We are less than a week away from the early signing period for the 2023 recruiting class, but college football programs are also going after guys in the transfer portal.
Since the portal opened up last Monday, the Michigan Wolverines have already seen a pair of players enter it (tight ends Erick All and Louis Hansen) and one player come into the program from it (offensive lineman LaDarius Henderson). But recruiting the portal hasn’t stopped with just one addition for Jim Harbaugh and the Wolverines. They’ve already extended offers to a handful of other players in an effort to build up the roster for next year.
Today, we detail the biggest positions of need, in my opinion and in no order, for the Wolverines to hit in the portal before the start of the 2023 season.
It’s important to have a quality backup quarterback in the event J.J. McCarthy goes down with injury, god forbid. Behind him right now is Davis Warren, who has played in a few games this year in mop up duty and looked good.
But with Alan Bowman moving on and a lack of extensive experience from Alex Orji and Jayden Denegal — as well as no quarterback committed in the 2023 class — the Wolverines should look at the portal for another Bowman-type of quarterback to bring solid competition, experience and knowledge of the game into the room.
This one should be fairly obvious, given the transfers of All and Hansen. Luckily for Michigan, it has two true freshmen coming in from the 2023 class and another committed player in 2024 to help negate those losses.
However, Luke Schoonmaker, Joel Honigford and Carter Selzer are also headed out the door after this season. That leaves Colston Loveland and walk-on Max Bredeson as the only guys with extensive experience on offense. Matthew Hibner has been around a few years, but hasn’t contributed much on offense.
Michigan has already offered two tight end in the portal — former Cal Poly redshirt freshman Josh Cuevas and former Indiana junior A.J. Barner — so don’t be surprised to see other players at the position offered.
This is based solely on my expectation of both DJ Turner and Gemon Green leaving the program for the NFL Draft. It’s entirely possible one or both stick around, as neither have announced their plans yet, but I believe at this moment that they’ll test the waters of the NFL, at the very least.
That would leave a hole at the position, and while Will Johnson looks like a star in the making, he can’t be relied on to make every play at the position.
The Wolverines, like every other program in America, are going to try their best with former Virginia corner Fentrell Cypress. It also wouldn’t be a bad idea to reach out to former North Carolina corner Tony Grimes, who the Wolverines recruited in high school. And while they’re at it, they may as well reach out to Grimes’ former UNC teammate, Storm Duck (yes, that’s his actual name), who had 46 tackles, one tackle for loss, one forced fumble, 12 pass deflections and three interceptions this past season.