The Wolverine

March 2018

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 53 of 99

54 THE WOLVERINE MARCH 2018 BY BRANDON BROWN Bradenton (Fla.) Braden River three-star Taylor Upshaw, the No. 25 strongside defensive end in the country, had been committed to Flor- ida, but became a U-M target in the wake of then-Gator head coach Jim McElwain being fired. Upshaw set up an official visit to Ann Arbor for the weekend of the Ohio State game and commit- ted almost immediately once he got to town. The 6-4, 240-pounder re- capped how comfortable he felt as soon as he arrived. "When I actually committed I was at Coach [Jim] Harbaugh's house," Upshaw recalled. "There were some recruits there, and we were having a Thanksgiving type of dinner. Coach Harbaugh came by the table and I pretty much just thought that would be a good time to tell him. "I told him, and he was like, 'Oh yeah! Great, great news!' I wanted to keep it more low-key, but he wanted to tell everyone. He stood up and announced that I committed, and ev- eryone was celebrating and cheering. "Then Coach Harbaugh played 'The Victors' and everyone was sing- ing it." Enrolling early was always a part of Upshaw's plan, and he's been on campus since early January. Braden River head coach Curt Bradley is very confident that Upshaw will thrive at U-M off the field. "Since he was home-schooled, aca- demically he's so far ahead," Brad- ley explained. "Leaving high school early was always going to happen for him. He's definitely ready to get right into it. "With the early signing period, kids don't have to wait until the first week of February to sign, and that was good. Some of these guys want Michigan Snags Taylor Upshaw From Florida, Brings Him In Early STATISTICS Year Tkl. TFL Sacks INT PBU FR 2017 33 7 4.5 1 (for TD) 1 0 2016 17 4.5 1.5 0 3 1 HONORS • Named Bradenton Herald All-Area honorable mention for 2017. RECRUITMENT • Was committed to Florida for five months before Jim McElwain was fired. • U-M offered, the coaches impressed Upshaw, he officially visited Ann Arbor and ultimately committed on Nov. 24, the night before the Ohio State game. DID YOU KNOW? • Father, Regan, was an All-American defensive tackle at Cal. The No. 12 pick by the Buccaneers in the 1996 NFL Draft played in the NFL for nine years. • Older brother, Regan Upshaw Jr., is a walk-on linebacker at Clemson. • Home-schooled his entire life. THEY SAID IT • U-M head coach Jim Harbaugh: "Taylor jumped off the tape as soon as we started watching him. He's very long and athletic as a defensive lineman, and has a 3.6 GPA with about a 1050 SAT." • Braden River head coach Curt Bradley: "He's got so much length and athleticism that I think he's more comfortable pass rushing right now. The hand placement and getting off of blocks will come with time — pad level too. Those things will definitely help him improve in the run game, but he did a lot of good things for us. He's played inside and outside, and he's got the ability to play all over." • Florida recruiting ana- lyst Rob Cassidy: "Upshaw, as of right now, is better getting after the quarter- back than he is against the run, but he has the tools to be really good." TAYLOR UPSHAW DEFENSIVE END 6-4 • 240 BRADEN RIVER HIGH SCHOOL BRADENTON, FLA. RANKINGS STARS NAT. POS. STATE ✪ ✪ ✪ — 25* 75 ✪ ✪ ✪ — 23* 76 ✪ ✪ ✪ — 68^ 120 * Ranked as a strongside defensive end; ^ ranked as a defensive end 2018 FOOTBALL RECRUITING ISSUE 54 THE WOLVERINE MARCH 2018 A newcomer to football, Upshaw only played two years in high school. PHOTO BY BRANDON BROWN

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of The Wolverine - March 2018