May 7, 2012

2013 Recruiting Needs: Updated May 7

Michigan last landed a football recruit April 10, bringing U-M up to 17 commitments for the Class of 2013. Most projections have the Wolverines taking another five to seven prospects, and here's where they could still use them ...







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2008 Scholi Chart

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style="font-weight: bold; color: rgb(246, 246, 248);">2013
Scholarship
Distribution Chart



2013
Commitments


Rs-Freshman or
Soph.


Sophomores

Juniors

Senior
Eligibility

QB

Shane
Morris



Russell
Bellomy (26)



Devin
Gardner (49)
TB

Deveon
Smith


Drake
Johnson (1)

Dennis Norfleet (2)

Justice
Hayes (27)




Thomas Rawls (34)
Fitzgerald
Toussaint (50)



FB

Wyatt
Shallman

Sione
Houma (3)





Stephen
Hopkins
(51)
WR

Jaron
Dukes


Amara
Darboh (4)

Jehu Chesson (5)







Jerald Robinson
(35)






Jeremy
Gallon (52)

Jeremy
Jackson
53)

Drew
Dileo
(54)



TE

Khalid
Hill

Jake Butt


Devin
Funchess (6)

A.J. Williams (7)



Ricardo Miller
(36)

Jordan
Paskorz
(37)



OL

Logan
Tuley-Tillman

Chris Fox

Kyle Bosch

David Dawson

Patrick Kugler

Erik
Magnuson (8)

Ben Braden (9)

Blake Bars (10)

Kyle Kalis (11)

Chris
Bryant (28)

Jack
Miller (29)






Taylor
Lewan (55)

Michael Schofield (56)
CB

Jourdan
Lewis

Gareon Conley

Terry
Richardson (12)







style="font-style: italic;">Blake
Countess (38)

Raymon
Taylor
(39)

Delonte
Hollowell (40)


Courtney
Avery
(57)

Terrence Talbott (58)
S

Dymonte
Thomas

Allen
Gant (13)

Jarrod Wilson (14)

Jeremy Clark (15)

Tamani
Carter (30)




Josh Furman
(41)




Marvin
Robinson
(59)

Thomas Gordon (60)

LB

Mike
McCray

Ben Gedeon

Royce
Jenkins-Stone (16)

Joe Bolden (17)

James Ross (18)

Kaleb Ringer (19)

Antonio
Poole (31)



Jake Ryan
(42)

Desmond
Morgan (43)



Cameron
Gordon (61)


Mike Jones (62)



DE

Taco
Charlton



Chris
Wormley (20)


Mario Ojemudia (21)

Tom Strobel (22)

Matthew Godin (23)

Keith
Heitzman (32)






Brennen
Beyer (44)


Frank Clark (45)





DT



Ondre
Pipkins (24)

Willie Henry (25)

Chris Rock (33)Ken Wilkins
(46)


Richard
Ash
(47)

Jibreel
Black
(63)

Quinton
Washington (64)
K/P







Matt
Wile (48)
Brendan
Gibbons (65)

Will
Hagerup
(66)


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Michigan is currently committed to 66 players for 2013. Safeties
Josh Furman and Tamani Carter, rumored to
be potential departures, both finished out the spring with the Maize
and Blue and should be back next fall. For U-M to offer more than
the 19 scholarships at its current disposal, with 17 already spoken
for, a few players will have to leave the program. While we will not
guess at who could be gone, there are candidates on this list.



So far, U-M has landed players at:



QB: 1


RB: 2


WR: 1


TE: 2


OL: 5


LB: 2


CB: 2


S: 1


DE: 1




Though the Maize and Blue technically only have two left to give, we
believe there will be at least four to seven more scholarships
available, and with those, they are targeting:




RB: 1
WR: 1-2
DT: 1-2
DE: 0-1
DB: 1-2




For now, this is what the current state of the team looks like, and
here is an updated comprehensive look at U-M's needs for 2013.



