|Defensive tackle Ken Wilkins|
Wilkins committed to Michigan in June 2009 as a member of the 2010 class. Rich Rodriguez recruited him as a "Quick," the OLB/DE hybrid that Craig Roh played at one time. As you can see from my commitment post (link), I always had doubts about whether Wilkins had the athleticism to pull off that kind of role. Wilkins redshirted in 2010, and by spring 2011 he was playing strongside end for Brady Hoke. Wilkins eventually grew into a 6'3", 294 lb. nose tackle, but the weight wasn't good weight. Reports indicated that he lacked intensity on the field and in the weight room, struggling to stay low; that was evident in the limited practice film and in his spring game performance. He was not expected to contribute much in 2013, since rising sophomore Ondre Pipkins had already surpassed him, Wilkins' classmate Richard Ash has earned some playing time, and the coaches seemed more excited about redshirt freshman Willie Henry, too.
Wilkins is the 16th member of the 27-man class of 2010 to depart early, joining Cullen Christian, Demar Dorsey, Stephen Hopkins, Carvin Johnson, Conelius Jones, Antonio Kinard, Ricardo Miller, Christian Pace, Jerald Robinson, Davion Rogers, Terrence Talbott, Terry Talbott, Ray Vinopal, Austin White, and D.J. Williamson. Michigan is still technically above the 85-scholarship limit for the coming season, so Wilkins' departure does not really affect the size of the 2014 recruiting class.