Sunday, March 17, 2013

Weekend Visitor Reactions 3/16-3/17

Michigan hosted several prospects this weekend headlined by the #1 recruit in the country, Da'Shawn Hand.  Hand is getting most of the attention, for good reason, but there were several other talented young men on campus that have a very real chance in choosing the Wolverines.  I was able to talk with almost all of them to see how their visits went.

LB - Michael Ferns - St. Clairsville High School (St. Clairsville, OH)  Ferns is obviously already in the fold for the 2014 class but he still makes visits as a recruiter and also just to maintain a relationship with his future coaches.  He told me that the weekend was great for him personally and that he worked hard on Da'Shawn Hand.  He said he feels Michigan is "definitely up there" for Hand's top team.  Ferns will continue to try to convince Hand to become a member of Team 135.

LB - Kyle Berger - St. Ignatius High School (Cleveland, OH)  Berger has frequented Ann Arbor a few times in the past couple of months and I truly believe its a two horse race between the Wolverines and Buckeyes for his services.  Berger really enjoyed himself this time being able to take in a practice which is something he really wanted to do.  He said, "I had a good time.  Practice was so cool to get to see.  The energy of the coaches definitely stuck out.  They just were bouncing all over the field, running with the players and things like that.  They were intense too.  I really enjoyed watching the practice."  I asked Berger about his relationship and interaction with his position coach, newly hired Roy Manning.  "Yeah, he was all over the field.  He was running just as much as the players. (Laughs).  He would be my position coach since they are recruiting me as a SAM LB.  My dad and I got to sit down and talk with him for about 20 minutes after practice and just got to know each other.  It went really well.  I actually met him when he recruited me at Cincinnati but he's perfect for the job, he's a great guy."  Berger also told me that the current situation at Ohio State will not affect his decision at all as he doesn't even know that much about it. 

OL - Tommy Doles - Grand Rapids Christian High School (Grand Rapids - MI)  Doles is still my pick to be the next recruit to commit, but he is a very heady kid who is taking his time to make the right decision.  He told me about the visit, "The visit went well.  It was good to see the practice and see the coaches in action.  I had a good time."  Doles plans on definitely visiting Northwestern but he hasn't scheduled it just yet.  There are also some other under-the-radar schools he is interested in right now.  "Army and Air Force offered me recently and there is a chance I might be able to see West Point over spring break but I'm not sure yet.  I have always been interested in the Armed Forces and the academies.  I just recently heard from the academies for football and I am open to learning more about that."  Even with the other interests from top notch academic institutions, Doles openly said that Michigan is still his leader.

TE - Nic Weishar - Maris High School (Midlothian, IL)  Weishar is another prospect I could see dropping for the Wolverines at some point, but not just yet.  He spent the entire weekend in Ann Arbor during his visit and told me that his visit went really well.  He told me that he and his parents thoroughly enjoyed themselves and he bonded really well with the players.  I asked Nic about the vibe during the first practice of the year, "They really got after it for the first practice of the year. It was intense and ran at a pretty high tempo."  Weishar was supposed to visit last weekend but he changed it to this weekend so he could stay with a player now that they've returned from spring break.  The coaches paired him up with Blake Bars citing similar personalities and an ability get along.  "The coaches just felt we'd get along really well and we did. He's also trying to get into the business school which is what I would probably do as well."  The coaches obviously set him up for an enjoyable visit and I asked him how Michigan ranked for him now after the visit. "Their combination of great academics and a rich football tradition is really special so I will definitely be staying in touch with Michigan for awhile. I'm still trying to figure it all out and will probably start to narrow my list down after I take some more visits this spring. It's still early to tell but I really enjoyed my visit and enjoyed learning about what Michigan has to offer."

DL - Malik McDowell - Loyola High School (Detroit, MI)  McDowell is the one recruit I haven't heard back from.  Malik isn't much of a talker, but if I hear back from him I will add him in separately.

