When it rains, it pours. Michigan football added yet another commitment tonight - that’s six since Luke Schoonmaker on July 25th - and this time it comes in the form of a 6’4”, 265-pounder from Georgia who’s been enamored with Michigan for quite some time. Michigan now has two five-star commits in the 2019 cycle, which is tied with USC and LSU for second-most in the country (behind Georgia, ironically).
Chris Hinton, meanwhile, gives Michigan its highest-rated commit (9th overall recruit in the country, .9971 composite) since Rashan Gary - higher than Donovan Peoples-Jones (12th, .9904) and Aubrey Solomon (24th, .9860), and fourth overall in Michigan’s recruiting history since 1999 behind Gary, Jabrill Peppers, and Ryan Mallett.
So, let’s get right to it - what does the tape show? Hinton is listed as a strongside defensive end and offensive tackle right now, but really he looks like more of an intriguing blend between Maurice Hurst and Rashan Gary - which puts him potentially at defensive tackle.
Hinton has surreal amounts of strength, first of all, plus a similar amount of athleticism as Rashan Gary - although not identical, as Hinton is not as fluid with his outside pass rushing as teenage Gary was (though, who is?) - and Hinton also has the kind of disruptive ability on the inside that makes me think of Mo Hurst. If I had to describe Hinton in one sentence, it would be as more of a defensive tackle equivalent of Rashan Gary.
Still, there are a lot of things that could affect where he winds up on the field. For one, he’s only entering his junior year of high school, so we don’t know how much more changing he could still do. (8’9”, 470 pounds, maybe? Who knows, I wouldn’t put it past him.)
He also has a lot of positional flexibility and the athleticism to pull it off. Michigan has a lot of positions to fill in the ‘19 class still, so assuming it can keep a hold of Hinton’s commitment, Michigan could end up evaluating him down the road and moving him anywhere on the line of scrimmage to best fit the team’s needs.
I do believe Hinton could be a freakishly dominant, play-making offensive lineman - although his tape doesn’t show any of him playing there. He could end up on the defensive side (in my opinion, defensive tackle is the most likely possibility) and support a group that’s quickly filling its ranks with five-star depth and tons of play-makers. He could end up doing most anything, in fact. This guy is ridiculous.
And, the 2019 class continues to become a tour de force for Michigan football. Not a bad way to end the week, I’d say.