Monday, March 12, 2012

Recruiting Update: March 12, 2012

Detroit (MI) Loyola defensive end Malik McDowell
Massillon (OH) Washington cornerback Gareon Conley committed to Michigan.

Trotwood (OH) Trotwood-Madison linebacker Mike McCray committed to Michigan.

Duluth (GA) Peachtree Ridge offensive tackle Orlando Brown, a 2014 prospect, was offered by Michigan.  Brown is the son of Orlando "Zeus" Brown, the former Cleveland Brown and Baltimore Raven offensive tackle.  The younger Brown is even bigger than his father, currently standing 6'10" and weighing 360 lbs.  He also has offers from Alabama, Auburn, Notre Dame, and USC, along with several others.

Grand Rapids (MI) Christian wide receiver Drake Harris, a 2014 prospect, has a Michigan offer.  Harris is a 6'4", 180 lb. kid who is also a highly touted shooting guard prospect.  As a sophomore in 2011, he had 57 receptions for 1,118 yards and 14 touchdowns.  He also has offers to play football at Indiana and Michigan State.

Mesquite (TX) West Mesquite wide receiver Eldridge Massington was offered by Michigan on Wednesday.  He's a 6'3", 205 lb. wideout with offers from Baylor, Houston, Notre Dame, TCU, and Tennessee, among others.  As a junior in 2011, he had 41 receptions for 666 yards and 6 touchdowns.  As you might imagine from an offer list like that, Massington immediately put Michigan and Notre Dame at the top of the heap.  He's a tall, good-sized receiver with enough speed to stretch the field.

Detroit (MI) Loyola defensive end Malik McDowell, a 2014 prospect, was offered by Michigan.  McDowell is a 6'6", 260 lb. strongside end who has started to wow people this offseason.  Loyola isn't a highly recruited school, so it's rare that we hear of kids from that school.  There have been rumors that McDowell will be transferring to Cass Tech, but so far there hasn't been any movement there.  He also has an offer from Syracuse.

Camp Hill (PA) Cedar Cliff tight end Adam Breneman committed to Penn State.  I did a scouting report and TTB Andrew interviewed Breneman in the past, but always seemed to be a long shot for Michigan.  You can't fault the kid for choosing the Nittany Lions.  New head coach Bill O'Brien showed with the New England Patriots that he values the tight end position, and he'll find myriad ways of getting the ball to Breneman in the next few seasons.

Columbus (OH) Bishop Hartley tight end Jacob Matuska committed to Notre Dame.  The 6'5", 240-pounder was being recruited by Michigan as a tight end, but the Fighting Irish are planning to use him as a defensive end.

Belton (TX) Belton tight end Durham Smythe committed to Texas.  Along with jumbo wide receiver Ricky Seals-Jones, who could also play tight end, the Longhorns are bringing in a couple quality

Crete (IL) Crete-Monee cornerback Anthony Standifer committed to Mississippi.  Standifer, a 2012 prospect, was committed to Michigan for several months, but a reported academic issue was going to prevent him from getting into Michigan.  Therefore, he decommitted a few months ago and started to look elsewhere.  He finally chose a school this past week.

In case you missed it, here's a list of guys who visited Michigan this past weekend.  David Dawson is on that list, but he ended up not making it to Ann Arbor.

Meanwhile, St. Paul (MN) Cretin-Derham wide receiver James Onwualu will be visiting Michigan on Wednesday.  The 6'1", 205 lb. athlete is being recruited by Michigan as a slot receiver, while other schools are recruiting him as a cornerback and safety, too.


  1. Wow, Brown is huge. His offer list suggests he will be a good tackle, but I've never heard of a lineman that tall. Magnus what's your take on him?

    And McDowell seems to be blowing up after that lineman camp last month. Good to hear that he seems to favor Michigan if he's as good as people are saying. Beating Elmer, a top 50 player and one year ahead of him, is certainly a good sign.

    1. I haven't seen any film on Brown, so I don't really know. He has offers from all kinds of powerhouse schools, so I have to think that he's pretty good. But at 6'10" and 360 lbs., I wonder how well he can move and if he can avoid injuries. There have been guys that heavy before who have suffered injuries early in their careers, and the tallest tackles you usually see are 6'8" or so. There really haven't been that many guys taller than that who have made it to the next level.

  2. Hard to know with a guy that size. On the one hand, the average size of OT grew from 280 lb or so in the 80s to 315 or so in 2000s. The 1980 all pro team included Dan Dierdorf who was a 6'3 and 275 lb OT. The 1990 all pro team had nobody over 300 lb, but everyone was around 290-295. The 2000 NFL all-pro team had mammoth guys like Ogden (6'9 345), Pace, and Roaf on it. 320 became normal. If that growth trend were to continue through to 2020 (a reasonable target for when this Brown kid might be an all-pro), 6'10 and 360-380 lb might be a realistic expectation for an elite OT.

    OTOH, both all-pro tackles in 2010 were 6'7 and 315 lb (Jake Long and Joe Thomas). Maybe the prototype has swung a bit with the growth of the passing game.

    Brown's dad was an effective pro at 360. I wouldn't be too worried about him. Assuming he stays dedicated, and maintains his athleticism, he should be an elite prospect. Anybody who is OT size has to be careful about getting too big.

  3. Can you see Drake Harris playing both football and basketball if he comes to Michigan?

    1. Not really. Playing both sports is a rarity.

  4. It didn't used to be that rare. Tai Streets, Jermaine Gonzales did both, and others before that, I believe. Kevlin Grady went back and forth. I think it takes both coaches being willing, which can be tough. The biggest thing is that the kid really has to want it - you're basically working a double-shift for free, since tuition is already covered by football. Then again, there are still great time demands with off-season work-outs - Basketball probably gets you out of much of that and keeps you in shape.