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Michigan Monday Crootin’ asks how much room is left in 2019 class, update on 5-star Quavaris Crouch

In a quiet weekend of recruiting, we look at the scholarship count to see how much room is left.

Penn State v Michigan Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images

Zach Harrison. Quavaris Crouch. George Karlaftis. Trevor Keegan. Danielson Ike.

These are just a few names of elite recruits on Michigan’s mind a month out from the December signing period. It begs the question, though:

How much room is there in the 2019 recruiting class?

To answer this, a quick look at the current scholarship count:

  • 20 true freshman +
  • 25 redshirt freshman/sophomores +
  • 23 redshirt sophomores/juniors +
  • Seven redshirt juniors/seniors +
  • Eight redshirt seniors
  • Equals 83 current scholarship players

Assuming all fourth and fifth-year players leave, that’s 17 current spots for a 2019 class that has already secured 24 verbal commitments. Since Jim Harbaugh and his staff are still actively recruiting, they probably expect more room to be made.

What roster changes are needed to make that happen?

First off, let’s assume every fourth and fifth-year player leaves, including the redshirt juniors. That means firm handshakes for redshirt juniors Reuben Jones and Nolan Ulizio.

That still leaves 17 openings, but needed to clarify.

Among the true juniors, five have the potential to declare early for the NFL Draft. That list includes Rashan Gary, Devin Bush, Lavert Hill, David Long and Shea Patterson*.

With Gary and Bush projected in the first two rounds, they’re gone. There’s considerably less buzz for Hill and Long, but if they continue to lock down the outside at absurd levels, scouts should take notice.

For sake of argument, let’s say one leaves between the two. With Patterson’s solid if unspectacular season, he might stay, as well.

*There’s the rumor, as well. That’s all it is at this point.

Three early departures gets us to 20 spots. Throw in three early enrollments in the winter, and now we’re at 23.

Without speculating, there’s a chance for three to four more transfers from the underclassmen. It’s getting late for a handful of players, so more firm handshakes are on the horizon.

The final count here is 26 to 27 available scholarships for the 2019 class. That’s not even counting potential decommitments, so needless to say, Harbaugh and company can hone in guys such as Harrison, Crouch and the like.

Speaking of which...


Ryan Callahan of 247Sports’ The Torch Bearer caught up with 5-star athlete Quavaris Crouch after his official visit to Tennessee.

The Charlotte, NC native hit up Knoxville at the perfect time for Volunteer fans, as their team dispatched then-No. 11 Kentucky 24-7 Saturday.

The winning atmosphere reportedly gave Crouch “the butterflies,” with his coach asserting Tennessee has “a legitimate shot at landing him” alongside Clemson and Michigan.

Crouch’s family has made the four-hour drive to Knoxville three other times this year, so it’s too early to dismiss head coach Jeremy Pruitt’s chances.

“I think they definitely, without a doubt, are in the mix, for sure,” his former coach and current mentor Sam Greiner told Callahan. “If people think Tennessee is not in the fighting race, then they’re crazy.”

For what it’s worth, The Michigan Insider’s Steve Lorenz still thinks Michigan leads.

Crouch is ranked the No. 28 overall prospect and No. 2 athlete in the industry-generated 247Sports composite for the 2019 class.

Final note: I’m in Northern California at the moment to scout 2020 quarterback prospect Jay Butterfield. The Liberty (Brentwood, Calif.) product faces Clayton Valley Charter in the CIF-NCS semifinal Monday.

The game was postponed due to the Bay Area fires this past weekend. Thanks to Liberty head coach Ryan Partridge, Maize n Brew is getting field access to the semifinal action.

By the way, Ryan is the cousin of Michigan assistant Chris Partridge. That connection alone puts Michigan in a positive light for Butterfield.