into Junior Day talk:
As was the case last year, Michigan’s first Junior Day of the year will coincide with the Night of Champions, a team-wide competition serving as the official end of winter conditioning, and therefore the beginning of spring practice. Of course, the junior day isn’t the first time Michigan has invited 2010 prospects to campus this year, and several players, such as Jerald Robinson (who offered his commitment), William Gholston, and Devin Gardner have already taken in basketball games in Crisler Arena.

So which players are planning to attend this weekend? As Josh Helmholdt reveals in the Free Press:

Among the in-state prospects who’ve stated they plan to attend are Detroit Southeastern defensive end William Gholston, Detroit Cass Tech cornerback Dior Mathis, Inkster quarterback Devin Gardner, Warren Fitzgerald linebacker Austin Gray, Charlevoix offensive lineman Bill Ivan and Orchard Lake St. Mary’s quarterback Robert Bolden.

Spartanburg, S.C., quarterback Cornelius Jones (6-2, 197 pounds) is one of those who is trying to work out a trip to Ann Arbor for the event. He was offered by U-M in January. Flower Mound (Tex.) Marcus running back Stephen Hopkins (6-0, 220) has also said he wants to visit Michigan that weekend.

(Ivan added to the recruiting board). There are also a few more recent updates:

  • Sam Webb said last Friday on WTKA that he also expects MI CB Mylan Hicks and MI DE CJ Olaniyan to make it in, but that Cornelius Jones probably won’t have a chance to visit until the spring game.
  • Monday, Sam’s WTKA recruiting update included information that DJ Williamson will attend (see above), and SC OL AJ Cann is also going to try to make it up for Junior Day, along with “a few guys from out in Western PA.” I assume that refers to CBs Cullen Christian and Brandon Ifill.
  • This Rivals header states that instate RB Austin White will be in attendance as well.

***UPDATE*** Gardner also plans to announce a commitment decision Monday, after (presumably) coming on the Ann Arbor visit. This can certainly be seen as a positive sign, though it’s not guaranteed that Devin Gardner will commit to Michigan.

Posted under Basketball, Coaching, Football, Recruiting

Recruiting Catch-up Post

Last week TheWolverine’s Josh Helmholdt had a recruiting chat on the Freep website, and I was aware of it but without anywhere to put it. So, I’ll dedicate a post to it, parsing out all the details I think are relevant.

Michigan definitely has a good shot at Inkster QB Devin Gardner. He dropped Ohio State this past week and that was the team he grew up following, so that increases Michigan’s chances that much more. Right now they have a better shot of landing Gardner than [Robert] Bolden. I personally like Gardner’s upside best. He truly does have some of the characteristics that made Terrelle Pryor the No. 1 recruit coming out of HS in the 2008 class. Gardner is also one of the QB prospects who Michigan has the best chance of landing.

I spoke with Austin [Gray] last night and Michigan is definitely high on his radar. Michigan State and Illinois look to be on the verge of offering and Indiana, Toledo, CMU and others already have. He is not listing an outright favorite right now

I was down in Florida with Marvin [Robinson] last week, and I still feel good Michigan is the team to beat. Several others in Florida agree with me on that.

William [Gholston] did favor MSU and really still does, but he has been adamant in the last couple weeks that he does not want to make an early commitment because he has not visited very many schools.

Gholston, Derrick Bryant and Darryl Baldwin from Solon, Ohio, [are the main targets] at defensive end. At DT, there is a kid in Georgia they are taking a look at, but all in all the talent nationally at that position is weak this year. Most of those offers will come later in the process.

[Regarding adding players to the 2009 class] They took a look at Carolina ATH Larry Raper, but have not offered. There are a few three and four-star guys still left uncommitted and if they can get in with one of them, then maybe they add one more. I keep in close contact with Raper, and he has not been offered yet by Michigan. As the days go on, there is less of a chance he does get that offer. The lack of available talent at the DT left in the 2009 class makes it unlikely they will add another one in the 2009 class.

I really believe [Nick Hill] will [end up in Michigan's class] Joe, and likely even before Michigan’s summer camp. Hill is short (5-6), but he has such unique abilities and brings more to the table than most HS backs. I am really high on Hill and rank him as one of the top 5 players in the state for 2010.

Most of that falls in the range of “not at all surprising if you pay attention,” but it’s still worth noting when there’s good recruiting content for free.Michigan State has since offered Gray, and I’ll try to sleuth out who the Georgia DT is.

And while I’m catching up on old recruiting information that wasn’t likely to end up having a home, DocSat talked most successful recruiting schools over the past two classes, and it’s pretty encouraging for Michigan fans:

Bama has reeled in 40 players rated four or five-stars by Rivals over the last two Signing Days. By comparison, the only other schools with more than 30 are USC and Michigan, with 31.

The big difference for Michigan, of course, is the lack of 5-star guys. USC and Bama have 6 and 7, respectively, while the Wolverines have only 1. Hopefully, more success on the field will allow the coaching staff to continue and accelerate the super-positive recruiting momentum they’ve managed to gain despite a 3-9 year.

Posted under Coaching, Football, Recruiting

Recruiting Update 2-13-09

Jim Stefani has a few QBs of interest to add to the recruiting board:

Barry Brunetti QB 6′1 206 4.65 Memphis University School Tennessee
Anthony Gonzalez QB/DB 6′2 193 Bethlehem Liberty Pennsylvania
Ricardo Young QB/ATH 6′0 155 4.78 Washington Woodson D.C.
Kain Colter QB/WR/DB 6′1 185 4.60 Greenwood Village Cherry Creek Colorado
Gavin Webster QB/DB 6′0 200 4.45 Lutcher Louisiana
Santez Emory QB 6′3 200 4.57 Franklin Heard County Georgia

…and also some good information on a few guys who are already there, so check out the article.

GA QB Barry Bostic has been offered by Georgia Tech, and they are his new leader (info in header).

Fluff on 2009 WR Commit Cameron Gordon, which also mentions his class of 2010 teammate, QB Devin Gardner:

Next year it will be Devin Gardner’s turn to celebrate his college choice with the Inkster faithful. The Vikings’ star quarterback could be throwing passes to Gordon at U-M or be the opposition if Gardner chooses to attend Ohio State, a school so high on him that head coach Jim Tressel visited recently and watched Gardner play in Inkster’s basketball game against Wyandotte Roosevelt…

“I was pretty excited at first,” said the 6-foot-5, 200-pound Gardner of the Tressel visit. “My heart was beating really fast, but as the game went on I just settled down and played within the team. I like basketball, but football is my first love.

Despite Tressel’s visit, Gardner is still not sporting an Ohio State offer.

The “other” instate QB, OLSM’s Robert Bolden, was recently the feature of an article by Sam Webb in the Detroit News. It’s pretty clear that Gardner is probably a higher priority for the staff (and with good reason), but Bolden might be a good fallback guy in the class.

The Free Press has an early in-state top-10 for next recruiting year, and The Sporting News had a national top-10 like substance. Gardner is on both lists, and Bolden is on the former while FL WR Commit Ricardo Miller is on the latter. From the former, I’ve added MI RB Chris Robinson from Ovid-Elsie to the Recruiting Board.

While we’re on the topic of early top-X lists, how about top-30 offerings from two of the biggest football counties in south Florida. Broward top-30, and Miami-Dade top-30.

Some Rivals fluff on VA QB Phillip Sims, who is still not mentioning Michigan (though he does talk about West Virginia). With his insistence on playing in a pro-style scheme, and no mention of the Wolverines yet, his tenure on the board may be close to coming to an end.

Posted under Football, Recruiting