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Scouting Report: Stanford Samuels III, CB Recruit

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Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
"All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way." ~Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina
Rankings
247Sports Composite ☆☆ Ht. Wt. Top300? Rank
247 ☆☆☆☆ 6'2" 175 28 #4 CB
Scout ☆☆☆☆ 6'2" 170 20 #3 CB
Rivals ☆☆☆☆ 6'1" 161 63 #7 CB
ESPN ☆☆☆☆ 6'1" 171 67 #8 CB

Offers: Akron, Alabama, Auburn, Bowling Green, Cincinnati, Clemson, Duke, FAU, FIU, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Iowa State, Kentucky, Louisville, LSU, Marshall, Maryland, Massachusetts, Miami, Miami (OH), Michigan, N.C. State, North Carolina, Northern Illinois, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, Purdue, Rutgers, South Carolina, TCU, Temple, Tennessee, Texas, Toledo, UCF, UCLA, USC, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.

Scheme fit: Samuels has played all over the field for Flanagan, but at the next level he should delve into the cornerback position and learn to dominate there with great technique.

Strengths: Long, rangy athlete with a very high ceiling at the next level... Willing to mix it up physically... Very light on his feet, with quick-twitch athletic steps... For someone as lanky as he is, very good at changing direction... Great at shadowing athletes downfield without losing position... An excellent tackler around the line, and very capable of containing and stopping other athletes... Has a defensive mentality, and plays as a part of a larger unit.... Also great as a runner from the quarterback position. Overall, great instincts and feel for the game.

Weaknesses: Can get a little stronger.

Speed factor:(?)

Samuels looks like he's effortlessly gliding out there on the football field. He's a very smooth runner, with the right kind of hips that a scout would look for in a cornerback. Not many lanky, tall guys can move like this young man can.

If it wasn't clear yet, I'm a very big fan of Samuels' game. After watching his sophomore film, I identified a few weaknesses that he could improve on - like forcing turnovers and using his hands more - and sure enough he improved those areas considerably by the time his junior year rolled around. That indicates to me that Samuels is a hard worker, a smart guy who will challenge himself to get better, and also a guy who will fit into a team dynamic.

Luckily, Michigan has a special place in Samuels' heart, thanks to three teammates from Flanagan who have already been recruited by and ultimately signed with Jim Harbaugh.

There are a number of teams pursuing Samuels - Florida State and Georgia are hard after him as well, and Samuels is a Florida State legacy like Devin Bush, Jr. was - but it's hard not to like Michigan's chances here. Jim Harbaugh might have a reputation as an irascible guy, but he's the kind of straight shooter and genuine person that Stanford's dad (who seems similarly feisty and genuine) will like. If Ann Arbor feels like home away from home for the Samuels family, despite the Florida State connection, this recruitment could be all kinds of anticlimactic.

Oh, and Flanagan's head coach moving to Ann Arbor probably doesn't hurt either. Still, Stanford's Crystal Balls all currently point to Florida State.

If Stanford does end up signing with the Maize and Blue, Michigan's defense of the future could start to have a distinctly South Floridian flair. That will make recruiting Florida even easier as these kids find success on the football field, and also find a family off of it.