ATH/WR - Brian Cole - Saginaw Heritage High School (Saginaw, MI) - 2015  Brian Cole actually did not make the trip to Ann Arbor as a basketball tournament got in the way.  He was only scheduled to make it for the Tom Lemming photo shoot, which he has now rescheduled to participate in at Notre Dame.  He does not see another Michigan visit in his immediate future.

17 comments:

  1. Great job CB3. Thanks for the update and thanks for putting in the work. We all appreciate it.

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  2. What is the current investigation at Ohio State? Have I missed something?

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    1. Some players have supposedly been involved in rape allegations.

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  3. I always knew there was something rapey about that program

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  4. Whats the big deal with this Tom Lemming photo shoot?

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  5. Great info CB, thanks! As Jer says, we appreciate your work.

    Overall it appears to have been a productive weekend. As calculated as Hand is, I think his tweets and early reactions are a good sign.

    As for McDowell, do you know if he interacts well (or at all) with other recruits on all of these visits he takes, or does he typically go it alone? Or even with the coaches for that matter. Just curious. Has he taken an "Official" visit yet or only unofficial "hang out" sessions? It seems like his visits are all informal and without much of a plan. It's unfortunate, since he could likely get much more out of them with a plan. I don't want to speculate too much, but I hope there's someone in his life helping guide him through this important process. A mentor of sorts.

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  6. I really hope we can land Berger. I think if he visits again before May,we will get him.

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  7. Berger is headed to Columbus this weekend. If he doesn't visit UM again I'm afraid he will be headed to Ohio.

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    1. If I remember right he grew up a big time Ohio fan so I can't blame him if he did commit to them. But I believe he is taking a final look at Ohio just to make sure UM is the place for him. Either way I think he will being committing soon.

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  8. I wouldn't necessarily turn Berger away, but as far as I'm concerned we have Ohio's top LB and top individual in terms of character, in Michael Ferns.

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    1. I think Berger is Blue in the end. The kid is just about everything the coaches want in a LB. Smart, good speed, great instinct and from what I has read a very good leader. Can you imagine both Ferns and Berger recruiting Ohio for the next 10 months? Goods things would come from this.

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  9. Interesting how 247 sports has Donte Booker ranked at #50 nationaly, and Ferns at #157...Rivals has Ferns #84 & Booker #99. Big Gap.

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  10. It would be awesome to get Berger,Hand,McDowell and Marshall all tho I highly doubt it happens.

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  11. How many LB's are we targeting in 2014? Hopefully 2 tops.
    Here's my best case:
    D-Line: Hand & McDowell at DE
    Mone & Andrew Brown at DT
    LB: Ferns & Kenny Young to establish some Texas contact (Berger as backup or 3rd LB, maybe young could be converted to Safety)
    CB: Peppers & Westphal (hoped for Webb, I think he will be really good)
    S: Erick Smith or some current unknown (wanted Blanding, but that ship has sailed)
    O-Line: Cole, Braden Smith, Alex Bars
    TE: Bunting
    WR: Harris & Scott
    QB: Speight

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    1. And I almost forgot... Although it's a long shot at this point, I think Elijah Hood is going to be special, and would be great if we landed that young man.
      Physically, I like him almost as much as Derrick Green. However, Green looks to be the total package in terms of physicality, character, work ethic etc.

      But could you imagine a combo of Green & Hood in the backfield?
      I wouldn't even bother throwing the football. Plus we could save $700k/ year since we would no longer need an Offensive Coordinator.

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  12. I would add Corey Holmes at wr too. I would swap out Peppers for Adoree' Jackson.

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    1. I agree with Adoree' Jackson, just not sure if we are on his short list.
      Corey Holmes would be cool too.
      What do you think about this KJ Williams kid. At 6'2" 190 he looks pretty strong, and would be a nice complement to the taller thinner Drake Harris.

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