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Quarterback





2013
Quarterbacks:
2

Commitments: 1

Need on Feb. 2: 1

Need on Feb. 20: 0

Need on May 7: 0



Though the emergence of redshirt freshman Russell Bellomy in the
spring was good news, junior Devin Gardner spent his share of
practice reps at wide receiver, and it isn't entirely farfetched
that if Gardner were to excel at the receiver post in 2012 that he
would be a strong candidate to stay put in 2013. If that is indeed
the case, U-M would find itself significantly short on quarterback
competitors, reduced only to Bellomy and true freshman Shane Morris.




Morris has performed well at recent combines, providing the Michigan
staff greater comfort that he will be a standout, perhaps as early
as his rookie year, but the simple fact is that the depth for the 2013
season is not ideal. Even if Gardner returns to QB, that leaves just
three signal-callers, including a true freshman. It's a bit of a
gamble, yet one it seems the Wolverines are willing to take because
they are not actively recruiting other quarterbacks in this class.



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Running
Back






2013
Running
Backs:
7

Commitments: 2

Need on Feb. 2: 1-2

Need on Feb. 20: 1

Need on May 7: 0



Can you say loaded? Michigan has more running backs than it knows
what to do with, and certainly from looking at the nine Wolverines
slated to compete for carries at tailback and fullback in 2013, one
could jump to the conclusion that someone will likely flee for a
greater opportunity. It's still too early to say that will
definitively be the case, however.



Of the nine, U-M has six at tailback, with Stephen Hopkins, Sione
Houma and Wyatt Shallman all pegged as fullback types. Still, there
is a glut at that position, and not only that, there is a bevy of
talents to be developed. Redshirt junior Fitz Toussaint is the star
of the group, but sophomore Thomas Rawls is on the rise, redshirt
freshman Justice Hayes showed promise in the spring, and the coaches
are excited to see what rookie Drake Johnson can do this fall.



The Maize and Blue don't need to add a running back to this stable.
They have a solid every-down back already committed in Deveon Smith.
However, Michigan is still actively recruiting four-stars Derrick
Green and Ty Isaac, hoping to land one of the two tailbacks. Why are
they still in pursuit? Largely because those two offer the promise
of the one thing U-M's current roster is missing -- the total
package.
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Wide
Receiver






2013
Wide
Receivers:
6

Commitments: 1

Need on Feb. 2: 3

Need on Feb. 20: 3

Need on May 7: 2



While Michigan is in good position at quarterback and tailback, and
at least should have a solid starting five along the offensive line,
both wide receiver and tight end are significant question marks
heading into the fall. At wideout, U-M returns just five scholarship
veterans while welcoming rookies Jehu Chesson and Amara Darboh. A
year from now, the Wolverines will return six players and have a
commitment from Jaron Dukes. In sum, Michigan will have seven wide
receiver options in 2013, and that simply isn't enough.



Dukes committed on Feb. 22, filling one of three needs the Maize and
Blue have at the position. Four-star Laquon Treadwell is still up
for grabs (though U-M's once firm hold on his commitment is now
tenuous) as are four-stars Devon Allen and Sebastian Larue, however,
two of Michigan's coveted targets -- Eldridge Massington (USC) and
Marcell Ateman (Oklahoma State) -- have been gobbled up in recent
weeks. The Wolverines will find someone to add to the class, but
they need difference-makers that can create separation at the line
of scrimmage, emerge as deep threats and catch the key third downs
and touchdowns that big-time playmakers do.



With few gaping needs at other positions, Michigan can focus its
attention on the receiver position, and depending on how many
scholarships it has to allot before the 2013 class is wrapped up,
could sign two more. In search of both depth and talent, U-M needs
to do just that.
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Tight
End






2013
Tight
Ends:
4

Commitments: 2

Need on Feb. 2: 2

Need on Feb. 20: 0

Need on May 7: 0-1



Like at receiver, Michigan is lacking in numbers and proven
performers. This season, the Wolverines are likely resigned to the
fact that they just don't have the dual-threat tight end -- the
blocker and receiver -- to employ one consistently. It is why rumors
of redshirt sophomore Ricardo Miller's move back to wideout have
gained traction ... because U-M simply may not use a tight end that
often, and Miller, like incoming freshman Devin Funchess, can be
split out wide in a three- and four-receiver look.



