2014 Rivals250 Live Chat: Michigan Highlights

Comment From Nate
How does the midwest look to be standning in terms of the amount of possible "250" talent in the 2014 class?
Josh Helmholdt: Nate- Midwest is starting off a little down in 2014 and the big reason is the state of Ohio just does not have the depth of top end talent we are used to seeing. Illinois is up, Wisconsin has a solid crop of talent, but Ohio, Michigan and even Indiana are a little down
Josh Helmholdt: Still, there were 32 Midwest prospects in the initial Rivals250 release, which is close to the number the region has in 2013 right now. But Ohio leads the way in the Midwest and where it goes the region usually goes
Comment From Guest
With michigan lacking in top skill position players (besides QB) in the last 2-3 classes, do the wolverines look to have a better chance at some top RB and WR in the 2014 class?
Josh Helmholdt: Guest - The Midwest, which is Michigan's recruiting home base, is really deep in wide receiver talent and has a good offering of running back talent in 2014 so Michigan has a chance to make some noise at those positions with this class.
Comment From Kevin
What did you all see in Kentucky prospect Drew Barker that made him, in your eyes, a Rivals 250 prospect? Are there any other Kentucky prospects close to the 250?
Josh Helmholdt: Kevin - Drew Barker is one of the most complete quarterbacks in this class. He doesn't have a big arm, though the potential is there for that to develop. He is a very accurate passer and his intangibles are outstanding
Comment From Guest
Do you see jalen hurd or todd kelly becoming a 5 star?
Hurd was right on the cusp this time but we just have some concerns over where exactly he's going to play in college.
Comment From Brandon
Whats your feelings towards Gelen Robinson from the footage looks good but dont see to much on him
Josh Helmholdt: Brandon - Gelen is a classic tweener. Skill set fits the DE role, but size is that of a LB. If he can develop his athleticism and ability to play in space he may be able to drop back and play LB
Comment From Brett
Where does Cameron Robinson from Louisiana project in 2014 class?
Jason Howell: Robinson is a guy who can play LT for me. He has the size, the feet, and the athleticism
Comment From Greg
No Trumbetti or Hilliman?
Mike Farrell: Greg -- no on both, Hilliman has speed questions, not sure if he's fast enough for four star and Trumbetti is good but not R250 good right now.
Comment From osufan
whats marshon lattimore ceiling and where does he project in college
Josh Helmholdt: osufan - I had a chance to see Marshon live a couple weeks back and I came away from that thinking he could definitely play CB in college. He has great size for the CB position, but he is fluid and flips his hips effortlessly. I think that is where his ceiling his highest, but he is no doubt a threat on offense as well
Comment From Clayton
Looking at Orlando Brown's offer list, size, and knowing his pedigree, he seems like a glaring omission from the Rivals250. I thought he would be a possible five-star and was a bit suprised to see him missing from the list. Could you shed some light on your thoughts? How does a guy with that offer list, size, and pedigree miss the Rivals250? Are there doubts about the legitimacy of his offer list?
Rob Cassidy: Clayton -- I have not seen Brown in person, but I can say that we do not evaluate players based on offer lists.
WoodyWommack: Sorry Clayton I thought Mike was taking your question. We have a a lot of concerns about Brown's weight and his conditioning. Obviously he has a famous father, but he hasn't shown nearly enough to make this list. That doesn't mean that with a solid offseason he can't get back in the discussion. He just has a lot of work to do.
Comment From Alvin
I have heard a lot about Derek Kief and Thaddeus Snodgrass in Ohio. Could you comment on them?
Josh Helmholdt: Alvin - two very good players, but two different receivers as well. Kief is more of a sure-handed, possession type. Snodgrass is big and strong and has a little more explosiveness to his game. Honestly, at this point, Kief is further ahead than Snodgrass, but Snodgrass has the higher ceiling
Comment From Guest
Mike PC played FCA at Rutgers and the talent on the filed was CRAZY... With Peppers and the FCA kid... and the level did not drop too far when Harrison or Washington (or Najee Clayton) had the ball... Some team is going to get a 5 star player rated with 3 stars when the great washington and really Harrison (he is special)
Mike Farrell: Guest -- I was there and saw it. Harrison and Washington are solid but not close to Peppers ability
Comment From Lee
Who would you consider the number one player in North Carolina?
