Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Mailbag question: Should I be alarmed with all the three star recruits?

Mailbag question: Should I be alarmed with all the three star recruits?

Should I be alarmed by seeing mostly 3 star players being recruited by U of M?




Thanks for the question.

What concerns us most is NOT the number of three stars, but instead the lack of elite level, top twenty-five to fifty type, talent being brought into the program. This premise is especially true on the defensive side of the ball. Justin Turner types are all too rare nowadays. The staff has compensated by locating and signing players who may be top level after say two years on campus. Lewan, Gallon, and Roh may or may not reach elite status, but if so this will take time. Turner, even with the problems of the summer, will play immediately.

As has been stated before, we believe in the philosophy of building defenses around difference makers. We believe building around a player like C. Woodson (obviously) is the best way to go.

Great players on defense committing, in our opinion, can change a program around quickly. This level of talent also has a positive side effect of infusing players that can contribute on special teams.

There is always a great debate on the star rankings, and coaches and media that cover recruiting may evaluate or value players differently.

There is a clear top-tier of say 25 to 50 players that end up being most of the time (but there are exceptions) consensus picks among the services. Frankly, most people, novice or expert, could easily spot such recruits and attach a wow tag. Then, it gets a littler tougher trying to decipher the players from spots 50-100. From about spots 100-250, evaluation is somewhat of a crapshoot and almost any recruit that is 250th on one list could probably be say 110th on somebody else's list. From spots 250-500 (or whatever) the talent level seems to show little difference and development becomes the key to making, or not making, a contribution at the college level.

Still, with discussion of numbers and rankings always flying around, of paramount importance is finding and signing players that fit your system, along with finding the occasional diamonds in the rough that other programs overlooked, or perhaps offered at another position. Get recruits, like described above on campus and convince these recruits that they can play at their desired position. Does Denard Robinson ring a bell? Some services did not even rank a superior athlete like this as a quarterback.

Currently, UM is receiving verbals from athletic players who need to develop, and many recruits have a still to be determined designation regarding their eventual position. There must be some high impact, premium quality, players, who can contribute from day one, brought into the program.

Elite level recruits will turn a program around much quicker. Coach Barwis will get the most out of the elites, resulting in an earlier on the field impact. Development then becomes less of an issue. As stated before, Coach Barwis prefers the higher rated recruits simply because he can improve them faster and the overall ceiling for eventual on the field production is much higher, compared to lower ranked recruits. There will always be exceptions, but an ace (five star) is more valuable in a hand than a jack (three star).

Yes, continuing on with this line of thought, we all know about the three star recruits that turn into great players and occurrences such as this are great stories. But in most cases, three star players continue to be three star type college players. But elite programs do need and actively seek elite players. There are hundreds of three star recruits, so some will improve in stature at the college level simply because of a larger number sample. Plus, some three star players are incorrectly evaluated for reasons such as playing at a smaller school, not getting their films out to colleges, not going to football camps, attending football combines, etc. A player must be his own advocate and cover the bases in today’s world of recruiting.

We have never really worried about Michigan's offensive recruiting. This is because this type of offense will always secure playmakers, which are excited to play in this system. Unfortunately, in the current status of the program, recruits are looking at the defensive side of the ball with some hesitancy. Why so? Within the last few years, there have been differences in the schemes, coaches, personnel, etc. Other programs quickly bring to recruits’ attention the above conditions. UM’s current coaches must fight hard and overcome these perceptions of instability. The ultimate elixir will be success. To the typical way of thinking, wins and players moving on to the next level largely define success.

Recruits, when selecting a college program, look at playing time probability (read depth chart) and how they fit into the scheme of the defense. Michigan can sell playing time as well as early playing time. The program must get Coach Robinson out and about to sell his defense, and convince the recruits where they will fit in, along with pledging to recruits he is going to be their defensive coordinator while they are at Michigan. Recruits worry about "what happens if the defensive coordinator leaves and a different scheme is brought in that I do not fit."

Simply put, these concerns need to be addressed. On the field success this year would be a great prescription for the future health of the program.

Play hard, and play well!!!

Thanks for stopping by Go Blue Michigan Wolverine
If you have any questions please E-Mail

Written by CoachBt and ErocWolverine


Anonymous said...

From 1995-2008, per's rankings, UM had by far the best recruiting:

I wonder what is keeping Rodriguez from reaching those heights? The 3-9 season? The negative recruiting? Is he just not accustomed to recruiting the very best?

ErocWolverine said...


Well one thing is that Coach Rod goes after a different type of athlete (such as slot receivers) which do not get ranked well on scout or rivals.

That is one position that I think they need to add for a position. Do not feel that slot receivers and split ends should be in the same category.

To many times the so called "pro-style wide receivers" will always be higher ranked than a slot receiver.

Right now he is getting players that he feels will benefit his system.

Of course the 3-9, the WV stuff, and of course other college coaches are using this stuff along with the Free Press stuff for recruiting. Also having 3 different defensive coordinators in three years does not help for the defensive recruits either.

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