The Illinois game had the longest list of 2023 visitors this season as the Michigan Wolverines’ staff tries to fill out the class about a month before the early signing period. Though the weekend has not resulted in any commitments, they definitely improved their standing with their targets.
Michigan visit “better than expected” for three-star safety
One of the several defensive back prospects on campus for Michigan’s win over Illinois last Saturday was 2023 Pebblebrook (GA) safety Tyler Scott. Scott recapped his thoughts on his first ever trip to Ann Arbor with On3’s EJ Holland following the experience ($).
“It was amazing,” Scott said. “It was better than I expected. I got to meet all the coaches. The atmosphere was amazing with all of the fans. The weather was normal for me. It was an amazing visit. I’ll be back.”
Scott even stayed an extra day on his unofficial visit to break down film with cornerbacks coach Steve Clinkscale and meet one-on-one with Jim Harbaugh.
“I really clicked with Jim Harbaugh when we were talking,” Scott said. “We talked about his plan for me, what I’m going to major in and things like that. I’m locked in with coach Clink. He seems like he’s a good coach that understands his players. I like coaches like that.”
Up next, Scott has official visits planned for Alabama on Dec. 3 and USC on Dec. 10. He is hoping to get back up to Michigan for an official visit as well before the early signing period.
“I just want to see more of the city and things around Michigan,” Scott said. “I have a feeling that it’s a good place to be, but I just want to see more of everything on the official.”
Scott has already taken official visits to Auburn and Tennessee and is also considering using his last one on Texas. Tennessee looks like the biggest threat right now but if Alabama pushes, it will also be tough to beat.
Michigan sits at top for three-star DT official visitor
Despite being committed to Wisconsin, 2023 Brother Rice (IL) three-star defensive tackle Roderick Pierce has made two visits to Michigan this fall, including an official visit this past weekend. 247Sports’ Allen Trieu spoke with Pierce to get his thoughts on the recent visit and his future plans ($).
“The main things that stood out to me is the family environment and how the guys get along with each other,” Pierce said.
He even went as far to say that Michigan is leading for him at this moment.
“As of now I would say that Michigan is at the top of my list of options right now,” Pierce said. “I loved my visit.”
However, this one is not quite wrapped up for the Wolverines yet. Pierce said he still has a couple visits in the works for Illinois and Texas before making a final decision.
The Texas visit is concerning with its NIL game, but that visit is not set in stone yet. Even still, Michigan’s proximity may end up winning out in the end anyway.
Michigan receives surprise visit from SEC commit
An unexpected visitor who showed up on Michigan’s sidelines for the Illinois game was long-time cornerback target, 2023 Trinity Christian (GA) four-star Aaron Gates. While he still remains committed to the Florida Gators, Gates has made several visits to Michigan in the last year. The Michigan Insider’s Brice Marich picked up some notes on his visit ($).
First, both Gates and Michigan “wanted to keep quiet” about the visit as prospects who are committed to other schools often do. When Gates visited for the spring game back in April, it was also a surprise.
Marich also reported Clinkscale has built a good report with Gates and his family as well, which will go a long way in this recruitment.
On Florida’s side, Marich said the “Gators still seem optimistic of keeping him in the class.” Gates tore his ACL earlier this season, but that has not deterred Florida’s efforts to keep him committed. In fact, Gates was at Florida last weekend and will take his official visit there on Dec. 9.
Gates seems genuinely torn between the two schools as all of these visits indicate. Having Florida get the last visit in December will make it difficult as Michigan will need to keep the program at the top of his mind.