WoodyWommack: Lee,
Right now I think it's Charlotte TE Jeb Blazevich
Comment From Guest
Josh who do you think is the best QB you've seen in the Midwest for 2014
Josh Helmholdt: Guest - at this point I have Wisconsin commit Chance Stewart as the top QB in the Midwest, though guys like Clayton Thorson, DeShone Kizer, Tyler Wiegers, Joey Duckworth, et al., could all make a run at that spot before the class is finished. Not a strong year for elite talent, but good depth at the position in the Midwest
Comment From Dr Pacheco
Have you noticed a higher percentage of kids already committed?
Josh Helmholdt: Dr Pacheco - The recruiting process is happening earlier and earlier every year, so yes, there are a lot more commitments at this stage than we saw five years ago
Comment From Kyle
Josh, this might not be the place to ask, but do you think if Nebraska wins the Big 10 this year it will help them to further establish recruiting in Ohio and the rest of the Big 10 territory? And will they be able to compete with Ohio State and Michigan for the too recruits in this region?
Josh Helmholdt: Kyle, yes, winning the B1G championship will definitely help Nebraska with Midwest recruiting. Won't turn it overnight, but you can see even by comparing their success in Midwest recruiting from 2012 to 2013 they are making more and more inroads. Winning the B1G will help, but just being on TV more in the Midwest is going to help
Comment From DENNIS
UVA reports being in the front for a lot of the top 10 VA recruits. Blanding Brown NNADI amomg others. Do you see these guys actually going there in the end?
Mike Farrell: DENNIS -- they could but it's a long way until Signing Day and they need more wins. Winning out and getting to a bowl would be a start.
Comment From Alvin
Do you have a list of your top 2014 WRs in the Midwest?
Josh Helmholdt: Alvin - The WR's from the Midwest in the 250 (in general order) are Allen Lazard, Drake Harris, Austin Roberts, Justin Brent, Dominique Booth, Travon Hudson and Thaddeus Snodgrass.
Josh Helmholdt: Kevin - Justin is a high ceiling guy. Hasn't quite hit his potential, and playing at a smaller Indiana school doesn't help, but he is big, explosive and is developing as a route runner
Comment From Guest
Surprised no WR's with 5 stars - any close?
Josh Helmholdt: Guest - in the Midwest I'd say watch Allen Lazard out of Urbandale, Iowa. He could be knocking on that door in a few months. Michigan State commit Drake Harris has an outside chance of getting there too, but he plays basketball in the off-season so we likely won't get a lot of chances to measure his progress again until next fall
Comment From Devin
Josh- Did Travon Hudson even play this year? His recruitment has been kind of weird..
Josh Helmholdt: Devin - yes, Travon played for Colerain this year. Had a big touchdown catch in their win this past weekend. He had a rough off-season, but talent-wise he is undoubtedly a 250 guy. If he gets things together off the field, the sky is the limit for him
Comment From Devin
What do you all think about Artavis Scott?
WoodyWommack: Devin, I saw Artavis a few times this summer and really liked him. Haven't had a chance to see him yet this fall, though.
Comment From Guest
how do college coaches feel about kids committing early and then decommiting. What message does that send to other college coaches?
Rob Cassidy: Guest -- college coaches are not in a position of strength on the matter. They don't like it, but it's the price of playing the game these days. They're not going to pull off of a good player because he is seen as a flake. Talent rules the realm and everyone is aware of the stakes. Some coaches deal with it in different ways.
Comment From nate
Any chance of Chandler Kincade moving into the top 250 before next year
Mike Farrell: nate -- he has a chance, we'd like to see more of him and will be evaluating him closely and especially on the QB camp tour next year.
Comment From Matt K
Will Michigan get Damon Webb and Malik McDowell?
Josh Helmholdt: Matt K - too early to say for either Damon or Malik, but Michigan is right at the top of the list for both players. Neither has plans for a commitment in the near future, though
Comment From Zach
Where does Kizer fall in place as far as qbs for 2014. Is he in the top couple or in the back of the rivals250
Josh Helmholdt: Zach - Kizer was one of the last additions to the 250. His skill set is really, really strong, but he is very raw at this stage. However, I liked the progression I saw on junior film and if he keeps it up he will be continuing to move up the list
Comment From tjg
im from saluda,sc and i am shocked dexter wideman is a four star as i have not missed a game but he rarely takes over a game and is very soft against inferior lineman can you please give some reasons why so high?
