The Wolverine

March 2018

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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MARCH 2018 THE WOLVERINE 25 "It's a fine class. They definitely did better in Georgia and the Mid- west than they did in Florida this year, even though they got a few nice pieces. "Like I said, it's all about perspec- tive. I think there are a lot of pro- grams out there that would like to have this class, but at the same time Michigan set a standard for itself early and now people expect them to meet that standard. I don't know that this class does it." Mid-Atlantic recruiting analyst Adam Friedman "Certainly people have started to wonder when the high-level results are going to start coming and that spilled over into Michigan's recruit- ing. Last season was not as successful as many had hoped and the recruit- ing class reflected that. "There's not as much star power and the ranking isn't elite at No. 24 in the country. I think that there are some really good players in the class, there's no doubt about that, but over- all it's a bit down. "Aidan Hutchinson really showed that he could be a star at the Army Game. McGrone also impressed me when I saw him in San Antonio. Those guys kind of lead the charge there. The staff really seemed to re- load in the defensive secondary. I think Myles Sims is a special guy and I think he'll be really good at Michigan." Midwest recruiting analyst Josh Helmholdt "I think Michigan fans have to be a little discouraged about it. The dif- ference between them and Penn State is about the same difference, point wise, between them and Northwest- ern, who is 14th in the conference. "After what they did last year and the year before that — pulling in the five-stars, top-five recruiting classes, going blow for blow with some of the top programs in the country — then here they came down the stretch and I wrote recently that five of their last six pickups were guys that didn't have offers going into their senior season. The question is, is it a trend or is it an anomaly? That's just some- thing we won't know until next year and the year after that. "Michigan has apparently changed their recruiting M.O. based on the last month or so. They're papering certain regions, including the in-state guys, with offers. They're obviously doing self-assessment as well and seeing that things need to change. "Is this the right change? I don't know. We'll find out about a year from now." Texas recruiting analyst Nick Krueger "The fact that there aren't any five- stars or Rivals100 prospects in the class is a poor reflection of the class itself, but I still think Michigan's class is pretty good. "To me, the surprising thing is that Michigan didn't land many offensive linemen. Those are guys you nor- mally expect Michigan to land — Big Ten type guys. "I don't think the Michigan staff did a poor job or anything. I really think it's more about how the talent was dispersed in 2018 and how some of the other programs did on the re- cruiting trail." Southeast/Georgia recruiting analyst Chad Simmons "I would say from an outsider 's perspective — being that I'm down in the south and don't know a ton about most of the individual guys in the class — when you look at the star power and where the ranking falls, it's a little disappointing. I don't think it meets the expectations that Jim Harbaugh has for himself. I think the fans are probably a little disap- pointed, but at the end of the day, it's hard to sign top-five class after top- five class. There aren't a lot of Nick Sabans or Urban Meyers out there. "It's probably more of a glitch for Harbaugh and his staff. Coming back in 2019 could be big. They're obvi- ously off to a good start with guys like [Norcross (Ga.) Greater Atlanta Christian five-star defensive end] Chris Hinton and [Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy three-star linebacker] Charles Thomas. "From the outside looking in, it's probably not what I expected for Harbaugh and Michigan at this stage. "Losing [four-star linebacker] Otis Reese was a big deal. He was definitely one of the jewels of the Michigan class. He's a guy that was definitely in that five-star discussion. He's an immediate impact player at just about any program in the coun- try. "When you lose a guy like that it's tough to swallow. I think Michigan was counting on him as a commit for over a year, so that's a tough loss late in the process." — Brandon Brown Defensive back Myles Sims was one of two U-M signees to play in the Under Armour All- America game, while a total of 10 future Michigan football players took part in national post- season all-star contests. PHOTO COURTESY RIVALS.COM

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