It is hard to believe how early it is in the 2013 recruiting cycle considering the state of not only Michigan's class, but some other schools around the conference and the country. The Wolverines, already sitting at an astounding 17 commitments, have done so much so quickly that the recruiting services haven't been able to keep up. Until yesterday only one service (247) had time to put together team rankings for 2013. It was just a couple weeks ago that ESPN was even able to rate its top players, and Michigan fans are already showing frustration that Rivals has yet to update its rankings from those released in February.
Even the rest of the Big Ten is starting early. At this time last year Michigan had eight recruits in what was considered a very fast start to 2012 recruiting. In 2013 Ohio State has already surpassed that with 11 (after also suffering two high profile decommitments, which seem to be occuring earlier and earlier as well), while Penn State and Illinois have tied that number, and both Michigan State and Iowa sit one player behind. If you count Notre Dame's 12 commitments that makes five Midwest teams at or above the level of Michigan's fast start to 2012.
Why such a fast start to recruiting? Normally no one outside of Texas has this kind of early haul in May. In a podcast on mgoblog a week ago, Ace tried his best to answer that question with the help of recruiting experts from both Eleven Warriors and Black Shoe Diaries.
By my estimation, technology is the reason. Twitter, online video, the proliferation of recruiting services, and the myriad of ways to contact and keep up with recruits has allowed people to push the limits as far as when and how young they can spot talent. Five years ago you had to be a recruiting guru or a high school football junkie to know about a promising underclassman. Today you can just do a google search. Kids simply don't have the peace and quiet to make these decisions on their own anymore, and thus it becomes preferable for some to get it over with earlier. The question is, when does the new reality that guides college football recruiting produce serious changes to the way the NCAA governs the practice?
If there is one thing technology has failed to speed up, it is NCAA action.
Tremendous: Impact Freshmen: Amara Darboh - Tremendous with another freshman profile, this time looking at Amara Darboh's chances at early playing time. Let's hope it doesn't come to that, but wide receiver depth has me thinking otherwise.
"We won't start our workouts until the beginning of June," Kovacs said. "Now it's just senior-led workouts, where the seniors are getting some guys in. We know it's important to be here. Because if we're not in there, somebody else is (at another school) getting better."
Miscellaneous Minutiae, 5/7/2012 - Holdin' the Rope looks at a few happenings around college football.
Offense explodes as Wolverines win first series in a month - Michigan baseball is starting to find a little success, but it is ultimately too little too late.
Spiece 2012: Keita Bates-Diop scouting video, quotes - Speaking of way-too-early recruiting worries, Keita Bates-Diop, a 2014 recruit and a top-50 player to Rivals, could be on his way to a Michigan offer soon.
Most indispensable players: Michigan - What kind of a world do we live in where a writer picks a safety as the most indispensable player on the Michigan defense and I object? Someone pinch me, because this surely cannot be real. Safety is always the biggest concern and has been one injury or washout from DOOOOM for years.
Is safety really safe?
It appears so. If Jordan Kovacs is forced to miss any time there is still an experienced starter at the other safety position, Thomas Gordon, and three backups (assuming Josh Furman makes it back from his spring absence) that have shown ability in practice.
The most indispensable player on the defense is up front. It is Craig Roh or Jabreel Black or Will Campbell. A player on the front line with perilous depth behind him.
This whole thing was probably just the worlds most effective jinx, and for that I apologize, Angry Michigan Secondary Hating God.
James' Campaign Staggers to the Finish Line - Let's hope this isn't the death knell for our dream of a Craig James free college football season in 2012.
Pro Combat Goes B1G: Nebraska Edition - BHGP trolls hard with this mock up of a Nebraska pro combat uniform. I would laugh even harder at this if 75% of the jokes weren't directly transferable to Michigan.
Every Major's Terrible - Sounds about right.
Bonus after the jump: watch Shane Morris throw at the Columbus Elite 11 regional.