NCF On The Trail: Henry Poggi

ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Now is a time when kids who are sports fans will need explanations for conference names.

They’ll want to know that at one point the “Pac” in Pac-12 (then eight) stands for the Pacific Ocean and that the conference held teams that were near that body of water, and that Arizona and Arizona State, being in deserts, isn’t just irony for the sake of conference humor. Or that the “East” in Big East didn’t initially imply “east of the Mississippi.” Or that something as simple as the Big Ten once truly had 10 teams.

But it’s a sign of the times, and conference realignment is a constant reality for today’s athletes. While the “Ten” in Big Ten is now a misnomer, it still lives up to the “Big” part, and the conference’s territory keeps growing bigger and bigger.

Cal commit Cameron Hunt (Corona, Calif./Centennial) has become one of the top offensive line targets for a number of schools across the country. The four-star prospect recently returned home from the Under Armour All-America Game in Florida -- the first leg of an action-packed January -- and is focused on evaluating his options with less than a month to go until national signing day.


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Hackenberg, Olsen earn UA Game starts

January, 3, 2013
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Black Team offense

Quarterback: Christian Hackenberg (Penn State)

Running back: Alvin Kamara

Receiver: Alvin Bailey (Florida), Robert Foster (Alabama), Damore'ea Stringfellow (Washington)

Tight end: O.J. Howard (Alabama)

Offensive tackle: Darius James (Texas), Denver Kirkland

Offensive guard: Grant Hill (Alabama), Joas Aguilar (Texas A&M)

Center: Hunter Bivin (Notre Dame)

Captains: Kelvin Taylor, Hunter Bivin, Robert Nkemdiche, Ben Boulware

Black Team defense

Defensive end: Robert Nkemdiche, Elijah Daniel

Defensive tackle: Greg Gilgmore (LSU), Kennedy Tulimasealii (Hawaii)

Inside linebacker: Ben Boulware (Clemson)

Outside linebacker: Alex Anzalone (Notre Dame), Matthew Thomas

Safety: Keanu Neal (Florida), Leon McQuay III

Cornerback: Vernon Hargreaves III (Florida), Tarean Folston (Notre Dame)

Black Team special teams

Long snapper: Tyler Kluver (Iowa)

Kicker/punter: Sean Covington (UCLA)

White Team offense

Quarterback: Kevin Olsen (Miami)

Running back: Keith Ford (Oklahoma)

Receiver: Laquon Treadwell, Ryan Green (Florida State), Jalin Marshall (Ohio State)

Tight end: Hunter Henry (Arkansas)

Offensive tackle: Derwin Gray (Maryland), Dorian Johnson (Pittsburgh)

Offensive guard: Patrick Kugler (Michigan), David Dawson (Michigan)

Center: Scott Quessenberry (UCLA)

White Team defense

Defensive end: Carl Lawson (Auburn), Joey Bosa (Ohio State)

Defensive tackle: Henry Poggi (Michigan), Kelsey Griffin (South Carolina)

Inside linebacker: Reuben Foster, Yannick Ngakoue

Outside linebacker: Trey Johnson

Safety: Max Redfield, Antonio Conner

Cornerback: Gareon Conley (Ohio State), Shaq Wiggins (Georgia)

White Team special teams

Long snapper: Brendan Turelli

Kicker: Ryan Santoso (Minnesota)

Punter: Shane Tripucka

Captains: Ryan Green, Hunter Henry, Patrick Kugler, Reuben Foster
Michigan added again to its already strong 2013 class with a commitment from the versatile Henry Poggi (Baltimore, Md./Gilman). The four-star is a good pick-up for the Wolverines as he could help on offense as a blocking tight end or on the defensive line. With two tight ends already on board in this class it is likely he will play on defense when he lands in Ann Arbor.

Defensively he could play on the edge, but in the long run with additional mass he probably will better fit as a defensive tackle where he is ranked on RecruitingNation. Regardless of how the Wolverines choose to use him they are a getting a coach's son who is a heady player and shows good toughness as well.

