The Wolverine

March 2018

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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24 THE WOLVERINE MARCH 2018 talent in the world, but he needs to hone in it. The [Miesbach (Bavaria) FOS Altoetting three-star defensive end Julius] Welschof kid is really interesting too. He's from Germany, so we just don't know a lot about him, but he's 6-6, 250 pounds and really athletic. He could be very good down the road. "It's a good class top to bottom, but I think it clearly trails Ohio State and Penn State by a good margin. Both of those teams brought in multiple five-stars and Michigan has none. Jim Harbaugh is a really good coach and will get a lot out of his guys, but he's behind those two schools in talent for this year's class." Southeast recruiting analyst Rob Cassidy "Recruiting is about perspective. There are teams out there, good teams too — like a Kansas State or something — that would kill for Michigan's class. But Michigan spoiled itself with Harbaugh and I think they certainly expect more. 0 Michigan signees were ranked in the Rivals100. Atlanta Westlake four-star cornerback Myles Sims was the highest- rated recruit U-M inked, at No. 103 overall. In comparison, the Wolverines signed seven top-100 recruits last year and four in 2016. The last time the Maize and Blue failed to sign a Rivals100 player was 2015. 3.32 Is the average star rating for U-M's class. To compare, the Maize and Blue's average star rating over the last two years — in a pair of fourth-ranked groups — was 3.63. 4 Signees are ranked in the Rivals250 — Sims, No. 129 Dearborn (Mich.) Divine Child defensive end Aidan Hutchinson, No. 195 Indianap- olis Lawrence Central linebacker Cam- eron McGrone and No. 200 Orlando Olympia quarterback Joe Milton. 4 Signees are listed at 6-6 or taller, which is the most for Michigan since 2013, when it also signed four. It stands as the second-most ever in the Rivals era (since 2002). Tra- verse City (Mich.) West three-star tight end Ryan Hayes is the tall- est of the bunch at 6-7. 5 Defensive backs are in the class, with each of them standing 6-2 or taller (Sims is 6-3). The Michigan coaching staff has made it clear they prefer tall, lanky defensive backs. 16 Of the 19 players chose to sign during the Dec. 20 early signing period. The only three who inked on Feb. 7 were Kansas City Park Hill two-star receiver Ronnie Bell, Valdosta (Ga.) Lowndes three- star athlete Michael Barrett and Rochester (Mich.) Adams three- star cornerback Vincent Gray. 19 Total players Michigan signed. Only three times in the Rivals era (since 2002) have the Wolverines brought in a smaller haul — 17 in 2003, 16 in 2014 and 14 in 2015. It was the second- smallest class in the Big Ten this year (Northwestern, 18). 38.6 Miles from Hutchinson's hometown of Dearborn to Ann Arbor, making him the signee who will have to travel the shortest distance to his new home. 275 Pounds is how much Grand Rapids (Mich.) Catholic Central four-star offensive tackle Jalen Mayfield weighs, the most of anyone in the class. The lightest is Sims, at 173 pounds. 4,316 Miles German three -star defensive end Julius Wel- schof will have to travel from his home of Mies- bach (which is located in Bavaria, Germany) to Ann Arbor. — Austin Fox BY THE NUMBERS PHOTO BY BRANDON BROWN

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