The Wolverine

February 2017

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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FEBRUARY 2017 THE WOLVERINE 59   COMMITMENT PROFILE Paramus (N.J.) Catholic four-star outside linebacker Drew Singleton comes from a school Michigan fans are growing more and more familiar with. Linebackers coach Chris Par- tridge, NFL-bound redshirt sopho- more Jabrill Peppers, third-year of- fensive tackle Juwann Bushell-Beatty, and freshman defensive lineman and top 2016 national prospect Rashan Gary are all products of the New Jer- sey high school. Singleton, a 6-2, 218-pound missile of a linebacker, announced his deci- sion to attend Michigan Dec. 22 and is very excited about continuing the trend of Paramus Catholic standouts in Ann Arbor. "We can make it a true movement now," Singleton said with a laugh. "I really made the decision because of me, but it is a great thing to be there. The Jersey to AA thing is really icing on the cake. Michigan was the right choice and the best choice for me, and having all of us Jersey guys up there is great. "I'm very close with the guys up there. I talk to them from time to time. We used to all hang out when they were here in high school." One of the biggest draws was Partridge, his former head coach in high school turned future position coach. The comfort level was some- thing no other school could match for Singleton. "It's obviously a really good feel- ing because I'll know my position coach personally," he said. "I really love the school for itself. Coach Par- tridge is just a bonus. "It definitely gives me a warm feel- ing and a comfort knowing that I know my position coach personally since I started playing high school football." Those bonuses, along with every- thing else Michigan offers, were all too much for Singleton to turn down. He went back and forth between Michigan and Clemson for much of his recruitment, but he ultimately found all he wanted at U-M. "It was the best choice for my fam- ily and me," Singleton said. "I see a whole bunch of opportunities at Michigan on and off the field. On the field, I feel like I will learn from the best and be coached by the best to become the best player I could pos- sibly become. "I see a lot of amazing opportuni- ties up there off the field. There are a lot relationships I can make that will benefit me in the future after football. They have a strong alumni base, a lot of connections and all the tools I can use to become the greatest man I can be." Rated by as the No. 1 player in New Jersey, and the No. 4 outside linebacker and No. 52 overall prospect nationally, Singleton is obvi- ously a talented young man — but he tore his ACL during the second week of his senior season after be- ing a second-team all-state selection as a junior. That injury isn't as scary as it once was, but it tends to still make people a little nervous. Michigan fans love the fact that he's bringing his athleticism to Ann Arbor, but some are still a bit concerned. Sin- gleton recently delivered a very clear message regarding his health. "You can tell Michigan fans that my knee is great," he said with confi- dence. "I had a very speedy recovery. I'm still going through therapy, but it feels great. "I'll be in therapy until I get to Michigan, just trying to get it stronger, but I am not worried about it at all." Mid-Atlantic analyst Adam Friedman says there's nothing to be worried about when it comes to what Singleton will do at U-M. "Michigan is getting a fantastic player," he said. "Singleton does re- ally well in space and is a big hitter. He reads keys quickly and always flies to the football. He makes a lot of plays and had a lot of interceptions in coverage throughout his career before injuring his knee. "He's already running and actually suited up for some late games during his senior season, but did not play. He'll be ready as soon as he hits Mich- igan's campus. He'll be ready to go." — Brandon Brown Drew Singleton Continues Paramus (N.J.) Catholic Pipeline To U-M FILM EVALUATION Strengths: Speed, athleticism and range are all part of Drew Singleton's skill set that make him the No. 4 outside linebacker nationally. He's great in space, can cover and is ideally built for pursuing plays all over the field. Areas Of Improvement: Singleton will need to bulk up a bit, but he's not un- dersized and has a great frame for adding weight. Listed at 218 pounds, he could probably get to 235-240 without losing his special athletic qualities. Michigan Player Comparison: Singleton is built almost identically to former Michigan linebacker Prescott Burgess. Both were in the 6-2, 215-pound range coming out of high school and were known for being long and rangy. Burgess was a five-star prospect listed as a safety coming out of high school, but he developed into an athletic linebacker the same way Singleton should under defensive coordinator Don Brown. — Analysis from rates Singleton as the No. 1 pros- pect in New Jersey, and the No. 4 outside linebacker and No. 52 overall player nationally. PHOTO COURTESY RIVALS.COM Singleton "The Jersey to AA thing is re- ally icing on the cake. Michi- gan was the right choice and the best choice for me, and having all of us Jersey guys up there is great."

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