Now that we've had a chance to see who's who on the offensive side of the 2016 offers, it's time to take a glance at the linebackers, tackles and defensive backs who have caught the eye of Michigan.
Now, Brady Hoke calls the shots, but this is Greg Mattison territory that we're talking--and the veteran defensive coordinator is known for getting his top picks at key positions. With that being said, let's start with the ends.
DEstination Ann Arbor?
At 6'5" and 230 pounds, Janarius Robinson embodies the classic case of a guy growing into his frame. With two years remaining at Bay High in Panama City, Fla., the No. 5-ranked WDE of 2016 has plenty of time to bulk up and tip the scales at 250 or better come NSD. In fact, depending on his workout habits, metabolism and other variables, he could easily put on 15-20 pounds within the next year alone.
If your'e so inclined, take a quick peak at his Hudl profile and you'll see a developing two-way threat. Now, according to 247Sports, the Wolverines view him as a WDE. Of course, should he be good enough, that doesn't mean that he'll be denied opportunities to do that at Michigan--or wherever he signs.
Hoke offered in late May and Robinson visited June 20, per 247Sports. Clemson, and Florida State, the perceived favorite for the 4-star, are also in the mix at this point.
Kyree Campbell's the No. 12-ranked SDE of his class, per 247. At 6'5" and 250 pounds, the Freedom High (Woodbridge, Va.) standout is well on his way to cultivating a Big Ten-ready frame. According to 247, he has "warm" interest in Michigan.
But he has "warmer" interest in Ohio State. So, as it usually goes, the Buckeyes and Wolverines seem likely to battle until the very end for the incredibly agile and sure-footed lineman. Since picking up an offer from Hoke in May, Campbell's visited Ohio State (UO) and attended a camp at Michigan on June 17.
Miami Gulliver Prep's Joe Jackson is a 4-star rated SDE with offers from college football royalty, Texas, Alabama and Michigan. He also has one from Appalachian State, but 247 says that Jackson is "cool" on that invite. At 6'5" and 229 pounds, he's another candidate for a few extra pounds. But again, he's entering his junior year of high school.
Give him time, because he could also be in the 250 range come NSD.
Athletic as they come, Jackson is also a track and basketball standout. Perhaps that well-rounded skill set will make its way to Ann Arbor. Imagine the tips at the line and all of those disrupted passes because of his lanky arms and respectable speed/endurance. Basketball and track plus Jackson's football skills equals quite the pass-rusher and defender.
Jackson picked up his offer in late January and has yet to visit.
Elite 2016 Miami (Fla.) Gulliver Prep DE Joseph Jackson says Alabama, South Carolina, Cincinnati standing out http://t.co/aCQeHK9YBW— Woody Wommack (@RivalsWoody) June 16, 2014
Hard to Tackle
Per 247's database, each DT that Michigan has offered has "cool" interest, including Rashan Gary, the No. 1-ranked DT of 2016 (No. 4 overall). At 6'4" and 285 pounds, the 5-star prep (formerly) out of Scotch Plains Fanwood (N.J.) combines ideal size with a lean and powerful frame.
As of late June, Gary had "warm" interest in Alabama. His visit timeline didn't have a block "M" on it, either. However, he's only a junior, and there is more than enough time for Hoke to get Gary on campus. Plus, he's transferring to Jabrill Peppers' old stomping grounds, giving the Wolverines a possible "in."
It might be a good time for "Breezy" to get in Gary's ear.
Daelin and Dele, D&D--hey, it could work.
At one time, Daelin Hayes appeared to be Michigan's for the taking. The 4-star OLB out of Orchard Lake St. Mary's has offers from Michigan State and Notre Dame, so there are definite options available. At 6'4" and 240 pounds, he has great size--that's probably why he's the No. 5-ranked OLB of his class.
Dele Harding, a 3-star ILB out of Freddy Canteen and Brandon Watson's alma mater (Elkton Eastern Christian in Maryland), has been on the Wolverines' radar for a little more than a year. He's 6'1" and 232 pounds and has offers from Tennessee and USC.
The secondary is being filled with enough guys to get Michigan through at least two more years--and there's absolutely no harm in Mattison and Curt Mallory going overboard in that department. The more; the merrier. Michigan's defensive backfield is becoming a premier landing spot for some of the country's top safeties and corners.
But due to solid recruiting and depth, there's only so much room.
Thus far, Michigan's offered a pair of 4-star talents: Levonta Taylor, a corner, and Malek Young, a safety. They're each roughly 5'10" and 175 pounds. Taylor's from Virginia and Young's a Floridian. Taylor was offered June 6 and Young received his invite on May 22.
Michigan Wolverine Recruiting: Malek Young 2016 CB Offered http://t.co/BCvDb4PTyS— GBMWolverine (@GBMWolverine) June 3, 2014
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