Every year I post my recruiting awards to look back on in future years. You can look back on past years here (LINK) to find the hits and misses.
Best Overall Recruit: DT Rashan Gary
There’s no real suspense this year. Gary is the consensus #1 player in the country, and I gave him a TTB Rating of 100. He is awesome at the football.
Best Offensive Recruit: TE Devin Asiasi
I think the combination of Asiasi’s athleticism and Jim Harbaugh’s propensity for developing tight ends will do great things for Asiasi’s profile.
Best Defensive Recruit: DT Rashan Gary
Hit the jump for the rest of the awards.
Recruit Most Likely to Make an Early Impact: DT Rashan Gary
This is starting to sound like a broken record, but Gary is probably the most likely individual recruit to start next year, since Willie Henry departed early for the NFL. Even if he doesn’t start, he’s guaranteed to play a ton.
Fastest Recruit: CB David Long, Jr.
Michigan has a handful of recruits who are speedy, including CB Lavert Hill (reported 4.39 forty), Long (4.4), Nate Johnson (4.47), and Eddie McDoom (4.48). It’s tough to pick between those four, because reported forty times are notoriously inconsistent. I’ll go with Long, though, who I think has a bit more giddyup than the others.
Strongest Recruit: DT Rashan Gary
I think Gary is probably the obvious choice here, because he generates so much power with his quickness off the ball. He’s not going to get overpowered very often, and when he does, it will be because he stands up too high and not because he just lacks the appropriate strength. But I’ll give an honorable mention to 367 lb. offensive guard Michael Onwenu. He was stoning defensive tackles at the U.S. Army All-American Bowl, and he has a very powerful lower body. At only about 6’2″ or 6’3″, it’s very difficult for opponents to get underneath him, which is one reason why I think he might be a better nose tackle than offensive guard.
Best Under-the-Radar Recruit: DE/OLB Joshua Uche
I require this category to be a 3-star (or lower) recruit. Unfortunately for the category – but fortunately for Michigan – even the under-the-radar recruits were pretty highly touted. Uche is the 247 Composite #705 player in the country, despite having offers from Alabama, Auburn, Florida, and Miami, among others. Whether plays a weakside end position or becomes a rush linebacker, I just think he has the quickness and speed to be a terror off the edge. He might be a bit undersized at 6’2″, 212 lbs., but I like the way he bends coming off the corner, and he could turn into a Robert Mathis-like player.
Most Overrated Recruit: WR Brad Hawkins, Jr.
This player has to be a 4- or 5-star kid, and my choice is going to be Hawkins. I don’t have any huge problems with his game, but I think we’re going to find that Hawkins is a little slow-footed in college. He looks like a possession receiver to me, and there have been some people saying he could play safety, too. As a 4-star and the #290 player in the country, I would like to see some more big-play ability. To put it in different terms, I don’t think many people would strongly disagree or be too upset if he were, say, a 3-star and the #400 player in the country.
Recruit Most Likely to Redshirt: DT Michael Dwumfour
The 6’2″, 286 lb. Dwumfour joins a defensive line that is pretty well stocked and loses just two players from last year’s interior rotation (Willie Henry and Tom Strobel); meanwhile, Bryan Mone should return from a season-long injury, and Ryan Glasgow should come back from a torn pectoral muscle he suffered halfway through the year. Toss in the fact that Rashan Gary is a shoo-in to see the field, and I think Dwumfour can take at least a year to develop his upper body.
Personal Favorite Recruit: DT Rashan Gary
If I have to pick a lone favorite, it has to be Gary. The thing that makes the difference with him is his attitude and hardworking nature; combine that with his pure talent, and he’s going to be very fun to watch. But he’s not the only one. I also have a fondness for WR Eddie McDoom (a potential big-play wideout), DE Joshua Uche (speedy edge rusher), and safety Khaleke Hudson (hard-hitting hybrid space player or pinball running back). This recruiting class has a wide array of talented athletes.
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