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Monday Crootin’: How does Michigan flip George Karlaftis from Purdue?

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The West Lafayette product committed to the Boilermakers a year ago. Does Jeff Brohm’s success help or hurt his recruitment? The answer may not be so obvious.

Michigan v Michigan State Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

The room in Michigan’s 2019 class is dwindling, but a small pocket of prospects remain in play.

One of them is 4-star strong side defensive end George Karlaftis. Despite committing to hometown Purdue 367 days ago, he has built a close bond with defensive line coach Greg Mattison.

“I’ve known Coach Mattison since my sophomore year, so it’s been a good relationship,” he said to The Michigan Insider’s Brice Marich ($). “He’s a great coach and great guy. I’m very comfortable with coach Mattison. His message is that he understands my situation and wants me to be at Michigan and he believes I’m a Michigan kinda guy.”

He also said while he has been impressed with Don Brown’s defense, he also notices the upward trajectory of his Boilermakers.

This divide leads to the question: Does Michigan want Purdue to tank and miss a bowl, or roll into the Big Ten Championship Game and see a richer program snatch up Jeff Brohm?

Which result brings the 6-foot-4, 260-pounder closer to Ann Arbor?

Poll

Which result is better for Michigan with George Karlaftis?

This poll is closed

  • 44%
    Purdue tanks down the stretch, misses a bowl.
    (496 votes)
  • 55%
    Boilers roll to Indy, a richer program snatches up Jeff Brohm.
    (617 votes)
1113 votes total Vote Now

The logic of the first one seems clear. The Wolverines continue their recent surge in play and seize their first conference title since 2004. Meanwhile, Brohm’s program shows inconsistency in destroying Ohio State by four scores, yet fades down the stretch.

Would an elite recruit such as Karlaftis want to step into the third year of a slow build? Since he committed during a 7-6 campaign in 2017, he might want to be a part of a new age in West Lafayette.

The second option looks realistic, especially after the buzz last offseason. Brohm talked about, “where’s there’s smoke, there’s fire,” regarding the Tennessee head coaching job.

Many battered brands of college football would throw money at him. In the hypothetical second scenario, he would have helmed a program to Indianapolis after a 9-39 record in the four years prior to his arrival.

There’s his alma mater Louisville possibly ousting Bobby Petrino. Seats are warming at Auburn for Gus Malzahn, as well.

Brohm bolting for another job likely puts the kibosh on the Purdue renaissance. Is that the catalyst for Karlaftis to sign in maize and blue?

For the top-ranked player in the state of Indiana, the dynamics of Purdue’s season are worth watching. Without it, he looks pretty solid to the black and gold.

VON LOZON TALKED TO 2020’S SAM ADAMS II

Maize N’ Brew’s Von Lozon spoke with 2020 3-star running back Sam Adams II Friday. The Sammamish, Wash. product — specifically his dad — has a long history with Jim Harbaugh.

“Sam Adams Sr., a former Texas A&M Aggie, was a first round NFL Draft pick and NFL defensive tackle from 1994-2007,” Lozon writes. “Nicknamed ‘The Man Mountain,’ he and Harbaugh were both with the Oakland Raiders in 2002 — Harbaugh as the quarterbacks coach, Adams Sr. as a player — and have known each other since.”

The younger Adams has fielded offers from Ohio State, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Florida, Oregon, Tennessee and Washington State, among others.

Harbaugh offered Adams II, and changed the tenor of his recruitment.

“Big time program,” he said. “A coach that my dad trusts and has worked with before. Says that coach Harbaugh is one of the hardest working coaches in football on any level. I like that.”

The No. 340 prospect nationally per 247 Sports had a lot more to say here. Watch his highlights below or here.

2020 BASKETBALL COMMIT?

John Beilein may be close to breaking the seal on the 2020 hoops class.

Maumee, Ohio 4-star shooting guard Zeb Jackson will announce his commitment on Tuesday, according to The Michigan Insider ($).

While Ohio State still carries a lone Crystal Ball, Sam Webb and Steve Lorenz are predicting he pledges to Michigan. Even Alex Gleitman of Bucknuts has conceded to the Wolverines.

The battle is nominally between Michigan and Butler, who carries one Crystal Ball from a local Indianapolis beat writer.

With recent guards in Nik Stauskas, Tim Hardaway and Caris Levert excelling early in the NBA season, Jackson has to see that and salivate over his professional development in Ann Arbor.

He ranks No. 66 overall per the 247 Sports Composite. He will release a video online announcing his commitment.