Thursday, December 20, 2012
The Weekly Update
By Tom VanHaaren
The Weekly Update at WolverineNation is a sneak peek inside Michigan recruiting.
The state of Florida is typically known for speed and skill players, but the Sunshine State also is home to some of the top offensive linemen for the 2014 class. One of them is Tampa Catholic lineman Corey Martinez, who has compiled offers from Florida State, Kentucky, Miami, South Florida and Vanderbilt.
The 6-foot-4, 291-pound lineman said he hasn't yet heard from Michigan, but it's definitely a school he'd like to learn more about.
"They have phenomenal academics and they are known for putting out very good offensive linemen," he said.
Martinez is a Watch List lineman who is hearing from Ole Miss, Notre Dame, Florida, Georgia, Alabama and Stanford. While a lot of prospects say academics is important, Martinez believes that's a big part of why schools are already showing interest.
"I'm always on top of my academics because I know that comes first before anything," he said. "Also, many of the schools like my aggressiveness on the field."
He actually took a break from studying for the SAT to talk recruiting, so he's doing a good job balancing the two out so far.
Martinez would like to hear from Michigan and says he isn't sure if distance would really factor in.
In the wake of former Wisconsin coach Bret Bielema accepting the Arkansas head coaching job, Michigan has gone after Badgers commit Marcus Ball (Westerville, Ohio/Westerville South) in the 2013 class. Ball recently took a visit to Michigan and is now waiting to speak with Wisconsin's new head coach.
The Badgers had already secured some top prospects for the 2014 class, including defensive end Conor Sheehy (Milwaukee, Wisc./Marquette). Michigan had offered Sheehy before he committed to Wisconsin and is now waiting to see what Sheehy does from here.
"I'm still deciding. I don't think I'll be able to make a decision before I see who the new coaches are," Sheehy said. "[I'm looking to see] whether or not I still feel comfortable with the direction Wisconsin is going in."
Sheehy has been in contact with Michigan coach Greg Mattison recently. They talked about the offseason, Sheehy's family and making sure Sheehy stays in touch with Michigan.
Much like a lot of the Wisconsin commitments, Sheehy was a Badgers fan growing up and felt as though he had made the right decision. Now that the coaching change has shaken things up, he just wants to make sure it's still a similar feeling going forward.
"I haven't thought it much yet, but [if I were to open things up] I might take a little more time with a decision because I was very familiar with what Wisconsin has to offer," he said. "I grew up watching the program so I felt comfortable making that decision."
Since he is only a junior he still has plenty of time to figure that out.
LEADING UP TO SIGNING DAY
We all know there is likely to be more attrition coming for Michigan as Ricardo Miller has said he won't return, and there is always potential for more. Miller's decision has not been confirmed by the university, but it would be odd for him to declare he's leaving and not leave.
That being said, it looks like Michigan could sign up to 28 prospects for the 2013 class, and there are plenty of targets remaining to try to fill those spots.
What we know right now is that safety Leon McQuay III (Seffner, Fla./Armwood) is going to have to decide soon since he's enrolling early. I get the sense Michigan is behind for some reason, but I don't think the Wolverines are out of it. If USC lands defensive back Max Redfield (Mission Viejo, Calif./Mission Viejo) that could make it a Vanderbilt and Michigan race for McQuay.
Running back Derrick Green (Richmond, Va./Hermitage) has been quiet of late and with all the coaching changes within Green's top group one would think Michigan is in a good spot. The re-addition of offensive lineman David Dawson (Detroit/Cass Tech) will also help in Michigan's pursuit of Green. In fact, Dawson has already been recruiting Green to Michigan.
The offensive line situation is still up in the air as well. Michigan recently hosted Dan Skipper (Arvada, Colo./Ralston Valley) and Dan Samuelson (Plymouth, Ind./Plymouth) and are still in it with Cameron Hunt (Corona, Calif./Centennial). All three are prospects Michigan would take, with only one spot left at offensive line.
That means that it's likely first come, first served for any of those targets. Samuelson, who is a Nebraska commit, seems to be struggling with a decision. Michigan has given him something to think about.