In the weeks leading up to national signing day, we'll take a look at each one of Michigan's commits.
For previous editions of Recruiting Recap, follow the links: Wilton Speight, Drake Harris, Freddy Canteen., Maurice Ways, Ian Bunting, Juwan Bushell-Beatty, Mason Cole, Michael Ferns, Chase Winovich, Noah Furbush, Jared Wangler, Brandon Watson, Jabrill Peppers, Bryan Mone.
Player: Lawrence Marshall, defensive end
Location: Southfield (Mich.) High School
Rankings: Listed as a three-star prospect, the No. 22 weakside defensive end in the nation and the No. 7 player in Michigan by Rivals.com
Committed: May 11, 2013.
Other Notable Offers: Indiana, Michigan State, Mississippi, Mississippi State, Nebraska, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Pittsburgh, San Diego State, Syracuse, Tennessee.
The Latest News On Marshall:
Rivals.com Southeast Recruiting Analyst Woody Wommack joins the podcast to discuss Michigan's two pledges - Lawrence Marshall and Chase Winovich - who participated in the Offense-Defense Bowl.
"The 6-4, 230-pound Marshall committed to U-M May 11 after previously pledging to the Buckeyes in February. He hasn't looked back since deciding to don the winged helmet, focusing less on the past and more on what he believes will be an exciting future in Ann Arbor over the next four or five seasons.
"'We have big-time recruits coming in like Jabrill Peppers at cornerback, and we have a lot of really good linebackers and defensive tackles coming in, and then me at defensive end,' he said. 'I feel we will have the best defense in the Big Ten by my sophomore year.
"'I can't wait until I get there. Our recruiting class is crazy good right now and when we get there, we know what we have to do to get us to the Rose Bowl and play for a national championship.'
"Marshall spent his winter break in Florida, participating in the Offense-Defense Bowl Jan. 3 in Orlando. Rivals.com named Marshall one of the game's top performers, noting he recorded two tackles for loss and a QB hurry.
"'There's no doubt he's athletic,' Rivals.com Southeast Recruiting Analyst Woody Wommack said. 'And in a game like that, where it was pretty apparent things weren't being handled ideally, he could have just half-hearted it, but he kept playing hard the whole game and that really made an impression on me. It was good to see him get after it and make his presence felt.'
"Marshall enjoyed the opportunity, and not only because the weather was significantly warmer than in Detroit.
"'I loved it down there,' he said. 'It was a wonderful experience playing against all future D-I athletes and to see that I could compete at the highest level.'"
"Marshall had a good chance during his time in the game to flash the one ability that has always been in his toolkit: great speed. He tracked down a couple run plays from the backside, and was a threat to make plays in the backfield when coming off the edge. Marshall showed good awareness in jumping to tip passes at the line, and almost intercepted one when he gained some space on the edge rushing the quarterback.
"He defeated a couple blockers on the edge, and was much more disciplined in keeping contain than he was early in this season. His strength was overwhelming for Lathrup's right tackle, and is one area of his game that he has been developing as well. When he hits, the opponent is sure to feel it, and he had one particularly violent tackle along the sideline early in the game.
"He also made a cameo at tight end in Southfield's goal line offense, opening a big hole with a down block on one play (though the tailback was dragged down by the defensive line), and showing his mobility on an outside zone run when the Bluejays did punch it in."
Analysis from TheWolverine.com's Tim Sullivan:
Strengths: "Marshall is a very speedy player off the edge, capable of rushing the passer. That also helps in chasing down running plays from the backside, or stringing tem out to his side of the field. He is developing strength at the point of attack, and improving his discipline in holding the edge."
Weaknesses: "Marshall has to put on several pounds to reach a college playing weight. Until he does that, he will likely be a liability against the run when facing college offensive linemen. He also has improvements to make in his technique, since he's been mostly able to get by on his natural athleticism in college. Adding moves to his repertoire will make him a more dangerous pass-rusher at the next level."
What To Expect From Marshall In 2014: The Wolverines will have several options at both defensive end spots next year, with all players who took snaps there back next year.
At the five-technique spot, Brennen Beyer, who will be a senior next year, started the last six games of the season after switching to the line from the SAM linebacker spot when regular starter Jake Ryan returned from an ACL injury.
If Beyer stays put - finally - he will have an entire offseason to bulk up and be even more effective on the line. Keith Heitzman, who will be a redshirt junior, is also in play after starting the first seven games of the year there. Tom Strobel, who will be a redshirt sophomore may also get a look.
At rush end, the Wolverines will have a senior Frank Clark, a junior Mario Ojemudia and a sophomore Taco Charlton.
With that kind of experience and depth, it will be difficult for Marshall to make his way onto the field, especially with the weight and strength gains he will need to make.
What To Expect From Marshall In His Career: The competition will be steep at both defensive end spots over the next two years, considering the number of young players who saw time there in 2013.
A redshirt season is likely in 2014, and Marshall may have a hard time making his way onto the field in 2015 - but, especially with the rotation the coaches like along the line, three years' worth of playing time is not out of the question.