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December 14, 2012Michigan's coaching staff is hosting a number of official visitors this weekend - and even a newer name on the radar as an unofficial visitor. What's in store for the weekend and beyond?
The commitsJust like last year, the vast majority of Michigan's commitments will be on campus together for a post-season visit weekend. The Class of 2012 consistently mentioned their trip last year as a bonding experience, and a good chance to get to know each other before arriving on campus.
Three commits enrolled early last year (Ohioans Jarrod Wilson, Kaleb Ringer, and Joe Bolden), and that number will increase to six in the 2013 group. Those six players will have a chance to acquaint themselves with the campus where they'll be moving in just three weeks from now. They'll take care of some of their orientations duties - especially important since all except Taco Charlton (who turned down an invitation to the Semper Fidelis All-America Game) will spend the first week of January going through national all-star games.
As for those who don't enroll early, they may be visiting officially this weekend, but expect many of them - especially those who live within driving distance of Ann Arbor - to return a few more times in the winter and spring.
A re-commit?Detroit Cass Tech offensive lineman David Dawson was a Michigan commit for eight months, picking the Wolverines Feb. 18 and decommitting Oct. 14. He was off the table for about a month following his decommitment, but has made nice with the Michigan staff and earned a re-offer.
Now, Dawson will be taking his official visit with 20 players that he once bonded with as future teammates. As long as there aren't too many hurt feelings between Dawson and the commits that stuck with their pledges throughout, there's a good chance that he ends up back in the class. He maintains that he would like to officially visit Alabama and Ohio State before coming to a final decision.
So, are the Wolverines on commitment watch for Dawson this week? It depends on whether he wants to forego those other two official visits. Remember, his first commitment was doomed because he wanted to see other schools - would he (again) risk losing his spot after experiencing tangible consequences?
I would keep an eye on the four-star this weekend, but even if he doesn't commit, it's not necessarily a sign that he can't end up in the U-M class later.
Elsewhere-commitsTwo visitors this weekend are committed to other schools. Arvada (Colo.) Ralston valley offensive lineman Dan Skipper is pledged to Tennessee, but with the unsettled situation in Knoxville, he's also considering other options. The 6-10, 295-pounder is a huge, mobile offensive lineman who could add to Michigan's strength up front. Imagine a pair of starting tackles in the 2015 season standing 6-10 and 6-9 (2014 commit Denzel Ward).
The other elsewhere-committed visitor is not one who will take an official trip, but he'll swing through campus on an unofficial. Detroit Cass Tech safety Delano Hill pledge to Iowa over the summer, and Michigan hadn't shown much interest. Now, the Wolverines have offered, and he'll stop by for Friday's football practice. If he likes what he sees, it could lead to another visit and continued consideration of Michigan down the road. Should Dawson re-pledge to Michigan - either this weekend or later in the process - it would be a big boost with his good friend Hill.
Etc.This weekend's visitors aren't the only ones with great chances of ending up in the Michigan class. In fact, two of the top prospects left on the board have already taken their official trips to Michigan.
Five-star running back Derrick Green has named Michigan a leader, and the Wolverines are in good shape, even when he finishes out his final three official visits. While he's no lock to end up in Ann Arbor, it's better to be looking down at the competition than trying to climb to the top.
Five-star safety Leon McQuay III has Michigan still in the mix, but not in as strong a position as does Green. McQuay likes Vanderbilt and USC as well, and has hosted coaches from all three schools in the past week. This weekend, he's taking a trip out to Los Angeles for his USC official, and the recruiting picture should start to clear for him shortly. He plans to enroll early at the school of his choice, so a decision in late December (or an announcement at the Under Armour All-America Game in St. Petersburg Jan. 4) should be coming.
Other prospects - such as Corona (Calif.) Centennial offensive lineman Cameron Hunt or Trotwood (Ohio) Madison cornerback Reon Dawson - could stay on the table pending the outcomes of decisions that seem to be coming sooner.
As always, thanks for visiting TheWolverine.com. Stay tuned for the latest in the world of Michigan football recruiting. That's especially true on a commitment watch weekend, so stick around.