Monday, February 25, 2013
Big Visit Weekend Reactions
Michigan hosted 11 recruits over the weekend and secured at least one verbal commitment out of the bunch while several others seemed to float home from Ann Arbor. The weekend was a huge success and the recruiting machine that is Hoke and Co. continues to roll.
LB - Michael Ferns - St. Clairsville High School - St. Clairsville, OH
With Ferns already being committed his main job this weekend was as a recruiter. His Project 135 idea has gotten national attention and it definitely had an impact on several of the visitors as you could see from the Twitter pictures inside the locker room. This kid is an intelligent leader and an invaluable part of the class.
QB - Wilton Speight - The Collegiate School - Richmond, VA
Speight was also in full recruiting mode and his main target was WR Drake Harris. Speight told me that he and Harris formed an outstanding bond over the weekend and actually talked about rooming together. Harris remains loosely committed to Michigan State but I think Speight will win him over in due time.
OL - Mason Cole - East Lake High School - Tarpon Springs, FL
Cole didn't arrive in Ann Arbor as a commit but many people thought he'd be one when he left. Last night I asked Cole why he didn't commit while he was in Ann Arbor and he said, "There's always tomorrow." Lo and behold, today Cole is a Wolverine. He said he wanted to talk it over with his coach and once he did that, he knew he was meant to be at Michigan.
LB - Kyle Berger - St. Ignatius High School - Cleveland, OH
Berger told me, "I loved my visit. I had a great time spending time with Coach Mattison and seeing all of the facilities. Meeting all of the coaches was great." The last time Kyle and I spoke he said he wanted to compare Michigan to Ohio State; he had this to say after visiting both schools. "I loved both schools. I had great visits at both places and I could see myself playing at either school. I think it's going to come down to spring practices and seeing how the coaches coach and all that." Berger plans on going the pre-med route in school so to me the decision is crystal clear.
WR - Drake Harris - Grand Rapids Christian - Grand Rapids, MI
Harris spent a lot of time with Wilton Speight and as I mentioned earlier, the two of them even talked about rooming together at Michigan. Harris was tweeting like crazy during and after the visit with all positive things about the Wolverines. He also stopped by the WTKA studio to talk with Sam Webb. Needless to say he enjoyed himself while in Ann Arbor and I still think he becomes a Wolverine when it's all said and done.
RB - Elijah Hood - Charlotte Christian - Charlotte, NC
Hood was absolutely blown away by the experience at Michigan. He told me that he was so high on Michigan that he'd put them at #1 on his list while he was still there. Today he has toned that down a bit but he now has the Wolverines at #2 behind Notre Dame and ahead of #3 Ohio State. Hood did tell me that the Ohio State visit was "not the same" as the Michigan visit. He said it was "just not the same type of coaches, people, or atmosphere at OSU." Most feel Hood will end up in South Bend but Michigan has climbed up his list very quickly. Having Derrick Green in the fold may deter him just enough to steer clear of Ann Arbor in the end.
DE - Lawrence Marshall - Southfield High School - Southfield, MI
Marshall told me that his visit to Michigan was great but didn't really go into as much detail as some of the others. I haven't been able to get a very good read on Marshall yet and given the fact that he was once committed to the Buckeyes, I'm not sure how much he "loves" Michigan. Coach Hoke and staff want passionate Wolverines and I don't get that vibe from Marshall.
DE - Malik McDowell - Detroit Loyola High School - Detroit, MI
McDowell was the only prospect I was unable to get in touch with but I think Michigan has done well with the potential top in-state player. He plans to visit again at some point and I think the Wolverines have a very good shot with him. (I found out Malik's phone died and he left his charger at school. I should be talking with him tomorrow.)
ATH - George Campbell - East Lake High School - Tarpon Spring, FL
Campbell will be a very tough get out of the state of Florida as he already holds nearly 15 offers, a total which will more than likely double at least by the time he commits. He told me that the visit went very well and it definitely helped Michigan's chance, but he is nowhere near committing at this point. I do think it was big getting him on campus this early and that may bode well for return trips in the future, especially now that his teammate, Mason Cole is committed.
DB - Brian Cole - Saginaw Heritage High School - Saginaw, MI
Cole came away from his visit very excited as he now officially has an offer from the Wolverines. A few weeks back the coaching staff basically told him that if he visited he'd be offered or he could be offered next year once he hit his junior season. I'm not really sure why that matters but it doesn't seem to at this point as he now holds an offer. I genuinely believe Cole will choose Michigan when he decides.
DB - Shaun Crawford - St. Edward High School - Lakewood, OH
Crawford may be one of the next 2015 prospects to receive an offer and he loves the Wolverines already. He told me that his visit went great and he loved the experience. In his own words, "They're really high on my list! I have Tennessee #1 mainly because they've offered but Michigan is right there. I feel the Michigan offer will come soon though." More than likely these 2015 kids are a long way from committing but when Crawford does I expect Michigan to be thoroughly in the mix.