The Wolverine

February 2019

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 51 of 75

52 THE WOLVERINE FEBRUARY 2019   FOOTBALL RECRUITING DAVID OJABO, 6-4, 252 Aberdeen, Scotland (Blair Academy) Harbaugh actually included Ojabo in his description of Morris when referring to them as big, strong guys with really impres- sive families and solid work ethics. The native of Scotland has only been playing football for two years, but managed to reel in more than 30 offers over that stretch. His upside is through the roof, and the early enrolled freshman has a chance to explode as a football player. Ojabo was considered by Rivals to be a three-star prospect and the No. 34 strongside defensive end in the nation at the end of the cycle. JALEN PERRY, 6-1, 185 Dacula, Ga. (Dacula) Michigan brought in many players with position versatility in the 2019 class, and Perry is in that group. "He played both ways … a corner and wide re- ceiver," Harbaugh said. Rivals' No. 17 cornerback and No. 190 overall pros- pect nationally had been committed to Georgia from October 2017 to October 2018, but always kept his eye on Michigan. He ended up flip- ping to U-M in November 2018 after an official visit and is now on campus as an early enrollee. NOLAN RUMLER, 6-3, 310 Akron, Ohio (Archbishop Hoban) Rumler is another Ohio kid who grew up loving the Wolverines. The four-star guard committed to Mich- igan way back in July 2017 and gave the U-M coaches a cornerstone to build around along the offen- sive line. Harbaugh loves players like Rumler and didn't pull any punches when talking about the No. 10 offensive guard and No. 199 overall player nationally per Rivals. "Arguably, he's the best player in the class," the coach noted. High praise for the four-time state champion. MIKE SAINRISTIL, 5-10, 179 Everett, Mass. (Everett) Versatility is a theme among many skilled signees in U-M's class, and Sainris- til might be the most versatile of them all. The speedy three-star ath- lete took home Gatorade Player of the Year honors in Massachusetts and very easily could play wide re- ceiver or defensive back at Michigan. "He's a very versatile skill player," Har- baugh said. "Could be an offensive player, could be a defensive player." The coaches are going to get a chance to figure that out soon with Rivals' No. 56 athlete in the country already on cam- pus as an early enrollee. MAZI SMITH, 6-3, 303 Grand Rapids, Mich. (East Kentwood) Smith is also on campus already, and that 's promising since U-M desperately needs help at the defensive tackle position. Rivals' No. 9 defensive tackle and No. 142 overall prospect na- tionally has been a four- star recruit wire to wire and was always viewed as a priority for Michigan. Harbaugh simply called him an "in- state defensive tackle" and certainly seems to understand that Smith might be able to help U-M next fall. ANTHONY SOLOMON, 6-1, 200 Fort Lauderdale, Fla. (St. Thomas Aquinas) Solomon lost a star down the stretch of the 2019 cycle, and is now a three-star pros- pect and the No. 25 inside linebacker in the country according to Rivals. Har- baugh couldn't care less. "He's probably going be a heck of a viper," the coach said. "He's is a real student of the game." JACK STEWART, 6-4, 280 New Canaan, Conn. (New Canaan) Stewart is the last offensive lineman to be mentioned, round- ing out a group that Har- baugh absolutely loves. "An offensive line that's really, really good and deep," he said of the six- man haul. Stewart is somewhat of a forgotten man not only because of his name, but because he's a quiet kid and rarely did interviews even in the wake of his com- mitment back in April. Rivals' No. 79 offensive tackle in the country has upside as a light-on-his-feet athlete with good skills downfield and in open space. CHARLES THOMAS, 5-11, 224 Atlanta (St. Thomas More [Conn.]) Thomas started out his prep career at Langston Hughes High School in Georgia, then played his junior sea- son at IMG Academy in Florida and finished at St. Thomas More in Connecti- cut. The scenery changed for Thomas, but his abilities did not. He consistently flew around the field and racked up tackles. "He's going to remind people of Devin Bush with his speed," the coach said. The frequent moving made it tough for Thomas to be evaluated, and he finished the cycle as a three-star prospect. Rivals' No. 35 inside linebacker in the country should really excel in defensive coordi- nator Don Brown's scheme. DJ TURNER, 6-0, 173 Suwanee, Ga. (IMG Academy [Fla.]) Turner is just a three-star cornerback per Rivals, but Harbaugh and defen- sive backs coach Mike Zordich love his game. He might've earned the most words of any prospect during Harbaugh's recap of the class in December. "It's great to get a corner, DJ Turner from IMG, out of the Atlanta area," he said. "He is a big-time corner. He likes to work, he likes to tackle, really good at man-to-man coverage." Turner finished the 2019 cycle as the No. 47 cornerback in the country and will almost certainly outplay that ranking while at Michigan. JOEY VELAZQUEZ, 5-11, 195 Columbus, Ohio (St. Francis DeSales) If versatility is the theme of Michigan's 2019 class, three -star safety Joey Velazquez might be the poster boy. "He'll do anything," Har- baugh said. "He played running back. He played safety. He played line- backer. He'll even play baseball when he's here. He's that versatile." The three-star prospect finished the recruiting cycle unranked, but he has the work ethic, skill set and drive to suc- ceed in just about any situation. Expect him to contribute on a level he probably shouldn't. ❏

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of The Wolverine - February 2019