The impact of Michigan's early season woes
There is no question the heat has been turned up exponentially on the Michigan football program in recent weeks. The Wolverines have had two showings where they have lost in embarrassing fashion and failed to reach the red zone a single time in their two losses.
This staff and the leadership within the athletic department certainly look like they could be on the way out if things do not shape up, and make no mistake about it, recruits will take notice.
Rivals.com Recruiting Analyst Rob Cassidy took a look at a few factors that could impact the Wolverines on the recruiting trail. (FREE)
On Michigan's eight losses in their last 12 games:
In a what-have-you-done-for-me-lately industry, the search for signature wins is a tedious one in Ann Arbor. That's to say that finding anything to inspire confidence in potential recruits is starting to get difficult. This isn't to say head coach Brady Hoke should or shouldn't be fired. That's for Michigan's athletic department to decide. It certainly doesn't matter in this space. What does matter is that the perception that he is coaching for his job. Prospects in the region are aware of the buzz.
On the 189 combined scholarship offers that the 2015 commits have on the table:
These guys have options. Lots of them. Whether Hoke is on the hot seat or not is irrelevant. People are starting to perceive that he is, and perception is reality in recruiting. If prospects are worried that the future of a program is uncertain, then it is. Following the Wolverines' 26-10 loss to Utah over the weekend, the front page of Michigan's student newspaper called his future into question with a headline that read "Clock's Ticking, Brady", and speculation about who may be the next in line for his job has already begun. None of that will inspire confidence among a group of high-profile high school recruits with plenty of offers to go elsewhere. If Hoke doesn't turn this season around dramatically, it may soon become open season on Michigan's class.
A few days back, I took a look at how the class could be affected, as well.
Here is what I believe the status is of their 2015 committed players so far:
Luckily for the Wolverines, the players they have committed right now to both their 2015 and 2016 recruiting classes appear to be pretty firm in their pledges to the university. The 2015 group is really close and a lot of those kids have gotten pretty close throughout the process. There's always the chance that a player could get cold feet and end up elsewhere, but as of today I don't think any of them are candidates to be flipped.
We'll see what happens. If things go south quickly I would not be surprised for this class to be shaken up a little bit, but I feel very confident that most of the parts currently in place are firm in their commitments.
It seems like the staff has a backup plan if some of their top options still on the board go elsewhere, so things appear to be okay as of today.
Recapping more games from commits over the weekend
I touched on a few 2015 commits and what they did this past weekend in Monday's roundup, but there were a few other notable performances that I missed.
We'll start with four-star tight end Chris Clark (Avon, Connecticut), who had an outstanding showing in his team's first outing of the year, grabbing 14 catches for 165 yards and a touchdown.
His school, Avon Old Farms, walked out with a 49-34 victory over Brunswick (CT).
Defensive line commit Darian Roseboro (Lincolnton, North Carolina) finished up a suspended game from last Monday where he not only notched seven tackles on defense, but also ran the ball for 186 yards and four touchdowns. It's scary how powerful and athletic he is at the defensive end spot.
Safety Tyree Kinnel (Dayton, Ohio) had a 69-yard punt return for a touchdown in a 54-0 Huber Heights Wayne victory over Troy.
For more on what Michigan's current commits did over the weekend, check out Steve Lorenz of 247's roundup on the action that took place. (FREE)
Thiyo Lukusa update and interview tease
Last night, I spoke with four-star 2016 offensive tackle prospect Thiyo Lukusa (Traverse City, Michigan) about where he is at in the recruiting process and the timetable he has set for a decision.
Lukusa confirmed to me reports of wanting to have a top five in place by November and committing sometime in December. The schools that are currently in the mix in no order are Ohio State, Michigan State, Auburn, Nebraska and Michigan.
When I asked him if there was a visit he has taken that has really stood out in his mind, he said yes, but that he would keep that to himself. He also plans on being in Ann Arbor this weekend for the game against Minnesota.
You can read my full interview with Lukusa here, where he talks about how the uncertainty of Michigan's coaching staff going forward will affect his recruitment and more.
That's it for Wednesday's roundup. Check back in Friday for the latest in Michigan football recruiting.
Be sure to follow Maize n Brew Recruiting Reporter Anthony Broome on Twitter, @anthonytbroome.