Michigan picked up one of its most surprising commitments in recent memory, as 2017 Top 100 DT (GA) Aubrey Solomon pledged his intent to play for the Wolverines on Saturday. This was one of the most quickly developing stories regarding Michigan recruiting in some time, and definitely reminds me of Nick Eubanks' or Josh Uche's quick decisions after visiting Michigan in January.
As far as Solomon goes on the field, Michigan has to be ecstatic about its pickup. Solomon is ranked as the 6th best defensive tackle on 247's Composite Ranking, and ranked as the 94th best player in the country overall. Add to that that he is from Georgia and was supposed to be at Alabama for a visit this weekend, Jim Harbaugh and company pulled off one the more stunning jobs in this recruiting cycle.
Solomon is a big, big kid who is already 6 foot 3 and 300 pounds. He holds his weight very well for a young guy, and when he gets on campus, the Michigan strength and conditioning staff is going to mold him into a beast. One thing that jumps off the film is his first step. It is quick and he does a good job of getting off the ball. One of the negatives you can see on film is his pad level. He tends to play upright, but is still dominant against most high school linemen. He won't be able to do that in college, but it is something that Michigan will fix upon him getting to campus.
One of the things that you fall in love with when you watch Solomon's film is his violent hand use. He gets his hands out and dictates the movements of the offensive linemen. Most of the time, these young high school offensive linemen can not handle Solomon and he's able to shed his block rather easily. But, when he does get latched onto, he shows a good array of club moves and shows good technique to get of his blocks and make plays.
Solomon is a total strength rusher, but has some good quickness that will allow him to develop some solid inside moves at the college level, especially when dealing with slower interior linemen. And when you project him along side great to elite pass rusher such as Rashan Gary company, the excitement level rises even more. Him playing inside with Gary outside has to have fans and coaches salivating for all of the possibilities.
Normally, you would hope to red shirt any type of linemen their first year on campus (Unless they are of the Gary, Clowney or Suh variety) but with Michigan losing a lot of front to graduation this year, Solomon will most likely play a lot as a true freshman. With his skill-set, however, he is someone who could come to Michigan and start for 2 to 3 years and play himself into being a first round pick.
Overall, Solomon is one of the most impressive pick ups Michigan has gotten since Jim Harbaugh became Head Coach last winter, and should be able to play immediately. His ceiling is very high and could be a feared player in the Big Ten sooner rather than later. Look for him to be an All Big-Ten performer by his second year on campus.