Michigan Offers Two 2014s, Two 2015s at Camp
The 2014 picture changed a bit this week when the staff extended offers to high school teammates Brandon Watson and Freddy Canteen. Both hail from Elkton, Maryland.
Word of Canteen's offer got out first, surprising more than a handful of Michigan recruiting writers, myself included. Michigan is in great position with four-star receivers Artavis Scott and K.J. Williams, so why would it offer a three-star player who holds offers from a bunch of mediocre schools? Steve Lorenz offers up a blunt answer:
#Michigan not afraid to offer kids at camp, even if in good position with other prospects. Get used to it.— Steve Lorenz (@TremendousUM) June 18, 2013
Touche. The staff saw something it liked in Canteen and offered on the spot, no ifs, ands or buts. They probably loved his footwork more than anything:
Tom VH reported that Canteen was killing defensive backs with his routes, so the work on the ladders is showing up on the field. Michigan would like to find a mid-sized slot for the class and Canteen fits that description well. He isn't a burner and lacks the size to play on the outside, but he shows soft hands and the ability to find holes in defenses. He wants to visit Michigan with his parents and already has the Wolverines in his top three, alongside Tennessee and Big Ten foe Rutgers.
Brandon Watson is another story. He plays corner and isn't capable of moving back to safety, reminding me of Ross Douglas on tape. Michigan is still is fantastic shape with four-star corner Parrker Westphal, who could easily slide back to safety, so maybe the staff isn't' scared of taking a smaller corner when they have two versatile, high-level corners in the bag. Watson has Michigan in his top group with east coast schools like Connecticut and Rutgers, and I wouldn't be surprised one bit if he moved his timeline up in order to secure his spot in Michigan's class.
Two offers going out to two generally low-level recruits makes me believe that this class will reach at least 19 commitments, and I'm beginning to wonder if the roster will lose another player or two through attrition. Michigan's class could stay in the 16-18 range, but recent trends have that number going up.
Canteen and Watson weren't the only players who received offers from Michigan this week. Four-star 2015 Ohio linebacker Justin Hiliard got his offer, but Notre Dame still looks like the team to beat for his services. The staff also extended an offer out to 2015 legacy offensive lineman Jon Runyan, who was competing against a solid crop of young offensive lineman in Ann Arbor.
It was a bit surprising to see 2014 SS/OLB Drue Tranquill go through the camp without receiving an offer, but Michigan is waiting on other outside linebackers to make up their minds. Michigan could lose out on him if they wait too long, as Notre Dame and Ohio State are eying him as well.
General Notes and Multimedia Items
Michigan wide receiver commitment Maurice Ways recently received his fourth star from ESPN. This gives Michigan one five-star, nine four-stars and one three-star according to the Worldwide Leader In Sports.
Class of 2015 four-star running back Damien Harris has Michigan atop his list. He plans on making a decision sooner rather than later:
Can you see yourself committing by the end of the year or in your senior seas... — Probably the end of this season. http://t.co/L6A9m52y74— Damien Harris (@Damien_D1Harris) June 18, 2013
Harris should be actively recruiting for the maize and blue early in 2014, possibly even sooner.
Four-star jumbo athlete Garrett Dickerson has a new top three, in order:
Michigan was recruiting him as a tight end before Ian Bunting committed, but he's now being looked at as a defensive end, where he has just as much potential. I think he ends up at Stanford, for what it's worth.
Woodbridge head football coach Karibi Dede describes Da'Shawn Hand's game and his impact both on and off of the field. Dede says, "For him, football is a piece of his life. He takes a lot of pride in his academic life." Most coaches will tell you this about any prospect of theirs, but this is actually true when it comes to Hand, who has Michigan on top for more than just football. And speaking of academics, Michigan dominates the country in terms of athletic and academic prowess.
Five-star 2015 receiver George Campbell shares a laugher via Twitter:
Michigan State came to East Lake and didn't know who you were.... — Yeah that's absolutely true http://t.co/a6FRzg4pLo— GΣΩRGΣ CΔMPβΣLL (@GeorgeCampbell0) June 18, 2013
Michigan State has quietly assembled solid recruiting classes in 2013 and 2014, but you wouldn't be able to tell after reading something like that. Also, let me bet a solid million, no, billion dollars on the field against Sparty in the recruitment of Campbell. Not happening.
The Sound Mind Sound Body camp series produces a good amount of information every year, and it also allows rival coaches to communicate with each other. I've waited to hear something like this:
SMSB's U-M/OSU Clash - it was a brief verbal exchange, but Greg Mattison threw hammer down on a rival coach— Sam Webb (@SamWebb77) June 16, 2013
Greg Mattison was coaching alongside Ohio State defensive line coach Mike Vrabel at the camp. It's assumed that Vrabel said something that rubbed Mattison the wrong way, leading Mattison to fire back at Vrabel. It's the offseason, so yea, this is hot news.
Finally, make sure to check out DGDestroys' third edition of the Big Board. Some of the prospects' rankings could surprise you.