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Can Michigan make Tennessee a pipeline state in recruiting?

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The Wolverines have a prime opportunity.

Michigan v Minnesota Photo by David Berding/Getty Images

Part of our discussion on this week’s Future Brew focused on Michigan’s two new commits in the 2022 class — four-star Tennessee defensive backs Kody Jones and Taylor Groves — and how they will fit into Mike Macdonald’s defense at Michigan. But can Macdonald and company make Tennessee a new pipeline state, much like former defensive coordinator Don Brown did with the state of Massachusetts?

Von: Stephen, I’ll start with you, man. It seems like Tennessee is becoming the new Massachusetts here, and I’m all for it. There’s a ton of talent in the state of Tennessee. With Tennessee having the talent they do in this recruiting class and so many others, do you expect Tennessee to become the next Massachusetts for Michigan on the trail?

Stephen: Yeah, we’ll see. I think it’s too early to tell just because it lines up really well with the not-so-great scenario that the Volunteers find themselves in. You’re gonna see the staff not afraid to dip their toes into SEC country. That’s where you have Mo Linguist, a lot of his roots are there. He has a lot of Texas roots, as well. So I don’t think it’s any coincidence with what we see at Tennessee. I am surprised, like you were about the quick commitments. Having the inroads there doesn’t hurt at all, so I think it’s something that Michigan will look to continue, and probably expand beyond Tennessee, but I think Tennessee provides a really great state with the in-state recruiting an uphill battle for the Volunteers.

Jon: (Groves and Jones) are both athletes that could play on both sides of the ball. Groves is 6-2, 175, a little bit taller than Jones, and more of a pure wide receiver guy on offense and more ticketed for safety on defense, just because he’s lanky and got those long arms that could help with his range. And I think Jones is pretty electric. He’s shorter but he has that shiftiness and agility that helps a lot. I think he could stick at corner, and has the requisite size and agility. I really like his film on offense, too, I think he looks a lot like a Giles Jackson or A.J. Henning, kinda in between that running back and wide receiver there. He’s really shifty and hard to bring down. So I think if Michigan ends up with a really good class at cornerback, they land guys like Myles Pollard and Will Johnson and Jaeden Gould, I think Jones could also have a spot on the offense if he really wanted it.

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