Another rookie, A.J. Williams, could be the answer, but he'll have
to develop quickly, showing the mental and physical strength to be
able to handle a role along the line of scrimmage.



The all-around athlete Michigan covets won't arrive until the 2013
class does when four-star Jake Butt dons the winged helmet. He
boasts the complete game the rest of the Maize and Blue's ends are
missing, and is one of two tight ends committed. Two should be
enough, but if Miller does end up at receiver, and Funchess plays a
similar role, it might not be a bad idea to add a third tight end to
the class. However, it doesn't appear U-M is seeking to do so.
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Offensive
Line






2013
Offensive
Linemen:
8

Commitments: 5

Need on Feb. 2: 5

Need on Feb. 20: 1

Need on May 7: 0



Michigan returns just seven scholarship linemen this fall, giving
the Wolverines very little wiggle room in case injuries or
ineffectiveness flare up. The latter already has, with redshirt
sophomore Joey Burzynski beating out a pair of scholarship linemen
for the starting left guard position in the spring. The two he
usurped -- fifth-year senior Elliott Mealer and redshirt freshman
Chris Bryant -- have to get their act together, and quickly, if
they're going to challenge for the starting job in the fall.



This August, four freshmen arrive to enter the mix, lending
competition and depth, but they cannot be expected to contribute at
a position that rarely does, even in today's college football.
Five-star Kyle Kalis might have no other choice, but if U-M can
redshirt him, and his three classmates, it will try to do so.



In 2013, the Maize and Blue will again be thin up front, with only
eight scholarship linemen expected back. Knowing that, Michigan
targeted dozens of hogmollies and scooped up five four-stars in one
week's time, from Feb. 18-25. With all four in the fold, U-M does
not need to add another lineman to this class, and, has in fact,
passed on a few players that still would have loved to join the
class.
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Cornerbacks





2013
Cornerbacks:
6

Commitments: 2

Need on Feb. 2: 2

Need on Feb. 20: 1

Need on May 7: 0



It's stunning to recall how desperate Michigan was in 2010, with injuries to Troy
Woolfolk and J.T. Floyd, in turning to three true freshmen to play
meaningful minutes at cornerback. Two years later, two of those
players remain -- juniors Courtney Avery and Terrence Talbott -- and
both are expected to compete for nickel and dime jobs this fall. At
the starting corners, Floyd, now a senior, and sophomore Blake
Countess will vie to become the Big Ten's best tandem, while
sophomores Delonte Hollowell and Raymon taylor, and true freshman
Terry Richardson, also look to carve out their niches.



That's a lot of options and a lot of depth. Of those seven, six will
be back in 2013 if all goes according to plan, so there wasn't a
pressing need to sign multiple cornerbacks. That didn't stop
Michigan, operating out of a position of strength, to snag four-star
Jourden Lewis and promising prospect Gareon Conley. U-M is still in
the mix for five-star Kendall Fuller, but certainly won't be ruined
if he chooses to play his football elsewhere.



The truth is, the Wolverines are well-stocked at cornerback now, in
2013, and for the foreseeable future. 

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Safety





2013
Safeties:
7

Commitments: 1

Need on Feb. 2: 0

Need on Feb. 20: 0

Need on May 7: 0



There is no reason to add another safety to the mix, however,
Michigan would not say no to five-star Su'a Cravens if the
Californian wanted to commit. But like at cornerback, U-M doesn't
have a need at the position, not with seven scholarship safeties set
to return in 2013, including 2011 starter Thomas Gordon, and a
commitment from four-star Dymonte Thomas already.



Both Furman and Carter were threats to vacate their scholarships,
but didn't, putting even less of an onus on attracting another
safety to the class. The simple fact is Michigan may have too many
already, with eight in the fold at a post that only starts two
players.



