The Michigan Wolverines have proven over the last three seasons your recruiting ranking is not always an indication of your ceiling. The coaching staff is regularly on the hunt for prospects around the nation with raw talent who can be refined into elite players.
To name some of these players in recent Michigan history:
- Hassan Haskins: Three-star
- Luke Schoonmaker: Three-star
- Mike Sainristil: Three-star
- Rod Moore: Three-star
- Kris Jenkins: Three-star
Michigan has a really good track record of developing players. With the emergence of the transfer portal, some pressure has been taken off the coaching staff when it comes to developing recruits rapidly to build depth. Although quick development isn’t as critical, there are a few players in Michigan’s 2024 class poised to outperform their ranking.
Edge Dominic Nichols
The Wolverines have a reputation for churning out elite edge rushers. Michigan’s talent along the offensive line has, in turn, helped develop their defensive line. The young defenders are going up against the best of the best in practice every day, making it easier for them to get acclimated to the college game. Three-star Dominic Nichols is someone who could rise up the depth chart rather quickly when he gets on campus.
You can coach technique, but size and physicality are tougher to control. Nichols will come to Ann Arbor with a similar body-type to former Michigan star Aidan Hutchinson, standing at 6-foot-5, 252 pounds. He put up some gaudy numbers his senior year — 84 tackles, 15 pass breakups and one interception, according to On3’s Zach Libby. His high motor and physical playstyle should result in him being a dominant force for the Wolverines.
Michigan got some good news a couple weeks back when Deyvid Palepale flipped his commitment from USC. The three-star out of Pennsylvania will come to Ann Arbor with the size (6-foot-3, 305 pounds) the Wolverines like to see along the interior defensive line.
The Wolverines will bring back some playmakers along the defensive line next season, including Mason Graham. Palepale has similar size and playstyle to Graham, so he should develop rapidly with the junior as his mentor.
The Wolverines will lose their bigger framed receiver in Cornelius Johnson following this season. Although there are multiple backups who will be looking to fill the void, incoming three-star Channing Goodwin will be worth keeping an eye on. He was recruited heavily by several air raid offenses and could become a weapon for the Wolverines.
Goodwin is a three-sport high school athlete, also competing in basketball and baseball. He was actively used as a downfield threat and regularly thrown 50-50 balls. He ended his senior season with more than 1,000 yards receiving and 14 touchdowns.
Goodwin was one of the primary targets for Providence Day, catching passes from fellow Michigan quarterback signee Jadyn Davis. Whenever it is Davis’ time to start, his high school connection with Goodwin should pay dividends.