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Jyaire Hill’s path to Michigan, outlook for 2023

The true freshman could see the field early and often for the Wolverines in 2023.

Michigan Spring Football Game Photo by Jaime Crawford/Getty Images

If you are an avid follower of football recruiting, you already probably know how much of a roller coaster ride the recruitment of four-star cornerback Jyaire Hill was. He eventually committed and signed with the Michigan Wolverines, but it was a bumpy ride to get to the finish line.

Now that he’s already been through winter conditioning and spring practices, and in the midst of his first fall camp in Ann Arbor, what are the expectations for the former blue chip prospect? We continue our outlook series today with one of Michigan’s

The story so far

Hill was a four-star prospect in the 2023 class on 247Sports’ composite, slotting in at No. 173 overall and the No. 20 cornerback in the nation. He played at Kankakee High School in Illinois and had a great senior season, racking up 42 tackles, five tackles for loss, three forced fumbles, three interceptions and two sacks. For all those great stats, his junior season was even better with 56 tackles, nine interceptions and six forced fumbles.

Jim Harbaugh and Steve Clinkscale made him a huge priority and recruited him as hard as any other corner in the recruiting class. Hill took an official visit to Michigan, as well as subsequent visits for multiple games in the fall. Things were looking good, until Hill left the Wolverines off his top-five list that involved Illinois, Purdue, Florida, Missouri and Kentucky.

The thing not everyone was clued in on — that top-five list he released was a gag, as Hill pulled out a Michigan hat anyways when he announced his commitment to the Wolverines on the opening day of the Early Signing Period in December. With so much uncertainty in the cornerback room at the time — heck, even now — this commitment was and remains a big deal.

Outlook for 2023

Hill got in on some action this spring and had a couple nice plays in Michigan’s spring game. He looked comfortable right off the bat and didn’t shy away from competition.

Of course, this shouldn’t surprise anyone. Hill certainly doesn’t lack confidence, as he told On3’s Zach Libby ($) when he committed that Michigan fans can expect some big things out of him.

“Expect greatness. Jim Thorpe Award winner,” Hill said.

Perhaps Michigan fans shouldn’t anticipate that happening in 2023 (or at all because that is extremely hard to do for any cornerback). But it is reasonable to expect him to get on the field early and often as a true freshman. The CB2 battle remains ongoing, and Harbaugh even said the competition will likely go into the regular season.

Because of that, Hill has an opportunity to win the job, but I don’t see it happening right away. I anticipate him being a backup to start the 2023 campaign, and then having a shot to supplant whoever initially wins the CB2 job (my money is on Josh Wallace, for what it’s worth).

At the very least, Hill will get his feet wet and probably burn his redshirt. He’s too good to keep off the field, even if it’s primarily in a special teams role.