For Cravens to commit, and for the Maize and Blue to accept his
commitment, Michigan must either fill its remaining needs at more
pressing positions, or know it won't, providing the freedom to grab
a talent that would otherwise go someplace else.  
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Linebacker





2013
Linebackers:
9

Commitments: 2

Need on Feb. 2: 2

Need on Feb. 20: 2

Need on May 7: 0



What once was a position overflowing with bodies, linebacker looks a
little more manageable with a pair of position moves (out of the
spot) and the departure of Isaiah Bell. U-M is now three-deep at
linebacker for 2013, if all four incoming freshmen stay at the post.
We know two will for sure, as both Joe Bolden and Kaleb Ringer got
an early start on their Michigan careers and performed well in
spring practice. As for classmates James Ross and Royce
Jenkins-Stone ... they will get their opportunity in fall camp.



The Maize and Blue have already landed two commitments in the 2013
class, from four-stars (and Ohioans) Mike McCray and Ben Gedeon.
They passed on Dorian O'Daniel even though the four-star seemingly
wanted to come to Michigan, which proves U-M has closed up shop on
linebackers. With one exception -- the Wolverines were willing to
accept a pledge from four-star E.J. Levenberry, who might have been
the most explosive athlete (with the greatest promise) of any
linebacker recruited during Hoke's three recruiting classes.



With Levenberry off to Florida State, though, Michigan's linebacker
class is complete.

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Defensive
End






2013
Defensive
Ends:
6

Commitments: 1

Need on Feb. 2: 2

Need on Feb. 20: 0-1

Need on May 7: 0-1



Michigan is set up for success at both the weakside (rush) end
position and at strongside end for the foreseeable future. At
weakside, U-M will pit sophomores Frank Clark and Brennen Beyer
against each other this fall. Both will play, though, as both offer
a skillset that should pay dividends for the Maize and Blue.
Michigan is also welcoming Mario Ojemudia in this fall to play that
position while in the 2013 class, Taco Charlton is committed for
WDE.



At strongside end, senior Craig Roh will handle the spot this fall
while redshirt freshman Keith Heitzman had an outstanding spring and
is poised to succeed Roh. Classmate Chris Rock is also a capable
five-technique (though we have him listed inside) while true
freshmen Chris Wormley, Tom Strobel and Matt Godin will likely
compete some at SDE. Redshirt junior Nathan Brink, who is following
in a long line of walk-ons-turned-starters, will also be around for
the next two seasons.



With eight players on the roster, Michigan doesn't need to sign
another defensive end in this class, however, the Wolverines are
still in on Christian Lacouture and Joe Mathis. Neither will make or
break the position, but both would be welcome additions, if other
needs are met.
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Defensive
Tackle






2013
Defensive
Tackles:
7

Commitments: 0

Need on Feb. 2: 2

Need on Feb. 20: 1-2

Need on May 7: 1-2



Despite positive reports this spring, especially concerning senior
Will Campbell, the interior of Michigan's line is still a question
mark. Campbell has never proven himself over the long haul and
junior Jibreel Black, undersized, has just moved in from the
position. The good news is there is depth. The bad news is that
depth is also terribly inexperienced.



Going forward, if some of the tackles begin performing, U-M will be
in good shape. Black is eligible for another season, as is nose
tackle Quinton Washington. Tackles Richard Ash and Ken Wilkins are
redshirt sophomores, Rock is a redshirt freshman, and true freshmen
Ondre Pipkins and Willie Henry will begin practicing in August.
Overall, that's seven tackles expected back in 2013.



However, predicting success at nose and defensive tackle is often
the hardest forecast for coaches, thus the more-the-merrier approach
is encouraged. And judging by the number of DTs U-M is still
actively involved in, it seems the coaches would agree. Four-star
Henry Poggi is No. 1 on the board, but Michigan is also in the hunt
for Eddie Vanderdoes, Scott Pagano and Rod Crayton. 
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Specialists






2013 Specialists: 3

Commitments: 0

Need on Feb. 2: 0

Need on Feb. 20: 0

Need on May 7: 0



Unless something were to happen this fall to Brendan Gibbons, Will
Hagerup and/or Matt Wile, there is no need to sign another
specialist. And even if something did occur, U-M has insurance in
three players -- Gibbons a kicker, Hagerup a punter and Wile
both. 




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