Happy Friday, and welcome to another Michigan Recruiting Roundup!
I hope you are all coming out of your turkey comas, because we’ve got a big football game tomorrow. Our own Jon Simmons will have his recruiting visitors list out later today per usual, but for now, let’s get to some recruiting news.
U-M could pursue former five-star WR transfer
It was reported earlier this week that Penn State wide receiver Justin Shorter entered the transfer portal. After a redshirt season in 2018 and struggling to find a role on the offense in 2019, it’s not a huge surprise to see him want out of Happy Valley, especially given his talents and being a former five-star prospect.
According to his sources, Isaiah Hole over at WolverinesWire (FREE) says Michigan is “likely to be interested and will definitely kick the tires to see if he’d be interested in Ann Arbor being a potential destination.”
It should also be noted Michigan’s director of recruiting, Matt Dudek, followed Shorter on Twitter not long after the news broke. To top it all off, offensive coordinator Josh Gattis was the main recruiter for Shorter when he was at Penn State.
If Nico Collins and/or Donovan Peoples-Jones were to enter the 2020 NFL Draft, Shorter would make for a solid replacement in the wide receiver room.
Top 2021 DT target looking to commit early
Near the top of Michigan’s defensive line board in the 2021 class is four-star Victory Vaka, who has one of the most bad ass names in this class.
The 6-foot-3, 315-pounder from Westlake Village, California is expected in Ann Arbor this weekend for The Game, and has forged a strong bond with defensive line coach Shaun Nua, so much so he included the Wolverines in his top five list with Arizona State, Texas A&M, Utah and LSU.
247Sports’ Greg Biggins ($) recently caught up with Vaka, who told him he is looking to make his final decision sooner rather than later.
“I would like to get it done early if I can,” Vaka said. “I’m looking at Jan. 6, which is my mother’s birthday, or Feb. 27, which is my birthday. I’m willing to push it back though if I don’t feel ready by then. I’m just going to play it out and we’ll see what happens.”
One of the most important positions for Michigan to acquire talent at in the 2021 class is defensive line. I could see the Wolverines taking four or five defensive linemen in this class, so securing a commitment from Vaka would go a long way for them, especially this early in the cycle.
Vaka is No. 189 overall on 247Sports’ composite rankings.
2020 commit officially visits USC
One of the few players committed to Michigan’s 2020 class that has not visited Ann Arbor for a game this season is four-star safety Jordan Morant. In the meantime, he has visited Texas A&M, and this past weekend, USC.
247Sports’ Brian Dohn ($) spoke with Morant not long after his visit to USC, and it sounds like he had a good time seeing USC take down rival UCLA.
“The atmosphere at USC was amazing,” he said. “Being around the whole program and everyone part of it was just a blessing. My family and I loved it there and I’m really glad I got to take a trip out there.”
It isn’t uncommon to see commits visit other schools, but what is uncommon is the fact Morant had not come to Ann Arbor yet this season while taking visits elsewhere. Morant isn’t the only one in Michigan’s 2020 class to do this, but he is the highest ranked and most valuable of the bunch.
However, I don’t believe this is as big of a deal as others are making it out to be. Morant seems pretty firmly committed to Michigan. He tweeted how “it’s great to be a Michigan Wolverine” after the Notre Dame beat down, and still has his commitment post pinned on his Twitter account. He is also visiting this weekend for The Game, so there is no reason to panic here.
That’s all for this week! There will be tons of recruiting news coming out of this weekend, so be sure to come back Monday for another edition of the Michigan Recruiting Roundup!