Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Chris Wormley, Wolverine

Ohio defensive end Chris Wormley committed to Michigan on Sunday

Toledo, OH, defensive end Chris Wormley committed to Michigan on Sunday after the "BBQ at the Big House."  He chose the Wolverines over offers from Cincinnati, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan State, Ohio State, and Toledo.

Wormley is 6'4"-ish and 250-ish pounds, depending on the recruiting site.  Speaking of recruiting sites, his ratings vary somewhat wildly from place to place:

ESPN: 4-star, #16 DE
Rivals: 3-star, #22 DE
Scout: 4-star, #20 DE
24/7 Sports: 4-star, #3 SDE, #57 overall

Based on Wormley's ratings and offers, I think it's pretty safe to say that Wormley is a complete wild card.  The only "elite" program to offer Wormley a car scholarship was Ohio State, and the other programs are all middle of the road.  People who look to scholarship offers more than ratings might not be all that enthused.  As for people who prefer ratings, well, the mixed reviews are curious.  Wormley has been on Michigan fans' radar since his sophomore season, he plays for a decent program at Whitmer, and he's a superb shotput/discus thrower.  He's had plenty of attention, but Rivals seems to be down on him.  Those reasons, explained by Josh Helmholdt from The Wolverine at one point, seems to be that he lacks a strong motor, lacks aggression, and might be a better fit at offensive tackle in college.

Most of Wormley's highlights seem to come from his sophomore season, with junior year film surprisingly scarce for such high profile player.  When he was listed as a 6'4", 225 lb. sophomore, he looked like an explosive edge rusher with a good frame and the speed to chase down quarterbacks and even running backs in the open field.  He looked like an absolute beast and I tended to agree that he was an elite player headed for perhaps the top spot in Ohio's recruiting ranks for 2012.

But something happened before his junior year.  He apparently added about 25-30 pounds (or more), lost some of that explosiveness, and just seemed pretty lethargic.  I have even suggested that he looked like he was injured and just couldn't go 100% last season.  Something was amiss.  His 2009 performance should have earned him offers from Michigan and Ohio State; his 2010 performance should have earned him offers from Illinois and Indiana.

The above picture seems to be representative of what I see in Wormley.  He's got big thighs and a big butt, and his upper body doesn't seem to fill out his jersey and shoulder pads.  That indicates to me that he's got some filling out to do, and when he does reach maturity, he might be 30 pounds heavier than he was last season.  If and when that happens, he'll be 6'5"-ish and maybe 285-290 pounds.  Do you turn that guy into a strongside defensive end, a 3-tech defensive tackle, or do you try to make an offensive tackle out of him?  I'm not entirely sure.  He's got the athleticism inside of him to do any of those things, but it depends on whether he's healthy and how hard he pushes himself.

Wormley is the 21st commitment of the 2012 class and joins four other defensive ends (if they all stay at that position group) in the bunch.  The last Whitmer product to come to Michigan was tight end Kevin Koger, who will be a senior this season.

TTB Rating: 73


  1. What would your TTB rating of Wormley been if you were exclusively viewing Sophomore year highlights?

  2. @ bada bing 10:24 a.m.

    Probably in the mid- to high 80's.

  3. His motor didn't seem to have a much horse power junior year as it did sophomore year. I dont think that should be a problem with hoke and mattison, they'll get him working.

  4. At least one of Wormley, Strobel, Godin will likely get a shot at the 3-tech, maybe a couple of them... Interesting that all 3 are a little taller than prototypical d-linemen.

    I see Wormley as a similar prospect to Brown - high ceiling due to athleticism/size but also decent risk of being a bust. Also, likely to redshirt. Strobel seems the safest bet of the bunch.

  5. With some reasonable luck which we're due, we should have the ability to platoon big time across the entire D line.

    While more is always better, If he tires some a lack of motor under that circumstance isn't a killer.

    The Albert Hayenesworth argument.

  6. My guess is he winds up as an interior player, along with Godin. (I predict Strobel will lock down the 5-tech spot for several years.) Wormley will probably be 260+ when he arrives on campus. His position will of course depend somewhat upon how his body responds to the weight program. It's reassuring that he is a good thrower in track and good basketball player. That's good raw material for Mattison to work with. I think if he was injured last season, it would be public knowledge by now. But here's hoping he turns it around for his senior year...

  7. Wormley had a lot more offers than you indicated Magnus, everyone in the B1G offered him except PSU and Minny. Alabama, Florida, and Tennessee also offered him. I think he has the most upside of any of our current commits. Anyway, here's the article from Toledo Blade.

    Recruiting assessments of Wormley are varied. lists him as a three-star recruit -- out of five -- and the 22nd best player nationally at his position. thinks more highly of Wormley, grading him a four-star prospect and the 20th best defensive end. ESPNU views Wormley similarly -- as a four-star recruit and the 16th best end.

    Palka said 10 of the Big Ten's 12 teams have offered Wormley a scholarship, with Penn State and Minnesota being the exceptions. Wormley's appeal has been felt down south too as Alabama, Tennessee, and Florida from the Southeastern Conference have extended offers.

    "The way I phrase it is anyone who has seen tape of him or has come around here have all offered him," Palka said.