At this stage he is a bit of a 'tweener size wise as a defensive lineman and will need to continue to add mass and fill out his frame to play inside. He flashes a good get-off, but needs to be more consistent. He is tough taking on blockers and defending the run as he can play low and be active with his hands as well recognize and react well to blocking schemes. As a pass rusher he comes up field hard and though he needs to continue to further develop as a pass rusher he can make blockers work to try and stop him. He also plays with a motor and is a good physical tackler.

Poggi might not be among the most dynamic D-Line prospects in this class, but he is a smart, tough and versatile football player, and those are traits that can add value to Michigan’s roster. Might be some time before Poggi is able to add size and settle into his best fit, but in the short-term his versatility could be called on and in the long run Michigan should have a good, productive defender.

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The Wolverines continued their hot streak on the recruiting trail by landing four-star defensive tackle Henry Poggi (Baltimore/Gilman) on Monday. The 6-foot-3, 255-pound lineman is commitment No. 20 for Michigan and the 16th commitment ranked as a four-star.

"I am grateful to say that I am choosing Michigan. I feel comfortable there and I hope I will fit in," Poggi said. "I know that they have great players at my position on their roster and in the incoming recruiting classes. I will do my best to compete and hopefully I will make the team and be additive in helping the team reach their goals. I know that I start at the bottom of the depth chart."

Henry Poggi
Courtesy of Maggie ThomasHenry Poggi could play inside or outside on the defensive line.
This is another big win for Michigan as Poggi chose the Wolverines over Alabama, Ohio State, Auburn, Florida and Stanford, among others. He's ranked as the No. 23 defensive tackle in the country, but he could be used in various ways.

Poggi's versatility along the line will give the Michigan coaching staff plenty of options as he could line up at the three-technique defensive tackle spot or move outside to the five-technique defensive end position.

Michigan seemed to move into the driver's seat after Poggi and his parents took a visit to Ann Arbor in March. After that trip, his father said that the visit was over the top and showed Henry that he fit in socially with the rest of the team. What might have been more important on that trip, though, was that Poggi's mom came away impressed and comfortable with what Michigan would offer her son.

"(Henry's mother) sat with Brady [Hoke], she spent about 40 minutes with him, and he explained to her why he coaches," said Biff Poggi, Henry's father. "He's passionate about impacting the lives of kids, and she believed him and felt like that was deep in his heart. The academic piece, she also thought in her mind is every bit as impressive and maybe more than Stanford."

This commitment now gives Michigan three very good prospects on the defensive line as Poggi joins defensive tackle Maurice Hurst Jr. (Westwood, Mass./Xaverian Brothers) and defensive end Taco Charlton (Pickerington, Ohio/Pickerington Central).

Poggi is also the fifth commitment for Michigan along the defensive line ranked as a four-star between the 2012 and 2013 classes. Depth and competition are being built in the trenches, something Hoke said would be a priority going forward.

New offer for 2013 DL 

December, 16, 2011
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With three defensive line coaches on the Michigan staff, it's inevitable that there will be a focus on recruits along the defensive line. The 2012 class was filled with top prospects at defensive end and tackle, and the coaches would like to continue that into the 2013 class as well.

There have already been multiple offers out to top defensive prospects such as tackles Henry Poggi (Baltimore/Gilman) and Billy Price (Youngstown, Ohio/Austintown Fitch), and defensive end Taco Charlton (Pickerington, Ohio/Central), among others.

There is now a new offer to add to that list as of last week.

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Gilman stars tripping to Ohio State 

December, 14, 2011
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Gilman School's prospects are thinking Ohio State.

The Baltimore school is sending two highly-rated prospects, Cyrus Jones and Henry Poggi, to Columbus, Ohio, this weekend to check out the Buckeyes under newly hired head coach Urban Meyer.

Poggi is a junior that already is garnering attention on the ESPNU Watch List. He is slated to play defensive tackle in college but could also be considered as a tight end. He said he was primarily considering Stanford, Michigan, Alabama, Tennessee and Auburn among his long list of scholarship offers.

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