|Delonte Hollowell (foreground, #24)|
Coming out of Detroit (MI) Cass Tech, Hollowell followed the likes of Boubacar Cissoko and Teric Jones, both of whom were diminutive Technician cornerbacks who would eventually play at Michigan, albeit with shortened careers. Hollowell was a Rivals 3-star and the #25 cornerback in his class, choosing Michigan over Central Michigan in January 2010, approximately a year before National Signing Day.
Hollowell mostly played as a special teamer in 2011, making 6 tackles and 1 fumble recovery, the latter of which came in the Sugar Bowl against Virginia Tech. He played a little more in both phases of the game as a sophomore in 2012, totaling 4 tackles and 1 more fumble recovery against Purdue. Then as a junior in 2013, he made 2 tackles and 1 fumble recovery. I hypothesized that he would have a 2014 season that included 0 tackles and 1 fumble recovery, but he broke the trend by making 15 tackles, 2 tackles for loss, and 2 pass breakups. Those numbers came in significantly increased snaps on the defensive side of the ball, as injuries and ineffectiveness opened the door for him to play more.
27 tackles, 2 tackles for loss, 3 fumble recoveries, 2 pass breakups
Hollowell was a small corner coming out of high school, and I questioned his abilities at the time. When he started his career at Michigan, I was surprised that he played as a true freshman. I thought he would be the type of kid who would certainly redshirt, but that turned out not to be the case. Brady Hoke burned his redshirt and got a fumble recovery out of him. Hollowell would eventually turn into a pretty solid gunner and special teams coverage guy, but he never panned out on defense. Aside from the three career fumble recoveries, his play on defense this past season was very frustrating. When Raymon Taylor and Jabrill Peppers were injured, and when Blake Countess was benched for stretches because of poor play, Hollowell got more time on the field than anyone probably wanted. The results were not positive, as several teams picked on him as soon as they saw him enter the game.
I WILL REMEMBER HIM FOR . . .
. . . being the first recruit to earn me some hate mail. If you look back at my commitment post from January 2010 (LINK), you'll see that I gave him a TTB Rating of 58 and questioned whether he would make an impact at Michigan. You'll also see if you scroll down to the comments that various family members, Cass Tech people, etc. were not happy with my characterization. I received a couple e-mails objecting to my statements, too. That was really the first time that a bunch of people came out of the woodwork to descend on my site with anger. Five years later, I still remember that as a landmark in my blogging "career," although not necessarily a positive one.
Hollowell was the star of Michigan's pro day last week (LINK), running a hand-timed 4.34, showing off a 37" vertical, and doing other things that pro scouts generally like. Unfortunately, his play on the field probably won't warrant a look at the next level. He was never a starter (well, he started one game as a senior), mostly played special teams, and never made an interception. Michigan has had better corners who never did anything in the NFL (Donovan Warren, J.T. Floyd, Todd Howard, etc.), so I think Hollowell will probably follow in their footsteps.