Comment From Kelly
Hows Michael Ferns not a 5 star?
Josh Helmholdt: Kelly - Ferns was not considered for five-star status at this time. He is rated 5.9 which is in that top 100 range, but we'll be evaluating all these guys continuously for the next 14-15 months
Comment From Tanker
What are your thoughts on Bryan Mone out of Utah?
Rob Cassidy: Tanker. I have not seen a ton of fim on Mone, nor have I seen him in person. His coach is just now starting to get his tape out there. I think we could be dealing with a player that could seriously break out when he gets more exposure. I've loved what I've seen and people around his recruitment think the world of him. He's landed on this list because of pure talent in a small sample size. What he does on the camp circuit this summer could get people noticing.
Adam Gorney: Tanker - I can't wait to see this guy in person. Hopefully he shows up to some camps. He has some impressive early offers and looks like he'll definitely play DT in college now that he's gained lots of weight.
Comment From Devin
Is Derek Kief on the list? Seems like he has good intagibles
Josh Helmholdt: Devin - Derek Kief was just on the outside of the 250 at this time... one of the guys who just missed in the Midwest. Like a lot about his game, but have not seen the explosiveness yet we like out of those 250 caliber wide receivers.
Comment From vargo05
I didn't see TEs Koda Martin or Nic Weishar. Were they close to making it?
Jason Howell: vargo05, Martin was in the discussion
Josh Helmholdt: vargo05 - speaking on Weishar, just too early at this time for 250. He's a very good player and we'll keep evaluating him
Comment From Mike
Who is the leader for Dashawn Hand and is he going to be the top recruit?
Mike Farrell: Mike -- Hand is the leader in the clubhouse right now for No. 1 overall but there is a lot of talent at the top this year who are rare prospects at their positions, could be best year at the top since 2011.
Comment From Guest
Thoughts on deandre payne?
Mike Farrell: Guest -- Payne is solid but size is a bit of a concern for us and he has good but not great speed. Don't go by offers because you can never tell what is what at Woodson for years.
Comment From Zach
Who do you guys have as the #1 player in Ohio or who has a legit shot to be in 2014
Josh Helmholdt: Zach - Marshon Lattimore, ATH out of Cleveland Glenville, starts out as the top player in Ohio for the 2014 class
Comment From Kevin
Who is the school to beat for Nyles Morgan?
Josh Helmholdt: Kevin - I talked with Nyles about that this weekend. He says he is wide open, and I believe him. It's early and he has a lot he wants to see. But, I like Notre Dame and Ohio State playing a big role in his recruitment.
Comment From jsparks
Who is the top player in Michigan for the class of 2014?
Josh Helmholdt: jsparks - Malik McDowell, DE out of Detroit Loyola, is the top player in Michigan to start out 2014. He's going to be in that conversation for five stars going forward if he can continue to develop and maintain his explosiveness
Comment From Kevin
Josh - How about the leader for Clifton Garrett? And will the choice of Morgan affect Clifton, and vice versa?
Josh Helmholdt: Kevin - I won't be surprised if the two play off each other down the road, and it could go both ways. They may want to play with each other if they find the right spot to do that, or they could see the other as competition for their spot. But, I like Ohio State, I like Michigan State and a few others to contend heavily for Garrett
Comment From Dave
Does ND have a shot with McDowell? Seems like he is a Stephon Tuitt clone
Josh Helmholdt: Dave - yes, I expect Notre Dame to factor in with McDowell. Would put them in a group of four (with Michigan, Michigan State and Ohio State) I see as having the best shot at this stage. And... I agree, like the Tuitt comparison
Comment From Todd
Thoughts on Parrker Westphal
Josh Helmholdt: Todd - Parrker is a big, smooth kid at that CB position, but want to see him get involved more. He wasn't tested much, but he wasn't making plays other than the ones directly in front of him either. He has the skills to factor into games more than we saw out of him this year