The Wolverine

October 2022

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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58 THE WOLVERINE OCTOBER 2022 BY CHRIS BALAS M ichigan coaches are still waiting for their first 2023 commitment, and the early signing period (Nov. 9) is fast approaching. One recruit U-M seemed to lead on at one point, South Kent (Conn.) forward Papa Kante (6-10, On3's No. 32 overall prospect), has slowed his recruitment after appearing ready to pledge. That's not necessarily good news for the Wolverines. He was down to four schools — U-M, Maryland, Pittsburgh, and Rutgers — and on the verge of a de- cision before going back to Senegal, Af- rica, to talk about it with his family. He then added Memphis to his list and released a final five upon returning to the United States after head coach Penny Hardaway hired Kante's former AAU coach, Andy Borman, as an assistant. "He started recruiting me when he got the job, and I really know him," Kante said in September. "He really helped me during the summer to improve my game. If he chose to go to Memphis, they must be good people down there. "Coach Hardaway called me and talked to me for a while. He says I'm an energy guy who can shoot and handle the ball a little bit. He said what I can do in practice, he'll let me do in a game." Michigan coaches were among those to stop at South Kent and see him in September. He reportedly unofficially visited Maryland again on the weekend of Sept. 17 and could visit the others on his list once more, including Michigan. "Coach Howard has been recruit- ing me personally. The first time he watched me, he offered me, and he's been on me since," Kante said. "I vis- ited his school, and he's a good guy who cares about his players. "The school is very nice. They are trying right now to schedule an official visit so I can watch their practice and meet the players that will be there if I went there. I didn't have a chance to watch their practice before, and that's something I want to see." Howard told him he believes he can make an impact his freshman year and help him achieve his goals, and there will likely be playing time for him. Assistant Phil Martelli recently said junior center Hunter Dickinson is set to graduate after three years, at which point he'll probably move on to his pro career. The Wolverines are looking for a point guard to play immediately, as well, and Isaiah Collier would fit the bill. The 6-foot-2, 190-pounder out of Marietta (Ga.) Wheeler, On3's top point guard and No. 2 overall prospect nationally, was ini- tially slated to decide in September, but a tragic accident — his cousin drowned when he was swimming with him in the Chattahoochee River — put his recruit- ment on the back burner. Collier has a fi- nal four of USC, Cincinnati, Michigan and UCLA, and he's visited all four schools. "Southern California has been the longtime school thought to be in the lead," On3 national basketball recruiting analyst Jamie Shaw said. "The freedom [coach] Andy Enfield gives guards, and his style of play is really attractive. Col- lier also consistently speaks about the number of players Southern California puts into the league. "Cincinnati has been the sneaky team here. Always a team in the mix, and never a team anyone really talks about. Interestingly enough, this is the only program, when speaking with Collier, where he talks about the atmosphere. The entire program has done a great job letting Collier know he is the top option, and that has kept the Bearcats right in the thick of things. "Collier went into his trip with the feel Michigan could be the fourth of the fi- nalists. However, coming out of that of- ficial visit, the tides turned for the Wol- Zayden High is the Wolverines' top target at power forward. The 6-foot-9, 215-pounder out of Spring Branch, Texas, and now at Compass Prep in Arizona, appears to have a trio of teams on top in Villanova, Michigan and North Carolina. PHOTO COURTESY ON3.COM Isaiah Collier, a 6-foot-2, 190-pounder out of Marietta (Ga.) Wheeler, is rated as the top point guard and No. 2 overall prospect nationally by On3. Collier has a final four of USC, Cincinnati, Michigan and UCLA, and he's visited all four schools. PHOTO COURTESY MADEHOOPS.COM BASKETBALL RECRUITING Class Of 2023 Recruiting Remains An Enigma

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