Hailing to the Victors: Fluffing Michigan's 2013 Recruiting Class

ANN ARBOR, MI - WE'RE #1 RUNNING WILD IN RECRUITING, BROTHER. (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images)

Back in February a colleague of mine at the High Porch Picnic published an article entitled The Hoke Problem: Recruiting Head-to-Head with Michigan. An Iowa-centric piece, it summarized how the arrival of Brady Hoke negatively affected the Hawkeyes' recruiting efforts. When Rich Rodriguez was in town, Kirk Ferentz had the advantage of pitching the pro-style offense to recruits who didn't want to play in Michigan's spread. And yeah, Iowa never beat the Wolverines straight-up and 2011 was the only year where we actually tied Michigan in commitments but the overall point was this:

Looking ahead to 2013, Iowa already has 42 offers out. Of those, 18 (43%) currently hold a Michigan offer and as mentioned above 6 have already committed to the Wolverines. The only good news is that at this rate the Wolverines will be done recruiting by June and then Iowa can come in a clean up the left overs. Or find the players that were under the radar before their senior season.

Now, it's June. Now, Michigan has a ridiculous 21 verbal commitments. Now, it's not just Iowa who is losing nearly every top-flight recruit they offer. Now, it's every team in the Big 10.

Some numbers in beautiful bullet format:

  • Michigan currently has the best recruiting class in the nation according to Rivals, Scout and ESPN.
  • Numbers wise, Michigan has the most commitments in the nation (21) and Georgia is the only other school to have 20+ verbals.
  • Per Scout, Michigan has 5 commitments in the top 100, which ties them with Ohio State for first in the Big Ten and second in the nation behind Texas, Alabama and USC.
  • Per Rivals, Michigan has the most 4-star commitments in the nation (14). LSU comes in at second with 11.
  • Per Scout, Michigan comes in second with three 5-star commitments. USC checks in at first with 5.
  • Michigan's 21 commitments are a full 10 more than the second place team in the Big Ten: Ohio State.
  • Speaking of Ohio State, they (along with Purdue but they're not a hated rival) are the biggest losers of the Wolverine's 2013 recruiting dominance. Of Michigan's 21 commitments, 8 are from the state of Ohio and of those 8, four had offers from the Buckeyes. Overall, Michigan snagged 8 players who had offers from Ohio State. Here's the full chart listing the Wolverine commitments and a breakdown of other B1G teams who made scholarship offers*:

    Commit:

    Illinois

    Indiana

    Iowa

    MSU

    Minn

    UNL

    NW

    OSU

    PSU

    PU

    UW

    Kyle Bosch

    Y

    Y

    Y

    Y

    Y

    Y

    Y

    N

    N

    Y

    N

    Jake Butt

    N

    Y

    Y

    N

    Y

    N

    Y

    N

    N

    Y

    Y

    Taco Charlton

    Y

    N

    Y

    N

    N

    Y

    N

    N

    N

    Y

    N

    Gareon Conley

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    Y

    N

    N

    N

    N

    David Dawson

    N

    Y

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    Jaron Dukes

    Y

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    Chris Fox

    N

    N

    Y

    N

    N

    N

    N

    Y

    N

    Y

    N

    Ben Gedeon

    N

    N

    N

    Y

    N

    N

    N

    Y

    Y

    Y

    N

    Khalid Hill

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    Maurice Hurst Jr.

    N

    N

    N

    Y

    N

    Y

    N

    Y

    N

    Y

    N

    Patrick Kugler

    N

    N

    N

    Y

    N

    N

    N

    N

    Y

    Y

    N

    Jourdan Lewis

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    Mike McCray

    Y

    N

    N

    N

    Y

    Y

    N

    Y

    N

    Y

    N

    Shane Morris

    N

    N

    N

    Y

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    Henry Poggi

    N

    N

    Y

    Y

    N

    N

    Y

    Y

    Y

    N

    Y

    Wyatt Shallman

    N

    N

    N

    Y

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    Deveon Smith

    N

    Y

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    Y

    N

    N

    N

    Scott Sypniewski

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    Dymonte Thomas

    Y

    N

    Y

    Y

    N

    N

    N

    Y

    N

    N

    N

    Logan Tuley-Tillman

    Y

    Y

    Y

    N

    N

    N

    N

    Y

    Y

    N

    Y

    Csont'e York

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    N

    Total:

    6

    5

    7

    7

    3

    4

    4

    8

    4

    8

    3

    Michigan receiving a commitment from an Ohioan is nothing new. Over the past 2-3 years, anywhere from 7-10 Ohioans signed LOI with the Wolverines. First, I'd point out that Ohio has a ridiculous amount of football talent and it's impossible to keep every top flight recruit in the state. Second, I'd point out that in the past, Michigan usually received commitments from kids who didn't have tOSU offers (cue Buckeye fans saying LOLOLOL UR GETTING OUR LEFTOVERS). That isn't the case this season. Doing some amateur research I found that in the past five years** Michigan has not received such a high number of commitments from prospects who had tOSU offers until this current recruiting season.

    How can we explain Michigan's dominance? Well, for Ohio State it's obvious: Tresselgate stigma. For everyone else it's equally obvious: they're not Michigan. Illinois is breaking in an entirely new coaching staff, Indiana is Indiana, Iowa has new coordinators, Minnesota is rebuilding, Nebraska has a creepy inflatable mascot who drives a panel van, Pat Fitzgerald enjoys ass and Penn State has "things" going on.

    That leaves me wondering about Wisconsin and Michigan State. Despite the Spartans and Badgers success in the Big Ten over the past couple seasons they still can't compete with the Wolverines on the recruiting front. Then again, you could just as easily argue that recruiting rankings don't seem to matter because they keep winning 10 games every year.

    There are a number of those who aren't buying Michigan in 2012. Last year was a fluke, Shoelace isn't that good, LOL VIRGINIA TECH etc. Detractors summarize their feelings with statements like "Michigan isn't Michigan anymore" and "This isn't your father's Michigan team."*** In the eyes of this author, I look at last year, I look at their recruiting class and I look ahead to next season. You can hate all you want, but it looks like Brady Hoke is building Michigan right back up where they used to be.

    * - Based on Rivals.com offer lists

    ** - And it could very well be more. It could be 10 years. I only went back 5 years because it's a pain to research.

    *** - That statement can be both positive and negative. I'm using it in a negative manner.

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